Discovrr: Hans Abanifi
The young entrepreneur explains how he overcame funding challenges and a lack of digital skills to launch his niche social media platform...
Name: Hans Abanifi
Company name: Discovrr
Date launched: 01/06/15
Tell us what your business does:
Discovrr aims to promote people’s creativeness and help them share their valuable work.
It was founded and created with a vision to connect people from all around the world via their artistic talent. I first came up with the idea in school after seeing all the unappreciated talent that was on display.
Where did the idea for your business come from?
I realised that there were not many dedicated services for artists to share and discover work.
We offer every user the chance to upload and share their talent. From music videos to photography projects, we aim to share your talent with a large and inspiring community.
How did you know there was a market for it?
Many of my friends and people I’ve been introduced to are artists and have some sort of talent that they share. I realised that the existing platforms such as Facebook, YouTube etc. are far too wide-based and do not offer the niche service.
What were you doing before starting up?
This is my first real venture. I have just finished my GCSEs and am going on do my A-levels in Mathematics, Economics, Physics and Government and Politics.
Have you always wanted to run your own business?
Yes! I have always wanted to run and own something that I have created and developed.
How did you raise the money?
I needed to raise money for the website hosting. To do this, I sold some of my personal items on eBay to raise the initial money.
Describe your business model and how you make money:
At the moment Discovrr is a completely free service. When the user base grows to a satisfactory size then I may introduce premium memberships where users can pay for extra features such as downloads and more upload space.
What challenges have you faced and how have you overcome them?
Not having much experience in website creation and design, I had to learn how to do it all myself. I spent endless hours watching tutorials and reading books, which enabled me to learn how to create and manage a large social media website.
What was your first big breakthrough?
I received a phone call from a very large and prestigious art school. The headmaster said he was very interested in the idea and that he would like me to attend the school’s next exhibition, where I could share and promote Discovrr. This gave me a huge boost in confidence as it showed me that other people had started to believe in my idea.
What advice would you give to budding entrepreneurs?
I would advise anyone who has a passion to follow it. No matter how hard it gets and how many hurdles you have to face you should carry on.
I was told on many occasions that it was not possible to create a website as I was too young but one year later I had done so and I have proven many people wrong.
Where do you want to be in five years’ time?
In five years time I want Discovrr to be a well known social media platform for ‘up and coming artists’. I would like there to be thousands, if not millions, of active users on the site.