When we think of successful entrepreneurs, people like Richard Branson, and Steve Jobs come to mind, but these tiny entrepreneurs started businesses before some of us were thinking of anything other than Barbie dolls and cootie shots.
These entrepreneurial kids will make you feel like you wasted your childhood, and inspire you to get out there and turn your idea into reality.
1. Mikaila Ulmer of Me & The Bees Lemonade
At the age of four, Mikaila entered a children’s business competition. When she was trying to come up with an idea for what her business would be, two things happened, she was stung by a bee, and her family received a cookbook from the 40s, which included a recipe for flaxseed lemonade. The bee sting peaked Mikaila’s interest in bees and she became very interested in learning everything about them and their ecosystems.
Before you knew it, Mikaila was creating lemonade that would help honeybees. Part of the profits of Me & The Bees Lemonade go to local and international organizations fighting to save honeybees. Mikaila is now only 11, and she is leading workshops to educate people on how to save honeybees, and is selling lemonade in large grocery chain, Whole Foods Market.
2. Alina Morse of LOL’s Zollipops
This young entrepreneur came up with the idea for Zollipops after her parents not allowing her to eat much candy or sugar. When she was offered a sucker from a bank teller, and she had to turn it down, this young 9-year-old was begging her dad for a healthy alternative that she could have. It wasn’t long until her dad and her were whipping up their first batch after plenty of research on finding the right products that will help your teeth versus hurt them.
The tasty (and good for you) treats are now available in several retailers in North America, including Whole Foods Market. Not only that, Alina has also visited the White House on multiple occasions, and appeared on Shark Tank.
3. Hart Main of ManCans
When wanting to earn extra cash to afford a bike, at age 13, Hart Main decided he’d start his own business to get some money in his savings account. He came up with the idea of ManCans, a candle company that sells candles with “manly” scents. The idea came up when Hart’s sister was selling candles for a fundraiser and he wondered why candles didn’t exist with scents that men enjoy.
Over five years later, this teens candles are available in over 150 stores, and although Hart is now a university student, he continues to run his business on the side and also give back to local soup kitchens with a portion of his sales.
4. Moziah Bridges of Mo’s Bows
In a few short years, this 12-year-old has built himself a $150,000 business. Starting Mo’s Bows at age 9, this business dynamo now has multiple employees and has appeared on Shark Tank.
Mo’s Bows started when Mo was dissatisfied with the selection of bow ties available for kids. So his grandmother taught him how to sew and Mo began sewing bow ties from scrap material. Before he knew it, people were making orders on Etsy and Facebook, and as the company grew, his family began to help more with the business. This youngster is sure to continue on the road to success, not only is he a dedicated businessman already, but he also is dedicated to giving back in his community with his profits.
5. Ryan Kelly of Ry's Ruffery
After adopting a 2-month-old dog, Ryan’s parents bought regular dog treats at a pet food store, but when they opened the bag, the smell made them all (including the pups) cringe at the scent. At 10, Ryan felt his new best friend needed a better biscuit, so he started researching by speaking to different veterinarians and began testing flavor combinations with his mom. After finding the most wholesome ingredients, he created his first batch and his dog, Barkley, loved them.
Soon after, Ryan began delivering some of these treats to local dog owners and Ry’s Ruffery was born. At age 11, he hit the Shark Tank floor, and struck a deal with Barbara Corcoran, which helped this young entrepreneurs business grow from $800 in sales to $350,000 in only a few months.
These young entrepreneurs really make us believe that anything is possible with a good idea, and passion for change or innovation.
About the Author
Lauren Marinigh is a Toronto-based online marketing and content development professional, who is completely addicted to traveling, puppies, and GIFs.