The primary thing holding me back from venturing into my own brewery business was the fact that my life over the last few years was anything but settled. From business school to working overseas to returning to the US and starting a company, there was never an opportune time.
Of course, with little more than home brewing experience, I also lacked any necessary prowess of brewing beer on a commercial scale. I had been brewing since 2012, although my interest goes back ten or so years when my brother first gifted me a home brewing book and DVD, which for many years say on my shelf gathering dust. That year, my wife, probably tired of my relentless complaining that I wanted to try home brewing but never had the time or motivation, bought me a Mr. Beer kit to get started. After that, it was on.
I brewed a few Mr. Beer extract beers, carefully analyzing and learning the skills of the trade, or at least as much as an extract beer kit could provide. Shortly after, I moved to all grain, doing one and three gallon batches, experimenting and carefully noting results along the way. Over the period of a few months, I had most of the equipment necessary to do a small batch every week. After that I was hooked.
That's when I wrote the first draft of the Yumbev business plan, which like my first home brewing book sat on the shelf for a few years.
In 2013, I divested the interest in the company I founded seven years earlier, Wild Creations. While I was still running the company, I was getting restless and fidgety. For the most part, my career has been broken into five to seven years gaps, perhaps my own personal "seven year itch", and this was no different. I started following craft beer news and even set up my Yumbev Facebook and Twitter accounts to curate news.
The next logical step was to get started.
When the announcement asking for business submissions be turned in for the first round of the Startup.SC small business incubator, I filled out an application with the proposal and crossed my fingers.
Which brings me to now, with the opportunity to leverage the amazing team at Startup.SC to make this dream a reality. It is going to be a long road, and the business plan is still being hatched, but the motivation is now stronger than ever.
I can only hope that it is contagious enough to attract the right set of people to join in.