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Chelsea Kaplan

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Profile

Buffettes Shoe Shine co-founder and CEO Chelsea Kaplan is a born entrepreneur, handing out her first business cards at 10-years-old, made for her budding babysitting business. She found her first job as soon as she was legally able, making her own money and juggling jobs from the time she was fourteen. She embarked on studies at Florida Atlantic University in 2007 with little idea of what she wanted to do upon graduation. After several changes in course of study, she settled on a double major in Cultural Communications and Health Administration, earning her degree in 2011.

Partnering with longtime friend Marla Comora, she co-founded model-staffed shoe shine business Buffettes in summer 2011, filing for an LLC the day after graduation. The founders were inspired by an experience they’d had working as brand ambassadors for Remy Martin Cognac during their sophomore year. In a month-long promotion, Kaplan and other female models shined shoes while male models served tastes of Cognac. Walking away from the promotion with substantial tip money, Kaplan sensed a potential business opportunity in the concept. The result was Buffettes, a completely mobile shoeshine company. The company has offered their services at office buildings, trade shows, conventions, restaurants, charities and fundraisers, as well as the occasional wedding and Bar Mitzvah. The Fort Lauderdale, FL-based company recently expanded, adding a permanent presence in Orlando.

Companies and Investments

Buffettes Shoe Shine (Co-founder, CEO), Remy Martin Cognac (Promotional Model)

Lessons Learned

I believe when the juices are flowing, and the ideas are booming, act on them! My mentality now at 24 is “I have nothing to lose”. The worst thing that can happen is something doesn’t become successful, but at least you tried. It’s a lot easier to start things younger when you don’t have a ton of commitments such as family, mortgages, and all that jazz to worry about. (Kaplan, on taking chances, starting young, and not being afraid to dive in to new ideas, in an interview with TheWorldOrBust.com)

Teamwork! This company would not be as successful as it is without my business partner Marla Comora. All business partners have their differences, but at the end of the day, when it comes down to making decisions and dividing the work , I wouldn’t want to be in business with anyone else. (Kaplan, on the importance of teamwork and solid partnership, in an interview with TheWorldOrBust.com)


Inspiring Quotes

Chelsea Kaplan's Quotes

Youre figuring out all the business stuff for yourself. With all the highs and the lows, thats all on you. Its not easy, but you have to be positive.

Chelsea Kaplan

Dont give up hope. Its okay to fail in some aspects — you just have to see what works.

Chelsea Kaplan

We offer a classy service that people aren’t used to getting. The sky is really the limit for where we can go.

Chelsea Kaplan

The worst thing that can happen is something doesn’t become successful, but at least you tried.

Chelsea Kaplan

Influential Books

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