Tell us about Fruto do Sol.
Paulo Colby: We are a 100% vegan grocery store that seeks to be a healthy alternative to corner stores and grocery stores with poor produce. We will provide shelved, frozen products and environmentally friendly body products. Fruto do Sol will hire from within the neighborhood and host programs for the community. Everything works together so we’re not just be a business, but something for the community.
What was your experience in the Build class?
PC: Build was an amazing thing for me. I got a lot of really good tools from the class. Staff and facilitators were easily accessible and personable. Even for someone who knows how to build a business plan, its a phenomenal tool and a confidence booster. Being an entrepreneur is work. The business plan process is laid out but you must tailor it to your specific industry. Its like the first test of if you are ready to be an entrepreneur.
“Build was an amazing thing for me… it’s a phenomenal tool and a confidence booster!”
Why did you choose to be an entrepreneur?
PC: Through their business, entrepreneurs have the potential to fix many issues in communities. I would like to be involved with changing Detroit to a place where people can stay in their communities and enrich it. It makes me happy to work with people on the community level, beyond just customer and sales. Being an entrepreneur gives me the freedom to be involved; to use my time here on earth to improve something. All the things that I want to do cannot happen with me working for someone else.
Any advice for fellow entrepreneurs?
PC: Allow yourself to be taught; absorb what is being told to you. Break out of your shell and meet people. Make sure that they know who you are, that way, they will call you when they think of something that can help you. Lastly, be confident in your business! If you pitch in a docile way, you won’t be taken seriously so approach it as “This is what I’m supposed to do, this is what I was meant to do!”