Interested in starting your own entrepreneurial journey in food and beverage but unsure what to expect? Then read up on our interview with Brian Xicay, Owner of SNAQUE, located in Hamilton, NJ, USA.
What's your business, and who are your customers?
SNAQUE is a snacking company based in Hamilton, New Jersey. We believe in creating healthy snacks without sacrificing great taste. Our mission is to inspire people to be healthy but, most importantly, to live a life that tastes great. Our target customers are those who are into eating healthy and living a life that tastes great.
Tell us about yourself
My name is Brian, and I am the owner of SNAQUE. I was born and raised in New Jersey by my Mom, but our family is from Guatemala. I started working at the age of 15 with the dream of working at Taco Bell. Sadly, I was rejected and ended up working for a startup snacking company. I fell in love with the company and thought I was going to be there forever. The company ended up closing my senior year in high school. I was upset and told myself, “this was not the end.” I went on in life to work for a startup beverage company that was bought by Dr. Pepper Snapple Group and then merged with Keurig to form Keurig Dr. Pepper. I was lucky enough to have an office next to the founder’s brother-in-law of the beverage company. I started asking him about how they started the beverage company and told him my idea of owning a snacking company. Inspired by the story behind the beverage company, I decided to quit my job and started working full-time at my company SNAQUE. I love the people I get to work with and their help in turning my vision into a reality. Our company is fueled by encouraging people to live a life that tastes great. The meaning behind this phrase is basically to do what you love in life and be happy. Working on SNAQUE makes me happy, and I believe in its message to the world to live a happy life.
What's your biggest accomplishment as a business owner?
My biggest accomplishment as a business owner is making my dreams into a reality. Being able to see your idea grow from nothing to having billboards across the U.S. and having a commercial stream on Hulu is absolutely incredible to me.
What's one of the hardest things that come with being a business owner?
One of the hardest things about being a business owner is learning how to fail. Sometimes things will go wrong before they go right. It is important to always be positive and keep moving forward. Failure is just part of the process.
What are the top tips you'd give to anyone looking to start, run and grow a business today?
Three tips for someone starting a business would be to be ready to be lonely, fail several times, and be misunderstood. It’s ok to be lonely; just find a few strangers. It’s ok to fail as long as you learn from your mistakes. Finally, some people won’t understand your vision, and that’s ok. Find people who will listen and help you bring your vision into reality.
Is there anything else you'd like to share?
Sometimes it’s a lonely road, but your biggest supporters are strangers. I drove 270 miles to meet two strangers that ended up helping me with SNAQUE. This was the best decision and has opened several opportunities. Mike and TJ, who work in our Marketing Teams, have really done a great job in helping me bring my dream to life.
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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