The Kizazi Story

By Franco Silva, Founder & CEO

Growing up in school, we all learned stories of the great leaders who changed the world. Unfortunately, their extraordinary achievements made it difficult to relate to them, to see them as human, to understand that they are examples of the human potential that we are all born with. What was the key to unlocking their potential? What allowed them to change the world?

Kizazi was born in the summer of 2013 when I found the answer. One month before graduating from Tufts University, a major leg injury spun my life into chaos. The incident not only caused me to miss the application cycle to medical school after four years of preparation, but also forced me to rethink my identity by putting an end to a life of competitive soccer that had previously defined me. During those months of confusion, I took to studying inspirational leaders who I hoped to emulate, looking for a path forward.

Examining their lives led me to this: all of these individuals came from incredibly varied walks of life with seemingly nothing in common, but they all shared one thing— the belief that they could achieve what they set their minds to. By truly believing in their potential and betting on themselves, they were able to fuel their work with passion and perseverance, and ultimately created the world they envisioned.

From that point on, I led my life down a different path. I decided that, going forward, I would bet on myself. I decided that I would no longer place limits on my own life through doubt and fear; I would instead fuel my visions with passion and perseverance.

The question was… what could I create to shape the world? What could I do to help as many people as possible? A year of thought eventually revealed my mission. I will create a movement to use soccer as a vehicle for change, to tap into the massive potential of the game loved by 3.5 billion people to fight global poverty. I will create a brand that allows fans of the game to play for something bigger, a brand that channels our passion for the beautiful game to shape the world. Over 2 billion people live in poverty, a massive undertaking. Well, 3.5 billion people love the game. It is time to fight a giant with a giant.