Unaliwear Founder Shares How Love and Passion Build a Successful Company

Unaliwear Founder Shares How Love and Passion Build a Successful Company

As entrepreneurs, we all know that one of the biggest keys to success is having a strong passion for what you are doing. I just love when I come across companies that not only have that passion but are driven by the desire to solve a problem that touches them personally. This is the case with Unaliwear and its founder Jean Anne Booth, whom I met at SXSW 2017.

After pitching her company at The Dell Experience at SXSW, I had the chance to talk to Jean Anne and learn more about what Unaliwear is and the strong passion that drives it. You can watch the full video of our interview below and continue reading to discover more about Unaliwear and hear Jean Anne’s advice for other startups and entrepreneurs.

Unaliwear: Building a Company from Love & Passion

“Unali is the Cherokee word for friend, and it is a Kanega watch, which in Cherokee means speak. So, we are the friend who speaks to you,” explains Jean Anne.

In the simplest terms, the Kanega watch is like a wearable “OnStar” for people. The beautifully designed watches provide discreet support for falls, medication reminders, and guard against wandering and features an easy to use speech interface rather than buttons, making it simpler to use for aging adults.

The desire and passion for building the company came when Jean Anne’s mother was turning 80. A former model, she refused to wear any of the emergency alert products that currently existed. She found them to be ugly and socially stigmatizing. So, Jean Anne went on a mission to create a product that would not only keep her mother safe but allow her to keep her independence with dignity. The result, the Unaliwear Kanega watch.

Jean Anne’s Advice for Other Startups and Entrepreneurs

A serial entrepreneur who previously sold two of her startups to Texas Instruments and Apple, Jean Anne knows what it takes to find success. After all, her startup company Luminary, which sold to Texas Instruments in 2009, was one of the top VC-backed M&A’s of 2009. So, she is the perfect person to ask what advice she would give to an entrepreneur or startup. Here’s her answer:

“There are two things that I would tell someone just starting out. First, find something that you are very passionate about and then just do it. Second, you have to be tenacious. Do not give up….no matter what!”

For those entrepreneurs and startups in the growth stage of business, Jean Anne notes that it is crucial to watch what you are doing culturally to keep everyone true to the mission and purpose and the things that made you start the company and the vision you are executing to.

“It’s easy to fall into the mindset of ‘what did I sell today’ or ‘what are my customers saying’, when in reality what you need to be thinking and asking yourself is, ‘I sold this, but why did I sell it and what am I doing to make the world a better place?”