This college dropout sold his first company for six figures at 21. Here's his recipe for success

This college dropout sold his first company for six figures at 21. Here’s his recipe for success

When Kevin Kim dropped out of college at 21 to become an entrepreneur, it seemed like a huge gamble.

“My mum cried a little,” Kim, now 33, said with a laugh.

But his confidence was not unfounded. Kim had just sold his first company — which he started when he was just 18 — for “six figures.”

That was no small feat, given that his starting capital was just $2,000, which Kim said he saved up from doing part-time jobs.

His e-commerce company imported streetwear from South Korea and sold it all over North America, he told CNBC Make It.

Achieving product-market fit is really hard, it takes years. You need to ask yourself … Do I really like this industry? Can I see myself build around this for 10 years?

Kevin Kim

Co-founder and CEO, Stadium Live

“After I sold my first company, it was easy to decide,” said Kim, who emigrated from South Korea to Canada when he was 11.

“There was no vision or alignment … I was a civil engineering undergrad but I wanted to create services and products for different audiences.”

Kim then spent almost 10 years building digital products for other startups and companies, before venturing out on his own in 2020 with Stadium Live — a metaverse app for sports fans.

The app allows users to customize their own avatars, buy digital collectibles, hang out with other fans in virtual rooms, take part in interactive sports livestreams or play mini games.

The startup has raised $13 million so far, including a Series A funding led by NBA star Kevin Durant’s 35 Ventures, World Cup champion Blaise Matuidi’s Origins Fund and Dapper Labs Ventures.

CNBC Make It finds out Kim’s three tips for running a successful company.

1. Founder-market fit

2. Closing a gap

3. Don’t overlook company culture

Leave a Reply

Your email address will not be published. Required fields are marked *