Career Advice Job fairs and Events

Classified Post Career Forum highlights: Snapask founder Timothy Yu talks about getting a head start in start-ups

Bright young people brimming with ideas and energy should consider a career at a start-up company as a compelling alternative to climbing up the blue-chip corporate ladder, said Timothy Yu, the founder of study app Snapask.

Launched in January this year, Snapask has been expanding fast. It has grown into a company with more than 30 employees globally, catering to more than 18,000 students.   

The app provides students with immediate study help. All they need to do is take a picture of their question, and they will receive an answer in about 17 seconds from one of 1,000 tutors around the world.

“It all started with an idea. When I was in university, my friends and I would always do part-time tutoring to make some pocket money,” said Yu, a finance graduate from the University of Hong Kong. “However, for every hour or two you spend on tutoring, you also need to spend two hours on transport. There has to be a business solution.”

Yu and a friend eventually set up a Facebook page for virtual tutoring. Later, encouraged by its success, he quit his banking job and devoted himself to Snapask full-time. After participating in several start-up programmes, Yu and his team were able to raise millions in funds from investors.

The company is now hiring digital marketing managers, and community managers to keep in touch with users.

“It is true that the corporate world is more stable and offers a more professional image,” Yu said. “But think about what you can learn and achieve in a few years in a start-up. Think about the different lifestyle it can offer. It pays to be an entrepreneur.”