When a deal goes down in a high school bathroom, it’s usually for drugs; not a $20 million startup fund. But for teen-tech-titan Eric Zhu, whose father received a call from his principal to say he’d been skipping class for ‘business meetings’ in the bathroom, it was just another day in the office.
A few days ago, the Twitter account @kidchocolate12 asked people to share a conversation they’d had with their parents. The prompt tweet went viral, racking up 74.7 million views, and collecting some fantastic screenshots of awkward family texts. But none came close to a message Eric received from his dad.
It was over for me that day pic.twitter.com/Bf2Sv6vEwy— Eric Zhu (@ericzhu105) May 9, 2023
Eric is the co-founder of Aviato, a search engine for other startups, but unlike other high school students who skip class to smoke weed; he skips for million-dollar deals. From his corner stall, he’s proposed pitches to other entrepreneurs, conducted a Facetime interview with @KingzTheCreator, and virtually attended an A.I. conference.
Nbd, just a 15 year old maker pitching from his hs bathroom pic.twitter.com/818r8bfO7Q— Product Hunt (@ProductHunt) January 14, 2023
It’s exactly like being there! pic.twitter.com/JFJ7MU5TWg— Eric Zhu (@ericzhu105) May 16, 2023
Unfortunately, neither the principal nor his dad seems thrilled about it, but we think they’ll get over it. “On the other side of that phone he’s def so proud of you though,” @randomrecruiter commented.
Eric likes to joke that his parents still expect him to go to med school, but he doesn’t see it in the cards for his future.
“Investing $10 million in deepfake technology to convince my mom I’m at med school,” he joked.
Parents refuse to believe I’m not gonna be a doctor. pic.twitter.com/x2P7A4aVS0— Eric Zhu (@ericzhu105) April 27, 2023
Working from the bathroom has become part of Eric’s brand, and he doesn’t hesitate to share pictures.
or, hear me out pic.twitter.com/04OKbdl6T7— Eric Zhu (@ericzhu105) May 22, 2023
I’m never gonna get a real office pic.twitter.com/b6kURnRXKA— Eric Zhu (@ericzhu105) May 31, 2023
For a high school student who’s worth $20 million, life can’t be too hard. Just imagine what it feels like to give a kid worth more than the entire district's yearly budget detention.
Like clockwork pic.twitter.com/ORMzZPg9VP— Eric Zhu (@ericzhu105) May 9, 2023