Foguete started his business of making and selling musical instruments 4 years ago. Before that, he was a professional drummer for forty years, playing in clubs, restaurants, streets, etc. As a musician, he used to take inspiration from everyday life to create variety of music. He once created a musical instrument using a ketchup bottle for a friend’s son. His friend encouraged him to make it is his profession and connected him to a person who promotes local artists in an organic goods market (every Sunday). He took the plunge but could only sell one instrument in his first few attempts. His mom joked that he was wasting his time, but he persisted. On the following Sunday, he sold instruments worth $100 to a musician from Barcelona who really liked the range of sounds his instruments created. At that point, he got convinced that it is a good business. He currently has monthly revenue of $1000 and monthly expenses of $700 (including reinvestments), and plans to expand by opening a small street shop from his savings. He sources his raw materials from a friend that he has known for more than 30 years. This helps him keep his costs low. Other than selling musical instruments, he also offers music lessons, but primarily when he comes up with a new instrument that his customers don’t know how to play.
Like Carolina, Foguete also mentioned that Brazilians don’t appreciate art too much. “People think art-craft has to be available cheap.” He mentioned that he went to Buenos Aires for 15 days for an art fair and could sell more instruments than he does in 6 months in Brazil. However, he is convinced that Brazil will change soon, especially with the upcoming key global events in the next 3 years. He started working with the incubator 2 years ago to position himself to ride this growth. Incubator helps him develop relations with the clients, understand business fundamentals, learn how to scale his business, and learn to enjoy business processes as well as much as he enjoys music. I recommended that he offer music lessons at customers’ houses.