We believe the best way to build a successful business is to learn from the practices of successful entrepreneurs. We are constantly searching for role models from a wide variety of industries who are willing to share their stories. These videos will teach you how thriving entrepreneurs discover business opportunities, create products and services, build powerful teams, work with zealous tenacity, create more with less, provide phenomenal customer service, and grow their companies over time. We are constantly adding new videos, so check back often.
David is the most successful entrepreneur in the history of commercial aviation. He is the founder and former CEO of JetBlue Airways and also founder of Azul Airways in Brazil. David co-founded Morris Air with June Morris, which they sold to Southwest Airlines for $130 million in 1993. He is also the founder of Open Skies, a touch screen airline reservation check-in systems company, and WestJet Airlines in Canada. David is dominating commercial aviation in Brazil with Azul Airlines that did nearly $2 billion in sales in 2012.
Justin is the CEO and founder of Justin’s Nut Butter. Justin’s is the premier nut butter company on the planet manufacturing organic and natural nut butters. Justin’s has been featured on major news networks and countless magazines and food publications. Justin began by selling his products to local farmer’s markets. His products are now available at retailers nationwide including Wal-Mart, Target, Whole Foods Markets, REI, Safeway and many more.
Nicole's passion for fitness started at an early age when qualified for the 1988 Olympic Swimming Trials. She went on to swim for Yale University and made her professional triathlete debut in 1999. She has made a 12th place finish at the Hawaii Ironman World Championship and won Ironman Wisconsin in 2004. Nicole’s leadership has grown Skirt Sports into a women’s fitness powerhouse with a full collection of styles including dresses, outerwear, accessories and more.
Bill is the Chairman of RC Willey Home Furnishings. Under his leadership, the company has grown from a single employee in a 600 square foot store to more than 3,000 employees and 17 locations. The business generates annual sales of nearly $1 billion. Such extraordinary success caught the attention of the “Oracle of Omaha,” Warren Buffett, who added RC Willey to Berkshire Hathaway’s holdings in 1995.
Amilya is an entrepreneur, prominent guest speaker, best-selling author, and radio and TV personality. She is the founder of Soapworks and other successful companies. She has appeared on Oprah, CBS News, Time magazine, People magazine, The Big Idea with Donny Deutsch, Strategy Room with Eric Bolling, and Fox Business News.
Alan E. Hall is a consummate businessman and entrepreneur. His acknowledgments include Ernst & Young Entrepreneur of the Year in 1997 and MountainWest Capital Network Entrepreneur of the year in 2009. He has invested in scores of companies and directly launched and led organizations ranging from home businesses to the multinational sales outsourcing organization MarketStar, which he sold to Omnicom in 1999 and continues to serve as Chairman of the Board. He is a weekly contributing columnist to Forbes.com. Mr. Hall is also a contributing writer to Harvard Business Review.
Dan Clark is a professional motivational speaker, author, and CEO of Clark Success Systems. Clark is the author of twenty-one books, and is a primary contributor to the Chicken Soup for the Soul series. He speaks to corporations, charities, universities, conventions, U.S. military academies and to troops and their families. Clark has also appeared on television and radio shows, including The Oprah Winfrey Show, The Glenn Beck Program and The Adam Carolla Show. Clark is also on the International Board of Governors of Operation Smile and on the National Advisory Board for Operation Kids.
Jim Pittenger, founder of Biker Jim's Gourmet Dogs, reposed cars for a living before he turned to serving gourmet artisan sausages from a spotless, stainless steel cart on the 16th Street Mall in Downtown Denver. He has since expanded to multiple carts and a restaurant on Larimer Street. Some of Jim’s menu items include reindeer and wild boar brats, rattlesnake and pheasant, elk and antelope, and yak and buffalo. Jim has received national recognition and has most notably been featured on the travel channel on Anthony Bourdain’s No Reservations.
Gary created the idea for the Boa Lacing System in 1998 when he took up snowboarding and found that traditional bootlaces were awkward and provided an imprecise fit. Today, millions of pairs of footwear, in dozens of different sports, are equipped with the Boa Lacing System. Boa is used by some of the most accomplished and elite professional athlete throughout the world.
Kate started Costume Craze in 2001 to test a search-engine optimization technology her brother Matthew developed. Today, the company is one of the largest costume retailers in the world. The business uses internal and external data and complex algorithms to determine what products will sell and how many to order. Costume Craze also operates a network of related websites to optimize search-engine hits, and sells its products on eBay and Amazon.com.
Jason & Jon Araghi are the founders of Green Beans Coffee. Green Beans got its start when Jason & Jon were invited by US Army personnel to open a coffee café on a US Army Base in the Middle East. Today, Green Beans serves military personnel in Afghanistan, Iraq, Kyrgyzstan, Kuwait, Qatar, Djibouti, Africa and domestically at military bases across North America. The company has a long-standing mission to support the men and women of the United States military through various programs, including their Cup of Joe for a Joe program.
