|13D Founder Kiril Sokoloff|
Sokoloff created the 13D Entrepreneurship student competition and the Kiril Sokoloff Distinguished Professorship in Entrepreneurship in the School of Business. In 2011, Sokoloff pledged to donate $5 million to UVI. He committed to donating $1 million to the University over a five year period.
On Friday, Dec. 5, Sokoloff shared the knowledge of his journey in life and as an entrepreneur. “Adversity is the best teacher,” said Sokoloff to a packed room of UVI students, staffers, and entrepreneurs. “To be an entrepreneur you have to understand adversity.”
|UVI President David Hall and 13D Entrepreneurship Speaker Kiril Sokoloff speak at round-table discussion|
“Deafness made me who I am,” he said. “Deafness threw me down below the waterline many times – molded me, toughened me, softened me, shaped my character and the way I look at life. I will never know what kind of person I would have been had I not lost my hearing, but I certainly would not be the person that I am today.”
Sokoloff founded 13D Research, Inc., an independent institutional global research firm, in 1983 with $25 and his office was in his attic. He kept the overhead for his business low with no obligations. Sokoloff said that he learned to push away destructive negative emotions and to hold a laser like positive vision for successful outcomes.
On Friday, he offered a few words of wisdom. He advised entrepreneurs to keep their fixed cost low and make sure that their customers are truly interested in their product. Sokoloff also suggested that entrepreneurs keep an eye on their cash flow, competitors and the market, and to think strategically.
13D Research, Inc. is currently based on St. Croix. Previous speakers in the series have included best-selling author Dr. Dennis Kimbro and business woman and philanthropist Loida Lewis.