What do you know about Inkitt CEO Ali Abazaz? You may not know who he is yet, but that’s probably about to change, thanks to the company he founded and now directs. Here are 10 things about him you might want to know.
1. He’s always had an eye for what sells
Some people just have a tendency to know when something will sell for a higher price than what they paid for it, and he is definitely one of those individuals. In fact, he has a tendency to see entrepreneurial opportunities almost everywhere he looks. It's one of the things that has always set him apart from other people and of course, has allowed him to be quite successful in his own right.
2. He started his own side hustle at 13
That's right, he was only 13 years old when he started his first job, one that he created for himself. He went on eBay and bought old cell phones for next to nothing. Once they came in, he would diligently polish them so they looked all bright and shiny, then he would take a series of pictures of each phone so that he could choose the very best photos to post online. He turned around and sold those same phones on the exact same platform from which he purchased them, only he was selling each one for anywhere from 20% to 30% more than what he paid for them.
3. He pays attention to what’s going on around him
Clearly, he's one of those people that pays attention to virtually everything going on around him. More importantly, he always has an eye geared toward different ways that he can use those situations to make money. It's often a very simple solution, so simple in fact that other people have a tendency to look right past it. That's what got him his first job as a teenager and it's what gave him the idea for Inkitt.
4. He formed his company because he likes to read
One of the reasons that he gravitated toward a company like Inkitt is because he loves to read. It only stands to reason that he would eventually combine his entrepreneurial skills with one of his favorite hobbies. The combination sort of happened naturally, as the idea came to him one day when he was thinking about some of his favorite authors. According to him, it just sort of hit him and he's been working on it ever since. Obviously, he was onto something.
5. He also enjoys learning about the authors
One of the things that helped him develop the idea for his company is that he enjoys learning about his favorite authors. He found out that two of those authors, Stephen King and JK Rowling, endured countless numbers of rejection letters when they were trying to get their books published. For King, his book “Carrie” was rejected approximately 30 different times. JK Rowling suffered roughly half as many rejections for her “Harry Potter'' series. That got him thinking about creating an online platform where readers have an opportunity to decide whether or not a book gets published, as opposed to putting that control in the hands of traditional publishers.
6. He loves dogs
He says that he's always loved dogs and currently has a dog of his own. His love for animals goes back a number of years, all the way to his childhood. For years, he wanted a dog but wasn't able to have one until much later. He claims that it was definitely worth the wait.
7. He tends to rely on the comfort of friends when things get rough
He believes that everybody needs a solid support system. He says that no matter how strong and determined a person is, nobody can do everything completely on their own. When things get dodgy in his life, he relies on his family and a close circle of good friends that he knows he can trust. According to him, these individuals have helped him get through a number of rough patches. In fact, he says that it's crucial for anyone's mental well-being to have a strong support group that they can rely on when they need a bit of encouragement, or even some guidance.
8. He doesn’t manage every person the same way
He's mentioned a number of times that he doesn't manage all of his employees in the same manner. In fact, he has a tendency to change his managerial style based on the person in question. That's because he realized a long time ago that every individual isn't driven by the same things. Some people work very well under pressure, but that same pressure can make other people fall apart. Similarly, some people don't produce their best work until they're given a proper tongue lashing. Others resent this type of thing and only do their best work when they are simply left alone to do what they do best. As such, he changes the way that he manages each person based on their needs. In short, he fits into their dynamic instead of forcing all of his employees to fit into his.
9. Bill Gates is his hero
He’s said many times that he’s highly impressed with Bill Gates. It’s not only about his managerial style, but also the way he approaches problems. He also loves how inspired Gates is to create new ways of doing things.
10. He’s been an avid reader since he was a child
He says he can’t remember a time when he didn’t love to read. It’s something that he has always used to transport him wherever he wants to go. For him, each book contains a brand new world that beckons to him. That’s precisely why he decided to create Inkitt in the first place.
Written by Allen Lee
Read more posts by Allen Lee