How Jane Lu built the Showpo online fashion empire after quitting her accountant job

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A savvy businesswoman shared how she built a $ 47 million fashion business while keeping it hidden from her parents for years.

A savvy businesswoman has revealed how she managed to start a $ 47 million fashion business while keeping it hidden from her parents for two years.

Australian fashion guru Jane Lu started Showpo, formerly Showpony, in 2010, selling clothes online, but her parents believed she was working as an accountant at a well-known company.

Jane’s parents, Queenie, 61, and Frank Lu, 67, were migrants from China and worked as cleaners in Sydney after arriving in the country when Jane was eight.

But they had high hopes for their daughter who worked at Ernst & Young, a big reputable accounting firm in Australia, and Jane didn’t know how to tell them she hated it.

They only found out when she surprised them by paying off their mortgage and even buying them a car, when her business suddenly exploded.

Until then, she would sit next to her mother on the bus every morning, pretending to go to her job as an accountant.

“I put on my costume every day. I took the bus into town with my mother. And I was carrying the empty laptop bag… I was definitely questioning my life decisions at the time. But there was no turning back, ”Jane told the Australian Financial Review-podcast product How I did it.

Realizing she couldn’t ‘do that [job] for the rest of my life, ”Jane jumped at the chance in 2010 when a friend suggested she start a clothing business from a pop-up booth.

So she quit her job and used her credit card as much as possible to buy stocks, and stuffed clothes into a garbage bag that she hid at home with her parents.

But her partner pulled out soon after, despite his rapid success, choosing a more secure full-time job instead.

Jane, though devastated, was successful, but chose to take the business online, rather than trying to run a brick and mortar storefront.

“Online fashion was only just beginning, but it was gaining momentum quickly,” she said.

“At the time, it seemed like a very low risk way of doing things. I didn’t have the confidence to go it alone in person, so I could hide behind the website.

After a few slow months, Jane had a blast moment and decided to launch a Facebook campaign that instantly helped increase her reach.

Within a month, Showpo would have grown from 3,000 to 20,000 subscribers, and in 2012, Jane left her parents’ garage to move into a warehouse.

Until then, she still hadn’t told her parents about it, but by then, she was earning enough money to support them.

She was able to pay off their mortgage and buy them a car, which ultimately allowed them to accept her successful career path.

The CEO admitted his parents “were shocked” and “just couldn’t believe how bad my balls were …”

Today, Showpo has 1.8 million followers on Instagram, 1.3 million on Facebook and 95,700 on its new TikTok page.

Jane, who is now married with one child, is considered one of Australia’s most successful self-taught businesswomen.

The clothing website reportedly grossed a whopping $ 63,853 million in 2019 alone, and it made AFR List of rich young people every year since 2017.

Despite her millions, Jane remains humble and married the man of her dreams in a $ 222 gown from her Showpo wedding collection.

She still pinches herself every day because of what she’s been able to accomplish – although impostor syndrome is still alive and well.

“’You have to be able to stop pushing the goal posts every time you hit one,” she said. “You have to tell yourself not to think about it too much. That’s what I tell myself every day: stop thinking!

This article originally appeared in The Sun and has been reprinted with permission


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