It’s a wrap. On Tuesday, we finished our final seminar in the Let’s Talk Business series run by the City of Sydney. I’ve been honoured to moderate this series for the past three years and it’s given me a wonderful opportunity to meet so many amazing entrepreneurs.
We had a wonderful panel to end the series including renegade entrepreneur Ruslan Kogan. This inspired this week’s Enterprise post.
Earlier this week, online retail empresario Ruslan Kogan spoke to a packed event at the Sydney Town Hall for the Let’s Talk Business seminar series. Well known for his controversial views on technology – like his recent stunt slapping on a “tax” to anyone wanting to use Internet Explorer 7, denouncing it as an “antique browser” – Kogan gave the crowd an honest account of his startup story. Here are some highlights.
1. How to conjure up money when you need it
Kogan needed cash. And it involved credit cards. Lots of them. It was an innovative way of paying for his first shipment of televisions from China, which he first sold on eBay. Both eBay and PayPal had frozen his accounts. They considered his accounts suspicious because he had sold $40,000 worth of televisions but received zero feedback. That’s because his customers prepaid based on a 45-day delivery period. With his accounts frozen, Kogan didn’t have the cash he needed for his first down payment. Then unemployed, he applied for multiple credits and soon amassed $40,000 worth of credit. He then asked his friends to do the same and garnered another $30,000. This was enough for his first instalment and the rest, as they say, is history.
2. At the coalface of quality control
Kogan was so paranoid about ensuring that his shipment arrived safely, he hopped on a plane to China, inspected every one of the 80 televisions in his first order, and watched them get loaded on to a container.
You can read the full Enterprise article here.