You know, you have to have the vision of where you want to be … a dream.
For me, it was six and a half thousand euros. I didn’t have it, but I had a very good friend who just gave me the money. This helped me lift off the ground. I’ve done a lot of groundwork leading into that. I had the website. I had made a lot of contexts, and I had a firm belief in what I was doing. It cost me six thousand euros to build my dream. Also, the guy that gave me the money hasn’t looked for it back, nevertheless, I paid it back. I was just lucky and fortunate.
That was his story. Only two and a half… I am looking for seventy.
That’s my mountain to climb, in some respects – the first mountain to climb. I am climbing a big mountain… So I go and go … around the corner. Sometimes I think I am nearly there. And then there’s another lift and then there’s another lift and then there’s another section. And it’s only when you get to the top and look back, and think to yourself: “Wow, that wasn’t too bad”.
You know, seventy thousand or fifty thousand euros is a lot of money. But I think if I can get it and have the first unit built, I might be amazed how quickly the next phase will come. But it’s just that initial one.
Don’t be disappointed and discouraged because some of the best ideas TAKE TIME. And I know, time isn’t always something that people have a lot of, particularly when you put so much of your time and effort into it. I think it’s very important not to lose your confidence. But that’s difficult because you are working on your own. I don’t have people around me that believe in me… but the most important person is myself. You know, it’s no different than any kind of sales job. You’re going to get knocked and it’s a rollercoaster ride. You’re going to get some serious lows. But there come serious highs.
If you don’t believe in yourself, why anyone else should? No, you should have a very strong belief in yourself and the thing you try to do. The luck is on your side. Believe firmly that you have great potential. You can and will succeed! You have two kinds of thoughts: either it’s complete rubbish or it’s really something innovative. Which thought is more pleasant to have?
For me, it’s just that process of getting the investor, that loan of some kind… You know, to get the first one going. It is my key to open the next door.
No matter what way you look at it, once you built the first one, it will just be like a snowball. But this is going to take time.
And you’re always worried that somebody is going to take this and run. Somebody who has the money will build 10 or 20 units. I’ve heard all of this happen to other people’s ideas. Once people see that it works really well – they copy you, create almost exact replicas. They all can make their own money where I will be relying on a builder who could run with the project himself. Just taking it off me.
It needs to happen… But you know, I have to find that money somewhere to get the first one built because there’s nothing that beats the physical product on the ground where people come and walk into. It needs to be close to where I am, where I am going to be touring people, showing and taking bookings.
You know what I’m saying? Even if it’s just one… that generates income, and allow an investor to go inside and say: “Oh, this is interesting“. All of a sudden you have figures now. You will know how many people are interested. Promote your website and collect sign ups. That’s the key – a physical presence. It’s so important. You know that yourself and it seems unreachable right now. People who invest spend incredible money on chances.
The problem is:
How to build the idea and the interest without the physical products? How do I build the interest without the physical unit?
Put up some kind of questionnaire online – a simple questionnaire and say: “Look, I have this plan to build …. and put them in certain areas across Canada. Are you interested? Would you be interested and have some kind of price structure in your head.” What’s this going to cost to stay for a week or two or a weekend. Then ask: “Are you prepared to spend such money and are you interested? – Yes.” Check the box. And “How far are you willing to travel?” Ask people how much they’re willing to pay, trying to get that kind of numbers together. I need to get some kind of data that gives me confidence. Maybe that’s my next stage. That is… The money will appear from somewhere.
It’s a difficult one and it’s frustrating. I’ve been knocked back, but I just got to keep looking for other directions. I really do.
Ok, well, maybe…. Maybe I am aiming too small. What about the idea of creating a village of my units? Multiple units in a really nice area – that’s just outside a city somewhere where it’s easily accessible. A village for remote workers.
What if I go to local rural development groups that have funding by the state/province? Ask for Grants!
I don’t have to pay it back. It’s almost like free money. The government tries to encourage rural area developments, where they try to build and develop a tourism stroke to get people out of the city to spend time in a rural area. Those areas benefit from it because of the inflow of tourists. So maybe it’s something worth looking into… The location could be not too far from a campground or something.
It needs to be on a good route out of a city that has a good road structure which allows somebody to step in a car and drive for an hour to take a week off. Or even an hour and a half and then leave the city and all the craziness with its noise.
Canada is like that. You step outside of Toronto or Calgary and you’ve got this place where it’s just noiseless but still has the infrastructure. By setting up the village – you can bring eight, nine, ten business people together. Yes, the business village.
