The Business Book Club presents: Escaping the Amazon with Alex de Bruyn
Adventurer, entrepreneur and crypto-token pioneer, Alex de Bruyn is the guest at our upcoming monthly event in March.
NxtLevel™ Business Coach, Jacques Velleman will be speaking to him about his book: Escaping the Amazon!
His story is like something you see in a movie!
When it comes to entrepreneurship, Alex de Bruyn is in it for the long haul.
The Johannesburg-based businessman joined the French Foreign Legion for adventure and two years later, left, ultimately making his escape by crossing the Atlantic in a dinghy. So, Alex knows about risk and survival against the odds; a useful grounding for a serial entrepreneur.
His first business venture was FiX – Get it FiX’d, a quote aggregation and payment service focused on home renovations. He then co-founded Waxed Mobile Payments, a payments business focusing on open banking principles driven out of Europe..
With solid credentials in high-tech payments, Alex (and a consortium of partners) then moved into another challenging sector – blockchain-enabled ecosystems and tokenised exchange services. The new start-up – DoshEx – is located in Bryanston and was formally launched in 2018. Bitcoin, of course, is the global pioneer of crytopgraphy-based ecosystems, payment networks and exchanges for the trading of digitised assets.
A sophisticated high-tech environment like this is not normally associated with Third World entrepreneurs, but that did not stop him and his partners from taking the plunge. The pioneering spirit is beginning to pay off.
DoshEx has assisted the South African arm of Virgin Money in the deployment of the latest version of their Spot peer-to-peer mobile app. A revolutionary secondary blockchain and tokenised solution is imminent to launch and list on DoshEx, with a third in the pipeline. Alex and DoshEx are clearly having impact, prompting a lot of questions among corporates, SOE's and fellow entrepreneurs.
Alex was still in his early twenties as he stared out forlornly into the vast Atlantic Ocean from the French Guiana shore. Decades prior, Papillon and Dreyfus contemplated the same thoughts of escape. Following a boyhood dream and quest for glory, de Bruyn joined the French Foreign Legion. To thwart desertion, he was shipped off to a backwater French colony in the Amazon, serving in the elite jungle unit, the 3e REI. Given a false identity, de Bruyn proved himself an extraordinary legionnaire. But well into his first contract, he became disenchanted by life in a rogue army where one was ordered to kill upon demand. Without a passport, de Bruyn decided to risk his life and escape modern-day Devil’s Island by sea. In the process, he dodged local gangs, drug kingpins, and was falsely imprisoned. Finally, in a rickety dinghy, during hurricane season, he commenced his suicidal attempt to cross the Atlantic. Half-drowned and dying of thirst, de Bruyn was prepared to lose his life, but in the divine process of surviving, he found it. This is his white-knuckle account of pain, glory, and redemption.
Entrance: A pre-loved book for donation.
Disclaimer: Seating allocation is on a first-come first-serve basis and we cannot guarantee a seat. Therefore, please arrive early to claim yours. Alternatively, you can stand and enjoy the event.