Secret Academy Episode - Kevin Liang

Kevin Liang was 14-years-old when he went to a friend's house and saw an elaborate ecosystem in his friend's bedroom. Curious about how it worked and how it was superior to the traditional aquariums he was used to, he asked his friend to teach him everything about this self-sustaining set up. Soon, he was hooked and built his own ecosystem in his sister's garage. Using Kickstarter, Kevin launched EcoQube, a small self-sustaining aquarium ecosystem using basil or mint to naturally clean the water so that no filter changes are necessary. In its first year EcoQube generated $120k in sales, which then increased to $750k the second year, and this year they are on track to reach $3M in sales.

Lesson's in Today's Interview:
  • How he got started building ecosystems and eventually breeding crystal red shrimp
  • Selling crystal red shrimp as a 16-year-old making $3000 in one weekend
  • Why he decided to stop pursuing his college degree
  • Using Kickstarter and what he changed from his first to second campaigns
  • Transitioning from being in total control to sharing responsibilites
  • Bringing on a partner and investors
  • Why he sought out investors even after his success with multiple Kickstarter campaigns
  • How going to college even without graduating with a degree has contributed to his success
  • Going to the factory and forming a relationship with the manufacturer is crucial to success
  • The biggest mistake he has made thus far
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Sean Ogle
Founder of Location Rebel
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Greg Mercer
Founder of Jungle Scout