A&M graduate starts company in San Antonio

By Joshua Clasberry

John Speer (left) and Sara Helmy (right) speak during Mass Communication
Week at Texas State.

At the age of 22, most people aren’t starting their own business, but that’s exactly what Sara S. Helmy did. Helmy, a graduate of Texas A&M University-Corpus Christi spoke during Mass Communication Week at Texas State about starting her own company, Tribu, which is an advertising agency based in San Antonio.

“What we sell is intangible, but measurable.” Helmy said. “What we sell is our talent and ours brains.”

The tribe, what the company refers to itself as, is made up of six people, Helmy as the CEO, and five other employees including Jason Beltran who works as Business Development, and John Speer, the Creative Director.

According to Tribu’s website, it has served local start-ups as well as Fortune 500 companies. A recent client of theirs was Firstmark Credit Union, a financial cooperative based in San Antonio.

Advertising is about catering to different clients Helmy explained. It’s about knowing a lot of random information about a lot of random industries.

“You have to learn about a lot this weird stuff that you normally wouldn’t think you have to know,” Speer said.

Samantha Ortiz, Senior and communication design major attended the event to learn about the skills needed in the advertising industry, but said she felt reassured about the advice they gave about starting off in the business without much experience.

“I liked hearing someone talk about starting jobs when they’re entry level.” Ortiz said.

Tribu’s past projects include websites, YouTube videos, billboards and customized logos. A lot considering Helmy started the company right out of college with some financial help from her mom and some savings.

“I had a year[‘s worth] of living saved up,” Helmy said. “And I depleted that year before I ever took anything home for myself.”

Helmy’s hope for the Tribu in the next 5 to 10 years includes becoming a national company, and exceeding every goal she’s made.

“I will be disappointed if we don’t hit past the million mark by then.”

Joshua Clasberry is a Senior Spanish major a Texas State University. Contact him at jc1931@txstate.edu.

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