Interview with Hamish Finlayson
Hamish Finlayson - Founder at 10 years old
Hamish Finlayson is a 13 year old like many others, his passions being technology, maths and the environment. However, Hamish isn’t quite like all other kids. Hamish has autism, which some may consider a setback, but in reality has spurred him on to be innovative in more ways than one. Moonshotindustries features Hamish’s environmental apps, as well as those for raising awareness for his condition and helping others with autism develop skills, greatly benefitting their day-to-day life. As a result, he has generated a huge amount of buzz about him and is currently in the process of developing app #6!
Excited by his future prospects we sat Hamish down to ask him a few questions about his business journey.
1) How would you best describe Moonshotindustries?
MoonshotIndustries.global is the platform I use for my social impact ventures. My ambition is to help stop litter and the harm it causes to the environment. I’m also trying to help people with autism grow and use technology to make life easier for people on the spectrum and their caregivers. My business model is based on using 10X or Moonshot Thinking to help solve really big and really hard problems and make a difference in the world.
“Never give up. Dream big, work hard and put yourself out there”
2) What inspired you to become an entrepreneur?
What first inspired me is that I hate litter and the harm it causes the oceans and environment. I live near the Great Barrier Reef and we are trashing our oceans and I wanted to do something to stop this, so I created my Litterbugsmash multi-media Platform to help protect oceans and save sea turtles. From there, I started to ocus on solving other problems I’m passionate about - like using technology to make life for people with autism easier every day - I’ve been living with autism too. Learning more about 10X or Moonshot Thinking from a TEDX talk by Astro Teller has also inspired me with the power of technology to solve really big problems.
3) Who supported you in creating/building your business?
Mum and Dad have believed in me doing this from day 1, so long as I focus on their golden rule: Homework first, save the world later. I’ve also met so many fantastic people who have helped and mentored me, like the US Ambassador John Berry, VCs and business mentors like Bill Tai and Paula Taylor from WestTech Fest and Alan Jones from Blue Chilli. Some really great companies have also helped me out with equipment, advice, support and business tips like BankWest, Keep Australia Beautiful, Keep Queensland Beautiful, ReefHQ Turtle Hospital, Autism Queensland, researchers at JCU in Australia, as well as amazing companies like Bank of America Merrill Lynch, Facebook, Apple, and Google.
“ Impossible it's not a fact, it's an opinion!”
4) What advice would you give to aspiring young entrepreneurs?
The advice I’d like to give kidpreneurs is: Never give up. Dream big, work hard and put yourself out there - you never know who might be able to help you out. Always remember - Impossible is not a fact, it’s an opinion!
5) To what extent would a platform like Kebloom have helped you achieve your dreams?
I haven’t used a platform like Keblooom before, but anything that can help a kidpreneur scale their ideas faster and learn what it takes to be an entrepreneur and go global with your ideas is really valuable.
6) What has been the best part about starting up a business?
In starting up my ventures, it has been really cool having the chance to meet and hear some of the world’s greatest leaders and entrepreneurs speak and provide tips on how I can scale my ideas. What’s really special for me though is when people using my apps, websites or products reach out with positive feedback and let me know they’ve enjoyed the apps or said they’ve made a difference to them and really helped them out.
7) What skills have you developed since being an entrepreneur?
I’ve learned lots of skills about creating a startup, from how to pitch an idea, what investors are looking for, what it takes to make a social impact venture succeed through to learning new coding platforms, like Hyperpad, GameMaker, Unity, Xcode etc