Interested in starting your own entrepreneurial journey in marketing but unsure what to expect? Then read up on our interview with Carmine Pistolesi, Owner of Sapphire Farms, located in Kalamazoo, MI, USA.

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

We grow and process cannabis in Michigan and, now, New York. We sell to licensed retailers and, eventually, to consumers.

Tell us about yourself

I started growing cannabis in college as a side stream of revenue. I graduated and became a certified public accountant (CPA). After several years as a public accountant, I was simply unhappy with my life. I went to work every day for long hours doing something I hated.

My wife and I were always very frugal with our earnings and always allocated most of our revenues to investments, allowing us to have a decent chunk of change for kids in our twenties to start a business. One day I decided I couldn't do it anymore, and we went for it with her support.

What's your biggest accomplishment as a business owner?

When we started in cannabis, the thought of being a multi-state operator (MSO) was not even on the wish list, and now to be operating in two states being self-funded is a considerable accomplishment working in a capital-intensive industry dominated by prominent venture capital entities that raise significant amounts of cash to use.

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

Being adaptable, especially in cannabis, where the industry rises to the bottom and changes rapidly.

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

  1. When starting, keep going. When it looks dark, you are close.
  2. Do something you love doing.
  3. Surround yourself with people who inspire you.

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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