Akshay Ruparelia, nicknamed ‘Alan Sugar’, reckons he is Britain’s youngest business millionaire – after selling houses during his school lunch breaks.
The 19-year-old owns an estate agency, and whilst balancing homework with property development, Akshay still managed to get three A*s and 2 As at A Level.
He hired a call centre service to answer his company switchboard while he was in class and rang clients back after the school bell rang.
In little more than a year, Akshay’s firm www.doorsteps.co.uk, was attracting investors looking to buy shares. His company is now valued at £12 million, and he has sold £100 million worth of homes.
The young man’s friends nicknamed him Alan Sugar, after the British business magnate and star of BBC show The Apprentice.
Akshay charges just £99 commission on houses he sells and says he is on a mission to put High Street agents out of business as they charge thousands of pounds.
His idea is proving so popular that this week, just 16 months after his web site went live, Akshay’s company became the 18th biggest estate agency in the UK.
Doorsteps.co.uk, which he started after relatives loaned him £7,000, already employs 12 people and is set to double in size soon with investors having already handed him £500,000 to get their hands on shares.
Akshay’s company is already operating from Cornwall to the Scottish Highlands.
He is raising £5 million with a share issue and is recruiting an ever expanding network of mums across the UK who work self-employed showing clients around properties he has been asked to sell.
Despite his commitment to running his company, Akshay still managed to get five A Levels, three at A* and two A grades in maths, economics, politics, history and financial studies, at Queen Elizabeth High School in Barnet, London.
“I want to rip up the old-style way we sell homes in this country,” he said.
“People have had enough of being ripped off by High Street agents in flash suits and cars charging them a fortune, but actually doing not a lot to sell their home.
“Why give an estate agent a small fortune just for putting photos of your house on the internet?
“Quite rightly people trust mums. Every mum who works for me will be honest and tell the truth. It is important. For the majority of people selling their home is the biggest financial transaction of their lives.”
Now he has 1,050 homes for sale on his web site, selling around 30 a week.
The most expensive sold for £1.4 million in Notting Hill.
Akshay, who lives at home with his parents, has a place at Oxford University to study economics, but has put that ‘on hold’.
“At first, I paid myself £500 a month, things are going quite well now so I’ve upped that to £1,000 a month,” said the remarkable young man.