As the President and CEO of Del Sol, Jeff has taken the company to become the largest color-change retailer in the world and the largest clothing retailer in the Caribbean. With nearly 1,000 employees and over 100 Del Sol stores in 25 countries, Jeff has grown the company into a worldwide brand with stores in the U.S., Mexico, Puerto Rico, St. Thomas, Barbados, St. Lucia, Alaska, Europe, and Canada. Jeff has been recognized nationally for his achievements as an entrepreneur and is a winner of the Ernst & Young Entrepreneur of the Year award.
We hit the streets of San Francisco to show you the many ways people can earn a living. These street entrepreneurs have developed unique concepts and are entertaining thousands of customers every week. All of them are earning part-time or full-time income from their business.
Becky is the original founder of For Every Body, one of the largest soy candle companies in the United States. She sold For Every Body in 2012 and started For Every Home, a successful party-plan company. Her products have been sold in 90 retail chains and 6,500 independent stores around the world.
Mike is an entrepreneur, business consultant, author, and university professor. He is the founder of successful companies in the food service, consulting, and real estate industries. He has written numerous articles and books on entrepreneurial success.
When her father's life was taken as a result of an accident, Alyssa created Donni Charm as a creative outlet to help her deal with the tragedy. Together with her mother, they began making designer scarves. While still in college at the University of Arizona, Alyssa’s scarves quickly became a fashion trend and thrived in sorority trunk shows and philanthropic endeavors. Donni Charm is now found in stores and boutiques all across the country, has received tremendous press, and is worn by dozens of big-name celebrities.
As the founder and CEO of iMemories, Mark is a veteran entrepreneur with a knack for figuring out what customers want and how to give it to them. With iMemories, Mark is helping reinvent how memories are experienced in today’s digital lifestyle by providing a social entertainment platform where images and videos from any generation can be digitized and shared via the web. Mark has been acknowledged and decorated as an industry leader receiving numerous awards including the Ernst & Young Arizona Entrepreneur of the Year of e-business.
As the founder of the San Francisco Fish Company, Allen is a staple in the seafood community around the bay area. For seventeen years, he owned and operated Rockridge Fish in the Market Hall in Oakland before moving into San Francisco’s historic Ferry Building in 2004. Allen and his staff treat customers to a dazzling array of seafood products and work hard to educate them about the joys of cooking and eating fish.
Earlier in his career Bill spent time as a Hotel Investment Banker, and was formerly the President of the hotel division of Samoth Capital, a publicly traded Canadian mezzanine lender. Bill got together with his partner Joe in early 2002 to found HPN Global with an idea to build a site selection/venue finding organization much more focused on professionalism, procurement efficiency and deep relationships. He has a long history of entrepreneurship and involvement in the hotel and meetings industries, having also founded Epix Hotels and Resorts and Set Solutions Inc.
Chris Michel is an American investor, entrepreneur and photographer. He is the founder of Affinity Labs and Military.com and run Nautilus Ventures, a seed venture fund. In 1999 he founded Military.com, an online portal for service members, veterans and their families. In 2006, Michel founded Affinity Labs, which runs a portfolio of online professional communities. Both Military.com and Affinity Labs were purchased by Monster Worldwide.
Jorge Fierro traveled to the US by himself as an immigrant with the dream of one day being a successful business owner. Unimpressed with the Mexican food he found in grocery stores, he recognized a niche waiting to be filled in providing fresh beans and other products authentic to the Mexican table. Starting with a small card table at a Downtown Farmer’s Market, he is now the president and CEO of The Fierro Group and founder of Rico Brand, Frida Bistro and Rico Catering.
Jacque is the Founder and Executive Chairman of MedQuest Pharmacy, which is one of the leading compounding pharmacies in the U.S. and includes 4 additional companies under the MedQuest Pharmacy umbrella. Jacque started the company after becoming a patient taking bio-identical hormones. She was disappointed with the products that she was given and voiced her discontent to her doctor. Her doctor asked Jacque if she thought she could do any better, and she said she could. The rest is history.
As a lifetime entrepreneur Brock Blake has always been passionate about helping other business builders. During college he became particularly interested in the concept of financing new ventures. After winning an entrepreneurial challenge he was awarded $50,000, which he used to start Funding Universe, a company that connected entrepreneurs to angel investors. Brock quickly realized that more entrepreneurs are a better fit for SBA loans or working capital loans and made the transition to Lendio where he is now founder and CEO.
While living in Logan, UT, a town with a population of only 50,000 people, Natalee was constantly hearing the phrase "There's nothing to do in Logan." Determined to prove that Logan had more to offer she started NothingToDoInLogan.com.
Gregory Jacobs was the most successful street entrepreneur in San Francisco. He found a way to make a comfortable living scaring people on the streets of Fisherman's Wharf. He earned a great living from his antics while only working part time. Gregory Jacobs passed away February 23rd, 2014 due to heart failure.
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