February 3, 2011
Several years ago Maddie Bradshaw hit the one million dollar mark and turned a hobby she loved into a profitable company with sales reaching 50,000 units per month. What kind of craze could yield such returns, one may ask?
Locker inspiration and magnetic bottlecaps! Bradshaw found her inspiration in some old bottlecaps, created fun designs and displayed them in her locker for the whole world to see. Sooner than later her classmates were begging Bradshaw to design more bottlecaps. But Bradshaw’s inspiration didn’t stop there. She later turned her bottle cap designs into fun jewelry, creating a necklace with interchangeable charms.
Alongside successful entrepreneur, Bradshaw can now add accomplished author to her list of accolades with the recent release of her new book, “Maddie Bradshaw’s You Can Start a Business, Too!” The book is written to capture the tween and teen market. Meanwhile, Maddie continues to grow her business and currently sells her SNAP CAPS bottlecap necklaces to over 2,500 retail channel partners nationally with annual revenue of 2.1 million per year. Learn how Maddie got started and the greatest lesson in her success.
Company: m3 girl designs
Founder, Age: Maddie Bradshaw, 14 & Margot Bradshaw, 10
Location: Dallas, Texas
Startup Year: 2006
Startup Costs: $300
How I Got Started: At the age of ten, when I was going into middle school, I wanted original magnets for my locker that no one else had. However, since I couldn’t find any I liked, I decided to make my own. I went to my uncle who has an old-fashioned coke machine and asked him if I could use some of his bottle caps. From there, I drew up designs, put them into the bottle caps, and eventually, I decided to turn my magnets into an interchangeable necklace.
Best Success Story: I think there is a great lesson in my success. It teaches girls, around my sister’s age (10) the real tools that can be used to start a business, the importance of owning a business while having a well-balanced life. Both my sister and I are very surprised that we have made so much money considering our company started with only $300! I am saving my money for a car and for college. Margot is saving hers for college as well.
Biggest Startup Challenge: It was not a challenge for me; it was a hobby that turned into a business. I find drawing very relaxing. I’m honestly just a normal kid. I play sports, right now I’m on my school swim team, and am apart of clubs and committees at school. Since I just draw the original artwork, it’s not really difficult for me to juggle all of my activities.
#1 Tips for Newbies: My advice for anyone, at any age, who wants to start their own business, is to follow your dreams, and make sure you are doing what you love.
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