This week’s Featured BossMama is: Samantha Ong, Founder, and CEO, of JoeyDolls.
Learning more about Samantha…
She grew up in Melbourne, Australia, and she now lives in Toronto, Canada. Being a mother, she hopes to raise confident girls who are proud to be who they are and their heritage. She now is on a mission to raise awareness about Asian diversity and help young children to feel worthy and loved; as well as continue to celebrate the beauty of Asian culture.
Samantha began her entrepreneurial journey in 2013 with a successful photography and videography business. However, when the pandemic hit in 2020, she found that her business had come to a complete halt without the regular revenue her family relied upon.
Samantha's journey as the founder of JoeyDolls began during the pandemic's peak when she lost her job as a wedding photographer due to the lockdowns. Despite facing financial struggles for two years, she found joy in being a dedicated mother and started to see the world through her daughter's eyes.
Joeydolls is a boutique toy store offering the world’s most diverse Asian dolls. They make a wide range of ethnically and culturally diverse dolls for children.
Samantha's experience of growing up without seeing people who looked like she, was represented in the world, affected her self-esteem. When she was looking for Asian dolls for her daughter, Joey, she realized that there were not enough options available. This led her to start Joeydolls, with the aim of providing children with relatable and lovable dolls that can help shape their views and instill confidence in them from a young age.
Launching a business from scratch is not easy, especially when you have no prior knowledge or experience in the industry. Samantha faced many challenges during her journey but did not give up. She was open to feedback and constantly revised her approach until satisfied with the result. For her, putting her life and family first before business is the key to balancing the demands of running a business with the responsibilities of being a parent.
Samantha’s goal for the next 3-6 months
Samantha's goal for the next 3-6 months is to get her dolls launched and start developing more South East Asian cultures, as well as boy dolls.