Hounnake, 34, grew up in the West African nation of Togo, a French-speaking country of about 7 million people. He moved to the U.S. in 2001, settling in Atlanta.
He soon won an Oprah scholarship to attend Morehouse College, where he studied finance. Following graduation, Hounnake took a job with Morgan Stanley before moving on to work with New York-based Privet Capital.
Late last year, while Hounnake was browsing through GrubHub menus for his dinner one evening, he realized that he really wished he could shop the same way for groceries from his local store.
And thus, PickUpLater.com was born.
“I hired a team of developers out in Phoenix, they tested [the idea] and said it was doable,” he says. Hounnake paired up his new startup PickUpLater with Food Cellar in Long Island City, an organic natural grocer that as a policy avoids stocking items high in unnatural and unhealthy ingredients, such as aspartame and high-fructose corn syrup.
Between making successful investments for his clients and setting up his own startup, Hounnake manages KodjoWorkout.com, a personal fitness website and blog. Through this outlet, he hopes to encourage others to pursue personal fitness.
“We only have one life to live and we need to do it right,” Hounnake says. “Health is wealth and people tend to forget that.”