30 Under 30: Benson Sung helps brands grow quick with D2C Design

The Richmond native has started a few brands of his own, too.

Benson Sung

Benson Sung, 29

Founder + CEO, D2C Design

Life Story: When Benson Sung was three years old, his mom brought him to Richmond from what was becoming an increasingly unstable situation in Taiwan. Starting from Grade 10, Sung picked up all kinds of jobs to support his mom, who worked at Langley Farm Market in Lansdowne. “Construction, barista, stock boy, warehouse, personal trainer at Gold’s Gym, sales, all kinds of stuff,” says Sung. He started doing agency services and copywriting for local mom and pop shops in Vancouver—gyms, restaurants, supermarkets. “They’d pay me $500 a month for SEO rankings,” he remembers. Then it started to grow—b2b commerce, direct-to-consumer brands.

You know the story from there. Sung eventually quit all the other side jobs and focused on D2C. When American tire giant SD Wheel came on, the business exploded.

Sung credits his upbringing for instilling the hard-working attitude that has become his calling card. “I think being an only child played a part in me growing up and needing to support the family,” he says. “I’ve reconnected with my dad over the past couple of years, but it’s one of those things where you don’t really know what you’re missing if you never had it in the first place.”

Bottom Line: D2C now has some 30 employees and Sung has since overseen the creation of the company’s own brands, including Divinius, a sustainable, ethical, transparent and charity-empowered women’s fashion brand, dog health supplement brand Everyday, and Kofe, a specialty coffee brand that is slated to launch this summer. 

“For each of these brands we build a core team of three to five people and grow from there,” Sung says. “We have shared services among brands and everything.” Safe to say that those days spent as a barista are paying off.