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Who are you and what business did you start?
I’m Yari Copt, born and raised in Lugano Switzerland. I’m an entrepreneur, musician, radio DJ, and skateboarder and in 2016 I founded Old Captain Co. a Lugano based manufacturer of premium Swiss Made dress shirts foractive and creative people.
What’s your backstory and how did you come up with the idea?
I always been a natural entrepreneur and creative person. When I was 19 years old I opened a skateshop, I have a radio show and sing in bands. Music, art, and sport have allowed me to wander the world and ultimately inspired me to create a brand that encompasses the influence of my passions.
I started a brand to be able to be creative and productive 360 degrees.
Describe the process of designing, prototyping, and manufacturing the product.
I develop my ideas with different talented young artists and we produce our exclusive prints and fabrics. I then produce the fabric in high quality 1 hour from Lugano and then we produce the samples in our local factory. If we like it we introduce the shirt in the collection.
Describe the process of launching the online store/business.
Today it’s easy to create an e-commerce with the different DIY websites. More difficult is to do a great job, a custom design and all the marketing and work behind it to make it work and to attract customers that will buy your products.
I personally put a lot of care in the product first, then in the photos and video content to push it, and keep the attention up with good social networking, marketing and events.
The business needs a good plan and some good money. Get your pitch ready.
Since launch, what has worked to attract and retain customers?
High quality, focus, hard work, transparency, innovation. Never copy anyone. Be unique and love what you do. Passion never fails.
How are you doing today and what does the future look like?
We are pretty successful to be only 2 years old start up. We have 25 retailers in Switzerland and starting to have international clients and retailers.
We are taking step by step to be a healthy business so it will take some more years to start to do big steps. But I’m happy with the feedbacks on the products and the love for the brand.
What’s your average monthly revenue today and what do you project it to be in next 6 months?
We are about a quarter million yearly revenue and we hope to double that before the end of 2020.
Through starting the business, have you learned anything particularly helpful or advantageous?
Well, you learn really fast that everyday there is a problem, that you have to relax about it, think about it and resolve it. You also have to learn to give 100%, stay positive, work hard and get shit done. Also, you have to learn fast how to understand if an idea is a good idea or not.
What platform/tools do you use for your business?
We designed a custom website on Shopify with a custom made shirt system. We also love Instagram a lot, the other social networks and MailChimp.
Advice for other entrepreneurs who want to get started or are just starting out?
Love what you sell. If you don’t do it with love you will burn out pretty fast. And get all the money you can. You always gonna need some, even more, if your business is good.
Are you looking to hire for certain positions right now?
Not yet. I have a wonderful work team and I’m still managing every aspect of the brand. After 2020 would be nice.
Where can we go to learn more about you?
If you buy a shirt you’ll get all the knowledge you need 😉
Visit us at www.oldcaptainco.com or follow us @oldcaptainco