Find a location to put eight-ten pods into that little community and let everybody know about it. It will be a talking point. You will have people coming from the City, wherever the place is… even a few hours drive away.
The village is in the middle of nowhere, but it has the infrastructure around: small restaurants, coffee shops etc. And what that does, it puts money into that local community and my company. This is a win-win situation. Applying for grants is a lot of paperwork, however I think that might be something worth looking at.
And it opens opportunities in front of me. If I set up my village in an area where there’s a nice restaurant, a nice coffee shop – all of a sudden I’ve got a place where my customers can go. This village will be a great place for meeting like-minded people.
Creating one single village will take less effort than trying to set up six different locations. Also, if I have a village, I can then target the companies – corporate clients. Yes, it will give me an awful lot more options… I can make it a business hub. It could become quite interesting.
I might find a lot of other routes to go. I can have certain times of the year that it’s business based and then I might have certain times of the year that are more suitable for anything from holistic style retreats to holiday retreats.
It gives me a lot more options when there are multiple units in one location. Really good Internet access, really close amenities in the local area for walks in a park, by a river or trails. Nice cycle routes to different locations. People are not only going to work but when they have the downtime, they’re right in the countryside and they can go for a walk or a bike ride while getting business done. They’re getting that “escape”.
By doing that, it might give me more opportunities. I need to focus on figuring out how to set “villages” or “hubs”. The individual locations might come later and if so, they can be developed quickly.
That might become the way to do things. I might be setting up villages with multiple units rather than trying to go for that one unit in different places. And all of a sudden it grows much, much quicker. And it also gives the manufacturer the ability to price the units in multiples rather than individual pricing. So cost effective.
I like it… then develop city by city, location by location instead of spreading yourself all over the place.
If you look at a city like Toronto or any of the major cities in Canada, if you go north, south, east or west – an hour’s drive, I could have four hubs surrounding. I could have six hubs surrounding Toronto with six units. Now I have thirty-six units within an hour of striking distance of the city. It just happens to be close to villages near lakes or mountains or trails. All the hubs interact with the local communities. Such interaction with the local businesses will be generating income for those businesses and communities.
Look if there is some form of government funding to develop businesses like mine. Instead of thinking about only 70 thousand, think about seven hundred thousand. Think bigger! Get the government funding. Whether it’s seventy thousand seven hundred thousand, it’s not big money for them if they see the returns of the idea is strong.
I think the idea is strong. Definitely so!
If I become a government-funded project – that’s huge. It will give me an awful lot of credibility. I can then go to a manufacturer and say, look, this is my plan. My business is backed up by the government and that’s gold. That speaks a lot to investors and manufacturers.
All of a sudden, I will be approached by people who want to build those units for me. They are going to be jumping at the chance because they see that you are the government founded company. This will almost guarantee you lock them down into a contract with you, where they will be a supplier of these units for the whole country of Canada. That’s huge! And I’m talking big!
That’s the way you have to be thinking. You have to dream! But you also need to get to the next stage and find that funding. Once I do find it – I can shout about that from the treetops and tell everyone we got the government funding. We hope to build such and such units… Who’s in?
Put it on you website, something like: “We already acquired seven hundred thousand from government government money and this is happening.” It’s gold. It’s solid that investors would like to become a part of it.
Speaking of investors – I may not need to worry so much about investors outside of the industry.
It might be the manufacturer of the product, who becomes my main investor. He’s going to be looking for the manufacturing and profit margin on that. And that is my investor who will get the margins I have created with my business model. On top of that, it’s my brand, it’s my idea that they’re manufacturing. I might think about signing some kind of confidentiality agreement and licensing agreements with them. I want it to be only my brand, so I have full control.
It only takes one interested party. Go to the local governments, go as high as you possibly can, try and get in front of people and just keep the enthusiasm because that’s infectious. Some people will respond. A lot of people won’t. Don’t ever take it personally. It’s not going to be easy.
But I could be sitting here in two years, and say: “You know, my biggest problem now is that there’s such a demand that we can’t keep up”. which will be great.
Get in front of the people and say: “Listen guys, this is where the tourism industry is going to be over the next three or four years. We’re only starting here… We are using a different approach…”
I need to work through a government body of some kind that may be an international fund or something.
I’ve got nothing to lose. The worst thing is that they say no. I am not going to die from it!
Look, there are problems, but I will get over them. WE will get over it. Yes, for sure! Just a question of time.
And what’s going to happen is that the government will have to invest in new businesses when everything opens up again.
Start looking at what’s coming down the track for funding to push businesses out and that’s the way I will approach it. People are going to look for alternative ways to work and this is the time for my solution.