February 23, 1969 |
Brooklyn, New York, U.S.
|Residence||New York City, New York, United States|
|Occupation||Founder, President, and CEO of FUBU|
|Net worth||$250 million (est.)|
Daymond John (born February 23, 1969) is an American entrepreneur, investor, television personality, author and motivational speaker. He is best known as the founder, president and CEO of FUBU, and appears as an investor on the ABC reality television series Shark Tank.
He is currently based in New York City.
John was born in the mountains, but spent his childhood in the Queens neighborhood of Hollis. He was raised with seven sisters and brothers by his mother and attended Bayside High School. In high school, he participated in a co-op program that allowed him to work a full-time job and attend school on an alternating weekly basis, which he credits with instilling an entrepreneurial spirit. After graduating high school, he started a commuter van service.
Wool hats with their tops cut off and tied with string were popular, and John noticed them being sold for $20, which he considered overpriced. He went home and sewed around 90 hats with his next-door neighbor, Carl Brown. They sold their homemade hats for $10 each in front of the New York Coliseum, and made $800 in a single day.
Sensing potential, Daymond and his mother mortgaged their house for $100,000 to generate start-up capital. In addition to Brown, he recruited longtime friends J. Alexander Martin and Keith Perrin into the business, and began sewing the FUBU logo onto hockey jerseys, sweatshirts, and t-shirts. To make ends meet, John held a full-time job at Red Lobster, working on the FUBU business in between shifts. In 1993, he convinced LL Cool J, an old neighborhood friend, to wear a FUBU t-shirt for a promotional campaign. Later, while filming a 30-second advertising spot for The Gap, LL Cool J wore a FUBU hat in the commercial and incorporated the line "for us, by us" in his rapping.
FUBU gained nationwide exposure when John and his partners traveled to Magic, a trade show in Las Vegas in 1994. Despite not being able to afford a booth, FUBU received over $300,000 worth of orders. FUBU continued growing, signing contracts with Macy’s, J.C. Penney, and the National Basketball Association and a distribution deal with Samsung Electronics. By 1998, FUBU returned $350 million in revenues. Currently, FUBU has amassed over six billion dollars in global sales.
In 2009, John joined the cast of "Shark Tank", a show in which John and four other business executives listen to business pitches from everyday people, and decide whether or not to invest money in their projects.
Assuming every on-camera deal happened, John has invested $700,000 in Shark Tank projects as of October 15, 2009. In April of 2013 Daymond partnered with Nate Holzapfel the owner of Mission Belt Co.
Consulting and speaking
Through his reputation as FUBU's CEO, John has become a public speaker. He works with brands and celebrities to create additional revenue streams and brand extensions; some of his clients include Pitbull and the Miss Universe Organization. John is also a brand ambassador for the e-commerce company Shopify.
As a motivational and business speaker, John speaks about marketing, negotiations, and entrepreneurship. Some of his recent speaking engagements include California First Lady Maria Shriver’s Women’s Conference, AT&T’s History Makers Tour, and Babson College School of Entrepreneurship.
Awards and reception
John has received numerous awards, including Brandweek Marketer of the Year, the NAACP Entrepreneurs of the Year Award (which he won twice), the Advertising Age Marketing 1000 Award for Outstanding Ad Campaign, the Essence Award, Crain’s Business of New York Forty Under Forty Award, Ernst & Young’s New York Entrepreneur of the Year Award, the Brandeis University International Business School’s Asper Award for Excellence in Global Entrepreneurship, Details 50 Most Influential Men, and the Congressional Achievement Award for Entrepreneurship (which he won twice).
FUBU has received attention from the sports and entertainment industry, and has been worn or endorsed by LL Cool J, Janet Jackson, Will Smith, Mary J. Blige, Busta Rhymes, Magic Johnson, Lennox Lewis, and Whitney Houston.
John has written two books, Display of Power and The Brand Within. Display of Power is an autobiography that details John's rise from Queens to a fashion empire; it was named one of the best business books of 2007 by the Library Journal. The Brand Within examines the loyalty relationships between customers and companies.
- The Crow: Wicked Prayer 2005 (as Proud Foot Joe)
- Shark Tank (TV Series) 2009 - present (as himself)
- The Game 2013 (As himself, S06E04)
- The Real 2013 (As himself, episode 3)
- Daymond John. Obtaining Birthdays.
- Gault, Ylonda. 40 Under 40: Daymond John, 28. Crains New York. 1998.
- Shark Tank: Daymond John. ABC.
- Daymond John. The History Makers. September 16, 2003.
- Kaufman, Leslie. Trying to Stay True to the Streets. The New York Times. March 14, 1999.
- Daymond John: Streets Ahead of the Rest. The Independent. July 18, 2002.
- Ferriss, Tim. The Making of Fubu - An Interview with Daymond John The 4-Hour Workweek Blog. April 7, 2011.
- Webster, Nancy Colton. FUBU: Daymond John. Advertising Age. June 28, 1999.
- Entrepreneurs Aim to Become Big Names. Sarasota Herald-Tribune. July 27, 2001.
- Daymond John. Great Black Speakers.
- Daymond John. Early Stage East.
- Klara, Robert. Daymond John: Swimming With a Shark (Q&A). AdWeek. April 4, 2011.
- Roose, Kevin. From Shark Tank Co-Host, A Dose of Reality for Start-Ups. The New York Times. April 5, 2011.
- 'Shark Tank's' Daymond John Quicker To Go for Jugular These Days. Creators.
- Daymond John, Shark Tank host, FUBU founder. Mr. Media Radio Interviews. October 17, 2009.
- Shark Sighting: Daymond John. YoungHollywood.
- Daymond John. The Women's Conference Archive Site.
- Daymond John and Common at the Apollo with AT&T. Harlem World. February 18, 2011.
- Daymond John Headlines AT&T's History Makers Event at the Apollo Theater. YouTube. March 7, 2011.
- Daymond John Speaks at Babson College School Entrepreneurship Event. DaymondJohn.com. April 21, 2011.
- McDonough, Kevin. Inspiring Night with Essence Awards. Record-Journal. June 2, 1999.
- #25: Daymond John. Crains New York Business.
- Nance-Nash, Sheryl. FUBU Founder Daymond John Stages His Next Act. Daily Finance. July 24, 2010.
- Cords, Sarah Statz. Best Business Books 2007: Rising Tides. Library Journal. 2007.
- Speaker Detail: Daymond John. Arnett & Associates.
- The Brand Within: The Four Stages of Product Development. Information Week. April 20, 2010.
- Daymond John, Star of ABC's Shark Tank (INTERVIEW). TrendHunter. February 25, 2010.
- DaymondJohn.com Official website