State: New South Wales
Stephen Chapman must being doing something right with his FaceBuy online auction platform.
Launched earlier this year after coming up with the idea two years ago, his business is in the running for the third round of the international Million Pound Start-up Competition.
“I was pretty shocked … humbled by it,” the young entrepreneur from Manly in Sydney says of his progress in the competition.
FaceBuy is a way for people to buy and sell between friends or extended networks using social platforms on mobile devices. Its goal is to change the way the next generation buys and sells goods on mobile devices or tablets.
Chapman says the business is still in its early stages and has so far had over 1000 downloads of its iOS app.
“It’s like an online mall that you go with your friends to basically,” he says of FaceBuy.
Chapman, who’s studying business at the University of Technology Sydney, says he aims to add retail businesses to the platform in the future.
He says finding a quality development team and his age have been challenges he’s had to overcome.
“Me being quite young, it’s hard to be taken seriously at first,” he says.
But when people see he’s confident and knows what he’s talking about, they reach a mutual understanding.
Chapman says he’s a strong believer in the concept of surrounding yourself with people smarter than you to achieve success.
“If you want to be the best, then you have to surround yourself with the best.”
The winner of the Million Pound Start-up Competition is expected to move to London, and will receive £1 million in an equity investment, as well as mentoring from a range of accelerators, companies, councils and universities.
Over 1,000 start-ups from 72 countries entered the competition including more than 20 Australian start-ups across a wide range of industries.
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