From Student to Start-up: Snakksu CEO Jason Wong’s Entrepreneurial Journey
In the bustling landscape of young entrepreneurs, a name that’s been making waves is Jason Wong, whose passion for business and innovation has propelled him into the NI start-up ecosystem. His remarkable journey, marked by resilience, creativity, and determination, is a testament to the power of entrepreneurial education and mentorship provided by Young Enterprise.
Jason’s journey into the realm of business began with the Young Enterprise Company Programme, a stepping stone that led him to discover his passion for innovation and set the stage for his entrepreneurial ventures. Young Enterprise became the launchpad for Jason’s business ambitions. Through the programme, he honed his skills, learning the essence of teamwork, patience, and inclusive leadership: “[I learned] the importance of patience, listening and including everyone. I remember clashing with my peers in the product ideation and creation phase, but in the end, we got things done.”
Director of his Young Enterprise company, Jason tackled challenges, fostering adaptability and problem-solving skills. The experience not only shaped his growth as an entrepreneur but also equipped him with the confidence to pursue a life of business.
With newfound confidence and a vision in mind, Jason embarked on his entrepreneurial journey. During lockdown, he delved into the world of 3D design for gaming, securing his first substantial commission and marking the beginning of his entrepreneurial endeavours. His creativity didn’t stop there; he conceptualised a unique hamper idea and undeterred by any challenges facing him, he founded Snakksu, a venture born out of his love for Asian snacks, within a mere two days! This rapid transformation from idea to execution showcases Jason’s determination and agility in the business landscape.
Jason’s story took a significant turn when he participated in the Emerging Entrepreneurs Summer School, a collaboration between Raise Ventures, Young Enterprise and Ormeau Baths. This intensive one-week program proved to be a game-changer, providing him with a platform to learn from established entrepreneurs, develop innovative thinking, and enhance his public speaking skills. More importantly, it facilitated invaluable networking opportunities, enabling him to connect with professionals and mentors who shared his passion for innovation. When asked about the summer school, Jason told remarked, “It was an amazing experience being able to present my team’s business idea and receive feedback from people who have done it before and been through that sort of journey.”
Armed with the knowledge and connections acquired through the Emerging Entrepreneurs Summer School, Jason is now more determined than ever to make his mark on the start-up scene. His vision extends beyond conventional boundaries; he plans to venture into live performances, bridging the gap between performers, venues, and consumers. He aims to push the limits and explore uncharted territories, embodying the spirit of innovation. To anyone on the outside, entering this start-up space may seem daunting, however, backed by his recent experience, Jason explains, “All you have to do is reach out, and to my surprise, so much guidance and further opportunities have been given to me in doing so.”
Jason’s journey serves as a beacon of hope for aspiring young entrepreneurs. His story illustrates the transformative power of programmes like Young Enterprise and the Emerging Entrepreneurs Summer School. Through dedication, innovation, and a willingness to embrace challenges, he has paved the way for his success.
As we look to the future, it is entrepreneurs like Jason Wong who inspire the next generation. Young people are encouraged to follow his footsteps, to dream big, challenge the status quo, and embark on their entrepreneurial journeys. With the right support and determination, they too can shape the future of business and innovation right here in NI.
Jason is currently studying Business Management at Queen’s University to further pursue his passion of business. Jason reveals that whilst his workload may be, at times, overwhelming, he lives for the challenge and is managing to excel in his studies. What else would you expect from the next star in the business world!
To end with a quote, Jason perfectly encapsulates Young Enterprise’s mission to build young people up, introduce them to business and show them the potential that they truly have:
“Young Enterprise has had a massive influence on me and has undoubtedly shaped my growth as an entrepreneur and as a person. My next steps would be starting up a business which I would have never known how to do, but now I feel confident with the connections and skills I have developed with all the opportunities I have been given by Young Enterprise.
“For young people, I would implore everyone to apply and experience the programmes and range of opportunities here available in NI. My call to action for young people is to go out and challenge yourself. Do something that exposes you to business and don’t be afraid to step out of your comfort zone. You are the future leaders of this country!”