He grew up at the back streets of London under his grandmother’s guidance in a council flat. Back at school in the squalid parts of London, he always wanted to do things that could bring him fame and fortune right from age 12.
In his words, “I realized I was different from other kids in the neighbourhood as I grew up by the hand, clothed in the blue dress of poverty” Although born in Britain, he moved to Nigeria at the age of two with his parents. Ten years later, he returned to Britain to live with his grandmother in a cramped council house in North London. Amosu didn’t even have enough money for school dinners. But early in life he discovered if he needed anything, he had to work hard for it.
Amosu was determined to make a statement … he was determined to break free from poverty. His rag-to-riches story is typical. It was in year 2000, at the age of 24th he accidentally stumbled on his lucrative new career. Amosu had sent his brother a ring tone he had made on a phone with a composing facility. As soon as his brother’s phone went off at college, immediately all his friends wanted it. That was the beginning of his wealth. Already a promising entrepreneur, he had been earning extra money at college by staging parties and balls.
Amosu made his brother’s friends come round to his house and pay him £1 for the ring tone. In the first day, he made £7. Amosu decided to specialize in R & B music and within 6 weeks had come up with further 6 ring tones. He installed an extra phone line, with a premium-rate number charging £1.50 a minute, in the council house he was living in with his parents. He advertised the number on the back of 20,000 fliers he made for his next party. On the first day, R & B Ring tones made £97. Amosu gave up university.
He was 21 years old at the time. Within four months, he had opened offices in Islington and employed 21 staff selling 1000 ring tones. In the first year, the turnover was £1.2m. In 2002, he was Young Entrepreneur of The Year at the Institute of Directors Black Enterprise Awards.
Today, the popularity of ring tones has been further increased by record companies, which now add downloadable ring tones to some of their releases. A few labels have been released the ring tone version of a single before CD, such as Mandy, by West life. Another reason for increased demand is the fact that the variety of ring tones has increased by about 1000 per cent in the past years.
As well as pop, classical, jazz, national anthems and film and TV theme tunes, there are also animal noises made available by the British library, courtesy of its vast sound archive, which include Columbus monkey calls, a desert cobra attack, birds singing and cattle lowing. The ring tone industry is now worth about £100m. Today, Alexander Amosu’s fortune runs into millions of pounds and he has become an employer of labour as he runs R&B Ring tones, which is now the UK’s number one provider of mobile ring tones and graphics. (Culled from The Guardian, Tuesday, September 14, 2004). (I don’t encourage young people in school to abandon their education and go after their business dreams.
I believe that education has a role to play in business success) The truth is You were created to produce something. You were created to add value to life. God created you so you can create also. As a matter of truth, the business of creation was unfinished so man can continue from where God stopped.
You were created to create something of value; it is this ‘something’ that brings you wealth. However, in creating a product or service, creativity is very important. Creativity is the additional value, extra effort, innovation and ‘uniqueness’ which come with a product or service.
“A market is never saturated with a good product, but it is very quickly saturated with a bad one”Henry Ford. The challenge this book throws to you is that the key to your wealth is connected to what you can create and are willing to create.
How do you create a product or service? Before I answer this question, what I am trying to say here is that you’ve got to start thinking like an entrepreneur. Our school system encourages and breeds in us an employee mentality. We are taught to be respectful to rules and traditions, are groomed to occupy certain office positions, trained on how to answer phone calls, write and reply correspondence and memos, relate with our bosses, colleagues, subordinates and clients and so on.
But no school, at least not in the practical sense, teaches people how to generate, develop, run with business ideas and create wealth. This is the tough task NEAII intends undertaking here. You really can become the next Bill Gates of this generation.
Do you know that Bill Gates, the richest man in the world today, started his company that became Microsoft, which is also the largest computer software manufacturing company in the world at the age of 17? While his partner, Paul Allen, was 21 then? Michael Dell, founder of Dell Computers, the largest personal computer manufacturing company in the world, was an undergraduate in his first year when he started the company that made him the richest man in the world under 40 in 2003.
The four founders of America online (AOL) the world’s largest internet service provider (ISP) were all under 25 years of age when they started the company, while the founding partners of yahoo are still under 30 years. Same goes for Google, world’s largest internet search engine. Its founders Sergey Brin and Larry Page are just over 30 years old. You can join this league of entrepreneurs and work your way to the top. So how do you create a product or service that you will exchange for money to create your own nest egg (i.e. an amount of money that you have saved) for aggressive investments.