While most five-year-old girls would be playing with dolls or pretending how to cook with pots and pans, Asia Newson was planning her first business.
“Since I was about 4 or 5-years-old, I’ve always had, like, the vibe, or, like, I don’t know, little power ball that keeps me going,” Asia told ABC News’ “20/20.”
Known as “Detroit’s youngest entrepreneur,” Asia is the co-founder and CEO of Super Business Girl, a company she runs with her parents. Now, at the age of 13, Super Business Girl is the perfect name for a determined young girl whose company is targeted to make $100K this year, and for someone who wants to help other young girls do the same.
Newson actually got started at the age of five selling candles door-to-door with her dad, who is also an entrepreneur. She bought the wholesale candles for $1 and sold them for $10. At the time, many people bought her candles because they couldn’t resist her cuteness. But as she grew older, the situation changed.
As with everything, business changes, sales strategies change and Newson had to change with it. She knew she could no longer rely on her cuteness if she wanted to create a successful and long-lasting business.
When Newson was older, local security guards began banning her from public places because they suspected she was running some kind of scam. With her mother’s help, she went downtown and got a vendor’s permit and began training other younger than her to keep the movement going.
A 20-something Detroit entrepreneur, Dave Anderson, caught her on camera doing her sales pitch (see below) and posted it on social media. He went back to the entrepreneurship incubator he was a part of and told everyone that Asia needs to be in it too.
But, everything really started to change when she literally ran into Quicken Loans founder, Dan Gilbert. Gilbert is the owner of Quicken Loans as well as the Cleveland Cavaliers, plus has a number of real estate ventures to revitalize Detroit. He recognized her as Detroit’s “Super Business Girl.” She met with him in his office and he said, “I have keys to the city, and I can sell anywhere!”
From that point, she pushed even more. Asia improved her product packaging and began to enlist the help of partners. She continued to train more people, and her web site really took off, producing more and more orders from her sales of candles, shirts, book bags and school supplies.
Newson has always been focused on helping others. The idea of training others to sell her candles is to teach other children how to make their own money. Her advice to others is to never give up, and don’t be afraid to fail.
She explains, “No matter what is going on in your life…no matter what other family responsibilities you have…no matter what your age, geography or gender, you can be a success. Just don’t give up.”
Asia has won numerous awards; including being named on the Grio’s top 100 list for business, and Entrepreneur of The Year from Ernst & Young. She has appeared on the Ellen Degeneres Show, America’s Got Talent, MSNBC, BET, 20/20 ABC News and NPR just to name a few! She was featured in countless articles and magazines, including Vogue, where she worked with the prominent photographer Bruce Webber.
Asia has traveled state to state and overseas promoting her business and bringing awareness of youth entrepreneurship. She was a keynote speaker at TedXDetroit and Accelerate Michigan.
For more information about this super business girl, click here.
credit – blackdoctor.org