Teenage Entrepreneur Works to Inspire Youth

Need a little entrepreneurial inspiration? Katalina Pinkney offers plenty.

In many ways, Pinkney is your typical teenage California girl. Typical, that is, if she wasn’t the Chief Executive Officer of a wildly successful skin care product company.

Pinkney founded Tahiti Waheennee. The company produces and wholesales skin care products to hundreds of retailers across the U.S. and in Canada. Her success is no accident. She had a strong entrepreneurial pull to build a company while still in high school—and that determination drove her to success.

“I wanted to build a successful business that creates great products, jobs and ultimately does good things for other people,” says Pinkney. “My generation is learning lessons from watching the older generations and the fallout from the global recession.

"I’m young and at the beginning of my journey in business, but I’m convinced that young people with a dream can succeed and make a difference. There is no rule that says you cannot succeed until you are 30 or 40. Many successful businesses are started by teens, and I’m working on building a global business.”

Listen to her talk! Pinkney got inspired when she was just 16. She was watching the a continual drop of news about families around the world being impacted by layoffs, increasing unemployment rates and other bad economic news. So she set out to build a business that could help people with jobs and in other ways.

In fact, one of first things she did when the company started turning a profit was to throw a holiday party for school children living in a financially distressed area. Pinkney’s reasoning: “I want to help others by inspiring them to visualize and strive for their own goals in life.”

Sheila Routon, marketing manager at Four Seasons, a major U.S. distributor of Pinkney’s products, says she have been amazed by this young entrepreneur since the company started distributing her products in November 2010.

“We see her at national trade shows commanding large audiences of retailers, and we have enjoyed being part of her success,” Routon says. “Her product sales have grown exponentially since we began distributing Tahiti Waheenee. It’s been great to watch Katalina and her business grow.”


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