Just like millions of other video-sharing users, Suffolk University alumna Stephanie Horbaczewski created a YouTube channel. The only difference is, her network, StyleHaul, quickly exploded into a booming business.
Horbaczewski, president and CEO of StyleHaul, founded the company with Aaron and Allen DeBevoise, the co-creators of Machinima. Their one-of-a-kind network aggregates thousands of fashion and beauty videos.
“We have partnered with 1,100 incredible creators who are revolutionizing how we consume content and helping us unite and grow the online video space,” said Horbaczewski. StyleHaul also has an in-house production team that creates original YouTube content.
The channel has grown at an astonishing rate since its February 2011 launch. Today, it boasts 250 million monthly views, 40 million monthly viewers, and more than 32 million network subscribers around the world.
StyleHaul makes a profit with targeted advertising to its 13-to-34-year-old female audience. Its innovative business model appeals to many investors, and last year, the company raised $4.4 million. One of StyleHaul’s largest investors is RezVen Partners, led by StyleHaul board member Anderee Berengian. The firm's investors have experience in several big-name companies, including Hulu, LuLuLemon, Saks Fifth Avenue, and Yahoo!.
Starting a business from scratch is challenging, Horbaczewski explained. “As an entrepreneur, you have to be prepared and knowledgeable about all of the functions of your company.”
Her experience at Suffolk set her on the road to success. “My education gave me incredible advantages,” said Horbaczewski, who graduated from Suffolk University with her JD/MBA.
Suffolk’s faculty, in particular, played a vital role in her career. “I was mentored and challenged by my professors during all four years. Suffolk offers an unparalleled experience to work closely with professors outside of the classroom. At Sawyer, I met Professor Steve Shapiro who taught my International Marketing class and changed the path of my career forever.”
One particular piece of advice still resonates with her today– “Do something you are passionate about and the rest will follow,” she said.
What’s next for StyleHaul? “Continued expansion of our global community, as well as an exciting new original programming and industry partnerships,” Horbaczewski said.