Gen Z Trends

Meet 5 Young Founders Making an Impact


In our last blog post, we looked at 5 inspiring young people who prove that age is not a barrier to becoming a successful entrepreneur. But they are not the only ones. Countless more young people are doing amazing work worth following.

So read on, here are five young entrepreneurs who are not just dreaming about a better future, but actively creating it.

Hart Main – ManCans

When Hart Main was 13, he needed money to buy his dream bike. He founded his company based on a joke: What if he could create candles with scents that appealed to men?

With the support of his parents, he launched ManCans, a unique candle business featuring scents like cigars and bacon. What began as a project to earn money for a bike turned into a successful venture.

“I’m most grateful for everything owning a business has taught me and how it has helped prepare me for a successful future,” Hart shared in an interview.

Hart also dedicated a large part of his business to giving back through donations to soup kitchens. Today, Beaver Creek handles ManCans’ production, where people with developmental disabilities are employed.

Alina Morse – Zollipops

When Alina Morse was seven years old, she went to the bank with her dad and the teller offered her a lollipop. While she really wanted to accept, her parents always told her that candy was terrible for her teeth.

So she asked her dad, “Why can’t we make a lollipop that’s actually good for your teeth?”. This was the moment the idea for Zollipops was born. The name was created by Alina’s younger sister who tried to pronounce the ingredients.

Supported by her dad, Alina set off to make delicious lollipop treats that were actually good for your teeth. In 2014, the first Zollipops products appeared in stores. Zollipops are candies that are vegan and sugar-free, with only natural flavors and colorings. The sweets turned out a great success and Alina became known as the “Lollipop Girl”.

If you want to find out more, you can have a look at her TED Talk:

Aaron Easaw – Easaw Development & ACE

When Aaron Easaw was 11 years old, he founded Easaw Development, a software development company that grew to a team of 80+ employees.

After a few years of running his firm and working with clients in 5 continents, he exited the company and moved into the world of angel investing at the age of 16.

Aaron now heads ACE Venture Capital, a VC firm dedicated to investing and supporting entrepreneurs under the age of 30. As the youngest sole manager of a fund, Aaron leverages a unique style of investing by heavily utilizing a relationship style of due diligence.

Lily Born – Kangaroo Cup

Lily Born is a great example of an entrepreneur who saw an issue and decided to solve it. At the age of 8, she noticed that her grandpa, who has Parkinson’s Disease, was oftentimes knocking over his cup and creating spills.

This let her to create the Kangaroo Cup: a three-legged cup that won’t tip over. Lily spent years refining her invention, from hand-moldable plastic prototypes to ceramic models crafted in a local pottery studio.

Her work paid off, and today, thousands of cups have been sold worldwide. Through crowdfunding sites, she sold more than 10,000 cups worldwide. She improved the initial design with unbreakable plastic, making it useful not only for people with mobility issues but for kids and grownups who simply want a better cup. Lily is also sharing her success with the community by donating Kangaroo Cups to NPOs and using part of the profits to support STEM education for young girls.

Michael J. Olivier – Math with Mike & Teentrepreneurs

When Michael Olivier was in high-school, he started tutoring math for peers in his class. Word quickly spread and soon parents from the community asked him to tutor their kids in lower grades.

Soon, he was running a self-employed tutoring business called Math with Mike that grew with each year. Due to the Covid-19 Pandemic, he had to stop, but his entrepreneurial ambitions didn’t end.

In 2020, Michael launched Teentrepreneurs, a nonprofit initiative that started to make entrepreneurship free and fun for anyone, anywhere, providing free education for aspiring entrepreneurs. He also laid his hand on retail when he bought and co-owned Tradehaul, a retail business specializing in snacks, ice cream, drinks, and more. Michael has been on several advisory boards as well, also on our Moonshot Pirates Young Advisory Board.

Ready to Start Your Own Business?

Have these incredible entrepreneurs inspired you to launch your own business? No matter your age and background, you can start today! What you might have to get are some more skills and a strong network in order to be successful. This is exactly what the Moonshot Pirates Launchpad provides you with! A step-by-step journey into entrepreneurship, supported by mentoring sessions from experts worldwide.

So what are you waiting for? Stop dreaming about building your own company. Start doing it! Find out more about the Launchpad here.

Enjoyed reading this article? Ever invited a pirate for a coffee? Now’s your chance.

Tagged as changemakers, gen z, young founders

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