Fresh Talent

They might be young, but these kids are taking the business world by storm.

Bryant Allen

Although he’s just a teenager, it seems as though dog lover Bryant Allen has already found his true calling. During a trip to Two Dogs and a Cat, his favorite local pet boutique to visit while on vacation in Lake Tahoe, Allen was struck with the idea to create dog biscuits from all natural, organic ingredients that are actually healthy. Allen’s first business venture was a dog walking business. This proved beneficial, as those clients were the first to receive samples of his homemade biscuits when he was just starting out, in addition to his own longhaired dachshund, Duke.

As far as advice for fellow entrepreneurs, he said to just be responsible, know your business plan and be prepared. “You have to set realistic goals and also be aware of the expenses and costs associated with your business,” he said. “More importantly, just do what you love. I love dogs and I’ve always wanted to be able to do something to help them and now I am.”

Adding to his already vast knowledge of business workings, Allen has some unique marketing techniques as well. He has wrapped samples of his treats, including the ingredients he uses, and left them in a basket at the local Curves women’s fitness center and the local pet store, and he has teamed up with a friend of his mother who makes dog purses to include some of his treats with each bag.

When he’s not busy running his business and participating in the usual high school activities, Allen gives presentations to children at the local YMCA on how to start their own business and volunteers for a local animal shelter called PUP.

The treats, all made from fresh ingredients, retail for $7.50 a bag on and come in flavors like Tasty Tomato Bones, Herbalicious Biscuits, Grain-Free Liver Crunchies and Spunky Spinach Biscuits.

Dustin Satloff

Baseball runs in Dustin Satloff’s blood. The New York teen has been playing baseball since he was 6-years-old. His bedroom is filled with autographed baseballs, photographs and two box seats from the Polo Grounds, former home of the New York Yankees.

Entrepreneurship is also in his blood. At the tender age of 10, Satloff received his first patent for a new way to play fantasy sports like football and baseball with special trading cards. He eventually sold the licenses to two trading card companies and used that money to start SatBats, his company that makes baseball bats out of bamboo.

Satloff designs every aspect of his bats from the weights to the sizes, lengths, logo and color. A typical SatBat is made from two-tone bamboo that is grown near the East China Sea.

Satloff explained that bamboo is one of the strongest materials on earth and that it’s also better for the environment as it grows faster than the ash or maple trees traditionally used to make bats.

Satloff is still pretty surprised that he was able to start his business and that it’s been as successful as it has. “It’s amazing to me that my bats are being used all across the country, from Indiana to here in New York and from California to Georgia. That’s really cool to me.”

When asked if he’d given any of his bats to any Major League baseball players, Satloff explained that the players can’t use his bats since Major League rules require bats made from one piece of solid wood. However, his family knows someone who lives in Yankee Jorge Posada’s apartment building and so Posada signed one of the bats for Satloff and kept one for himself. When it comes to business, Satloff is in the big leagues.

The bats retail for $60 and are available at

Tyler, Niles, Isabelle & Griffin Smith

A recent study from Georgia Tech showed that people become emotionally attached to their Roombas, even giving the small, robotic vacuums names and dressing them in costumes.

This idea bodes well for Tyler, Niles, Isabelle and Griffin Smith from Acton, Massachusetts. In 2003, these sibling entrepreneurs started a niche company called myRoomBud, which designs and sells costume covers for IRobot Roombas and Scoobas.

The idea came about when the kids were looking for ways to make some extra money to buy their mom some cowboy boots for Christmas one year. Dad had previously purchased a Roomba for mom and Niles had taped some ears and eyes on it as a joke. The crew took about $70 in piggy bank money, bought some fabric, and myRoomBud was born. They started out selling them to friends and family, but the demand was so great they decided to turn it into a full time business.

The RoomBud costumes, include Roor the Tiger; Mooba the Cow; RoomBette La French Maid; Sunny the Penguin; Roobit the Frog; Lucky the Ladybug; FooFoo the WereRabbit and Spotty Leopard. They retail for $24.95 at Scooba costumes, Toothy the Killer Whale and Sooshi the Goldfish, sell for $29.95. The costumes take about 15 minutes to create with all 4 crew members working together. The Smiths have also hired kids around their school as sales reps. As far as advice for other entrepreneurs out there, Tyler and Niles said to stick with your ideas and don’t give up. “When you hear people say that no idea is stupid, it really is true,” they said. “Not a whole lot of people probably would’ve believed that people would pay for a costume for their vacuum cleaner.” In addition to being successful entrepreneurs, the Smith kids also all have a great sense of humor. Taking a cue from Victoria’s Secret and their $6.49 million Hearts of Fire Diamond Fantasy Bra, myRoomBud offers a $10,000 Snowy the Polar Bear Winking in a SnowStorm costume. Like the bra, so far there are no takers.

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