Fabrizio Moreira is an Ecuadorian politician and businessman. He currently resides in the United States and runs The Moreira Organization which is an organization that was awarded by INC 5000 as one of the world’s hottest digital agencies. Along the way he became a prolific angel investor and venture capitalist, eventually co-founding the Brooklyn-based record label VIP Music Records – a label is best known for managing the bookings of the rapper Soulja Boy from 2013-2014. VIP Music Records was born in 2009, and today, the group has agreements with The Orchard Music, Sony Music’s distribution division. To head its A&R department, the company was able to get Dwayne Domonick Grant to join them, a talented hip-hop recording artist, record producer, songwriter, and rapper, known as D-Teck, who is a former executive at Konvict Muzik. He is also a voting member of the Grammy Awards as well as an international speaker.
StarCentral Magazine recently caught up with Fabrizio to discuss his journey to entrepreneurship and here’s what went down:
Could you please tell our readers a brief background about yourself and how you started your business?
I’m the former president of the Chamber of Young Entrepreneurs in Ecuador for two consecutive terms.
I own 2 companies; The Moreira Organization, and VIP Music Records. The Moreira Organization was recognized by Inc 5000 in 2017 as one of the fastest-growing companies in the USA.
I am also an advisor on business management through the International Initiative YWL (Young World Leaders), a former President of the Young Entrepreneurs Committee of the Chamber of Commerce Manta, and a former member of the Network of Young Leaders of the Inter-American Development Bank.
I used to be a candidate for Congress in Ecuador and I’m also a promoter of Free Trade Ideas and training activities in Ecuador with the participation of the Friedrich Naumann Foundation. You can find out more about me via my Wikipedia page.
Can you describe your journey to success? When did you start? Did you ever imagine you would become this successful?
I started my own business around the age of 14. A gift arrived that was every teenager’s object of desire: a Nintendo console, a video game console that would change my life. At that time, it was very difficult for low-income families like mine to be able to own a video game console; back then, it was easier to “rent” than to own, and for many neighbors, history repeated itself. Some of them decided to offer me a few “sucres”, our local currency, in exchange for being able to play. We thought about selling the console, but my mother decided that I could keep it on the condition that I bought the games and that I saved for my education.
I saved and grew as an entrepreneur. Maybe I didn’t do it thinking about the future, but by saving up to buy new games; I attracted more customers. Pretty soon, I was the owner of a console and a variety of games that I couldn’t even use anymore because the demand was so high. My savings were stable, so I changed my strategy; with the help of my aunt and my mother, I was able to get television on credit and a second console with the intention of being able to play; never thinking I was on the path to understanding what independence meant. I didn’t change my lifestyle though.
I had my own income; a stable customer base and the savings were now coming from two consoles instead of two; I didn’t change my spending but I did increase my savings, because by now I was thinking about expanding, not having fun. This didn’t happen overnight; but with a combination of a bit of luck and a kid perceiving a need that others had; which naturally gave birth to a business endeavor, an unplanned endeavor, from which I learned that the strength of an entrepreneur is in being able to see the needs in their environment.
What is your main source of income?
My business is the main source of income, royalties from music we have created, and consulting services I provide to my extended list of clients.
What are you currently doing to maintain/grow your business?
Right now my main strategy is partnerships that allow us to grow. I see everything we have as a table that has resources, and by allowing others to join and bring their tables to play a role, this allows me to expand. Another vital point that I am focused on is the growth of those who are part of the business since their growth becomes the best reference for new clients and for potential leaders to join the process in search of the same
What social media platforms do you usually use to increase your brand’s awareness?
What is your main tactic when it comes to making more people aware of your brand and engaging your customers? How did your business stand out?
Results, and direct contact. Communication is the key – you have to tell the truth even if the truth means it may potentially damage your business’ reputation. I can’t be dishonest no matter how much you pay me. The goal is not just to make money but to teach our clients and potential clients that we are there to make then grow and advise then in areas I do have knowledge about.
What form of marketing has worked well for your business throughout the years?
The best marketing strategy is the customer’s own word, but when it comes to promoting a business, I really prefer videos.
How did your brand stand out from the rest of the other brands out there that is similar to your niche?
I don’t see any competition because while there may be other businesses doing the same thing as what we do, our focus is always to be more personal – provide a service that includes more than what the customer can afford, become a part of their business and help them to grow. At that point, I really find little to no competition.
What is the toughest decision you had to make in the last few months?
Right now, to put our production team on standby.
What money mistakes have you made along the way that others can learn from?
Trying to jump ‘all in’ in a business that I didn’t know well enough. This has a lot to do with me jumping to win, and I learned the hard way! When it comes to money you need to invest in knowledge and preparation before you jump. You can’t just jump and gamble in a business without any research or preparation, you need to be ready. Even though there will always a chance to make a loss in the end, if you don’t at least have the knowledge, to begin with, the learning ‘on the go’ will cost you way more.
What have you learned in the process of becoming wealthy that others can learn from?
“No one can make you successful; the will to succeed comes from within.” This is my motto, this is my phrase, there are a lot of people looking for others to help them to become successful but that’s not how it works. You need to go out there and do it yourself and while you’re doing it, people will start joining your journey and believing in you even more.
What new business would you love to start?
To be honest with you I would love to start a traveling company.
If you could go back in a time machine to the time when you were just getting started, what would you do differently?
I will change nothing. I think every single thing I have done in my life has made me who I am today and placed me where I am now. Can I be even bigger in the future? Maybe yes, but maybe I could also be a failure, I believe that I am no more ready to achieve more success than I was when I was in my early years.
If you could go back in a time machine to the time when you were first making a name for yourself, what advice would you give yourself?
Caring about your name is not everything – Don’t put your name in every single thing. Try to analyze a situation a thousand times first before even thinking of attaching your name in it.
Do you have any favorite business-related or personal development related books that you can recommend to other entrepreneurs?
“The Power of Habit,” Why We Do What We Do in Life and Business.
What is the best advice you have ever been given?
My mom told me to never give up.
What advice would you give to a newbie Entrepreneur setting up their first business?
Go try it! It may be hard, it may be difficult, but as you keep going you will discover that it becomes easier, and you will start finding more support from others.