This post continues our ‘share your story’ series of youth who have embodied our trademarked brand’s slogan: “Where Street IQ Meets Book IQ.” We encourage you to share this story with the hope that other youth will come forward and share their story, as well. We need your help to spread the message about the importance of Pro-Education. Here’s our interview with Nanxi Liu, CEO of Enplug and and Founder of Nanoly Bioscience.
Tell us about your business.
Enplug started with the idea that outdoor advertising such as posters and billboards should be social and engaging. We believe that people should be able to post content into the physical world with a few clicks of a button. So, my co-founders and I started building the most futuristic digital billboards and placed the billboards in the main dining areas of the most popular restaurants. Now, anyone from non-profits like UNICEF to major brands like Red Bull can post their content on hundreds of billboards instantly. Our mission is to make our brands’ advertisements be as innovative as their company. It’s been a year since my co-founders and I started the company. We grew from a 5-person team 12-months ago to now over 35 full-time teammates. We’ve also become the largest network of interactive indoor digital billboards in California.
What challenges have you faced and overcome?
Our biggest challenge has been building Enplug’s technology from scratch. Because there wasn’t any digital billboard network technology or software that could stream all of the real-time content we wanted to show, we had to do it on our own. This was quite a fun challenge for us because we had to completely use our own creativity and skills to design this billboard network. To solve this challenge, we brought on board teammates that were some of the smartest software engineers in the world. We worked tirelessly for months before the first version of our technology was finished. By recruiting the top talents, we were able to overcome our biggest hurdle of building a brand new technology.
What’s your dream for the future?
I’m a dreamer so there are many dreams I have for the future. In terms of my company, my team and I want to lead Enplug to be a multi-billion dollar company within the next few years. In terms of personal dreams, I hope that I will be someone who people can always look up to as a good teammate, friend, and leader.
In one phrase or sentence, what does mentoring mean to you?
Mentoring is sharing experiences and knowledge to help a person achieve their goals.
If you had one wish for today’s youth, what would it be?
I want today’s youth to have the confidence to pursue any dreams they have. It doesn’t take money or “luck” to get to where you want to be. What it takes is perseverance and hard work.
Growing up, I lived in a low-income neighborhood and was on the free lunch system. While my classmates wore new shoes, I had clothes donated from the local church. However, I didn’t let the fact that I had few opportunities or lack of financial resources get in the way of my dreams. I went and searched for opportunities and made sure to maximize every opportunity in front of me. For example, when my parents got me a cheap $100 piano from a garage sale, I practiced every day. Eventually, my hard work paid off as I was able to win competitions and scholarship money. My drive for making the most out of what I have translates to everything I do whether it was getting into college or starting a company.
In your opinion, name some characteristics of someone who embodies the Kool As Nerdz brand “Where Street IQ Meets Book IQ.”
Someone with street IQ and book IQ knows how to take what he/she learns from books or school and apply it into the “real world.” This person is resourceful and can figure out how to get anything done.