ITE student sets up app company
Leong Chang Wen, 18, has yet to graduate from the Institute of Technical Education (ITE), but he already has a company set up with friends.
He has also managed to secure investors for his product, a social-networking app that combines elements from Instagram and Facebook.
His app is called Sbaey - a combination of "steady" and "baey", a term of endearment used mostly by millennials.
Chang Wen, who is pursuing a Higher National ITE Certificate (Nitec) in business studies (event management), told The New Paper: "On Instagram, you can only 'like' a picture. You cannot rate it like how you now can with Facebook.
"But many youngsters no longer use Facebook, it isn't as 'cool' any more."
Enter Sbaey, which allows users to upload pictures and rate them by choosing an emoticon, such as "hot", "cute", "wow" and "sexy".
Sbaey, which is still a prototype, was created by Chang Wen, a friend from Ngee Ann Polytechnic, and three others.
It has always been Chang Wen's lifelong dream to be his own boss, and he said pursuing a Higher Nitec has helped greatly.
Chang Wen, who studies at ITE College Central, said: "ITE education is very hands-on and learning how to manage events taught me how to better communicate with people."
With those skills, the team managed to secure an investor, who is willing to pump in more than $5,000.Chang Wen said: "In August, we put up a pitch online asking for investors to assist us.
"He replied a week later and agreed to join us. He helped to secure a programmer and a developer for the app."
Mr Leong and his friends pumped in between $500 and $3,000 each too. His parents invested $3,000.
The team aims to release Sbaey for Apple iOS users next month, with an Android version possibly ready later next year.