Interested in starting your own entrepreneurial journey in food and beverage but unsure what to expect? Then read up on our interview with Billy Madden, Owner of Black Lab Brewing Inc., located in Toronto, ON, Canada.

What's your business, and who are your customers?

We are Black Lab Brewing, a small community-focused dog-friendly brewery. We make small-batch beer for the Leslieville (Toronto) community but also deliver city-wide and ship across the province.

Tell us about yourself

I used to work in Brain Injury Rehabilitation and was completely burned out. I wanted to start something fun - where I could be creative and have my black lab Snoopy with me.

What's your biggest accomplishment as a business owner?

Surviving COVID. While other businesses struggled, our small team was able to pivot and come up with creative ways to continue serving our customers.

What's one of the hardest things that come with being a business owner?

Never knowing what's next. There are always obstacles and hurdles, and it's relentless. While that's the hardest part of owning my business, it's also the most rewarding when I'm able to overcome and be creative with problem-solving.

What are the top tips you'd give to anyone looking to start, run and grow a business today?

  1. Be ambitious - aim for the stars and go for it.
  2. Be industrious - never stop working and moving towards a solution.
  3. Have fun and surround yourself with strong-minded people.

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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