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Fashion startup secrets they won't teach you in business school

Thursday, July 3, 2014

Q: I am 16 and studying entrepreneurial management in the Philippines. Do you recommend that my friends and I start a business now (we are looking at fashion)? Compared to our classmates, we are not the best students, but we want to try and will not give up easily. You don’t learn everything in business school, and we want to discover and have fun while studying.


I reached out to you because I bought your book “Like a Virgin: Secrets They Won’t Teach You at Business School”—I’m on page 58.



Thank you very much for getting to page 58 of the book. I hope you made it all the way through! The right time for you to get started is right now. I was your age when I launched my first business, Student magazine. By that time I was old enough to think for myself, and young enough not to be daunted by a career that involves risk.


You seem to have found your passion, so you’re already a step ahead. Admittedly, it’s difficult to make an impact in the fashion industry: I learned this firsthand, having launched ventures like Virgin Brides, Virgin Clothing and Virginware, all of which failed. Fortunately, I had some success when Virgin helped to launch a modeling startup called Storm Model Management. One of the first models the founder, Sarah Doukas, signed up was Kate Moss, and the rest is history.