This man quit his job in Singapore to start 12 startups in 12 months


Jon Yongfook was what you might call a “digital nomad”, living on the beach five years ago while building a social media software business to sustain his lifestyle.

After some two years of giving away his life to the corporate world, he stepped out once again on a different mission: to start 12 startups in 12 months.

Jon, 38, is now halfway through his goal, and we could not think of anyone that is as brave as this Singapore-based entrepreneur to go out there and abandon a cushy corporate job for an experience like this.

He was formerly the Asian head of digital and product design at Aviva, a British multinational insurance company but left the position in July 2018 to start this challenge.

In a blogpost, Jon said that he realized his ability to ship products to users atrophied after he decided to abandon his streak of product launches to join the corporate world.

“So I’m spending the next year exercising that muscle back, by building and shipping a new product every month for a year,” he wrote.

Some of the benefits of doing this, Jon highlighted, was that he could afford to take more risks in launching new products while balancing your schedule with more commercial ventures.

“It’s like an anti-MBA where instead of sitting in a classroom learning theory, you get out of the building, ship in rapid succession and learn lessons directly,” he wrote.

Since he started last July, Jon has launched six startups by starting on an idea at the beginning of the month and launching the product by the end of the month.

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These six startups are:

  • Zipsell, a free, open-source platform for selling digital downloads
  • Promomatic, a program to help app makers create App Store design assets
  • Montage, a program to help app makers design apps with pre-built components
  • Tech Jobs Asia, a job board of tech jobs in Asia
  • Hyperjump, a form builder that works with the restrictions of the financial industry
  • Tropic, an app to help teams working in multiple timezones to collaborate better

He intends to continue launching the other six products, with a timeline of launching all 12 of them by the end of August.

In a tweet, Jon said that his goal for the year was to find his ‘ikigai’: the sweet spot between passion, mission, profession and vocation.

And for all of those who are doubting whether you have enough in your savings to go quit your job and live the nomadic lifestyle, Jon himself tweeted a resource you can use to quickly calculate if you have enough money to chase your goals.

May his story (and your gumption) inspire you to chase your dreams.

This article, Inspirational: This man quit his job in Singapore to start 12 startups in 12 months, originally appeared on Coconuts, Asia’s leading alternative media company. Want more Coconuts? Sign up for our newsletters!





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