Jamal Edwards MBE
The online broadcast company Jamal established is a major industry force and its founder is one of Britain’s hottest young entrepreneurs.”
“I was impressed by his confidence the first time I met him… I saw first hand how keen young people were to look to him for inspiration.”
Richard Branson (as told to Time Magazine)
There aren’t many men of 24 with a CV as flowered with accidental triumph as that of Jamal Edwards. Having just received an MBE for his services to music - and one of the few who can boast an A-List-filled photo collection including a selfie spudding Prince William and Harry, an image that went from Jamal’s Twitter to the pages of Vanity Fair and Vogue - it’s fair to call him the millennial’s hero of DIY entrepreneurialism.
But he’s still very much the boy next door – just with a slightly nicer front door now. Having gone from creating his own YouTube channel to curating stages at Bestival and Wireless, from filming on British housing estates to recording interviews from 10 Downing Street to the Bermuda Triangle, Edwards can now boast an expanding business portfolio and a solid reputation that sees him inspiring a new wave of digital entrepreneurialism.
Hard work has always been the ethic, his many followers on social media adopting his #SelfBelief tactics. Heck, according to one youth agency there’s already a marketing term in his namesake; ‘The Jamal Edwards effect’, a newly adopted ideology that anything’s possible in the digital age.
Considering a career in sport or music, it was while at college that Edwards edged closer to his actual beginnings in the big wide world. Juggling filming foxes and his mates on his £20 NEC phone with a part-time job at Topman (where you can now buy Edwards’ first foray into menswear, a collaborative range with American Freshman), it was the Panasonic camera he got as a Christmas present from his mum and dad that really sealed his direction. And since 2006, Jamal has grown his youth broadcasting channel, SBTV, from the inner confines of his bedroom into a renowned brand with global
Encapsulating the DIY ethos of the underground music scene that inspired the teen to pick up a camera in the first place, Jamal Edwards was - and still is - responsible for documenting the rise of a new breed of previously ignored video stars. Early nods of approval came from Richard Branson and Simon Cowell, but now SBTV, the first new media business on YouTub