posted on 08 June 2021 16:09
Freddie Figgers, the inventor and telecoms magnate, was left in a rubbish bin as a child. Despite such an inauspicious start, Figgers went on to become the youngest telecoms operator in the United States.
Figgers, 31, is a phenomenally successful entrepreneur whose company, Figgers Communications, is the only black-owned telecommunications business in the country, worth over $62 million.
Yet, at the age of 8, Figgers found out that he was adopted, by loving parents Nathan and Betty Mae.
Being told that his biological mother did not want him left young Figgers in disarray. When his fellow school pupils found out, he also suffered horrendously from bullying.
“Kids used to bully me and call me, ‘Dumpster baby’, ‘Trash can boy’, ‘Nobody wants you’, ‘You’re dirty’”, recalls Figgers.
“I remember getting off the school bus sometimes and kids used to just come behind and grab me and throw me in a trash can and laugh at me.”
The bullying became so severe that dad Nathan had to walk him home from the bus stop.
But it was also around this time that Figgers discovered his passion for technology, which turned his life around.
Attempting, as a young boy, to fix his home computer proved to be a pivotal moment after he tried 50 times to repair it. On the fiftieth attempt, he succeeded. It finally switched on – and so did Figgers. He knew at that moment that he wanted to spend the rest of his life working with technology.
The passion for technology took away the pain of the bullying and his rejection by his birth mother.
From mocked to millionaire
Soon Figgers was earning money repairing broken computers.
By the age of 15, he had set up his first company. He went from strength to strength, as an inventor as well, creating such devices as a glucometer that instantly displays blood sugar levels.
In 2021, Figgers is a multimillionaire who also has a foundation investing in education and healthcare for disadvantaged kids and families.
He also has his own family, his wife, Natalie, and their young daughter.
Now Figgers tells his daughter: “Never give up, no matter how cold the world may look… Try to make a positive impact on the life of every person you encounter.”
Michael Robinson, SPUC Director of Communications, said: “Figgers’ message to his daughter is even more powerful since he has lived it in his own story, overcoming rejection and bullying to find purpose and contentment.
“Every life has the potential to flourish and give life and hope to others.
“We can be grateful that Figgers survived his birth and found love in the arms of compassionate adoptive parents – an example to us all of what can be achieved if a child is given a chance to live and be loved.
“Figgers’ story also reminds of the 600 babies killed under the Abortion Act 1967 every day in Britain.”
Millionaire inventor Freddie Figgers thrown away as baby