Alexender Amosu grew up in a council estate in north London. From a very young age, he had known that in order to get what you want, there are two ways. You either pay for it or you steal it. Amosu chose the first way. His first job was delivering papers for which he used to get £10 per week. He had enough to buy himself a pair of Nike trainers in few weeks. It was then that he realised that he didn’t want to be poor. From organising parties to providing cleaning services, he tried all the small businesses he could. It was not until 2000 when an idea changed his life and he quit his computer engineering degree.
Amosu was playing around on his new Nokia 3210 when he composed a ringtone and sent it to his brother. This ringtone was based on the Big Pimpin’ tune by rapper Jay Z. When his brother’s classmates heard the ringtone, they were impressed and it became a big hit among the friends. The next evening, 21 of his brother’s friends came to his place asking for the ringtone. The idea that came to his mind was “if you want it, you have to pay £1 each.” That night he sat with £21 and thought what would happen if he made a hundred or two hundred ringtones.
There were just two other companies who made ringtones at that time and they both focused on pop-music. According to him, none of the companies did R&B and hip hop and he just had to bring those ringtones to the world. His father was not pleased with his decision. He thought Amosu was throwing his life away. But Amosu knew there was potential. On his first day, he made £6 and his business grew from there. In just four months, he had enough money to rent an office in Islington at £2000 per month. He started out with 21 staff. Some were taking calls while others were making ringtones. He knew there were young guys like him who were making ringtones so he put advertisements for designers up in colleges and hired at £5 per hour. He named his firm R&B ringtones and soon its advertisements were on TV and newspapers.
By the time the year ended, he had made over £1.6 million. Within the next three years, he had made another £6.3 million. When he saw that everyone had gotten in the business of making ringtones, he sold his business for £9 million in 2004. He got married and moved to Edmonton with his wife and two kids to start his next venture which was designing mobile phones for the rich.
Today, Amosu is an entrepreneur. He creates customised phones in white gold and gold, encrusted with precious materials such as diamonds and gemstones. His phones are sold to the wealthy clients around the world.
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