Harrison Baum is a serial entrepreneur that has a knack for custom built creations. He created his first company while in college, OnCampus Repairs, an iPhone repair business. He followed in the footsteps of his father who designed security equipment, taking gadgets apart and putting them back together in a unique fashion.
Baum was able to identify the complexity and structure of iPhones, creating a business where everyone eventually began to seek out his services. His entrepreneurial spirit grew quickly when he saw how many kids on campus were walking around with broken iPhone screens, he quickly jumped on this business opportunity to help his fellow students fix their phones. Baum could repair a phone quicker than anyone else, and charged a substantially smaller fee of $70 for his services. His impeccable ability for this endeavor captured the attention of many students, where he eventually was fixing 50-70 phones a month.
Initially, Baum was nervous when he started this undertaking, knowing that he could not mess up anyone’s phone, as it would be detrimental to his growing business. However, his commitment to his craft and dedication to excellence was imperative to his business, as he fixed around 1,500 phones, without leaving behind a single upset customer.
His business expanded beyond just fixing phones, if Baum couldn’t fix the phone, he bought it off others to refurbish and sell overseas. He was able to ascertain the large demand for iPhones in foreign countries, as a refurbished iPhone goes for about $600 in countries like Russia, China, and those in the Middle East. Baum also figured out how to unlock phones, and he did it legally, as he figured out his own proprietary method that adheres to all legal requirements.
Although Baum has had many sleepless nights perfecting his business, the juice was worth the squeeze, as customer satisfaction was of utmost importance to him, earning a 100 percent satisfaction rating on Ebay. He only took payment when the job was complete, and promised to beat any of his competitor's rates.
Baum used the money he made from OnCampus Repairs to pay back his parents for his college tuition. Although his parents never asked, he still felt it was appropriate, as his college experience served as a launchpad for OnCampus Repairs, as well as many other business ventures he is currently involved in. He is very thankful to all the people that trusted and believed in him and his services, they were the motivating factor to instill an impenetrable sense of confidence for his future accomplishments.
“I’d love to thank everyone who initially trusted me, used my service, spread the word. It helped me pay for college — I couldn’t ask for more than that. It meant so much to me that I had the opportunity to pay for my tuition.”
Baum says that he learned an invaluable lesson when operating his business, something he would have never learned in a classroom setting. Despite the fact that many colleges have classes about entrepreneurship, Baum took matters into his own hands and succeeded in practice, something that is very different than theory.
“I feel like I’ve learned so much more from this than I would in any class, I love business and I love technology. I love doing stuff like this and dealing with people, so hopefully I can keep this going.”
Harrison Baum is a testament to the universal saying of “do what you love”, he has followed his passion in all of his ventures. His passionate dedication and business acumen is what sets him apart from other like-minded entrepreneurs. Baum is also a big fan of comedy, he ran the University of Maryland standup comedy club during his time in college. He decided to do this because he has an affinity for comedy, he is also a successful comedian himself. He won first place for the University of Maryland in a Washington D.C. competition, and placed third overall for that region individually. In 2012, Baum was a top 16 college comedian for TBS, and finished as a finalist in the TBS National College Comedy Competition. It was only right for him to run the UMD comedy club in college as his own, and he hopes to follow his passion to open up a business that is centered around standup comedy. If you are passionate about something, you must follow your intuition and create opportunities to capitalize on such a passion, this is the true essence of an entrepreneur. Execution is also imperative, as the combination of passion and proper execution can lead to a potentially lucrative business and a fulfilling life.