Instead of going on summer vacation at uni, I went to CeBit in Germany because I wanted to start a business (but I wasn’t sure what kind). I met this cool audio inventor there and he was elated to have me interested in selling his product into a market he hadn’t considered. I got a bank loan and started importing MP3 players into New Zealand three years before the iPod was invented.
It was 1998 though, and no one really knew they needed an MP3 player yet. Except the geeks. They knew. I sold lots to the geeks and luckily that helped reduce the pallet load of hardware from my dorm room.
Rivo Systems was my first startup and it taught me why people buy online.