How Hong Kong entrepreneur Tommie Lo went from doing schoolwork at sea to building a career around education

How Hong Kong entrepreneur Tommie Lo went from doing schoolwork at sea to building a career around education

How Hong Kong entrepreneur Tommie Lo went from doing schoolwork at sea to building a career around education

If given HK$8 million (about US$1 million) to spend, entrepreneur Tommie Lo would invest in something that is close to his heart and also benefits society: rescuing dogs.

“I want to do something new that is meaningful and impactful,” Lo says. “I’m a big dog lover, and I think there might be a better solution I can work on to help dogs live a better life.”

Lo, who describes himself as an entrepreneur and educator, is the founder and CEO of Preface, an ed-tech start-up that leverages artificial intelligence and blockchain technology to provide personalised technology training courses. The company’s goal is to make education in new technologies accessible to everyone, from corporate professionals and entrepreneurs to children.

Preface was developed around the concepts of decentralising the traditional classroom experience and transforming the learning environment. This is demonstrated at Preface Coffee and Wine, Lo’s lounge-style space that has been designed to encourage learners and industry experts to meet, collaborate and innovate.

“It’s actually quite ironic, because I’m someone without regular schooling,” Lo says, reflecting on his career path.

Tommie Lo looks for projects that can make a positive impact, and hopes to find a solution to improve dog welfare.

Lo grew up in Po Toi O, a small, traditional fishing village in the Sai Kung district of Hong Kong. As a child, he regularly accompanied his father out to sea for weeks at a time, doing his schoolwork on the boat.

“I’m rooted in a fisherman’s family,” he says. “I would follow my father on the boat, and a lot of the time I thought about making the world a classroom.”

Lo’s humble upbringing shaped his values, which not only helped define his company’s culture, but also led to what he calls his “25-25-50 principle” for managing wealth.

The first 25 per cent of Lo’s spending is invested into his personal well-being, which includes furthering his education and travelling, as well as expanding his collections of books and film cameras.

The next 25 per cent goes towards diversification and exploration. “I diversify my business investments into new technology, new start-ups and new ideas,” Lo says. “I make use of my knowledge to invest in others, to build wealth for themselves and, at the same time, for myself as well.”

The remaining 50 per cent is put into a single initiative. Lo explains: “We need to be bold sometimes, in order to make an impact in the world. We need to be focused. So I put 50 per cent into a really focused area, to scale a business or organisation.”

Lo says his upbringing in a traditional fishing village helped him see the world as a classroom.

Ultimately for Lo, wealth means having freedom in every aspect of his life – financially, intellectually and also in terms of time. He says: “In the end, it’s about having the freedom to do the things that I love and that I believe in.”

Watch the video to learn more about Lo’s views on learning and meaningful investing.

Standard Chartered Bank launched its SC Wealth Select advisory initiative as part of its transformation into an advice-led organisation to assist its clients on their wealth journeys, guided by the adage: “From here, possibilities are everywhere”. Find out more here.

Source link