Interested in starting your own entrepreneurial journey in agriculture but unsure what to expect? Then read up on our interview with Robert Imbeault, Co-Founder of Adapt Agtech, located in Manotick, ON, Canada.
What's your business, and who are your customers?
My current business is Adapt.ag which converts used shipping containers into vertical farms so that they can grow and sell mushrooms. Adapt's customers are chefs and grocery stores.
Tell us about yourself
I've been an entrepreneur since 2003, primarily in B2B software. I had a software development consultancy followed by a SaaS company called Assent which became a unicorn in 2021. I retired in 2017, author two books, and became an angel investor. I have been interested in vertical farming for years, and I wanted to take on a challenge like food insecurity which led me to co-found Adapt.ag.
What's your biggest accomplishment as a business owner?
Building the foundation of a company that continues to thrive even after I am gone.
What's one of the hardest things that comes with being a business owner?
There is no downtime. Your employee's challenges are your challenges, and there is a constant weight on your shoulders that whispers that you might fail. This doesn't go away, but you have to persist anyway. Also, firing people sucks.
What are the top tips you'd give to anyone looking to start, run and grow a business today?
- Focus your business on solving a problem.
- Hire slow, fire fast. The quickest way to lose a good employee is to keep a bad one.
- It may sound obvious, but I see it repeatedly; keep your eye on your burn. If it's under a year with no breakeven in sight, it's time to act, i.e., raise and/or look at cost cutting.
Where can people find you and your business?
If you like what you've read here and have your own story as a solo or small business entrepreneur that you'd like to share, then please answer these interview questions. We'd love to feature your journey on these pages.
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