Part-time Palm Beacher Blair Brandt is part of a group of entrepreneurs under the age of 30 gathering in Washington today to launch Buy Young, a collective effort to promote businesses owned by young people and boost their profile with policymakers.
Brandt, 23, said he and other business owners hope lawmakers will listen as they gather at the U.S. Chamber of Commerce, on Capitol Hill and at the White House. Key points of the discussions will include the barriers they have faced at start-up or when trying to expand.
Lawmakers often invite Fortune 500 company owners to Washington to talk about job creation, but “young businesses and new enterprises in their first three years of operation create the biggest number of jobs in this country,” said Matthew Segal, 25, president and co-founder of Our Time, the group launching Buy Young.
So Segal has the young business people set to talk to politicians and other company CEOs to offer their experiences.
“It’s to promote the fact that young people are key agents to the economy recovery of this country,” Segal said.
One runs a butcher shop, others own candy shops and produce such iconic e-commerce sites as WordPress and Living Social. Our Time members are diverse in the businesses they run and the political beliefs they hold, Segal said.
“There’s not one type of entrepreneur. You don’t have to be (Facebook founder) Mark Zuckerberg,” he said.
Brandt, a co-founder of Next Step Realty based in Palm Beach and New York, said he’s happy to meet politicians, but he’s really excited to meet other young business people.
The networking will continue his efforts to cooperate with other business owners and co-promote products, he said. Brandt, who started Next Step Realty in May 2010, said he thinks young entrepreneurs have respect for each other’s space and would rather work together than try to take over or undercut what someone else is doing.
His business, in fact, is a middleman between young people who are relocating and the real estate brokers in the area to which they are moving.
“It’s kind of a matchmaking real estate company geared toward graduating college seniors,” he said.
Our Time: Buy Young schedule
9:30 a.m. Press conference and roundtable, U.S. Chamber of Commerce. Roundtable is moderated by PBS NewsHour host Judy Woodruff.
12:45 p.m. Capitol Hill luncheon, Russell Senate Office Building. Hosted by House Minority Whip Steny Hoyer, D-Md. Keynote speaker Barry Diller, CEO of IAC.
4:30 p.m. Panel and briefing, White House. Hosted by White House Business Council, Small Business Administration.
Source: By Emily Roach Palm Beach Post Staff Writer