It Changed My Life: Running a business is like completing a marathon, says QFPay co-founder Patrick Ngan

Mr Patrick Ngan ran 36 marathons in 21 countries, a hobby which he said taught him many life lessons. Once retrenched by Lehman Brothers, the ex-investment banker co-founded QFPay, a digital platform which recently raised US$20 million in funding.
Mr Ngan has completed more than 35 marathons and Ironman races in more than 20 countries, including (from top) the Beijing Triathlon, South Pole Marathon, and North Pole Marathon. Mr Patrick Ngan went from investment banker to co-founder of QFPay. Th
Mr Patrick Ngan went from investment banker to co-founder of QFPay. The company is known for its QR code-based technology, and provides end-to-end online and offline mobile payment solutions. It recently made headlines for raising a new round of US$20 million (S$27.5 million) in funding.ST PHOTO: KELVIN CHNG
Mr Ngan has completed more than 35 marathons and Ironman races in more than 20 countries, including (from top) the Beijing Triathlon, South Pole Marathon, and North Pole Marathon. Mr Patrick Ngan went from investment banker to co-founder of QFPay. Th
Mr Ngan has completed more than 35 marathons and Ironman races in more than 20 countries, including the Beijing Triathlon (above), South Pole Marathon, and North Pole Marathon. PHOTO: COURTESY OF PATRICK NGAN
Mr Ngan has completed more than 35 marathons and Ironman races in more than 20 countries, including (from top) the Beijing Triathlon, South Pole Marathon, and North Pole Marathon. Mr Patrick Ngan went from investment banker to co-founder of QFPay. Th
Mr Ngan has completed more than 35 marathons and Ironman races in more than 20 countries, including the Beijing Triathlon, South Pole Marathon (above), and North Pole Marathon. PHOTO: COURTESY OF PATRICK NGAN
Mr Ngan has completed more than 35 marathons and Ironman races in more than 20 countries, including (from top) the Beijing Triathlon, South Pole Marathon, and North Pole Marathon. Mr Patrick Ngan went from investment banker to co-founder of QFPay. Th
Mr Ngan has completed more than 35 marathons and Ironman races in more than 20 countries, including the Beijing Triathlon, South Pole Marathon, and North Pole Marathon (above). PHOTO: COURTESY OF PATRICK NGAN

Start-up co-founder draws lessons from taking part in marathons to achieve success

For several years when he was in his 30s, Patrick Ngan dithered over running a marathon.

He kept finding excuses until he crossed paths with a considerably older woman one day.

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A version of this article appeared in the print edition of The Sunday Times on October 13, 2019, with the headline 'Running a business like a marathon'. Print Edition | Subscribe