6 Young Entrepreneurs Who Have a Sharp Eye for Inspiration
August 7, 2018
By: Jason Eisenberg Community Program Manager for Office Depot
One of the most wonderful things about being a free-thinking entrepreneur is that you can find inspiration anywhere. It’s likely some of you reading this started your business on the foundation derived from your first “aha” moment. Inspiration for a great and innovative idea can strike anywhere at any time, but it only catches on if you’re paying attention and putting yourself in the position to succeed.
With International Youth Day coming up August 12, I wanted to take this opportunity to highlight 6 young successful entrepreneurs who either found inspiration in something they love or were inspired by other great ideas to make the world a better place. While running a business requires a multitude of skills and hours of hard work, it’s their passion for what they care about that keeps them moving forward.
Bella Tipping – 15
We’ll begin this list with our youngest entrepreneur, Bella Tipping from Australia. At the age of 12, Bella traveled to the United States. Her experience staying at some hotels got her thinking that most of them didn’t have children in mind when it came to food and accommodations. With a sound entrepreneurial mind, she thought most kids probably feel this way on vacation and (with the help of her mom and web developers) created Kidzcationz.com in 2015. The website is essentially the same idea as TripAdvisor, except it’s written by kids, for kids and is designed to run alongside other major travel apps [Bella Tipping].
Logan Gulleff – 16
One of my favorite examples of a young entrepreneur finding their passion early and getting a head start is Logan Gulleff, the youngest winner of MasterChef Jr. But Logan shows true entrepreneurial spirit by not resting on his laurels. The Memphis-raised culinary prodigy met the First Lady and President after winning the First Kids State Dinner at age 13, has done over 25 local food demos on live TV, and authors one of the top blogs in Memphis called OrderUpWithLogan.
Issam Darui – 23
At age 20 in University, Issam Darui created Morocco’s first electronic bus station that allowed passengers – both local and international tourists – to book their tickets online. Lagare.me was born and only 2-3 years later, the website has over 25,000 registered users, can accept ticket payments in 25 currencies and is available in 10 languages, according to Forbes.
Bonnie Chu – 25
At the old age of 22, Bonnie Chiu had an experience that turned her love for photography into a global movement for women everywhere. According to an interview with Mashable, Bonnie traveled to Instanbul, Turkey. There she saw a group of women fascinated with her camera so she showed them how it worked and bonded with them. This was the first step towards her business, Lensational – a company that empowers women in the developing world by helping them share their stories through photography and videography.
She told Mashable:
I realized then how photography is a universal language, and can transcend cultural barriers.
Without any funding she started a Facebook Page on International Women’s Day in 2013 – she posted articles related to International Women’s Day, shared photos she took of the Turkish girls, and boom, her and her business partner had a social media footprint they could build their business on.
Andre Lorenceau – 28
There are so many ways to incorporate VR technology today. For instance, Office Depot in downtown Austin has a VR Unit to help you customize your office like you’re really there. But let’s get in the mindset of a late twenties sports aficionado. Founder and former CEO of LiveLikeVR, Andre wanted to bring you and your buddies to the game through a VR set and they partnered with FOX Sports to stream the event.
As an avid San Francisco Giants fan living in Austin, Texas, the idea of watching the ballgame in the bleachers with my friends is not as far off as I thought.
Whitney Wolfe – 29
Maybe 29 is pushing ‘young’ for some people, but for anyone over 30, we count it. Whitney Wolfe has been on my radar since the inception of the mobile dating app Bumble. Was it completely original? No. But Wolfe, who was VP of Marketing for infamous swiping app Tinder at the time, saw a real problem with inappropriate messaging – often unsolicited. After leaving Tinder (which she co-founded), she created an app with a simple and elegant fix.
Bumble is similar to Tinder, except only women can start the conversation. In an interview with INC. in 2017, Wolfe explained her one goal: “to make tech-based romance more inclusive and empathetic for the marginalized”. Since then she has used Bumble to help launch Chappy, a dating app for the LGBTQ community.
There’s a reason why everyone asks, “what did you want to be when you were a kid?”. It’s because in that answer lies a raw, unfiltered passion. Whether it’s sports, food, travel, or empowering those who need help, trust in yourself what truly inspires you and your ideas may likely follow.
Take a minute to reflect on what you truly wanted to do when you were growing up. Chances are it's not too late to work in line with your passion - maybe you just need a little help getting off the ground. Check out Office Depot's business services and see how fast you can launch your business.
All content provided herein is for educational purposes only. It is provided “as is” and neither the author nor Office Depot, Inc. warrant the accuracy of the information provided, nor do they assume any responsibility for errors, omissions or contrary interpretation of the subject matter herein.
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