Selling online is nothing new but now two Titans have joined in, teaming up with others to form Swaggle, a mobile application that matches interested buyers with resellers of gently used men’s fashions. The company launched March 23 and is currently only available on the Apple Store.
“Entrepreneurship has always been my passion and I knew one day I would start my own business,” explains Eric Niu ’12 (B.A. international business-Chinese), co-founder and CEO of Swaggle. “My CSUF experience not only shaped my character, but also defined my drive in the entrepreneurial journey.”
During his tenure at CSUF, Niu was a member of the Pi Kappa Phi fraternity and served as Associated Students Inc. president in 2012. After graduation, he served as an assistant in the Office of U.S. Personnel Management in Washington, D.C., and as a consultant in Deloitte Consulting LLP.
“Eric and I have been close friends since freshmen year of college,” says Loren Silva ‘13 (B.S. kinesiology), who serves as Swaggle’s creative strategist. “Since graduation, we have always remained in contact and kept each other up to date in what jobs and projects we may be working on.”
Prior to joining Swaggle, Silva worked at Volcom, a company that designs, markets and distributes board sports-oriented products. “At the same time Eric founded Swaggle, I co-founded Freesoul Projects, a media production house. I enjoyed what Eric had been working on and I wanted to become a part of it.”
Both men stress that if you are interested in becoming an entrepreneur, “you must follow your dreams. It is a cliché, but it’s true,” says Niu. “Never let anyone or anything impede your ability to conquer challenges before you, or make you fearful of pursuing opportunities that you’ve never imagined.
“We set high expectations for ourselves and with a successful launch, it only reinforces what we are doing,” he adds. “This is a big milestone for us and it represents all of our hard work.”
In addition to the March 23 launch, Swaggle was accepted into the ETC (Emerging Technology Centers)’s Accelerate Baltimore 2017 program, which provides $25,000 in seed funding and four months of programming supplied by the ETC.