All Founders Stories

Melanie Perkins

CEO & Co-founder at Canva

buildd tags

Quit job to start Doesn't code

Quick stats

$6.5B Net wealth 34 Yrs Age 2012 Year of founding


2007 Public Relations Internship, Weber Shandwick 2007-Present Founder and Director, Fusion books 2012-Present CEO & Co-Founder, Canva


BA, The University of Western Australia

Personal Information

Partner Cliff Obrecht

Making of an Entrepreneur

Melanie Perkins has been launching creative businesses since she was a teenager - her first venture was designing and selling handmade scarves in her hometown of Perth, at the age of just 14. At 19, Melanie founded her next company, Fusion Books from her mother's living room, and it ended up being so successful that she dropped out of college by the time she was 22.

Simplifying 'Designing'

With Fusion Books, she was successful, though on a smaller scale, in realising her vision of making the future of design simpler. In college, Melanie Perkins used to teach students on how to use design software. It was then that she had realised how long it took them “to feel remotely confident while designing something basic.” Following the success of Fusion Books, Perkins and her partner (now Co-Founder) decided to create a web-based platform with easy-to-use tools that allowed even non-professionals to create beautiful designs.‍

The Build

In 2010, Melanie Perkins and her partner moved to Silicon Valley to pitch the idea, where they were rejected by more than 100 venture capitalists over 3 years. In 2013, with $3 million in backing and former Google executive Cameron Adams on-board as a co-founder, the trio were able to build Canva and execute their strategy quickly and effectively.


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