Name: Reuel Matthew

Major at Baruch College: BBA - Accounting
Graduation Year: 2010
School within Baruch College: Zicklin School of Business
Company and Title: President and CEO at Egami, Inc.

1. Tell us about your current position and what your company is about.

I am the President of Egami, Inc. I have always been passionate about creating my own apparel line. Egami was born in 2016 and continues to grow and represent clients across the US including entertainers, athletes, clergy, senior executives in corporate America, and everyday members of the general public. We pride and differentiate ourselves by providing a very personal tailoring experience to each client. We visit our clients in the privacy of their own home or office, as well as focusing on helping customers build an image through fashion and educating our customers about their options.

2. What made you decide to start your own company and what was your key driving force to become an entrepreneur?

My mother is a career seamstress and piano teacher from Trinidad and Tabago who immigrated to New York and I have always had a passion for making clothes and music. I was inspired by apparel moguls such as Damon John and Sean “P-Diddy” Combs. I started to leverage my tailoring connections by doing fashion shows at Baruch College with student organizations like Women in Business and the Caribbean Student Association. I decided to follow my passions and leveraging my tailoring skills to start my own company.

3. What were some challenges you faced in your journey through entrepreneurship and how did you solve them?

I needed the financial capital to take my ideas to the next level. I had a career in corporate America working as a licensed CPA at Ernst & Young as well as a number of smaller boutique consulting firms. I made sure I saved enough capital in order to get started with my company. For example, fees to incorporate the business, fees to file the Egami Collection trademark with the USPTO, attorney fees to file necessary patent applications with the USPTO, costs of sample orders from manufacturers, costs of initial inventory, costs of my inaugural launch event, and miscellaneous costs such as web development and supplies.

4. What was the most important part of your whole business journey?

The most important part is that no matter how difficult it may be at the time, knowing that doing what I love is what makes me happy.  Regardless of if I have a good week or a bad week, knowing that I’m following my passions makes it all worth it.

5. How was your experience at Baruch like? How did Baruch impact your life and career?

Studying business at Baruch and being active in clubs like NABA (National Association of Black Accountants), CSA (Caribbean Student Association) and USG (Undergraduate Student Government), helped me manage my business better. You learn the skills of leadership and running an organization, as well as learning accounting and finance to file your taxes effectively and draft investment proposals.  Currently I’m seeking investment for a new patent and my education at Baruch helps me effectively draft proposals.

6. What is one of your favorite memories you have from your time at Baruch?

My favorite memory at Baruch is doing my first fashion show in 2011 with WIB (Women in Business).  I already started leveraging my tailoring abilities and my friends at WIB had invited me to do their Style your Success fashion show in 2011. It my first fashion show right here at Baruch. When I was invited to do the WIB fashion show I was honored and excited but at the same time nervous as it was my first fashion show.  However, I worked closely with the organization to make suit designs that represented the style they were looking for “business professional and business chic” and took measurements of the models to reflect their perfect sizes.

7. What is some advice can you give to current Baruch students and alumni who are trying to start their own business?

Take strategic risks to follow your dreams. In this world you can achieve anything you put your mind to and anything you give your full energy to I promise you will grow.  It’s also good to understand that every business you work for was started by an entrepreneur who decided to take risks and start a new journey that they believed in. As entrepreneurs, we are really the ones who change the world and leave a legacy behind us.

8. How can people contact you?