Amanda Briskin’s first venture, MiMCo, was established four years ago. Selling bags, hair accessories and jewellery, the company’s products are now available in department stores around the country and through more than 200 outlets in the United States. Her second project, Spongestore (www.spongestore.com) is an online retail site featuring fashionable products from around the world. Launched just six weeks ago it is already ranked in the top 10 online shopping sites in the country. Amanda was inducted into the 2000 Businesswomen’s Hall of Fame and is an inspiring role model for young women looking to go into their own business.
Where did the ideas for MiMCo and Spongstore come from?
MiMCo came from my desire to start a brand featuring products that people were going to enjoy, something that would transcend fads and fashions and have its own identity. Spongestore was the result of wanting to explore opportunities in another market – key fashionable items that we would only sell online.
What gave you the courage to make the move into your own business?
I really did it because I was young and didn’t know what I was going into! It was a natural progression at the time.
What has been the biggest hurdle?
Definitely managing our team and getting the right team in place for growth. Making sure people are happy and satisfied with what they’re doing.
What is the motivation?
I just love what I do. I am motivated by the success of the business and the team and the challenges they present.
Who are your mentors? Inspirational books/people etc?
My husband. We work together and make a great partnership because we have the same goal. I also read a lot of business magazines, both Australian and American, to get different perspectives on what’s happening in the world.
What is your top strategy for success?
Be passionate and patient. Enjoy what you do and work with good people.
How do you stay on top of it all and focused?
I am always conscious of my time and what I do in that time – whether it is spent working or with my son, I try to make it all quality time. My husband helps me keep focused and I have an amazing support network. There still isn’t much ‘Amanda time’ but that should come in about five years!