Author Archive for GeigerER1

Derek Ek: Spotify’s Millenial Entrepreneur

Derek Ek, age 34, is currently the CEO of Spotify, one of the leading titans in the musical business. Named #1 in Billboard’s Power 100, the Swedish millennial has completely changed the world of music. Ek co-founded Spotify in 2006, launching it in 2008, and rapidly gaining major-label support for the vision of an industry-backed site making a vast catalogue of music available. It has also become a significant driver of music discovery, with the playlists it suggests to users. In 1999 Daniel Ek was a 16-year-old Swedish programmer, getting rich building websites, when he pondering a simple question: How do you get people to pay for music that can, if illegally, be downloaded free—and without charging them for each song?

Ek’s eventual solution: Spotify, a jukebox in the cloud that provides legal, on-demand access to millions of songs. Supported by paying subscribers; it now has more than 15 million users, four million of whom pay. With an estimated value of $4 billion, Spotify is one of the hottest Internet companies in the world.

Spotify isn’t the only service to let listeners stream music on demand. But it distinguishes itself from Internet radio services like Pandora and Slacker through the vastness of its music libraries and its deep integration into social media. Spotify lets users seamlessly share playlists and swap music on social networks like Facebook and Twitter. And Spotify makes it easy for others to build apps that work with its platform in order to give users yet more ways to discover and share music. “The trick was to think through the social aspect of the service from the very beginning,” says Ek. “We didn’t want it to be an afterthought.

Now Ek is trying to find ways to make it as easy to find and play music as it is to find and play videos on YouTube. This year the company introduced a radio service for computers and mobile devices, launched its first iPad app, and made it possible to embed a Spotify play button into any website. The Huffington Post, the blogging site Tumblr, and Rolling Stone’s website are among the many that now offer music that way (Dyer, Technology review)

Ek is a great example of an entrepreneur who has discovered a problem from asking questions, finding a solution to his question, and distinguishes himself from the rest of the competition.



You Couldn’t Read this without a Millennial Entrepreneur

There are many millennials who have changed the world with their innovative thinking. One prime example of the millennial entrepreneur is Matt Mullenweg, the creator of Word Press. At age 21, Matt launched a website called Automatic, which became the secret force behind WordPress. Automatic reached over a billion people every month, and became the basic skeleton for many other websites, like Akismet, Gravatar, VaultPress, IntenseDebate, Polldaddy, and eventually, WordPress.

WordPress was created from the multiple passions that captured Mullenweg’s heart. Matt has written code, prose, and music for many years. He took these passions and combined them in one of the most successful blogging posts of today.

“I am a founding developer of WordPress, the Open Source software used by over 26% of the web, including this site. The website says WordPress is ‘a state-of-the-art semantic personal publishing platform’ but more importantly WordPress is a part of who I am. Like eating, breathing, music, I can’t not work on WordPress. The project touches a lot of people, something I’ve recently begun to appreciate. I consider myself very lucky to be able to work on something I love so much.”
-Mark Mullenwag.

Many of us think we need to separate our work and our personal lives. Mullenwag shows us that it’s possible to combine work and play, and to be extremely successful at it as well.

Sean Rad: The Millennial Founder of Tinder

But in August, Rad stepped back into the role of CEO. In an interview with board member and Benchmark partner Matt Cohler, Kara Swisher reported for Re/Code that Payne as CEO wasn't going to be a "long-term fit."

One of the most popular trends right now is the concept of “swipe right,” the signature of approval of someone’s Tinder profile picture. On Tinder, millions of people are connected to local singles and can connect with those in the area with a simple swipe of a finger. Tinder has fully transformed the world of dating. Plenty of couples haven’t had met if it wasn’t for its founder, Sean Rad.

When it launched a few years ago, Tinder made over a million matches in less than two months.

Rad has been an entrepreneur for many years. Before finding success in Tinder, he has launched, ran, and sold other companies. He decided to drop out of the the Marshall School of Business in order to dedicate more time to his ventures. Rad has worked with phones since he received his first one when he was 13, and made a successful career as a result of his creative innovations to the worlds of networking, cell service, and dating.


CEO of Snapchat is only 27?

"We weren't cool," Murphy later told Forbes, "so we tried to build things to be cool."

One of the biggest social media’s currently is snapchat. Becoming popular only a few years ago, the little white ghost has taken photo sharing to a whole new level. Snapchat creator Evan Spiegel became the youngest public company CEO when Snap began trading in March 2017. Every day about 170 million people, mostly teens and millennials, use Snapchat to send disappearing messages. Spiegel came from a wealthy family and was the son of two ivy league graduates. When he attended Stanford, he took classes in entrepreneurship and venture capital, where he learned from the Google CEO Eric Schmidt and YouTube cofounder Chad Hurley. Spiegel came up with the idea of snapchat with two of his friends from Stanford. After developing the business and acquiring investors, Spiegel dropped out of Stanford in order to fully dedicate himself to his company, which was called “Picaboo” at the time.

In February 2016, Snapchat loaned Spiegel $15 million. Snapchat raised $175 million the following month at a $16 billion valuation, and Spiegel repaid his outstanding loans in full later that year.

After gaining monumental success, Mark Zuckerburg offered to purchase Snapchat for 3 billion dollars. After he was turned down, the founder of facebook attempted to make his own version of Snapchat, a failed app called “Poke.”

The 26-year-old has been named the youngest self-made billionaire in the world by Forbes for the past two years. He has an estimated net worth of about $4 billion based on Snap’s value as a public company.

Evan Spiegel is the splitting image of an innovative, millennial entrepreneur. His business idea of disappearing images has transformed the social media market, the foundations of executive management, and the culture of millennials.

Tumblr: Made by a Millennial, for Millennials.

David Karp, at age 27, created Tumblr. This site is famous among youth who use the blogging platform daily. The site is normally used for sharing art and images, but it also acts well for short form blogging and sharing ideas. Many artists have gotten their start from using Karp’s technology in graphic design, modeling, poetry, or even music. Tumblr appeals to many millennials who feel outside of the mainstream. Tumblr’s focus is on aesthetics, fan groups, and art collaboration. In 2007, when others his age were studying for midterms and living on dorm food, David Karp was busy launching Tumblr, an easy-to-use blogging platform that now hosts 17.5 million blogs and receives about 1.5 billion page views per week. The company has also attracted some $40 million in venture funding ( Tumblr has been used to change many people’s lives, and is a perfect illustration of right brain thinking that has made monumental success.

Kaylena Marie’s Bakery: A Vision of an Entrepreneur

Back at home in Orchard Park, a girl who graduated one year before me in high school opened up her own artisan bakery in town! Kaylena Marie Eisenhower is a twenty-year-old entrepreneur who started selling her baked goods online at a very young age. Throughout high school, Kaylena continued to cater and sell various baked goods, even if that meant waking up very early in the morning to send out shipments before school started at 7. After graduating high school, Kaylena spent 2 years studying Culinary Arts to further her education. During this last year, Kaylena transformed a small rental space into a gorgeous artisan cafe, where anyone can order pastries, sandwiches, coffee, and a whole lot more. The store spaced has been transformed into a beautiful, comfortable atmosphere. Before coming back to GCC, I stopped by the bakery for the first time. The bakery opened at 8am, and there was a line outside of her shop waiting for the freshly baked goods. With the help of her family and friends, Kaylena has offered Orchard Park a wonderful space for community, creativity, and bliss.