Twin sisters from Macquarie Uni take over the App Store with emojis

September 20, 2016
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Aussie twin sisters and Macquarie University law students Colina and Hripsime Demirdjian are blazing trails for young entrepreneurs. The pair launched their first app, Moji Edit, in July which has been met with huge success. The app, which allows you to create a customised emoji version of yourselves to share with your mates, has scored over half a million downloads and is still at the top of the charts in the Australian App Store.

At only 24 years of age and just shy of graduating from their law degrees, the twins never imagined that something that started as a passion project would become so popular. Not only has Moji Edit gained attention from international social media stars, it has also reached the top 15 apps in the UK, US, Australia and Canada.

“For us, one of the top moments was when we saw a lot of people quickly engaging with Moji Edit and embracing the emojis they created in ways we didn't imagine,” Colina said.

“We still get the chills every time Moji Edit is trending on the App Store and we sometimes need to pinch ourselves that this is actually happening,” she continued. “It’s been quite a roller coaster ride but with each twist and turn it’s been a learning opportunity.”

We decided to become entrepreneurs to follow our calling, explore and expand our innate potential and define our own journey. The greatest satisfaction was the freedom to do things our way.”

Moji Edit was born out of an observation on recent trends in digital communications, particularly how specific emojis can trigger different types of emotions (let us all take a moment to snigger at the infamous eggplant emoji).

“We wanted to provide users the tools to create their own emoji to make them stand out in the digital arena and amongst their friends,” Hripsime said.

Before deciding to drop everything and set out in pursuit of their dream, Colina and Hripsime had no knowledge about programming or any coding skill. They learnt everything along the way and turned their concept into a product which is now on over 700,000 devices.

“We had to understand a number of tech-related fields and terminology, which was not our forte,” Hripsime said. “Understanding the software business and turning our idea from a fun concept to something of value, which we could build for the long-term, was challenging.”

“We decided to take the risk, learn on the way and pursue our passion for tech and creative design by starting a tech start-up,” she said.

Hripsime and Colina are planning to pave the way for more young Aussie entrepreneurs interested in tech, especially for other young women. They hope that their story of success will inspire others to do the same.

Let your passions motivate your life goals and take steps to reach them.

“We decided to become entrepreneurs to follow our calling, explore and expand our innate potential and define our own journey,” Colina said. “The greatest satisfaction was the freedom to do things our way.”

“We hope our story inspires and empowers other young individuals, especially females to enter the tech space,” she said. “We definitely need more female entrepreneurs and role models in our community to drive innovation.”

Colina also offered advice for indidividuals looking to pursue app development, a very fruitful venture in this increasingly tech-savvy world.

“Validate (the) idea, establish a need in the market and ensure (the) idea provides a creative solution that others will adopt,” she continued.

“Let your passions motivate your life goals and take steps to reach them. Never let the fear of failure keep you from exploring your potential.”

Moji Edit is currently available to download for free on iOS mobile devices. Colina and Hripsime can also be found on Instagram and Twitter.

Shannon Coward

Shannon Coward is a third year Bachelor of Journalism and Bachelor of Arts student at the University of Queensland. She enjoys period dramas, doughnuts and a good nap.

Image: Supplied

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