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“Partnering” by Jean Oelwang

Tangible lessons from 60+ of the world's most remarkable partnerships.


Friends and cofounders of LeapFrog Investments

Andy Kuper and Jim Roth


College friends Andy Kuper and Jim Roth have long shared the belief that the private sector can serve social needs and cofounded LeapFrog Investments with that broad vision in mind. Together they seek business opportunities in healthcare and financial services in emerging markets that can change the world.

“And I think had we not had a philosophy of partnership, where we thought about the flotilla of speedboats. Not the battleship, with hierarchy. But really, a whole set of co-captains together, building something. I don’t think that would have been possible. Only a partnership mentality will get you there. Shouting down from the bridge of the battleship as to what everybody should scurry around and do is incredibly ineffective. Whereas creating an ever-expanding flotilla of speedboats is much more likely to allow you to ride the waves of history, and reach many, many shores.”

Andy Kuper

“You know, allows us to disagree without being disagreeable. To argue loudly but persuade one another. And I think it’s those things, in my mind, at least for me that, kind of, keeps the partnership together. That sense of empathy. That sense of trust. That sense of we’re doing something for a higher purpose, fundamentally.”

Jim Roth

“I think one of the things that that incredibly broad and bold vision of profit with purpose does, is it casts a bright light on anything that doesn’t fit well with the partnering mentality. And a humility mentality. And a meritocracy mentality. And a change-orientated mentality. And it says this doesn’t belong here. It’s not appropriate against the scale of this vision. What about the next 100 million people? What about the next billion people that we could reach, and whose lives we could impact? Is it really important what you are focussing on today? And it gives you a deep sense of materiality and of humility and of partnership.”

Andy Kuper

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