Who will be the top 5 Gen Y Founders?
Woman.com.au is in search for five promising Gen Y Founders to share their entrepreneurial journey on the Gen Y Founder Diary Series. After wading through 200+ applications, we’ve narrowed our search to seven young women. They each have a dream – a startup dream and they want to take you on their journey. Over the next four weeks, you’ll be learning about the rollercoaster ride that is the life of an entrepreneur.
If you’ve ever dreamed or wondered what it’s like to chase a dream, you’ll get a peek into the realities of life as a founder. It’s full of twists and turns, wins and losses, rejections and celebrations, long nights of hard slog and weekends that just aren’t long enough to get things done.
It’s all here in the Woman.com.au Gen Y Founder Diary. And it’s never a dull moment.
Vote for your favourite founder
Our shortlist of seven women is competing for five spots on WOMAN.com.au that gives them a platform to showcase their business over a period of three months and get advice from our growing community of influential women. The selection process will last for four weeks and will be based on the quality of their posts and the level of engagement from readers. That means, you have a say. Every time you comment on a post by a Gen Y Founder, or share it on social media, it will count towards her points, helping her to get closer to winning a spot on WOMAN.com.au.
If you have a favourite, help her win by:
1. Commenting on the posts she writes and sharing them on social media to help spread the word,
2. Voting for your favourite.
Meet the Gen Y Founders
Katya Baxter is the founding director of two fashion businesses, Mina and Katusha and Gusto and Elan, as well as Made in Melbourne, part of Melbourne’s Big Fashion Week. It’s fair to say this serial entrepreneur leads a fairly busy life! But while Katya acknowledges that it isn’t always rosy, she can’t help but look on the positive side of living her dream. Tiring though it is, she is compelled to power ahead, and her drive and positive attitude is what has seen her through the busiest six years of her life. Katya takes us through the pros and cons, and her decision to remain the eternal optimist. Read more
Cyndie Bowen is the founder of Europe in a Box, the subscription service that delivers a culinary taste of Europe to your door every month. She’s also the writer behind lifestyle blog, Mademoiselle Slimalicious, where she inspires people to live a healthier and greener life. Part of that blog is a list of 29 things to do before she’s 30, and one of those things is starting an online business. Tick! Subscription boxes are a growing trend in Europe and the USA and, with Cyndie’s expertise in all things European, it was a natural progression. Cyndie has lived in countries all around the world, and wants to bring her passion for European food to the Australian market. Read more
Ebony Centazzo, founder of Cat Napping Suburban Retreat, knew she wanted to start a business – she just didn’t know what kind of business. She put in the hard work, and finally came up with a business idea that incorporated one of her great loves – animals. A self professed “crazy cat lady”, her cattery is unique in that it gives each cat its own little space. On top of that, she also has a top secret business idea forming – something that hasn’t been done in Australia before, and something that, of course, will be about cats! Ebony chats about how she got started, and the upsides to starting a business in an area (and with creatures) that she loves. Read more
Think back to being a teenager for a moment. If someone told you at that age that you weren’t good enough, wouldn’t you be devastated? I know I would. It’s the kind of thing that can hold a woman back for life. Not Adelle Cousins, founder and writer of fashion blog, Where the Styled Things Are. A self proclaimed “clumsy doofus”, she’s taken her passion for fashion online to create this fantastic blog, which she juggles with all her other jobs and projects, from photographer to marketing coordinator. At Where the Styled Things Are, Adelle takes us on trips to the local op shops, shows us how to upcycle things we might otherwise throw out and models some of her very own creations. Here, she tells us how she didn’t let criticism hold her back, but used it as inspiration and drive to help catapult her to the best she could be. Read more
As founder (and namesake) of BUTTONS by Sarah Claire, Sarah’s career hasn’t exactly been straight forward. She came close to starting her own fashion line years ago, but lost faith and decided to return to education, ending up on an entirely different path. Now, finally, she has returned to her first love of fashion, and found that the break has worked in her favour – it’s true that absence makes the heart grow fonder. Sarah tells Woman.com.au how her experience has made her better than before. Read more
Courtney Symes, founder of Mr Gift, has been on a mission to find the perfect job. In turn, this journey has led her to helping women around Australia find the perfect gifts for the gentlemen in their lives – not an easy task, as we all know! With a lifelong fascination with retail, Courtney has worked to build a business that provides all the aspects she values from a shop and e-tailer. On top of all this, the last year has been especially busy for Courtney, with the arrival of a baby girl and an interstate relocation. Courtney tells us about her strive for a work-life balance, and what makes it all worth it for her. Read more
Iona Yeung is Chief Pickle at Pretty Pickles. “What’s that?” I hear you ask – Pretty Pickles is a one-stop-shop for quirky, bespoke party supplies. It’s not just pretty paper straws and luscious lolly bags – every product is biodegradable and handmade. What started out as a hobby for Iona has turned into a flourishing business and now she loves every part of the job that she does. Read here about how she got started, and where she sees it going. Read more