Jessica Wilson attended Bishop Druitt College from Year 7 to Year 12, sitting the HSC in 2009.
27-year-old born and bred local Jess is an entrepreneur who has taken herself from paddock party-planner to being named as Forbes Magazine’s ‘one of 1,000 entrepreneurs under 30 to change the world in 50 years’ through her shopping app “Stashd” – despite being told she ‘didn’t have it in her’ to have a career in the fashion industry.
‘I am so excited to be sharing my experience and key learnings at StartUp Coffs Coast! I started my first business in Coffs Harbour when I was 16, just over 10 years ago now – so it’s exciting to come back after building a business and working all around the world to share skills which can be applied from any laptop anywhere in the world to start a startup.’ Jess said.
Jessica Wilson grew up on a farm in Karangi, starting her first business at 16 years old – running formal after parties for students on the farmland she grew up on, utilising different paddocks as venues. From there she grew and scaled this business to cover 16ths, 18ths, and 21st and made enough money to put herself through her first year of university.
From ages 19 to 21, she worked throughout Australia, New York, and Paris with some of the biggest fashion brands in the world. This unique perspective allowed her to see an emerging trend within the global fashion industry which resulted in the launch of Stashd. Jess booked a one-way ticket to Sillicon Valley at 21 with no contacts and lived off two-minute noodles for two months, but managed to meet people from the companies like Yahoo, Facebook, and Google which gave her the insight to start Stashd.
In 2016, Jess took Stashd into China and launched it via the TV series ‘The Next Unicorn’ (China’s version of Shark Tank x The Apprentice) which was a televised global search for the next billion dollar business in China. The judges included the seed investor in Paypal, seed investors in Baidu, the ex CEO of Alibaba and partners of leading China funds Sequoia, GGV, and Zen Fund. The television show was aired to 15 million per episode in China and Jess was placed in the grand finals with the bronze trophy as the last western team and last female founder/CEO.
Jess will be at StartUp Coffs Coast to inspire entrepreneurs and ‘big thinkers’ of all ages, right across the Coffs Coast. BDC is proud of you, Jess.