Meet the Whiz Kids: 10 Overachievers Under 21
8. The Master of Domains
Matt Wegrzyn, 19
You've got to get up pretty early in the morning to get the better of Matt Wegrzyn, of Bodis.com. In fact, you might not want to go to bed at all. The creator of Bodis.com says that "a typical day probably starts at 10 a.m. for me and lasts until 5 a.m. There's just too much to do in order to sleep. I feel like I need to work every hour possible on the weekdays in order for this company to be successful."
Bodis is a domain-name parking service. If you invest in a domain name but don't want to create a site for it, you can park it with Bodis. It will place click-through ads on a page bearing your domain name, then split the revenues with you. In 2007, Bodis split enough ad revenues to pull in $1 million.
It was a natural venture for Matt, who bought his first domain name at 17 for $120 and sold it a few weeks later for $500. Eventually he became a premier "domainer," selling some plum names for as much as six figures. But he considers himself a developer first and an entrepreneur second.
"In my opinion, developers have the biggest advantage," says Wegrzyn, who mastered the ColdFusion programming language by age 15 and has done all of the development work on Bodis. "They can easily start their own company, sell their own software, develop their own code. And there's always something that you can develop that is not out there. There's nothing better than knowing your own service/product inside-out--literally."
It also helps if you keep a schedule that would turn most people into zombies. But Matt has vowed to start taking it easier very soon. "By 2009 I [will] work normal hours, no more all-nighters," he says. "And by 2010 I plan on showing up only a few hours per week. It's not because I will lose dedication. I believe with all the hard work I am putting in right now, there won't even be a need for me to show up two years from now."