Amazon business built by high schoolers trends towards $2 million

TUR Party Supplies profits are now paying for the founders’ medical and business school degrees, as Amazon-first strategy pays big for brilliant kids and an $800 bet.

3 min
June 28, 2024
TUR Party Supplies Founders

TUR Party Supplies founder, Hamza Raja, doesn’t think long about what he would tell other teens considering starting a business. “Don’t wait until you’re older, thinking there will be a better time in the future,” he said. “If you have the urge to start a business, do it now. And, start on Amazon.”

Anyone, at any age, said the entrepreneur, can do what he and his two best friends, Dr. Mohammed Dairywala and Mustafa Doctor, did in high school and grow it into a multi-million-dollar business. It takes time, determination and desire. Everything else, he said, you can learn between first and second period on YouTube.

The trio were high school students in Houston, Texas, when they decided to build their business. Raja remembers the Amazon product brainstorms with his friends, before school and after homework. They were giddy, he said. Teenagers, who didn’t know anything about the real world, willing to try and not afraid to fail. That’s the magic about youth, he said.

“We started with $800 dollars and a lot of ideas,” he said.

Amazon was a strategic partner from the beginning, said Raja. The business wouldn’t exist, without the Amazon store and the logistics support, like Fulfillment by Amazon. “The FBA system was the root of the entire business,” he explained. “We knew that we couldn’t be tied up in our garages fulfilling these orders and studying for the SAT.”

TUR Party co-founders, Hamza Raja, Dr. Mohammed Dairywala and Mustafa Doctor prepare their pallets for a Fulfilment by Amazon shipment before high school

TUR Party co-founders, Hamza Raja, Dr. Mohammed Dairywala and Mustafa Doctor prepare their pallets for a Fulfilment by Amazon shipment before high school.

The FBA model allowed the teens to ship their products directly to Amazon warehouses where Amazon specialists would pick, pack and ship their products on their behalf. Amazon can even take on customer service, handling returns, so entrepreneurs can focus on growing their business.

The teens tried different products with limited success, watches turned into water bottles. With the support and advice of their families and an entrepreneurial community within their local mosque, they kept pursuing their passion. Any money earned was put back into the business to test new products. Keep trying, he said, keep learning and repeat.

“We did all of our research online. We watched countless YouTube videos and we had read some books and blogs, just to learn as much as we could on the topic [of selling in the Amazon store],” said Raja.

Raja said it continued for about two years, when they decided to try something new: gender-reveal baseballs. They went from selling four water bottles a week, to four baseballs a day, then 10, and 20, opening their eyes to the party supply market. Now in college, they held board meetings in their dorm rooms as they watched their business take off.

“The really cool thing about the party supplies category is that every product you sell, there is some story or some celebration or something behind it,” said Raja. “Customers are so eager to show their pictures of how they used our confetti cannon or their gender reveal baseball. So it’s a cool experience.”

Models show the impact of the TUR Party Supplies' biodegradable Rainbow Powder Poppers

Models show the impact of the TUR Party Supplies’ biodegradable Rainbow Powder Poppers

With the right vendor, baseballs turned into confetti cannons and soon, TUR Party Supplies was turning a profit they could use to pay for school. All those pictures, videos and tags, turned into reviews and referrals that the best friends used to their advantage. It was a free-flywheel and they could spin as fast as they wanted, knowing Amazon would do the heavy lifting.

“Amazon marketing has opened up other selling avenues for us,” he explained. “We’ve been able to start our own direct to customer website and a little while ago we were reached out by a retail business that said, ‘Hey, we’d like to put your poppers in our stores as well.’ They saw the success and the customer reviews on Amazon and they were like, ‘Hey, this is something that we’d want in our stores as well.’”

Now 25, the University of Texas medical student still runs TUR Party Supplies with his two best friends, but the business has come a long way from huddles in their high school hallways. The entrepreneur is now an employer, with two full-time staff dedicated to running the ins and outs, while he’s making rounds, checking patient charts.

It’s a self-described side hustle, that he has no desire to ever give up, even after he gets his MD. On track to seven figures, you don’t need to be a brain surgeon to know why. TUR Party Supplies is quite literally paying for his medical degree.

“You don’t need a whole store. You don’t need a whole warehouse,” he said. “With Amazon, all you need one product and a couple hundred bucks,” said Raja.

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