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BREAKING: WealthLAB Co-Founder Makes Forbes 30 Under 30 List

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Forbes Africa just unveiled its fifth annual “30 under 30” list, highlighting the top young entrepreneurs, innovators and gamechangers.

And guess what: WealthLAB co-founder Odunayo Eweniyi is on it. See the full Forbes list here.

Alongside co-founders Joshua Chibueze, 26, and Somto Ifezue, 28, Odunayo built PiggyVest, a fintech app that’s helped over 230,000 African Millennials invest and save over $15M. 

“PiggyVest was born out of the need to help people create a sustainable means of saving,” Odunayo told Forbes. PiggyVest users currently earn 10-13% on savings.

Just last May, PiggyVest—then known as Piggybank—closed a seed round, raising $1.1M. In doing so, Odunayo became one of under 30 Black women to raise over $1M in startup capital.

While the app started as a digital piggy bank for savers, Odunayo told TechCrunch the goal was to become a “financial warehouse” where other financial providers “can plug in their services for [PiggyVest] users.”

That vision recently came to life with the launch a new investment feature called “Investify,” which pays around 25% depending on the investment opportunity.

The Forbes distinction comes on the heels of an impressive recent run of awards for the young entrepreneur.

In March, Odunayo earned an award from Forbes as one of the top young “wealth creators” in Africa. Shortly after, Odunayo was named 2019 SME Entrepreneur of the Year in Wealth and Society in West Africa.

Prior to founding PiggyVest, Odunayo co-founded PushCV, the largest job database in Africa.

“I’ve always wanted to make an impact. I didn’t know how I would do it, but i felt a compulsion to.”Odunayo told Black Enterprise in a recent interview.

In addition to PiggyVest, Odunayo’s co-founded WealthLAB (yes, this WealthLAB) with NYC-based investor-entrepreneur Philip Michael. The two also invest in women —and minority run startups in the US.

Forbes Africa named 120 entrepreneurs across four categories: trade, technology, innovation, and sport. “I’m honored but I’m just ready to work,” Odunayo said when asked about the award. “I’m already thinking about what’s next.”

Well, alright then. Hit her up and congratulate her on IG here! 

ENTREPRENEURS

INTERVIEW: Founder of $310M Clothing Line Bonobos On The Best Way To Raise Money (And No, It’s Not VC)

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When Andy Dunn graduated from Stanford, the aspiring entrepreneur kickstarted a menswear company from his small apartment in New York. The clothing line, Bonobos, started off with a simple idea — selling chino pants.

Ten years later, the company was acquired by Walmart for $310M. According to Dunn, the key to raising funds does not always hinge on money. Here’s how he did it.

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ENTREPRENEURS

Here’s How Apple’s CEO Tim Cook Starts His Day (And What He Does Might Surprise You)

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Apple has became a trillion-dollar company. Despite the tech giant’s great numbers, how does its CEO Tim Cook actually start his day?

In a recent Axios interview, Cook revealed he starts each day just before 4 a.m. with a strict morning routine.

What that consists of might surprise you: He reads user comments about Apple products.

“I like to take the first hour and go through user comments and things like this that sort of focus on the external people that are so important to us,” Cook says.

In other words, he reads comments from fans, trolls and everything in between.

You’d think the CEO never bothers to read stuff like that; that he’d have an assistant ready to give him the rundown.

“And then I go to the gym and work out for an hour because it keeps my stress at bay.”

Workouts can be super critical. Billionaires and other successful entrepreneurs cite fitness as a key component to their success (and overall sanity).

“I seriously doubt that I would have been as successful in my career (and happy in my personal life),” Branson once wrote in a blog post. “If I hadn’t always placed importance on my health and fitness.”

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ENTREPRENEURS

Investors Reveal: 3 Major Mistakes Aspiring Entrepreneurs Make

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There’s an old saying about first time entrepreneurs—they don’t know what they don’t know. 

No matter what field you are in, or what type of business you own, it is so important that you understand some of the mistakes that tend to plague so many entrepreneurs in today’s market.

There is one main mistake you can avoid from the jump. But it’s the same one many founders miss, investor Sebastien Eckersley-Maslin says.

“Most people come up with a solution first, without thinking through the problem,” Eckersley-Maslin told CNBC.

More often than not, aspiring entrepreneurs come up with a great idea…only to discover there’s no need. 

This looks pretty obvious, at first, but you’d be amazed to know how many people overlook it. So what are the right moves to make?

Here are some common mistakes aspiring entrepreneurs make.

1) Underestimate the amount of time it takes to learn a new industry

“One dumb mistake I made is to underestimate the barrier and knowhow when entering into a new industry,” says Zhifei Li, Founder & CEO of the Beijing-headquartered Mobvoi, the maker of the smartwatch called Ticwatch.

“Irrelevant experience can be a burden,” Zhifei Li, Founder & CEO of Mobvoi & Ticwatch. “Stay humble, stay hungry.”

 

2) Holding on to an under-performing employee for too long

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Chris Myers, the CEO and co-founder of the Denver-based financial tracking and analytics tools for small businesses BodeTree, says he held on to an under-performing employee for too long.

“I hesitated to take action, instead holding out hope that somehow the individual would fix their behavior and get back on the right track,” says Myers. 

3) Launching a company with no customer validation

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Victor Chang’s first startup idea, LifeCrumbs, a social journaling app, seemed brilliant to him. But Chang never tested it with potential consumers and that was, he says, a “terrible mistake.” He spent five months building the app in stealth mode.

“This hurts a lot because when we finally launched the service, we realized this isn’t what the customers were looking for!” In hindsight, Chang says, LifeCrumbs wasn’t different enough from existing products to be successful.

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