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Craig Swanson: Definity Health

Starting with mowing lawns in fifth grade, Swanson graduated to painting houses in junior high, aspiring to paint them like a professional. From there he graduated to full-time construction work in the summer and college at the University of Vermont during the school year.

With a degree in economics and political science, he joined the management group of Meredith & Grew, an old-line real estate company in Boston.

Soon, he moved to TCF Bank in Minneapolis during the S&L crisis, before joining the MBA program at the University of Minnesota. After graduation, he became a consultant with Deloitte & Touche, where he spotted an opportunity in health care payment.

With his colleagues and partners, he started a new venture called Definity Health. After investing nearly a million of their own money, the partners raised $75 million in three rounds of venture capital. Four years later, they sold the business to United Health Group for $307 million.

This is how they did it.

This introduction is excerpted from Bootstrap to Billions: Proven Rules from Entrepreneurs who Built Great Companies from Scratch by Dr. Dileep Rao. Copying or reproduction in any format or medium without the prior express, written consent of the author is strictly prohibited.

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