WHILE many teens enjoy a kick about or some down time with friends in their spare time, one Blackpool teenager has his sights set on the big time.
Inspired by the likes of Richard Branson and Lord Alan Sugar, Jake Adams has set up his own social enterprise – at the age of 14.
The Year 10 pupil set up Community Printing in July of this year after saving up £1,000 for start up costs.
With his own business cards and state-of-the-art machinery Jake now runs the business from Claremont First Step Community Centre, on Dickson Road, Blackpool.
Community Printing specialises in printing on banners and equipment to help other businesses advertise their services.
He said: “I never thought I’d be able to do it. We learned about graphics and printing at school and I enjoyed it so thought I’d do more.
“I put all the money back into the business so it’s always there if I need it. I want to try to grow it more.”
His mother Kathy said Jake has always had an entrepreneurial spirit, setting up his own dog-walking business when he was 12.
He also made use of a disused caravan in his front garden, on Woburn Road, North Shore, to sell refreshments to passers-by, and washed pots at a restaurant to save up the £1,000.
He has managed to fit all this in while volunteering at the community centre and chairing the Blackpool Volunteer Youth Forum too.
The St Mary’s high school student is now studying for GCSEs in ICT, Business Studies, Media and Graphics to develop his theoretical knowledge as well as getting hands on experience.
He hopes to go on to university but said he has known from a young age he wanted to be his own boss.
Jake added: “I like being able to do what I enjoy. To say I have my own business is what motivates me.”
JAKE’S TOP BUSINESS TIPS
>> If you want to start a business up, make sure you have got the capital to do it in the first place.
>> Make sure you choose a business you can do, which isn’t too overwhelming at first. Then you can always progress it at a later stage.
>> Research is really important when starting up a business. Jake looked at what people wanted the most through surveys on-line.
>> You have got to be tough in business but also make sure you have got good people skills.
>> Stand out from the rest by having a unique selling point.
He runs the business from an office at the community centre, visiting after school to work on orders while still giving his time to help elderly visitors to the centre.
Mrs Adams said: “He’s very keen on his business, he never stops. He started off volunteering with older people at the club but now he’s getting his own ideas of ways they can do things at the centre. It’s unbelievable really, I’m very proud of him.”
For more information on Community Printing, or to place an order, contact: (01253) 299306