Tag Archives: rich entrepreneurs

Here are the steps to becoming a Billionaire

Chine is the only country in the world to have more self-made female billionaires than any other country. That is saying a lot about a country that controls everything their citizens do and say. In any case China pushed hard on gender equality in the uprising of capitalism so many women took their chance on the opportunities given.

The process of being a self-made anything is one of hard-work, strict discipline, and focus-driven mindset on what one hopes to accomplish. There are many cases where people inherit money and waste their time shopping and just playing around. Women in China had to prove their talent and worth to anyone they worked for in the beginning. In this case, Zhou Qunfei, made the decision to drop out of school at the age of 16 to move in with her uncle in hopes of finding a better job. Her school work and study habits were top-notch and many of her past teachers remembered the work she turned in as very talented.

Her travels would lead her to find a job in a watch factory making lenses, which entailed working all day shifts that would many times end well past midnight. It was those conditions that made her quit her job but before doing so pushed her to write a letter to her boss. It was this action that brought the attention of the horrible work conditions to his attention that made him offer her a job promotion if she stayed. This would be the start of many promotions she got in the coming years.

Lesson 1
Make evident what you know to people of power and influence
People in power have control over things and people. They are not always able to be everywhere so when they meet people who inform them on things that are happening around them they gain even more power and control. Influences are always looking to meet people who can help them learn more about what is happening around them. They want to meet people who are very observant because it means they can learn more from them. Ms. Zhou explained in her letter the terrible conditions and long work hours but she did it in a way that was respectful of who she was talking to. It was enough to get his attention and start her on a path that would lead to high achieving success.

Starting on her Own
During her years gaining promotions and learning the whole process of lens making she was saving up money from all her new jobs that paid more. It only took her three years to save up enough money to give her the opportunity to quit her job and start her own company with some of her family members. The important part about is that she had help from her family to manage different parts of her company. She was not doing everything on her own but she did make it a point to learn how everything worked, something she picked up on during her years before in her old jobs.

Lesson 2
Learn everything you can about your industry and how it works, including the machines
Ms. Zhou made sure she knew how to use and operate every machine she ordered in case something went wrong but also so she knew the limitations of the machines. This action enabled her to become the go-to person of everyone she worked with because if something broke down she would be the first to know so it can get fixed right away. She made herself the focal point of her business operation. This behavior would label her as obsessive about her work but also how she gets things done. Anytime a machine is down the less lens get made. In order to have more control she chose to have her apartment connected to her office so that she had access to the factory floor all the time.

Change in Market Demand
Ms. Zhou learned everything there was to know about how to make glass lenses for watches so she knew all the physical properties of glass and what could be done with it. That is why when she got a call from a phone company asking if she could help make glass screens for phones she jumped at the opportunity, something they offered to help her with. It was this action that connected her to a whole other market that would require her to hire more staff, build more factories and take on more clients.

The world of mobile phones still centered around plastic screens but when many phone makers started switching over to scratch-resistant screens with tough glass that is when manufacturing of glass lenses changed. That is when Apple contacted Ms. Zhou and her whole business of operation changed. She went from a regular glass lens maker to the supplier of the top computer company in the world. The demand for high-quality thin glass skyrocketed globally making it hard to find suppliers who were experts in this field. Luckily for Ms. Zhou she was in the right place at the right time.

Lesson 3
Learn to attract the best (aka be in the right place at the right time)
Ms. Zhou used her time to learn everything she could about her glass making business and this got the attention of many phone makers. No knows when something big will happen in the market but for those that are great at what they do and something big happens they will be the first ones called on to do something. She was able to grab the attention of the top tech companies because everyone was switching to tough glass and there were not many glass makers who had the knowledge of how to do that. It was the help of the tech companies that taught her the whole process of what it was they were looking for that propelled her even further.

Expanding the Customer Base
Ms. Zhou, after going public with her company, has spoken at many investor meetings. Investors worried that more and more competitors are entering the market making it harder for her company to stay ahead. She answered a few questions but it was how she interacted with them at her production facilities that showed how enthusiastic she was about what it is she does. She showed a passion for the kind of work she creates but knows that attention to detail is why her two top clients, Apple and Samsung, picked her to work with. She knows every step of the process because she designed the whole operation. Now she checks on the same factory workers at every level, including the bottom where she started, to make sure nothing goes wrong. Many investors are content with how she runs things because they know she is always there checking on everything and looking for betters ways to innovate.

