Four Entrepreneurs Who Didn’t Need University to Launch Successful Businesses

Posted: 31st of July 2017 by Anonymous

Considering your options after school can be difficult and with so much focus on university, it can be hard to know what your alternatives are. For many young entrepreneurs, university can seem like an unnecessary cost when they are ready to tackle the world of business head on.

If you’ve decided that university isn’t for you and you’re concerned that you can’t be successful without a degree, worry not.  Here are some of our favourite companies started by entrepreneurs who didn’t graduate from university to prove that a degree isn’t always the answer to financial success.



Founder Dorsey dropped out of New York University in 1999. After a brief career as a designer, he founded Twitter in 2006 with his business partner, Williams which launched the pair to success. Their venture, then named Odeo, was a podcasting platform, but they quickly changed direction and Twitter was born.

With more than 200 million users and over 500 million tweets daily, Twitter has become a hugely popular social media platform. Dorsey alone is currently worth more than $1 billion.


Virgin Group

Branson left school at the age of 16 and founded his first business, a student magazine, shortly after. He then developed the idea for a mail-order record company to help fund his magazine, known as Virgin. His record-selling venture became a huge success and he subsequently added an airline, phone provider and a plethora of other ventures to the Virgin Group.

He has also spoken openly about how he does not believe university to be a necessary component in business and that the best experience an entrepreneur can gain is on the job. To reinforce this idea, he established the non-profit Virgin StartUp scheme, which provides business loans to young people looking to start businesses of their own.



Gates is responsible for the creation of one of the largest software companies to date and is currently worth in excess of $70 billion, making him one of the wealthiest men alive today.

By the time he got to university, Gates had been programming computers for many years. After a short stint at Harvard University, he made the decision to trade the classroom for more hands-on learning and started his own company with friend Allen. Starting from humble beginnings, the company currently operates in 70 companies with a workforce of over 110,000.



Apple founder Jobs became famous for his creation of the Macintosh shortly after dropped out after only one term due to his family’s limited finances.

 After working for Atari and travelling around India, he and his business partner, Wozniak launched the first Apple product in his garage. At the time of his death, his net worth was valued at around $11 billion.

If you have a business idea, university should not be the only avenue to consider. There are many successful entrepreneurs who do not benefit from real-world experience rather than learning in the classroom.

Having the right support can make all the difference. At ClearSky Contractor Accounting, we have supported thousands of new businesses with their finance needs right from those very first steps. To see how Clearsky can help you, feel free to get in touch via our contact page.

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