Many people dream of leaving the office behind and pursuing something more fulfilling. But what happens when you actually do it?.
Le Gist interviewed Successful Companies started by Women Founders who proved that it was possible to set up a successful business out of the city and reshape their lives.
Levinred: Founders, Patricia Rodríguez and Sofía Ferreiro. The entrepreneurs, from a village, who make natural cosmetics from wine to Ribeiro county.
Describe your company in three words?
– Consistent, patient and hardworking.
How would you describe your company?
– It’s a homage to our grandparents, to wine and to Ribeiro county, because we are taking something very traditional winemaking and we are using it to create an innovative cosmetic product whose main ingredient is full of history.
What was the inspiration behind your company?
-The history of our grandparents, the history of Ribeiro wine and tradition. The fact that we use the same method to make wine that our ancestors used in the past to make wine for their own consumption inspired me to use the surplus to make cosmetic products.
No-one “back home” really valued our product… we had to leave to find people that valued it.
Could you describe your journey to becoming business women ?
We still think of ourselves as entrepreneurs because we believe that a business takes shape very slowly, with a lot of hard work and dedication. Sometimes things get hard or difficult, but it’s all worth it when you feel the satisfaction of seeing the results of your hard work. We’re still constantly reinventing ourselves because a business or our business, at least – doesn’t do the same thing every day, and what works for us for a few months isn’t necessarily going to work forever.
Which moments have been the most important, and how have they impacted you?
We’ve had some very difficult moments, but we’ve never lost our patience, and we’ve never lost faith in our products or in our own work. The thing that had the most impact on us was that no-one “back home” really valued our product… we had to leave to find people that valued it. I think that we should change our mindset and appreciate what we have.
¿What is the best thing about being businesswomen?
– When you talk to people and feel the satisfaction of knowing that they appreciate all the hard work that goes into your product.
It’s all about how much you’re prepared to sacrifice. Nothing in this life is free.
What is the worst thing about being businesswomen?
– The uncertainty, and the administrations that sap your motivation by imposing so many requirements and very often even obstacles. The people who make the rules don’t know anything about the reality of being an entrepreneur. That needs to change.
What advice would you give to other entrepreneurs who are just starting out with their businesses.
– That however crazy their idea might seem, they should go for it. Because if their project is a good one then with patience, hard work, constancy and a lot of enthusiasm, they will eventually see results. It’s all about how much you’re prepared to sacrifice. Nothing in this life is free.
What are the three main secrets to your success so far?
– A good story behind our product, a high-quality product and a whole lot of work.
What obstacles / barriers have you had to overcome?
The only problem that we’ve had to overcome has been obtaining financial backing and getting through all the red tape. In the end, we obtained financial backing from a private entity because we weren’t eligible for any public funding, but we didn’t let that stop us… The most complicated factor was the administration. As far as stereotypes go we didn’t encounter any, perhaps there was some prejudice because we were young, but we didn’t pay any attention to things like that. Our philosophy is that if you want to do something… find a way to do it.
What’s next for you and your company? What does the future hold?
-We’re still in a good place, due to COVID we’ve had to cancel or postpone some plans but during this exceptional situation the most important thing is our health… we’ve got more ideas, projects and as soon as we can, as long as it’s up to us, we’ll continue forward with them… A time of uncertainty is approaching for all of us, but we entrepreneurs are already used to that…
Muhlloa: Founder, Marta Álvarez Quinteiro and the collective effort of five entrepreneurs women, who decided to join forces, changing the city for the town to continue supporting traditional rural life and developing their professional projects.
• How would you describe your company? Why did you start your company?
– As an innovative cosmetics company, because we were the first to create a product using fresh ecological cow’s milk. Moreover, the company was founded thanks to the collective effort of five women from the county of Ulloa. We were looking for a way to add value to our raw materials after working in agriculture for 20 years.
“Experienced entrepreneurs in rural areas have the best of life. They are where they want to live and doing what they want to do,” said Elizabeth Isele to Forbes Magazine.
• What was the inspiration behind your company?
– One rainy winter afternoon, we all got together and we came up with the idea of bringing together our knowledge and our products to create an innovative, ecological and locally-sourced line of cosmetics.
Never give up hope, and if they’ve got a good idea they should pursue it.
• What is the best thing about being businesswomen?
– Being the ones who make our own decisions.
• What advice would you give to other entrepreneurs?
– Never give up hope, and if they’ve got a good idea they should pursue it.
• What have been the main secrets to your success so far?
– Quality raw materials, perseverance, innovation and a belief in our project.
• What obstacles have you overcome so far?
– Without a doubt, getting financial backing has been the most significant obstacle.
• What does the future hold for you?
– We will continue designing new products, and making our dreams come true.
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