For the last George Brown College Alumni Entrepreneur Spotlight for 2019, what better way to end than with a start-up entrepreneur who launched her business just a month ago after lots of planning.
We had the pleasure to catch up with Lilia Costa, Founder of Brazil Heels and who is also currently in the startGBC Pop-Up store at theStackt Market, along with another fantastic George Brown College business called MyWineCanada. Be sure to drop by and visit them whilst they are at the store. Their last day is Sunday, December 10, 2019.
Lilia is delightful, full of passion and is so proud to now call Canada home after residing here for the past 4-years. During this time Lilia has worked so hard to advance herself and follow her passion of establishing an online shoe store that will bring a better range of women’s shoes into the Canadian market and support economic growth both in Canada and Brazil.
We have had the joy of watching Lilia grow personally in her confidence and can do attitude and we are so happy that we have been able to help and support Lilia at this critical time in her entrepreneurial journey. Her passion and drive are absolutely a tonic to be around and will for sure inspire others.
So, we asked Lilia to answer some questions for us that should be an inspiration to others.
Lilia, what’s your educational background?
I have a degree in Business Administration from Brazil. I also studied at York University the IEP Bridging Program in Business Management. I did the Entrepreneurship Connections course at Access Employment last July and the StartGBC Entrepreneur Summer Camp in August. I also did a couple of courses at Enterprise Toronto all of which have helped my entrepreneurial journey.
What made you want to become an entrepreneur?
Because I like to make my own decisions, and I believe I can make a difference in this world solving problems. I trust the products made in Brazil, so I want to spread the concept of Brazilian shoes throughout Canada. I believe Canada needs more variety of products in general, just like its neighbor from the south.
Why did you create Brazil Heels?
I have trouble with routine, I feel bored doing the same activities every day in a nine to five job. I prefer a day full of new challenges, even if sometimes I have no idea how to solve them or where to start. I like to use my creativity to create things from scratch. I also want to generate more jobs to help people here and to contribute to the Canadian economy to grow, as well as to help Brazil to export more products to Canada.
What success have you enjoyed so far?
As an immigrant who has been living in Canada for four years, I feel very proud of my accomplishments until now. I also feel blessed for all the support I’ve been receiving specially from startGBC at George Brown College, and Access Employment to turn my passion and aspirations into reality.
What advice would you give to aspiring entrepreneurs?
Research about the field you want to work within, study different topics (marketing, finance, sales), network with industry professionals from, work hard on your business plan, get mentoring from more knowledgeable professionals, avoid procrastination, and work every day to get the work done. Be kind with yourself when you fail doing something. There will be lots of challenges along the way, so don’t give up when you face them.
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