Takeover Thursday: Smart is Sexy
Join us every Thursday as Erin Lyons takes a closer look at young entrepreneurs on the rise.
Yuriy Zubarev, Co-Founder of PLOOSH Leather Toy Collection
What was your first job?
My first job was as a bag boy at Food Lion in Hampton, Virginia, I was fifteen and had to get a work permit from my parents to start. For those who don’t know, the title Bag Boy covers everything from bagging, to sweeping, mopping, plunging…yes, that kind of plunging etc. you get the idea.
If you could travel back in time, what is the one piece of advice would you tell your former self?
Be yourself! This is the hardest thing you will ever have to do, but be yourself, stay true to who you are. Never be embarrassed of being different, or of where you’re from, or of talking funny, or of thinking about things differently. This is what makes you uniquely you and this is why you will become successful later on in life. You will be ignored, people will make fun of you, and that’s okay because at the end this is what will truly help you on your way to wherever it is you decide to go.
Favorite spot for power networking?
This is actually a difficult question. My favorite spot would be any venue that caters to successful individuals. PLOOSH was discovered at a hotel in Miami while I was sipping a Mimosa. Within five minutes of me setting my PLOOSH on a bar top I had the Director of Finance and Acquisitions for Limited Brands come up to me and a world renowned photographer start taking photos. The answer to this question, at least for me, isn’t necessarily a favorite spot per se but just the willingness and readiness TO network. You never know who’s who and most likely the person you need to meet is someone you don’t even know about yet.
Greatest achievement thus far?
Placing PLOOSH at Henri Bendel on Fifth Avenue. This is without a doubt the greatest achievement thus far.
Is there something (product, service, person, etc.) you cannot live without in your everyday work life?
I cannot live without my business partner and Founder of PLOOSH, Sasha Iastremska. Her wonderful imagination came up with the concept and it just so happened that I was willing to listen when she told me about it. As for a product; I cannot, and I mean, CANNOT, live without my Samsung Galaxy S4, it is the best phone I have ever used and if I ever lose it I will be a complete mess.
Where do you see your business in the next 10 years?
In the next ten years I see PLOOSH as a multi-million dollar brand that has permeated the mainstream and I see it growing into a multi-national design house.
Since I received this request for an interview we have launched a new line for PLOOSH, it is called DownTowN. It is edgy, it’s extremely creative, it’s more accessible to the everyday consumer and it allows a lot of freedom in creativity.
… and the actor who would play you in your Biopic would be:
You sure don’t make this easy, do you? Ryan Gosling. Kidding! He’s in everything! Great actor though. Okay, the actor who I think would best play me in my Biopic would be Zac Efron, he can really act!
The question isn’t who is going to let me; it’s who is going to stop me! –Ayn Rand
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