By Brian Sodoma, Special to VEGAS INC
Note: River Jangda was a winner of NCET’s 2013 Governor’s Cup college business plan competition.
Most of the young entrepreneurs Zachary Miles encounters at UNLV’s small business development center have can-do attitudes.
That’s not surprising given the emerging tech scene in Las Vegas.
But some, Miles said, take that confidence a bit too far — to the point of not being able to take criticism. Miles, the center’s director, calls it the “baby syndrome.”
“‘This is my child. How dare you say he needs braces?’” he said. “It’s better for entrepreneurs to hear that an idea is not going to work. … Just because the baby is ugly, doesn’t mean you can’t pivot. Usually, in an idea, there’s a nugget that can work.”
VEGAS INC recently spoke with some young entrepreneurs about the ideas they’re making work. Some are established and having success; others are in early stages of entrepreneurship. Many share a bootstrapping theme. Here’s what they had to say.
While attending UNR in 2011, River Jangda and his now business partner, Brad Cabanilla, created the website raverswag.com. Initially, the only item for sale was a fanny pack, developed by another company and geared toward electronic music festivalgoers.
“We were in college, and we loved going to music festivals. … People get all dressed up and crazy,” said Jangda, now 25. “One of our first products was a bra … that could blink to the beat of the music.”
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