The China Startup Pulse

Leveraging WeChat ecosystem to build a profitable cross-border product with Drew Kirchhoff, Co-Founder and Head of Product of Yoli

Episode Summary

Drew Kirchhoff is a product guy. After studying finance in the USA and working for a diamond investment firm in China, Drew became one of the most successful product managers to publish the game Crossy Road in the market achieving more than one hundred million downloads. “A great product manager makes a great CEO”. After being a product manager, he co-founded Yoli which allows users to learn English directly through WeChat. He shared how he and his co-founders found the market opportunities driven by the advent of WeChat, how they launched the company, developed Yoli WeChat mini-program and later, he explored deeper in the technical area to improve the product.

Episode Notes

Drew Kirchhoff is a product guy. After studying finance in the USA and working for a diamond investment firm in China, Drew became one of the most successful product managers to publish the game Crossy Road in the market achieving more than one hundred million downloads.

“A great product manager makes a great CEO”. After being a product manager, he co-founded Yoli which allows users to learn English directly through WeChat. He shared how he and his co-founders found the market opportunities driven by the advent of WeChat, how they launched the company, developed Yoli WeChat mini-program and later, he explored deeper in the technical area to improve the product.

Show Notes:
1:20 Drew’s background and his experience in China
5:50 Working in a mobile gaming company
7:50 Brought the game Crossy Road to the market
10:28 Performance of Crossy Road worldwide - 9/10 kids were playing the game
11:38 Product management to being a WeChat Mini-program entrepreneur
12:02 How WeChat changes Chinese business
14:00 Formation, MVP launch and goal of Yoli
21:40 Importance of Mini-programs for User Experience
24:00 Relationship with funding and development
26:30 Competing with huge competitors in the market
26:52 Exciting developments in Yoli’s language education service
30:50 Understanding Conversion Rates - from product to business
33:30 Drew Kirchhoff’s contact information

Feel free to leave a comment and start a conversation with us! If you have an ideal guest whom you would like to listen to, please let us know and we'll do our best to realize it!

Many thanks to our host Oscar Ramos and guest Drew Kirchhoff, editor David and Geep, producer Eva Shi, organizer Chinaccelerator and sponsor People Squared. Be sure to check out our website www.chinaccelerator.com