Jordan Belfort, the “Wolf of Wall Street” has finally met his match, and he comes in the form of a 15-year-old boy named Nathan John-Baptiste from Walthamstow in East London, England.
He’s called the “Wolf of Walthamstow.”
Nathan was launched to prominence with the tuck shop he ran from his school’s bathroom, raking in around £1,150 ($1,500 USD) weekly and totalling to £45,000 (about $58,000 USD) per year with a profit margin of 50%. Like the slick penny-stock operation that Belfort ran, Nathan followed suit–albeit in less criminally negligent ways.
When Nathan was 12, his illustrious career began with £5 (about $6.50 UDS) and a simple business model: buy multi-packs of Lucozade and Chewits and sell them during break times to his schoolmates for half the price at the Walking Talking Shop, his underground store.
Soon, the furtive demand grew exponentially, leading him to open a shop in the boys’ bathroom to sell candy, chocolate, and drinks. He used Snapchat as a marketplace: every day, he’d publish a menu of the sweets for sale with their respective prices, and then after taking orders from students via Snapchat, he would sell the goods during lunch.
“No one has done what I have,” Nathan told the Sun. “Others have sold sweets, I’ve created an empire.”
Recruiting eleven people across three schools, constructing his empire was well underway until one day, during a drama exam, his teacher pulled him out to talk with him. The school had discovered his illicit operation, and they shut him down with a couple of days in detention as punishment. But that hasn’t deterred him.
“So I’ll start investing in different things–I can’t sell sweets for the rest of my life,” he told the DailyMail.
Regardless, Nathan has already acquired a taste for the opulent lifestyle that comes with business. One of his favorite places for dinner isn’t a Nandos or McDonald’s; rather, it’s The Shard, a 95-story skyscraper in Southwark, London.
While that’s not usually within the budget of typical 15-year-olds, his parents are proud of his entrepreneurial spirit. To his mother, Sharon, it’s much better than him using his talent to sell drugs instead.
His entrepreneurial spirit is his way out of Walthamstow.
Walthamstow isn’t a rich town; it’s not a place that people associate with British sophistication and sprawling opulence. According to an interview with This Morning, Nathan always thought he had two paths to tread in life: either going down “the wrong path,” which he said he was headed, or joining the military. It took a school-organized event when he was 11 for him to realize that he just may be able to carve out a new one.
“Because of the area I was in our school got talks so we didn’t turn to gangs,” Nathan told the Sun.
The town has seen its fair share of children who turn to drug dealing and gang violence in their young, formative years. Like the history of those kids, a millionaire who spoke at Nathan’s school had a past he wasn’t proud of. He knew the lifestyle in places like Walthamstow, but he chose another route.
“This man Carl told us: ‘You can be whatever you want,'” said Nathan. “That really resonated with me.”
So, a kid from Walthamstow picked himself up and started looking for business. But when nobody would hire him because of his young age, his mother said that he thought that he might as well just do it himself. With small enterprises like a cupcake business he set up in senior year that only made £25 ($32 USD) to his weekend gig selling bath soaps at a local market, it’s always been about keeping your head down and never losing sight of the end goal to Nathan.
Now, Natahan wants to be a stockbroker when he grows up. He believes seriously in investing in sub-letting property with the £5,000 (about $6,500 USD) he’s saved. He wants to be rich, but most of all, he wants to be like Carl.
“The plan is to be a millionaire,” he affirmed to the DailyMail. “It’s just about the hard work.”