21-Year-Old Man with Down Syndrome Builds a Million-Dollar Empire

John Cronin is now making seven figures selling socks 

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- Posted on Feb 1, 2018

21-Year-Old Man with Down Syndrome Builds a Million-Dollar Empire

In 2016, John Cronin was facing a tough decision, as many high school seniors do, about what to do after graduation. Cronin, who has Down syndrome, wanted to start a business with his dad, Mark Cronin, but wasn’t sure what kind of business they’d run. His initial idea was a food truck, but they quickly turned it down because neither of them knew how to cook. John then came up with the idea of turning his love of socks with fun designs into a business.

“John’s Crazy Socks” was launched on December 9, 2016, and became an immediate success. In just over a year the Cronins have shipped more than 42,000 orders and brought in $1.7 million in revenue. Due to the initial high demand, Mark would buy and resell socks from Kmart. John and Mark now source their socks from several manufacturers around the world and John has even started designing his own socks, which will be manufactured in the U.S.

What makes this company so special are the 4 principles the Cronins stand by. The first is their commitment to hiring people with disabilities. The second is giving back. They donate 5% of their earnings to the Special Olympics, a program from which John has benefited greatly. The third is their wide range of sock choices which includes over 1,200 pairs of fun, crazy themed socks including valentine’s socks, awareness socks, and music themed socks, among others. The fourth principle is gratitude. Every package is paired with a hand written thank you note from John. The personal touch is a form of gratitude John aims to express to his customers.

“I love my business. I want to keep it this way. I want to keep growing. I’m so inspired by my dad and I want to work with him,” John said in an interview with MONEY.  

John hopes to continue inspiring others with his company’s success.

Given time, opportunity, and support, people with disabilities can achieve their dreams. “It is possible,” John told TODAY.

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