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INTRO Hi from the UK / looking for advice

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pumpkinman

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Jul 20, 2021
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Hi everyone. I recently finished The Millionaire Fastlane and it's been something of a revelation for me. I feel I'm at a crossroads in my life and could use some alternate perspectives from those who have been here before. It might get a little lengthy...

I'm 33 and live in the UK. My working life up until now has consisted of doing things that I thought were fun, and I've honestly had a great time, but now I want to make some money. I studied Japanese at university because I thought it would be a laugh and ended up living there for two and a half years, one year of that working for the government. It was a job I was really proud of but I felt stifled by Japanese society, and since then came back to the UK where I began working on my passion: music and being in a band.

Over eight years my band progressed from one that nobody knew about to touring the UK, Europe and Japan and making many releases. It's been great and very fulfilling, but my income has always been secondary to the band. The band is basically a hobby and because of the genre we play would never make any real money. I have had jobs working mainly in marketing/social media/e-commerce (specifically in the hydroponics/cannabis industry) to support my music dream. My most recent job became absolutely soul-crushing towards the end and I've now come to see how I was just a cog in the machine, making profit for my bosses along the way, but not me, so I quit. I see people a lot less intelligent than myself making very decent money and I'm quite sure I'm done with working for other people. Right now I have two options in front of me and I'm not sure which way to go.

One is a business I've been planning with a friend over the last few weeks since quitting my job. It began as a conversation and has quickly morphed into something tangible. It's a gourmet mushroom growing business, potentially with microgreens. My friend has been growing mushrooms at home and wants to work as a partnership to grow, market and deliver mushrooms to local restaurants, shops and end consumers. We've actually already been offered shipping containers basically for free by a local social enterprise/urban farm place. If I went down this path I would also like to create a YouTube channel around the business and the whole farm - I think this would be interesting for a lot of YT viewers. I have a background in video editing and I'm pretty good at it, and it's something I miss doing. Analysing it using MJ's CENTS approach:
I would have control
It's not something that anyone is doing in my city
I feel gourmet mushrooms are about to become popular as a food source and there would be a lot of interest, especially being part of the urban farm
My main concerns are it will be quite time and labour-intensive
Also serving only my city really limits its scale

My second opportunity is with a different friend selling cannabis seeds via an online store. This is a business I already ran for somebody else once, and it was probably my first lightbulb moment in terms of wanting to start my own thing - I once showed the boss exactly how much value I was bringing to the business and asked if I could ever expect any ownership, but was flatly refused. I know this industry very well and my friend has a lot of clout on social media, plus he has connections to source niche strains from boutique breeders. Again, with the CENTS approach:
I would have control
The market is becoming a little saturated but I believe we can stand out with superior branding and more niche breeders
There is a big need for it right now which is only going to increase as the cannabis industry grows in general
It wouldn't be quite as time-intensive as the mushrooms and would be easier to automate
As an internet business it has great reach
Brexit is making things a little difficult when it comes to posting seeds abroad (in fact, pretty much posting anything haha), and as a high risk industry payment processing and banking can be tricky. However, I do see potential to make this into a great brand, branching out into clothing, other smoking accessories, CBD etc. Don't know if anyone is familiar with brands from the US such as Cookies, but they've done incredibly well in this regard.

Any feedback / advice would be greatly appreciated as I'm not sure which idea to go with for now. I know that this is only the start of my self-employed journey but I want to create something big that will make me a very decent living for years to come. I know partnerships are perhaps not the first choice for an entrepreneur but in this case my partners do bring a lot of knowledge and connections to the table. Thanks for reading.
 

lowtek

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Welcome aboard, sounds like you're well on your way. Make sure you have an ironclad written agreement with your partners before you start.

How can one of you buy the other out?
What happens if one of you gets divorced?
What happens if one of you is (heaven forbid) disabled?
What happens if one of you decides to be lazy?
Consider structuring ownership as 51/49 so that one person is clearly in control.
 

MJ DeMarco

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Welcome aboard.

One is a business I've been planning with a friend over the last few weeks since quitting my job. It began as a conversation and has quickly morphed into something tangible. It's a gourmet mushroom growing business, potentially with microgreens.

Love it.
 

c4n

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Consider structuring ownership as 51/49 so that one person is clearly in control.

Or make sure your partnership agreement has a Mexican shoot-out or similar type of clause in it, so any party can easily terminate the partnership if (when) needed.
 

Mark98

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Oct 27, 2015
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Welcome aboard.



Love it.
Hey man,

if you want to figure out what to do. Go sit in a quiet room for an hour , without distraction and the answer will come to you.

it’s that simple.

So much of business is intuition and so much is data-based. In your heart you will know what to do and you can look at empirical information to also chart your course. So it’s good to make a decision off of qualitative and quantitative factors. Lastly, I would advise doing your own thing because many partnerships go sour. I would say most.
 

pumpkinman

New Contributor
Jul 20, 2021
2
4
11
Thanks for the welcome everyone.

Welcome aboard, sounds like you're well on your way. Make sure you have an ironclad written agreement with your partners before you start.

How can one of you buy the other out?
What happens if one of you gets divorced?
What happens if one of you is (heaven forbid) disabled?
What happens if one of you decides to be lazy?
Consider structuring ownership as 51/49 so that one person is clearly in control.
Yeah, I drafted up a more generic agreement using lawdepot.co.uk but these are good specifics I should probably think about adding in too.

Hey man,

if you want to figure out what to do. Go sit in a quiet room for an hour , without distraction and the answer will come to you.

it’s that simple.

So much of business is intuition and so much is data-based. In your heart you will know what to do and you can look at empirical information to also chart your course. So it’s good to make a decision off of qualitative and quantitative factors. Lastly, I would advise doing your own thing because many partnerships go sour. I would say most.

I like it, the zen approach. Yeah, I have a lot of thinking to do and I'm in no particular rush. I'm already leaning towards one choice. I guess there are a lot of subtleties that I didn't get across in my original post which are informing my gut feeling.

And I totally hear everyone about the partnership thing. I'm not going to put all my eggs in one basket by relying solely on one of these ideas. I'm going to set up a few more passive income-type streams over the coming months which will be purely me. Things like writing a book and affiliate marketing. I even feel like creating a YouTube channel to document my journey into self-employment for the first time and using my background in video. Shit is really hitting the fan with the UK government right now and more than ever I feel driven to work towards detaching myself from both time and location when it comes to my income.

I intend to stick around here as I can already tell it's a positive place to be, so look out for more updates I guess.
 

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