Business is tough, so it might come as a surprise to many that we are seeing a new trend of youngsters taking on the corporate world. Increasingly, we are seeing a breed of young entrepreneurs (some as young as 12) coming through the ranks and proving that age is no barrier when it comes to entrepreneurship.
Ollie Forsyth has already well and truly earned his stripes in the business world. This impressive young man from Northamptonshire in the UK began his tenure into the world of business when he was just 13 years old. Inspired by his hero Richard Branson, this gutsy young man was determined not to let his dyslexia or the fact that he was regularly bullied by his peers stop him from achieving success.
Ollie has always had an entrepreneurial spirit and from a very young age was driven by a desire to earn money. As a young boy, Ollie would regularly create “businesses” within the family home, earning an income from making his parent’s tea or coffee, cutting the grass or walking the family dog.
This entrepreneurial spirit really grew in his teenage years when he learnt about how his hero Richard Branson had been able to turn his “disadvantage”, his dyslexia, and a challenge that Ollie knew so very well, into an advantage. This light bulb moment for Ollie set the foundations for his first foray into the business world and the launch of his online shop known simply as Ollie’s Shop. He was only 13 years old at the time but not afraid of hard work and he was determined to use this opportunity to prove to all the schoolyard bullies that he was capable of great things.
“Inspired by his hero Richard Branson, this gutsy young man was determined not to let his dyslexia or the fact that he was regularly bullied by his peers stop him from achieving success.”
Ollie’s shop was an online boutique selling a range of gifts from on trend bracelets, to cufflinks, belts and a variety of other “perfect prezzies” which he sourced from China and stored at his family home.
From its conception, Ollie’s Shop was profitable primarily due to the unique products on offer as well as the prompt delivery and good customer service – a result of Ollie’s commitment to driving and growing his business.
That success grew and grew and now at the ripe old age of 16, Ollie has opened his second online shop, Charmou. This new business is a fashion focused ecommerce site featuring over 23 of the most up and coming apparel brands with over 250 products from all over the globe already on offer and many more due to come in the future.
Ollie has shown a fighting spirit from the start and dreams of becoming a millionaire in the next few years and if his past record is anything to go by then he is right on track to achieving his goal.
Here he shares his top three tips for young entrepreneurs dreaming of setting up their own business:
Do your market research and develop a full business plan so you know exactly who your competitors are
Find a market with HUGE profit margins.
Work seriously hard. Ollie works from 5am-10pm everyday, as he wants to be better than the competition.
Like many young entrepreneurs of his generation, Ollie believes that giving back to the community is an important part of sharing his success and he volunteers for a range of charities including East Anglia’s Children’s Hospice and the Army Benevolent Fund’s The Soldiers Charity. He has also used his own money to establish a charity to help young entrepreneurs realise their dreams of establishing their own businesses whilst they are still at school.
Ollie Forsyth is a young man to watch!