SL Entrepreneur Profiles: Xion Hax, ‘The cultural landscape can only be changed by people’s initiative’

December 1st, 2009  |  Published in SL Entrepreneur Magazine, SL Entrepreneur Profiles

by Avarie Parker

Over a year ago, I was fortunate to meet Xion Hax at one of Linden Labs famous Second Life parties. He was immediately intriguing as he hobbled on one leg with an ornate contraption where his leg should have been. It was the first time I had seen a physically challenged avatar.  After a brief exchange I discovered he was one of SL’s premier Tattoo artists and quite an extraordinary entrepreneur.

His website, gives one a good idea of his talents. You can find his amazing Tattoos, clothing and skins at his main-store:

He was generous enough to take the time to answer my questions and I’m thrilled to publish them here for my readers.

Second Life Entrepreneur Xion Hax, tattoo artist and designerHow long have you been in SL?
I joined SL during the spring of 2007 and have been addicted ever since.

Why did you come?
I followed a friend’s advice. He talked to me about a virtual world parallel to real life but I wasn’t expecting it to be so fascinating.

What Second Life business activities do you engage in?
I am into tattoos, piercing and grunge clothing design. I have also created a whole commercial sim dedicated to grunge fashion, the addiXion Grunge Neighbourhood.

How did you first start creating Tattoos?
I just followed a Linden Lab tutorial about making your first avatar tatt. I am a tattoo lover in RL actually.

What is your RL profession? Do you have any RL tats? Or do Tattoo work in RL?
I work as a freelance graphic designer and photographer. I do have RL tats, I love ink on bodies, lol.

Discuss your SL Business, Business model, profit margin, who are your primary clients, monthly fees, etc.
AddiXion Tattoos & Piercing started as a small rented parcel of 512 sq. meters somewhere on the Second Life mainland. After the first 2 months the 512 sq. meters with the small addiXion main store grew;  spreading over half of the whole sim. Then the addiXion Grunge Neighbourhood started to form around it.

One year after its establishment, addiXion moved to its own private island, the addiXion sim. 65’000 sq. meters of a detailed, urban buildings full of pure grunge fashion stores.

After that the NEO Fashion Addict clothing brand was born, and started to play an important role to the overall business. Over the last two years,  45’000 SL residents visited addiXion sim and over 15’000 of them have been satisfied with their purchases.

Addixion’s business model is simple and quite effective. Top of the line quality products with reasonable prices that make your avatar stand out in the crowd.
NEO Fashion Addict and addiXion main stores are the main act on the sim while personal handpicked grunge fashion shops are spreading all over the neighbourhood. So every visitor has the ability to take a walk among the most edgy fashion designers shops, all in the same neighbourhood.

Is your business growing?
It is still growing, but it  needs full-time management, client services and new product releases, as well as targeted advertising. We’ve launched a line of skins that has been very popular.

A very profitable idea that I have espoused is the addiXion Tattoos & Piercing and NEO Fashion Addict FRANCHISING NETWORK. Anyone who wants to start a profitable business in SL but doesn’t have a designing background is given the opportunity to sell my merchandise. Being a part of the franchising network allows residents to sell my products at their shops around SL and having 50% commission on every sale. More than 50 franchisees have already joined the network and are enjoining profitable businesses.

Can you pay RL bills with your SL profits?
Having worked my butt off in SL for so long…I’m glad to say YES I can.

Does your SL business impact or influence your RL?
Well, in a way it does. The way I deal with my SL business is to make it a part of my RL one.  So it impacts my day to day time schedule. Not complaining though…lol. It is so much fun for me.

Any RL skills translate into SL business?
Definitely. My Photoshop and 3D software skills are playing a great role in SL content designing and my marketing background helps with my SL business management.

How long does it take you to create a custom tattoo? Which tools do you use? Illustrator ?  Photoshop ?
To be honest, I have stopped taking custom orders some months ago due to  lack of time. When someone is looking for a custom tatt, he pays a large amount of Linden$ so he deserves the best and that translates into a really large window of time.

Contrary to what some may think, designing and releasing a quality SL tattoo or piece of clothing is a really time consuming task, involving not only designing time but also a great amount of inspiration and brainstorming.

What is the most promising industry for new business in SL?
I think that quality animations and the  scripting industry are the most promising since they are two of the least saturated markets.

What types of businesses shouldn’t come into SL and why not?
I believe in the free market so I wont suggest that there are types of businesses that should not come into SL. Everyone has his chance and nobody can assure you that your idea, no matter how strange it might be, wont be the next big thing in SL.

What is your opinion on RL business in SL, how will it effect the community?
Well, a RL business in SL is a strange issue. My SL experience is indicating that most of the time RL businesses do not manage to obtain success in Second Life. I think that this is happening because SL is a whole different world, it has some social rules of its own. Almost all of the successful SL businesses have been created in SL and stayed in it. People are coming to SL to find a new alternative world, not a mirror of what we are living outside.

Off course another factor is the poor SL implementation of most of RL businesses. SL is mostly successful due to the individuals’ creativity of creating their own stuff as well as interactivity so I think that is the perfect arena for smaller creative groups and not multinational corporations that think of SL as another channel for advertising.

What are the biggest mistakes SL entrepreneurs make?
I think the biggest mistake is to think that SL residents will easily give you their precious Linden$ for poor quality products or services. People are not dumb. Even if they are not experts they can perceive when something is of good or poor quality and that’s the reason why some SL businesses  are doing so well. I have a marketing background and focus on these fundamental four elements:  Product, Price, Promotion and Placement. Keeping these elements in a perfect balance is the secret.

Any predictions about the future for SL? New technology? Growth? New potential uses?
During the years that I’ve been an SL resident and business owner, I have spent a lot of time thinking and discussing social 3d platforms like Second Life. Practically I think that there are no limits. As long as graphics cards technology and network speed grow Second Life will get more and more realistic. I also think that the next big thing in SL will be its larger connectivity with other virtual worlds and the rest of the Internet.

I will risk the prediction that the global economic recession will not negatively impact Second Life.  SL entrepreneurs will will benefit from it. SL and all other social networks are mostly fun and entertainment for people and I am sure residents will continue to use it for cheap escape.

What does having a second life give you?
It has given me a field of self expression, a huge amount of fun and additional income off course.

Is there an element of fantasy or escape?
I think the combination of both elements make SL so appealing. Everybody can be whatever he or she  wants to be.

Will SL change the cultural or social landscape of business as we know it today?
I have always thought that the cultural or social landscape can only be changed by people’s initiative. Never in history has a human invention made a difference on its own. It is what people are making out of it. SL has taken interactive communication to new level and communicating and sharing ideas is the fundamental element of social and cultural change.

One thing I am sure of is that major global social change will be derived from the Internet due to its universal break through and use.  Concerning the business landscape, I think that SL has already changed that since it managed to create a profitable new generation of virtual entrepreneurs that are functioning solely in Second Life’s virtual world.


Xion Hax Website: website:

AddiXion Main Store:

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