History has shown that most successful business owners started when they were young. A majority of today’s billionaires grew up with at least one business, making improvements and formulating new ideas along the way. Starting a business is no small task. For aspiring business owners it’s often difficult to find inspiration to drive you towards your goals. 2023 has been some sort of year, but for these young business owners, they’ve made their mark nevertheless. Here’s a list of young founders you should look out for as a new year approaches:
Brendan Cox – 20
Brendan Cox is a New Jersey-based serial entrepreneur who has built (and even sold) an array of businesses. From founding and later selling Teen Assistant to working amongst some of the most popular influencers and brands, Cox has done it all. This year alone, he came out with his first book dubbed “Strictly Business” and was ranked amongst “The Most Influential Young Entrepreneurs of 2023” by Business Insider and About Insider.
Caroline Bercaw – 17
Caroline Bercaw started making bath bombs in her basement a few years ago. With the belief that everyone loves surprises, she created a line of bath fizzers that each have something fun inside. She includes many items inside her products such as toys, charms, messages, and jewelry. Since her company became an official business in 2015, the young entrepreneur has somehow managed to juggle school and friends, while standing at the helm of a company that now produces over 700,000 bath bombs per month and has created over 180 jobs in her community.
Cory Nieves – 16
Cory Nieves had an ambitious plan at a tender age. At six, he wanted to sell hot chocolate in his Englewood, N.J., neighborhood, and save enough money to buy his mom a car. After three months of baking with his mom, Nieves bit into what he thought was the perfect chocolate chip cookie. The recipe was a hit. He and his mom began taking cookies to local races and festivals, where Nieves would pitch potential customers with irrefutable lines like “Life’s too short to not eat a cookie!”
In 2015, Nieves was invited to appear on The Ellen DeGeneres Show, and of course, the response was overwhelming. More orders came in than Nieves and his mom could fill. An appearance on CNBC’s T he Profit earned Mr. Cory’s Cookies a $100,000 cash infusion. Today, the company offers 14 flavors, and Nieves has high hopes for expansion and his future. He’s done it once, and, no reason he can’t do it again.
Jacob Pace – 21
When Jacob Pace moved from his native El Paso, Texas, to Los Angeles to begin a career in music. The label executives who’d hired him to run PR for their artists were expecting a seasoned industry pro, not a 16-year-old kid. At 21, Pace is CEO of Flighthouse, a media, and video company that specializes in teen-friendly programming. Though it’s only a couple of years old, Flighthouse averages a billion views a month and aims to become the premier content brand for Generation Z.
Ziad Ahmed – 21
Ziad is a senior at Yale University. He is an American-Muslim-Bangladeshi student, entrepreneur, and speaker. He is the CEO/Co-Founder of JUV Consulting, a purpose-driven Generation Z consultancy that works with clients to help them reach young people. Ziad was named to the 2019 Forbes 30Under30 list at 19-years-old. He has been personally commended by former U.S President Barack Obama for his work and has had the honor of being invited to the Obama White House three times.
Mikaila Ulmer – 15
Ulmer appeared with her father on the television show Shark Tank in 2015 where she successfully received a $60,000 investment to support her growing business called Me & the Bees. Ulmer was invited that year to meet President Barack Obama at the White House. Ulmer “had the honor” of introducing Barack Obama at the United State of Women Summit in 2016 where Obama referred to her as “an amazing young lady”. In 2017, her business received $800,000 as an investment made by a consortium of football players. In February 2023, Me & the Bees was in over 1,500 stores nationwide, including Whole Foods, Cost Plus World Market, Vitamin Cottage Natural Grocers, and others. Me & the Bees has also expanded its product line to include lip balms made from bee’s wax.
Moziah Bridges – 15
Moziah “Mo” Bridges is the 15-year-old CEO of Mo’s bows, a set of handmade bow ties. After trading bow ties for rocks on the school playground, Moziah’s strong fashion sense led him to start his own company at the age of nine. His colorful, handmade ties quickly made an impression on major networks, and the young fashion mogul made rounds on the Steve Harvey show, the today show, Oprah magazine, Good Morning America, and eventually, shark tank. Shark Tank’s Daymond John serves as Moziah’s mentor as he continues to grow his business.
Mo’s bows has five employees, including the “CEO of Mo” whole is also known as Mom Ramica Morris and granny; who taught Moziah how to sew. The business-minded teenager has sold more than $300,000 worth of bow ties and men’s accessories. Moziah plans to attend college at the parson’s the new school for design in New York City and have his clothing line by the age of 20.
Josh Richards – 18
Joshua Kenneth Richards is a Canadian internet personality. He has garnered a following of 20 million TikTok, 2.4 million YouTube, and 7.1 million Instagram followers. His posts often include dancing, lip-syncing, and video skits. He has acted in films including B rother’s Keeper and Summertime Dropouts. Richards is the co-founder of TalentX Entertainment. In July 2023,
Richards became the first artist to sign a recording contract with Talent X and Warner Records. He is an investor and the chief strategy officer of Triller. According to a Forbes report published in August 2023, Richards earned $1.5 million in 2019 from his numerous sponsorship deals. Making him the fifth highest-earning TikTok star.
- Rachel Zietz – 19
At the age of 13, Zietz followed in her father’s footsteps and started her own business. Six years later, the 19-year-old entrepreneur was named as part of the 2023 class of the Forbes 30 Under 30 List in the Retail and eCommerce category. She was the youngest honoree in that category. Zietz is the founder and CEO of Gladiator Lacrosse, LLC, a lacrosse training equipment line, set to generate $7 million in revenue in 2023. She hopes to expand her business into lacrosse sticks, increasing distribution channels globally, especially in Canada, Europe. Additionally, following Gladiator Lacrosse’s acquisition of All Ball Pro™, which sells commercial rebounders and also supplies to the University, Zietz hopes to expand into other sports.
- Jack Doherty – 17
Jackson “Jack” Doherty is an American YouTuber & prankster best known for his “daredevil” stunts and pranks in various shops and entertainment parks such as water parks and trampoline parks as well as other outdoor places such as bridges and cliffs. Jack Doherty set up his channel on YouTube and uploaded his first video in 2016. His most-watched video has a view count of 18 million as of March 2018. Although Jack gets into mischief for his videos he is making a fortune from being one of the most watched teen entertainers on YouTube.