What was your path into business?
My journey in business started when I moved to London from Italy. I was full of enthusiasm and ideas and London was full of opportunities and still is.
I started to work in the accounts department of a food importer, then I moved into the Hospitality sector and learnt the ins and out of the trade until I decided that I was ready for my next step. With lots of research, planning, commitment and hard work I opened my first business which was a restaurant. I managed it for more than five years until I decided to move on. I sold it as going concern and made a conspicuous profit. I invested part of the profits to further my education and gained an MBA in Business Strategy and I became a Business Advisor.
I had another of my “ideas” therefore more research and business planning. I moved to the sunshine of the Canary Islands where I set up a building and construction company. I started to buy plots of land and building 2/3 bedroom villas targeting mainly British people. After acquiring further market knowledge I set up soon after a property search and consultancy company and stayed on the islands until the contraction of the market due to the recession of the 2007/8. I came back to London and started to work again as a Business Adviser.
What do you love about mentoring?
Mentoring has played a very important role in my development. When I had my restaurant I was mentored by a business angel for a long time. It was an invaluable experience. Since then I have always thought that when I had the chance I should pass on my knowledge and experience to help others succeed.
I have been a mentor possibly from the day I started in business. I believe a good business person should always pass on his experience to others and the vast majority do pass it on. What I love most about mentoring is the human contact, meeting new people, to live and get excited about someone else's dream, it’s fun and helps me keep up with the times.
What skills / characteristics do you think are necessary to enable entrepreneurs succeed?
In my opinion and experience what makes an entrepreneur succeed is: the market knowledge, commitment, passion and the belief that his idea is going to succeed, not afraid to take risks and willingness to learn.
How do you like your tea / coffee?
I like my coffee short, black and strong.
Where’s your favourite spot in London to hang out?
There are many beautiful spots in London where I like to hang out but if I had to choose only one…..I would chose Borough market where all the new trends about food are on display!