Nick Hu, Zipline, on the future of healthcare supply chains
In our latest episode, I had a chance to chat with Nick Hu, an early member of the Global Operations team at Zipline. Nick led the launches of Zipline’s operations in Rwanda and Ghana and continues to drive expansion strategy across Africa. Zipline has built the world’s fastest and most reliable delivery drone and the world’s largest autonomous logistics network to help provide instant access to life-saving medical supplies in Rwanda, Ghana, and the US. Founded in 2014, Zipline is a Series D company most recently valued at $1.2B, featured on CNBC’s Disruptor 50, and slated by Fast Company as one of the most innovative companies of 2020.
Nick shares stories and lessons learned from building and launching Zipline in Rwanda and Ghana: how they worked with local government (Aviation Authority, Minister of Health) and their customers (healthcare providers) to build the first just-in-time logistics network at national scale. Nick reflects on how these experiences have shaped his perspectives on how to create sustainable change in healthcare delivery, and the power of technology to transform healthcare supply chains and ultimately, improve healthcare access. We also chat about Zipline’s COVID-19 response in Ghana, from delivering PPE to poll workers in the last election to on-demand vaccine distribution.
Prior to Zipline, Nick co-founded First Derm, a teladermatology service, Medbikes, a motorbike ambulance program in rural Tanzania, and Noisy Savage, a boutique storytelling firm. Nick holds a Master’s of Science in Global Health from UCSF and an undergraduate degree in Global Health Access from UC Berkeley.