BYU–Hawaii Student Launches Company

Casandra Fryhoff | University Relations | 29 January 2013

On January 21, 2013, Ryan Chaffin launched his company NFNT, pronounced infinite, showcasing a product called The Big Face Woody, a light-weight, durable and eco-friendly bamboo wood watch. Chaffin is a senior at BYU–Hawaii, studying finance, but has always had a love for entrepreneurship.

“I love that in addition to studying finance, I was able to earn the entrepreneurship certificate offered by the Willes Center,” Chaffin remarked, “I’ve had different business ideas, but with the support of faculty and knowledge from the various business classes I’ve taken, I’ve now been able to make it a reality.” Influenced by Jason Earl, Helena Hannonen and Cary Wasden, Chaffin recognizes that the business professors are there to support students outside of the classroom. “Ryan Chaffin is the perfect example of entrepreneurship. He came up with an idea, put it to action, and is already seeing success,” noted Wasden. 

“I wanted to make a wood watch that looked like a traditional watch,” Chaffin stated. The company’s target market consists of high school and college-age students active in the surf and skate scene. “Surprisingly, it’s taken off with just about everyone,” he said. NFNT already has customers from Japan, Australia, Italy, Norway, Germany, UK, Canada, the United States and more, including fellow BYU–Hawaii students.

Within 11 hours of kick-starting the company, they reached their funding goal of $11,000. “I didn’t see that coming,” Chaffin said, “I think one of the most important skills applied during the startup process is forecasting financials and determining margins.  I was able to find a product near the start of a growing trend with attractive margins, and pursue it.” With 20 days remaining, NFNT currently has $42,000 in funding and continues to grow each day.

On March 20 and 21, students can enter their business plans into the Empower Your Dreams Business Plan Competition sponsored by the Willes Center for Entrepreneurship. When asked what advice he would give to other students, he replied, “Go for it! You never know until you try.”
To learn more about Ryan Chaffin and his company, click here