By: Janagan R.
This fourth-year University of Waterloo student has a passion for helping brands scale.
Work-life balance is no easy feat. Throw a full course load and a thriving business into the mix, and the equation gets even more complicated.
Yet Janagan R., owner of athletic apparel brand Official SportsJunkie and full-time student in the Accounting & Financial Management (AFM) program, has found that very sense of balance. The rising entrepreneur runs his business without sacrificing his performance – or experience – in school. Keep reading to learn how he does it.
Career and academic journey
When he first set foot on campus, Janagan wanted to pursue a CPA designation and secure an accounting position. His plans quickly changed when he uncovered his true passion: helping businesses scale their brands and tap into their full growth potential.
Sustaining a company, he found, is challenging – yet aligning the brand with his passions has been a very rewarding feeling. As a huge basketball fan, the business owner leveraged his personal interest in the sport to form strategic partnerships with notable NBA players and teams. He’s worked with star athletes from his favorite teams – for example, the Toronto Raptors, Golden State Warriors, Denver Nuggets, and the Utah Jazz. He has also collaborated with renowned musical artists like Polo G, Ali Gatie, MurdaBeatz, and others.
“There's no better feeling for us than getting messages and pictures from customers who are wearing our products to the games, As grateful as I am to collaborate with iconic influencers, I think nothing will top the feeling of seeing our customers wearing the brands we designed,” Janagan explained.
What’s next for SportsJunkie?
We asked Janagan how he envisions his future for SportsJunkie, and he explained his focus is on school – at least for the time being. The AFM student noted that he’s enjoying the experience of being back in school after a year of doing everything virtually.
Of course, his business remains a top priority as well. The entrepreneur mentioned he is working on a marketing campaign to capture the likes of Canadian basketball players in the NBA.
Who are some people you want to see your brand collaborate with?
“I really want to dive deeper into the NBA scene and start working with more of my favourite players. Working with Jamal Murray, Shai Gilgeous-Alexander, and Derrick Rose would be exciting. Shai is one of my favourite players right now so it's definitely one I'm hoping I can make happen.”
With over 24 months of professional experience in marketing working for companies like Microsoft and American Express, Janagan is continuing to help other businesses scale and tap into their full growth potential.
Moving forward, Janagan hopes to expand his business and, after graduation, pursue an MBA education. Outside of work and school, his hobbies include basketball, music, and cooking.
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