LEANNA ARCHER was just nine-years-old when she began using her Haitian great-grandmother’s recipe to sell homemade hair care products.
Today, the 17-year-old is the CEO of a six-figure business, Leanna’s Inc.
Her great-grandmother in Haiti had a special recipe for hair pomade, and Archer used that recipe to begin a line of oils, hairdressings, and conditioners.
The company handles more than 350 online orders a week, and generates more than $100,000 in revenue every year.
Leanna Archer said the company began “organically” when friend’s and neighbours started asking her what she used in her own hair.
“I packaged them in Gerber jars and gave it out for free,” she says. “I had no intention of really selling it. I just knew that they wanted it and I made it available for them, and next thing you know they’re showing up on my doorstep, you know, throwing checks at me and asking me how much of it will it get them. So from there, I decided to start the company.”
Leanna now sells her products in 80 countries, including Singapore.
“You wouldn’t think [Singapore] would need these kind of hair products, [but it] is probably one of my biggest – where a majority of my customers come from now,” she says.
And how much input did her late grandmother have in the company before she passed away?
“Up until the moment she passed away, she was always an active member of my company and helped me – helped supervise the work I was doing, and make sure that I was doing it the way she taught me. And for the newer products, give her own input on what I should add, what I should take out. And she helped out a lot.”
Leanna Archer is currently in college. She takes business classes so that she can continue to grow Leanna’s Hair. Leanna also hopes that she can motivate others to act, whether it is to start their own business or to help the disadvantaged. If a teenager can make such a big difference, others can do the same