Lesson 4
Have a game plan and figure out how to execute it
The reason Ms. Zhou knew what she was doing was because she had three years after writing her letter of resignation to learn how the whole factory process worked. She gained enough experience to understand what she needed to buy first in order to get started. Once she saved enough money then she could quit her job and start her own business. Many people say they want to start their own business but do not know the first step to make. This is where many people get scared and don’t try. You need to put yourself deep into the industry you want to work in in order to understand what it takes to get going. Ms. Zhou was not afraid of anything because she had family support and working knowledge to know what to do every step of the way.

The company she started, Lens Technology, has an estimated worth of $8 billion.

The process that many self-made individuals have is one of constant iterating – starting something and going back if it doesn’t work and starting over again until they get it right. They had a relentless pursuit to do things on their own terms in order to get started. They are constantly learning and trying to innovate better. If you plan on success then these are a few lessons to help you out before you get started.

How a Chinese Billionaire Built Her Fortune

These guys became Billionaires by taking other people’s ideas

Article updated: [9/10/2014]

Walk into any entrepreneur conference or brain storming session and you will hear ideas being shared all over. Try and talk to an entrepreneur about their secret idea they have been working on and they just might ask you to sign a Non-disclosure agreement (NDA). You might look at them and think, “why would I want to steal your idea when there are literally thousands being shared all over in this room but also on the internet?”

It takes an average person to put in the hard work to find the next best thing but it takes a certain genius to work smart to find the simplicity of doing business. A smart man might work day and night on his project in his basement trying to figure out all the problems and get it to work right but it takes a genius to pull together talent to do all the work for him. He might create a forum online asking people how they might solve a simple problem. He might write down everyone’s answers and then go back in to the same forum, while creating another forum elsewhere, and ask the question, “what would be the first step to building that thing,” and while people are responding to that question in the other forum he made, he could pose the question, “say someone needs help with <the very problem he posed in the first forum> and this thing that does this and that, what would be the tools he needs to build it?” This man simply took the work of other people and put it together in a way that worked without so much as typing on his keyboard.

That man working in his basement is the image we all have come to know as the American genius who worked out of his garage or basement and created the next great American company. He is remembered for his hard work and dedication but also for his genius of creating something no one else could think of. The second man is today’s business man who is looking to establish himself, not as a hard worker of business or even a genius of business, but as someone who knows how to clone and replicate on any scale. This man views business school as the connecting factor to people of importance but also as a way to focus their view on what everyone else is doing.

Samwer Brothers
If you were to ever meet someone who steals other people’s ideas for a living you might call them a thief but it’s not considered stealing if where you come from it doesn’t exist. All over the world there are people who look into what other countries are doing and then take that company’s idea and create it where they live. In their point of view, no sense in racking your brain over creating the next original business idea, when you can take what already works and build it for your country. You don’t need to know a lot about business to work as an entrepreneur in this fashion just need to know a lot about different companies and how they operate in order to clone and replicate.

Meet Marc, Oliver, and Alexander Samwer who are all about to become billionaires off the very idea of taking American  and Chinese companies and cloning them all over the world. If the idea is successful in America then why can’t it be successful in Germany or Indonesia, after they have made a few tweaks to them? As it turns out it can be a very successful operation for these brothers and that is exactly what they learned in business school. During their time in America studying in San Francisco they ventured out and explored what American companies were doing and studied them. They learned everything about what they were doing, and even wrote a book about it, so that they could then take that and build it back home or anywhere that needed it.

Theses area few of the companies they have cloned and made millions off of and soon to be billions off of.

American Company          Cloned Version
Zappos                               Zalando
Amazon.com                      Lazada
eBay                                   Alando
Facebook                           StudiVZ
Groupon                            CityDeal

Many of the cloned companies have since been absorbed into their American originator after finding out how successful they were in other countries. This helped the American company to expand their operations and then study the clone’s operations of how they matched cultural and consumer interests, which is not an easy thing to accomplish.

