Before Mario Schlosser started the New York City-headquartered health insurance company Oscar Health with Josh Kushner (Jared Kushner's brother) in 2012, they co-founded — and he was fired from — a social video-game company, Vostu, headquartered in Buenos Aires.
The once-booming start-up Vostu, replete with scooters, a cafeteria and copious white boards, was toppled by a copyright infringement lawsuit by gaming company Zynga (which Schlosser claims was scurrilous, but it was settled with "a monetary payment to Zynga" and "changes to four of its games," according to the Los Angeles Times.) Employee moral soured and Schlosser was ousted by the board in 2012.
At the time, the Harvard MBA grad, who left his native Germany in 2001, had a wife who was three months pregnant and he needed to figure out his next venture.
"Josh and I have coffee and Josh says to me, 'We should start a health insurance company. That's a crazy stupid, stupid industry that's nobody's innovated in. Let's do that,'" Schlosser tells CNBC Make It in November.
Schlosser agreed to noodle on the idea, despite his own skepticism.