Anue | Feature

By Jerome LEE

The breakout success of Singapore’s Adam Khoo achieving millionaire status at a tender age of 26 has more than tugged at the heartstrings of many. At 26, most of us would probably be experiencing the quarter-life crisis of wondering where the open road in life would lead us to after graduation, probably not having the drive, ambition and entrepreneurial spirit that Adam Khoo possessed.

Here at Anue, we value the aforementioned values, alongside with diligence and respect for our clients, as these are the values we believe, which in turn is reflected in our work. Thus, we sought out 3 individuals under 25 who have aimed to make their mark in their respective industry, and have surfaced with admirable success. Anue speaks to these three bright, young stars.

Genevieve started off with an online clothing store that was initially an extra source of income. Time past and she began to grow weary of the fact that what she brought in for sale was exactly what everyone wore on the streets. She was burdened with a need for change, to go behind-the-scenes and actually fashioning clothes, and learning how to manage a proper business. Eventually getting her start through Japanese departmental store Parco’s incubator program, she recalled having her designs being criticised at the interview panel – her clothes ended up on the floor. However, being the iron-willed toughie she was, such an experience only brought her motivation up instead of putting her down. “People don’t just scold you in your face, so it was a good experience… as soon as I left the room, I thought, okay let’s move on with our lives,” she said. Soon after, she received a call from them only to be informed that she was shortlisted as one of the incubator programs new designers.

Genevieve has come a long way – her label, 20:TWOTHREE, has now participated in 2 Audi Fashion Festivals under the Parco showcase, and she has been interviewed by various magazines and even had a feature with Lian He Zao Bao with the other Parco designers last year. The best part? All these accolades coming from a girl who had no formal fashion training.

Before turning 30, Genevieve has a few goals in mind – a proper office space, a team whose vision align with hers, and distribution of her label throughout the world. These might be some far-flung goals, but we’re sure that Genevieve’s iron will only bring her and 20TwoThree to greater heights.

Genevieve lives by two words her mother ingrained in her – sincerity and genuineness in all that she does. “I think these two words, if you put them into your personality and your communication with people, it will bring you quite far.” Even her collections are inspired by her mother, with her first collection, Clarity in Blindness, a tribute to her mother who was severely ill back then. “All my collections thus far, it’s based on phases that I go through so it’s very personal,” she explained.

When you are cut off financially from a tender age, you start devising ways to earn your own living. In that sense you learn independence, which gives you an edge over your peers. This was Enoch Teo at 14, when a decision to stop studying led his parents to cut him off financially. He worked at a zi char (coffeeshop eatery in Hokkien) when he was 15, and at 16 moved to work at a Japanese restaurant for 1.5 years, learning the tools of the trade. Enrolling himself in into a culinary arts school through a recommendation by chef Francois Mermilliod, Enoch worked his way up. An insurance payout from a previous accident granted him with the financial means to set up his business, and now his ventures, both Le Petit Paradis and &Eden, a restaurant serving up affordable French cuisine, and a café dishing out rustic stews and all-day breakfasts respectively, are doing extremely well.

At a young age where his peers would talk about their school results, or the latest video game on the market, Enoch’s daily conversations since stepping into the working world are with people who would share stories about the harsh realities of life. This instilled in him a maturity way beyond his years, which translated into a determination to succeed. Clocking 14-18 hour work days at his restaurant, Enoch believes that his hard work will not go unnoticed. “I believe that if you do what others can’t do today, you will do what others can’t do tomorrow,” he explained.

It seems that being the boss of his own restaurant at 24 does have its up and downs. For one, he’s concern about older staff being harder to work with for the mere fact that older people might resent being ordered around by someone many years younger. On the other side of the spectrum, Enoch reasons that if he ever falls at this age, he can still climb back up again. Such positivity can only meant that Enoch will lead himself into a brighter future.

For someone who started out DJ-ing in junior college at 15, Joshua has come a long way. At 21 now, he has just completed his DJ residency at Pangaea, located at Marina Bay Sands and is, according to Forbes, the highest earning club in the world. Joshua, with Oliver Osbourne, plays After Dark, a pop-up party series at Kilo Lounge along Kallang River.

Already 21 and having made waves in the local DJ scene around here, Joshua still has that fleeting sense of discontent in him. He does not call himself successful in any degree, and that in itself is something that keeps him going. “I don’t feel like I’m ever really content with where I’m at, so when you’re not, you just keep pushing on and on…you don’t settle,” he explained. Furthermore, Joshua is keen to pursue other options on the road down, seeing that he is leaving for London to pursue a philosophy degree. “I have many other options that I might want to pursue which I might use my study time to try and work out,” he added.

For him, Joshua feels that it is his age that has aided him greatly in his career. Having grown up with older siblings who are now in their late 30’s, he was exposed to music from an earlier generation, something that has aided him in his DJ gigs. Older DJs would be impressed by the mere fact of him knowing and playing music well beyond his years. “Youth in my industry is a pretty good thing, especially when you can back that up with proper music chops. It also lets you sleep at the most godforsaken timings!” he added, noting that DJ gigs don’t allow him the luxury of sleeping regular hours.


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