SFU Business student Milun Tesovic likes to hire SFU grads for his award-winning Internet business

Internet tycoon pursues SFU degree

October 30, 2008

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By Diane Luckow

SFU Business student Milun Tesovic is a successful entrepreneur whose outlook on life and money belies his years.     

"I don’t spend money on everything I want," says the thoughtful 23-year-old, whose lyric-sharing website Metrolyrics won a Red Herring Top 50 award this year as one of Canada’s most innovative and promising companies. "I ensure financial stability first and foremost, and proper investment, and I leave enough to enjoy life."

That includes paying off his parents’ house mortgage and driving a new Range Rover, with a Corvette and a Camaro in the garage.

Tesovic was just 16 when he founded Metrolyrics, now the world’s largest website for downloading lyrics. Today, he co-owns the site, which reaps 90 million page views a month from 28 million individual viewers. That’s an alluring audience for advertisers who pay to be on his site.

While Tesovic declines to evaluate his site’s worth, he says that Napster, a site with similar demographics but four to five times less traffic than Metrolyrics, recently sold for $121 million.

Ironically, Tesovic started the company to earn money to buy his first car. "I went into the only market that doesn’t discriminate against age but rather for ability and knowledge," he says. "I went from a start-up in an over-saturated market to being the largest site, with competitors trailing behind us by 50 per cent."

Tesovic says his company spends a lot of time on search-engine optimization and has developed strong music-industry partnerships. And Metrolyrics offers something similar sites don’t – compensation for songwriters and music publishers.

This fall, Metrolyrics plans to open an office at the foot of Burnaby Mountain and increase its staff of four full-time and 15 part-time employees. "We have one SFU student in the MBA program who will join our executive team once she graduates," says Tesovic.

"And I’ll be hiring a couple of programmers from SFU’s computing school – either co-op students or graduates. We’re accepting applications via our website."

Tesovic, who graduates next year, is already reaping the benefits of his business education. "Education is crucial," he says, "especially when networking with other business owners who expect you have to have knowledge of terms and procedures.

"A lot of the things we learn I can apply directly to the company. They relate to, and further reinforce, what I know and will also help me to grow the business."

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