BIO: Patt Soyao is currently the Managing Director and founder of Icon Executive Asia, an executive solutions firm that focuses on executive search and executive events that services a roster of high profile and high net worth clientele.
STORY: Patt won the chance to run an event for a high-level multinational. The event would cost him about $100,000, but he had $5,000 only. His former business partner got him someone to lend them the money, but he’d have to pay back $30,000 in interest. This was equivalent to his profit. Patt had no choice but to accept the deal since he already had a contract with the multinational.
LEARNING: Have enough funds to run your business before you start. Be careful when borrowing money from friends.
“If you’re going to be a business owner, turn that thought into tangible things. Make things exist.”
Patt Soyao is currently the Managing Director and founder of Icon Executive Asia, an executive solutions firm that focuses on executive search and executive events that services a roster of high profile and high net worth clientele. He is also the Chief Strategy Officer and Cofounder of Shoppertainment Live, the leading live stream shopping network in the Philippines.
Check out his podcast Job Defined, which is all about debunking job descriptions through interviewing actual professionals who are doing that job right now.
Worst investment ever
Patt had an events business that did a lot of high-level productions for multinational companies. The business was great. The only catch with working with multinational clients is that they have terms that require payments to be made 60 to 90 days after you bill them.
Patt won this huge project, and after doing his cost estimates, he’d require more than $100,000 to run it. The business barely had $5,000 in the bank. Patt’s previous business partner told him that she would find a financer who could finance the event.
Just a few weeks before the event, the lady told Patt that she found someone who could lend him $100,000 but at an interest rate of 10% per month. Because this particular client would be paying in three months, that meant Patt would have to pay an interest of $30,000. That was basically all the profit he would be making from the project.
Patt was distraught, but he had nowhere else to get the money that fast. So he agreed to take the deal.
Figure out where your financing will come from before you get into business. Have that runway before you start doing business.
Be careful when borrowing money from friends. Ask yourself if you are ready to risk the friendship.
You can always go back and ask to get out of a contract if it is not working for you.
Sometimes it is better to walk away from a deal if it is going to sink your business.
Know your numbers but at the same time, think bigger. Understand when money is involved; you have to manage the cash flow and how long you can survive without making sales.
No. 1 goal for the next 12 months
Patt’s number one goal for the next 12 months is to scale his live stream shopping business so that it’s not just surviving but thriving in the pandemic.
“Ups and downs are normal. So just keep on keeping on.”