Young Entrepreneur: Victoria Wilson

Getting fired was one of the best things to happen to Victoria Wilson.

When her first job out of college in marketing and communications unexpectedly ended on a sour note, the 30-year-old from Atlanta embarked on a journey of self-exploration.

“I worked in event production. I worked in operations for an e-commerce brand. I even started my own digital consulting agency, freelancing with different small businesses,” she says.

That led her to take a job as a project manager at The Taproom, a firm that helped online retailers maximize their presence on the shopping platform Shopify. A rising star within the agency, Wilson was promoted within a couple of years to director of operations, and then, in January 2022, to CEO.

Once again, however, the unexpected forced a change in Wilson’s career trajectory when the owner of The Taproom decided to close the agency.

Disappointed about being unable to implement her vision, Wilson went to lunch with a mentor who happened to be a venture capitalist. During the meal, he threw out what she initially thought was a wild idea: why not pivot and start her own business helping online retailers find success?

Her mentor’s firm, Atlanta-based Collab Capital, would even be willing to invest $1 million to enable her to hire three former colleagues and build out a suite of products to work with online retailers hoping to create a better shopping experience for their customers.

The new company, Elementum, launched May 16. The name reflects the company’s mission of building out elements of the online store experience, Wilson says.

Being able to adapt allowed Wilson to take advantage of a once-in-a-lifetime opportunity. “I think the entire span of the time from that conversation to actually closing the deal and having our first official week in operation was like six weeks,” she says. “The direct-to-consumer space for e-commerce is really a big opportunity right now, so there’s a lot of data to justify such an investment.”

But she credits two other things for her success: nurturing relationships such as the one with her mentor, and losing that first job out of college. “Every single day I’m thankful because I don’t know where I would be had I not gotten fired.” DW

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