Too old to start? Here’s 7 entrepreneurs who became successful only after 30

When we try to explain to people the way to be rich is to be an entrepreneur and start your own business, one of the most common responses we get is “I’m too old”, “If only you told me when I was younger”, “I’m past my prime”, “it’s too late for me now” etc. We then proceed with a desperate attempt to try and convince the person that there is no such thing as being too old to start.

Somehow, most people have this mindset that if you were to be an entrepreneur, you have to be of a certain age and that number usually falls in the mid 20s. But that can’t be further from the truth, there’s no such thing as having to be of a certain age to be an entrepreneur.

To prove that you can start and run a successful business regardless if you are 20 or 80, here’s 7 entrepreneurs that’s worth millions today who didn’t found success even when they were 30.


  1. Walmart founder, Sam Walton

    Walmart is an American corporation that operates a mega chain of departmental and discount stores. In 2014, this household name netted a net income of US$16.36billion and has today, international partners from around the world. All a far cry from its founder’s early days when Sam Walton had to take a $20,000 loan from his father-in-law to purchase his first business franchise, a Ben Franklin store. Even though he subsequently expanded to 2 stores, he was still struggling to pay his employees until he founded Walmart at the age of 44.

  2. Paypal founder, Peter thiel

    If you have ever shopped online, you would have heard of Paypal and all it’s abilities. Even our Socks Singapore team uses Paypal for their E-commerce store with thanks to it’s worldwide online payment system that makes Global payment a breeze for both sellers & consumers. But before it’s glory days when Peter Thiel founded Paypal at the age of 31 years old, Peter was a lawyer and hated his job. He too once worked as a clerk and a derivatives trader for Credit suisse group before he found his calling with Paypal.

  3. MircoSolutions founder, Mark Cuban

    From the guy that explained to us if Athletes do indeed have an advantage in business, Mark Cuban is the notorious billionaire that owns Dallas Mavericks. This outspoken billionaire made his first fortune when his company, MircoSolutions was acquired for $6million. He subsequently used that money to start which was again subsequently acquired by Yahoo for 5.7billion when he was 32 years old. Who would have saw it coming when just a few years ago, the 28 year old Mark cuban was still sharing a 3 bedroom apartment with 5 people.

  4. Alibaba Founder, Jack Ma

    Jack Ma is no stranger to us as we have covered him in more than one of our Articles. Unknown to most is that the founder of one of the world’s top b2b platforms has actually never written a single code until he used a computer for the first time in his 30s. Before the age of 30, Jack Ma has famously applied for dozens of job only to be rejected by even fast food chain, KFC twice. Most would have thought Jack Ma to be a failure at the age of 30, but just 5 years later, at the age of 35, Jack Ma gave birth to Alibaba and the rest as they put it, is history.

  5. Twitter founder, Jack Dorsey

    Co-Founder of Twitter and the 2012 Wall street journal “Inventor of the year” award, Jack Dorsey has come a long way since the days before he was 30. Before founding Twitter at the age of 30, Jack Dorsey was a nose-ring wearing hacker that was more commonly seen around as a punk skater even in his mid 20s.

  6. Ford Motors Company Founder, Henry Ford

    American Motor Company, Ford revolutionized the automobile industry by manufacturing cars that the middle class could afford. His methods gave birth to the term “Fordism” and made him one of the richest and well known man in his era. But before he founded Ford motor at the age of 40, Henry Ford had to file for bankruptcy for not one, but two of his prior companies; Detroit Automobile Company and Henry Ford Company. So i guess it’s safe to say that people who knew him when he was 30 didn’t have much expectations of him.

  7. WhatsApp Founder Jan Koum

    It’s almost impossible to find a person with a smart phone without messaging app, Whatsapp. But little do people know that one of the world’s most popular instant messaging app was only founded by Jan Koum when he was 33 years old. This billionaire with a net worth of US$7.5billion, was ranked in Forbes 400 richest in 2014 after Whatsapp was acquired by Facebook for US$19Billion. But before he became who he is today, Jan Koum was once issued a court restraining order by his ex-gf, worked for Yahoo and took a break for a year to tour South America playing ultimate Frisbee. But the biggest irony of them all has to be that Jan Koum once applied to work for Facebook but was turned down.

If these 7 entrepreneurs aren’t prove enough that age isn’t a factor, I’m not quite sure what is. The thing is, starting a business can be like heading to the gym to lose weight or improve your fitness, where the first steps are always one of the hardest. Our mind thus often conceive “reasons” and excuses of why we cannot do something. Not wanting to do the hard work, we embark on that self fulfilling prophecy telling ourselves that “we are too old”. But what does too old mean anyway? Who made the law that to be an entrepreneur, we have to be of a certain age? And if you really think about it, if someone had come to you when you were 18 telling you that you should be an entrepreneur, you probably would have told them that you’re too young. So what is it really? Is age really just an excuse your mind conjure up so you wouldn’t have to go out there and get down and dirty?

What are your thoughts? Share with us in your comments below!

Or if you know of anyone who needs an inspiration, share this article with them and you would be doing them a huge favor!


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