If you look at their company’s main website, Rocket Internet, you can see how they show all the companies they have cloned all over the world from companies inside China and the U.S. Their whole business model of entrepreneurship is not to create the next original thing but to take what already works, improve it to the customers you are working with, and sell to them. It’s very difficult to come up with an original idea and almost not worth the effort anymore when you can simply take what someone else has already done and make it your own and then build it.

After their company goes IPO each brother will probably take home close to a billion each or maybe a little more. The important thing to understand about how they did business was that they held majority voting power in their company in order to stay in control. When you study their company, they created a company that has specialized in the art of cloning businesses, something you don’t hear talked about very often. Instead if you were to ask a random entrepreneur what business they are working on, chances are you won’t hear them say, “I take companies that are already successful and clone them to work in other countries.”

What they did was a very smart move. They worked smart not hard, but they did put in the long hours and hard work to make it all happen but they didn’t spend wasted hours trying to come up with the next best thing.

Tips for Entrepreneurs reading this
1. Don’t look at this and say, “oh, well I will just google “companies in Australia” and find one to copy and I too will become rich.” If you read this article and think that is how easy it is, you are forgetting the hard work they put in first. Yes, these guys just copied business models and took them else where but you are forgetting that they studied these companies to understand every aspect of how they worked and why they worked.

2. Maybe you have an MBA and know a thing or two about business and would consider doing what they did. Great, go for it, but how will you raise the funds? The challenge to doing what they did was that they scaled their business clones very quickly to match the demand that was already there. If you think you can clone, let’s say, Amazon again in another country, well just how do you suppose you will be able to meet the demand that will come from it and not only that but how will you manage to survive financially, Remember, even though Amazon is the giant of internet shopping it still struggles to pull in a profit and for the first ten years it was in the red and just recently in the news it posted a negative earnings.

3. Start small and then slowly scale with an idea from another country to see how it works. Just because one restaurant in another country has a long line every night doesn’t the same thing in a country where people don’t even know what half the things on the menu are. Maybe you found how one company has fixed neighborhood crime by installing special lighting at community parks and waling areas to get people out more. It might be a good idea first to see what kind of people make up that neighborhood it works so well in and why.

4. If what you read sounds so easy that it has encouraged you to find an idea and clone it and you have never started a business before then you are setting yourself up for hardship in the end. In the many articles I have written the one thing I emphasis the most is putting in the hard work. What the brothers did was take another person’s idea and make it their own but selling that to investors was probably not an easy thing to do and all the setbacks and hardships they went through showed that they did not give up. Scaling an idea like Amazon on the internet is probably one of the greatest challenges of creating a business online. Read books like How to Get Rich and How to be Rich. They will wake you up to understand just what kind of work hours you will have to put in to get any business up and running, not to mention one that is profitable.

5. If you find a company overseas and you know for sure that it does not exist in your home country and you think you are onto something, do your homework and study that company like  you were in college. Learn how it manages its operations, how it hires people, how it markets and sells, the company culture, where it gets its financing from and anything else you can get your hands on. Read magazine interviews if there are any. If you find out that company is struggling, don’t get turned off by the idea but find out instead why; what could be causing that and if those same problems might occur in your own country.

6. Just because it worked well for one person doesn’t mean it will work the same for another. These guys are the cloners of businesses and that is something they have specialized in. They are the best at it and they have learned to turn it into a lucrative industry.

7. Ideas exist everywhere and it is evident by what people are doing with crowdfunding sites. No doubt someone is on those sites cloning some of the ideas they have found and producing them in their home city or state or even country. But take idea in stride and figure out all you need to know and out of respect, invest in their idea, if you plan on copying it.

News Article

Rocket Internet Seeks to Raise about $967 Million in I.P.O

Germany’s Samwer Brothers to become Billionaires

Inside the clone factory: The story of Germany’s samwer’s brohters

Samwer Brothers’ Cloning Rocket Goes To Warp Speed

Germany’s Samwer Brothers Take their Web Copycat Act Global

Alexander Samwer Wiki Entry