The idea that the millionaires who create digital startups are all young people just out of college, is not so. Bill Gates, Steve Jobs or Marck Zuckerberg, are rather the exceptions. In fact, an investigation carried out in the Technological Institute of Massachusetts (MIT), United States, revealed that the average age of an entrepreneur who founded a seriously successful company is 45 years.
However, when we talk about small-scale ventures, there are many young people who with a good idea and enthusiasm manage to generate personal income and, in some cases, even create jobs.
Why the average age of a successful entrepreneur is 45 years
These are three stories told in the first person by young British people who launched into the digital adventure and achieved their goal.
The “crypto-lady”: Erica Stanford (30)
The first time I heard about bitcoin was on the radio in 2009. Back then, I only talked about it with my friends or my father.
But last year I was bored with my work in sales and marketing and it occurred to me to investigate what happened with the blockchain (which is like a global database where the cryptocurrencies are built), after my friend John, he started to invest in bitcoin
“I love being known as the crypto-lady.”
The subject hooked me. I found it interesting that it had all those uses in the real world.
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Then I bought about $ 250 in bitcoin and other cryptocurrencies. I started experimenting with the cheapest virtual currencies and invested the US $ 2,500 with money taken from credit cards.
I earned $ 38,000 and used them to pay my debts and save. I was surprised when I saw that it was real money and I started to think that I could give up my work and dedicate myself to this.
And that is precisely what I did. Some people told me I was stupid and I felt scared the last day I went to work, wondering if I could make a salary with the cryptocurrencies.
My boss kept my post for when “inevitably failed.” That’s how in September of 2017 I started doing full-time cryptocurrency transactions.
Stanford was surprised to see that the money generated with cryptocurrencies was “real.” I think that bitcoin has a bad reputation as something that is used to buy drugs or weapons on the “dark internet.” But in my opinion, that’s like saying that there is something suspicious when we use money because people buy illegal things.
The day I made my first million I felt panic. My friends were worried, and my father told me that I was going to end up on the street, mainly because I had to pay a mortgage and debts on credit cards.
It is straightforward to lose money on this. I had not realized that if a coin goes up very fast, it will probably go down very fast.
I made mistakes. One day, for example, I lost $ 6,500 at one time. Then I started to investigate to understand the market better, find patterns and design the next big project to invest.
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I was determined to keep doing it and dedicate myself to this as if it were any other job.
My life has not changed much, except for having more vacations. And it feels good to pay leave in Thailand with bitcoin.
A year after leaving my job, we have made almost $ 26 million with John. I like to give advice and talk about events in different countries. And I love being known as the “crypto-lady.”
The “network magnate”: Laura Roeder (34)
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I was one of the 1st users of Facebook when it was launched at my university, but I never imagined that I could make a lot of money working on this.
“If someone had ever told me that one day I would become a millionaire thanks to social networks , I would have thought it was a joke. “Doing a business from your room also has disadvantages”.
I learned to program in a self-taught way when I was 12 years old so I could build my own website.
And in 2007, at 22, I quit my job as a graphic designer to dedicate myself to freelance work . It was the time when Twitter and Facebook were taking off and I was making web pages for small businesses.
He advised them on what content their clients wanted to see on their corporate website or showed them how to attract more visitors. I thought that everyone who created web pages did the same, but it was not like that. Then more and more people told me that I could receive a payment for teaching these things.
As I have always liked to speak in public, I began to talk about social media marketing from my room and to organize “webinars” , online seminars, on how to use Facebook and Twitter to promote small businesses.
I started selling them as online courses for a value between US $ 45 and US $ 220. It was exciting when I realized that I could work less and earn more money. I earned more than US $ 100,000 the first year . It was mentally rewarding, as if I was doing exactly what I had to do with my life. Then I designed software for my own company, which helps freelancers and small companies to automatically update their social networks.
At first we were a team of three people and now we are 25. We all work remotely from the house or from a cafe. And although we got $ 1.3 million in revenue in just one year, I reinvested it in the company.
Last year we made more than US $ 4 million and we are proud.
Although doing a business from your room also has disadvantages. I have to remember to make sure to leave the house and force myself to be with other people.
I have also had to face misogyny when they ask me if my husband or father are behind my business. But our success has been a stimulus to my self-confidence.
Sometimes when I am in a safari with billionaire Richard Branson, or enjoying the luxury of taking a long maternity leave to be with my baby, I can not believe that I have this lifestyle thanks to social networks.
I’m doing something that I’m really passionate about. Is not that the definition of success?
The “kings of furniture”: Monty George and Dan Beckles (both 21)
“I’ve always been an entrepreneur, and when I was 12, I bought cheap machines to make sushi and lights for laptops with money from my pocket, and then I sold them on eBay,” says Monty.
“At 15, I bought a lot of motorcycles from China to sell them online , but after my account I did not know anything about motorcycles in case they broke down.
“When I was 12 years old, I bought cheap machines to make sushi and lights for laptops with money from my pocket”. Thinking about what else I could sell, I heard that the furniture business was the fastest growing online market , and I bought a couple of containers with chairs and tables.
They ran out immediately.
I could not believe how lucky I had been, so I reinvested the money to get more products. Soon after I asked my friend Dan to join the project. Three years ago, sales surpassed US $ 1 million and continue to grow . Fortunately, my parents have always supported me and I believe that I inherited their strong work ethic from them.
I made mistakes along the way. In 2014, I had to assume a large debt because I had not realized that I had to pay value-added tax. I had to sell some of my things to collect the money. I felt silly, but that did not stop me.
Having launched the company when I was still living with my parents, I did not have to pay the monthly expenses and they let me use part of the house as a warehouse. I currently reinvest most of the profits and live quite austerely . With Dan we are sharing a house in Bristol, but we are too busy to spend a lot of money.
Most of the days I get up at 6:00 am and start sending emails to my suppliers in China. The rest of the day I used to spend talking to clients or printing labels.
I am proud to make a lot of money at a young age. I like to think that I am denying all those who think millennials are lazy . “