With three new businesses and a documentary in progress, Corey Wadden closes in on his goal to become a Millionaire by age 25
At the age of 23, Corey Wadden, a Nova Scotia native, set out to become a millionaire by the age of 25. This brings to mind a classic line from the film Citizen Kane: “It's no trick to make a lot of money... if what you want to do is make a lot of money.” But Wadden doesn’t just want to make a lot of money. His goal in earning the proverbial one million dollars is to attain financial freedom that would allow his mother to retire.
When Wadden first spoke with Millionaire Corner in April 2012, he had recently embarked on his two-year goal. He has since chronicled his progress on Facebook and Twitter, and is in production on a documentary in which Wadden interviews a wide range of successful individuals who share their hard-earned wisdom on what it takes to become a millionaire and endeavors to put their insights to use in starting new businesses of his own.
So; how’s he doing? After 153 days, he has earned about $76,000. Which brings to mind another quote from Ben Stewart, CEO of Canadian Property Stars, who observed, “It’s not about who wants it the most, but who wants it the longest.” Wadden has cited this quote as a major source of motivation.
Wadden recently started a crowdfunding campaign to bankroll the documentary, of which clips of the work in progress can be seen on his website. “I can’t self-fund it anymore,” Wadden said. “It’s very expensive and I am reinvesting every penny back into my businesses.”
With 45 days left, he is about one-fourth on his way to his goal of $20,000, which he has budgeted to complete the documentary. He plans to submit it to film festivals and eventually have it be made available on iTunes and Netflix. Among the perks he is offering to contributors is acknowledgement in the completed film’s credits, tickets to the film’s Toronto premiere and even limited edition apparel.
Wadden is indefatigable about his two-year challenge and remains upbeat about his steady progress. Some of his entrepreneurial efforts have not panned out, among them Old Sentiments, a website which invited visitors to post pictures and share stories behind treasured family heirlooms (currently down) and a start-up fashion line with which he is no longer associated.
There was a moment, he said, that his confidence was flagging. “I began to ask myself if this was what I wanted to be doing,” he reflected. “There had to be a better way. I took some time to get in touch with nature and get my head straight. When I came back, I was open to finding projects that had potential (to get me back on track).”
Yes, there was an app for that. Wadden took inspiration from a blog post written by “The Four-Hour Work Week” author Timothy Ferriss about how to build an app empire. He interviewed Ferriss for his documentary (and received some coaching besides). “Lights went off in my head,” Wadden said. “I went off on my app journey.”
Wadden created two businesses, Echo Bay Apps, which is geared toward fun and entertainment, and Phoenix Apps, which focuses on reference and utility based applications. He has also started a third business, Echo Bay Books that produces niche e-books for the Amazon Kindle. “They’re all doing great,” he enthused.
This presents him with something of a quandary, he said. Should he try to sell his businesses by year’s end to make his million dollar deadline, or take a more long-term approach and keep growing them?
Among the lessons Wadden has learned along his journey thus far, perhaps the most important, he said, was learning to distinguish the difference between 'busy' as opposed to being effective and efficient. He has also sought to follow the example of Timothy Ferriss, who so impressed Wadden by his energy and “bringing his A-game every minute.”
Wadden has also found benefit in seeking out and cultivating local talent to collaborate with. “This whole experience has increased my belief in the saying, ‘You are the five people you associate with most,’” he said.
But the biggest lesson, he said, is “I realize now that you can really achieve anything you set out to achieve. But if you have set a pie-in-the-sky goal, you have to ask yourself, ‘Is this what I really want? It’s no longer a question of whether it’s possible; it’s a question of will you be satisfied?
Donald Liebenson writes news and features for Millionaire Corner. He has been published in the Chicago Tribune, The Chicago Sun-Times, The Los Angeles Times, Fiscal Times, Entertainment Weekly, Huffington Post, and other outlets. He has also served as a marketing writer for Chicago-based Questar Entertainment and distributor Baker & Taylor.
A graduate of the University of Southern California, he is married with a college-age son. He also writes extensively about entertainment.