For Ildiko Ferenczi, it was never a question of if she was going to enter business, but when. She was raised around business professionals her whole life – in fact, her mother scheduled time out of her work day to deliver Ildiko, and then returned with the baby in a basket to finish off the work day at the family shop.
Ildiko’s family taught her how to be hard working and how to value success in business. When they moved to Canada, Ildiko and her brother helped their mother in the shop after school. They watched her sell her most prized possessions as she opened an antique shop by day and cleaned offices by night to put food on the table.
“We did everything in our young age to support and help our mom. She was so encouraging and took in and built on all of our ideas! Our weekends literally consisted of treasure hunts,” Ildiko recalls.
Ildiko’s life to follow was full of ups and downs, triumphs and tragedies. Her journey culminated after the birth of her first son, as she was able to balance motherhood and her pursuit of business, in the founding of The Billionaire Collection, her current business.
“With my husband, we discussed how powerful the words you speak are. We remembered how quotes, by great entrepreneurs of the past, lifted and inspired us through the low parts of our lives and businesses. We talked about our childhood and what inspired our love for historical treasures, and right there the idea was born. “Why do people lock up these treasures in a safe when they can be displayed”, she said.
Today they curate signed historical letters, documents, and photos, that each have these stories behind them, from these leaders and entrepreneurs of the past. They marry them with this person’s most inspirational quote, and frame it in a museum quality, contemporary frame, made with the finest materials, to make what she calls “Art for the CEO.”
“They say that you become what you surround yourself with, well there is nothing that will bring you closer to Edison or Lincoln or Steve Jobs, than owning something that they once held in their hands.” “It’s hard to believe that it is even possible to own something like this”, said Ildiko.
Soon The Billionaire Collection grew beyond their wildest dreams, as they attracted more and more high profile clients, athletes, celebrities , and business moguls, who all wanted to surround themselves with these inspirational pieces of history.
Word of mouth from our first clients became our best form of advertising, Ildiko said. These amazing investments, hanging on the walls of their offices, become these incredible conversation pieces, inspiring everyone around them.
With their passion at the forefront of their business, Ildiko pursued her business and found great success. As she balanced raising a family and finding professional success, she realized that many people were coming to her seeking advice on how she was able to remain so picture perfect.
“I had a huge realization and told my husband that we needed to start a podcast. Even though we had our own challenges with illness in the family and other obstacles we agreed that the timing was perfect to launch the business podcast with a twist. Successfully building businesses and gracefully handling obstacles must be faced as a team. We do what works for us and I’m always willing to share these stories of painful struggles and beautiful wins that we’ve gone through. I think it can be so valuable to our audience when we can take what works for us and pass on that hope and inspiration that we all need when times are hard.” Ildiko says.
Thirty days later they aired the first episode of the Pretty and Punk Podcast: a business podcast for entrepreneurs with kids or thinking about having kids. Ildiko saw how important it was to get interviews talking about work-life balance, for Parentpreneurs out there that are feeling challenged and need some hope and inspiration. Her podcast has allowed her to play a role in saving marriages, building relationships, and inspiring families.
In the coming year, Ildiko is putting focus into The Billionaire Collection and like a modern day Indiana Jones she is searching the worlds best auctions, to acquire more incredible pieces this year. “Collectors sound motivated to sell some breathtaking parts of their collections and we’ve been able to get our hands on some unique pieces that are going to not only inspire our clients but their whole team,” Ildiko said.