Top 10 inspiring young founders
At 20-something-years-old, I feel like most of us are finding as well as re-defining ourselves. I myself have changed from the person I was a year ago. Some of that is down to the circumstances we’re all facing, but mostly from graduating and stepping into the real world, starting projects I’m passionate about, always learning and being somewhere I enjoy working. 😊
It also helps to look around you and be inspired by those doing well, even better when they’re of a similar age and you can relate to their experiences. With that in mind, I thought it’d be interesting to compile a list of 10 inspiring young founders who are paving the way in their field but also setting an example that age doesn’t need to be a factor for success!
Grace Beverly, 23
Coming across Grace in a recent episode of Secret Leaders, I was really inspired by her dedication throughout her degree and overall passion to build a business (or two)! Her mindset was also really encouraging, something that we’ve agreed apparently comes with time. It taught me that age doesn’t need to be an indicator of what aspirations, expectations or life you can aspire to.
Alexander Liegl, 28
Since mining Bitcoin is about converting electricity into money, Alexander is creating a sustainable future for the internet’s growing need, specifically through building Bitcoin mining data centres that help stabilise energy grids, not only making it cheaper but also a greener process. With Bitcoin on the rise, it’s climate effects have more or less been ignored, so I think a business like this is crucial for the future of tech.
Timothy Armoo, 25
Co-founder and CEO of Fanbytes, a leading influencer marketing agency, Timothy has really redefined how brands engage with millennials. From being classed as the “Most Influential Person in Marketing and Advertising" by the Evening Standard to "Leading the new School of Marketing" by Forbes Magazine, I was again motivated by his desire to learn but also to successfully deliver.
Maya Pindeus, 29
As Co-founder and CEO of Humanising Autonomy, I just really like what Maya is doing (in regard to gender diversity) and the mission of her company. Humanising Autonomy develops software for autonomous vehicles that analyses and predicts the behaviour of pedestrians with the aim of minimising road accidents. Solving this problem will be a step in effectively rolling out autonomous vehicles. But it can also be implemented in existing technology, like driver assistance systems in vehicles already operating across the world.
Hamish Blythe, 26
Also first coming across Hamish in a podcast – The Back Yourself Show – his entrepreneurial journey to launch Trilo intrigued me. As well as this, the whole conversation around whether university is necessary for entrepreneurs – some super insightful thoughts! I learnt that no journey has to be smooth sailing, with perseverance making the ride somewhat easier.
Ben Francis, 29
Ben is the Founder of Gymshark. I really loved seeing how you could take something you love and make a living out of it. This whole notion of ‘do something you enjoy so it never feels like a day of work’ really made me think of what I stood for, what I was passionate about and how I can apply that to different aspects of my life.
Joyce and Raissa de Haas, 29
I love that the twin sisters founded a company in premium soft drinks, an industry primarily dominated by men. This made me realise the importance of taking advantage of opportunities and that your own network should very well be the first point of contact e.g. for investment. They’ve also launched a scholarship programme to support and train other female entrepreneurs!
Ben Pasternak, 21
Featured on Forbes 30 Under 30 for 2021, he founded Simulate, a start-up making vegan chicken nuggets. This hasn’t been Ben’s only venture, building iOS games at 14, dropping out of high school at 15 and by 18, building and selling Monkey, a video-chat app with 10 million users!
Trisha Prabhu, 20
The youngest on the list and also featured on this year’s Forbes 30 under 30, first-gen Indian immigrant and Harvard student, Trisha, is the founder of Re-think, a technology that detects and stops cyberbullying before it happens. It really does help seeing someone of the same racial background as yourself changing the world, as representation and diversity in tech has been a stagnant issue.
Frederik Groce, 28 and Sydney Sykes, 27
Founded in 2018, BLCK VC has a mission to double the number of Black investors employed by VC firms to 4% by 2024. Frederick says, “tech is where new wealth is being created. And if we’re the gatekeepers, we should be trying to make it more inclusive.” I wholeheartedly agree with this, when reading the diversity section of the The State of European Tech Report by Atomico, it was sad to see how “2 cents for every dollar invested in venture capital over the past 10 years has gone to all-ethnic teams.” Or even that "Black founders...are the most heavily impacted with only 38 Black founders receiving venture capital funding in the last 10 years, representing just 0.24% of the total sum invested."
There’s no denying that these individuals are inspiring and impacting the world as we speak, however this is definitely not an exhaustive list; think of someone else who should be on here? Let us know!