This past week we have successfully submitted our building permit to the City of Vancouver for our the building we are hoping to lease. It seems so absolutely absurd to submit our building permit without actually having a signed lease in place, but we are making a huge roll of the dice on this. When you start down the road of starting a brewery, a funny thing happens. You start doing things that previously you would have thought were crazy. Things like submitting a building permit without a lease in place!
Let me take a step back and explain things. When I started off doing creating this brewery, I was quite a bit more risk adverse. I would avoid over-exposing myself on most anything in business and finances. Take for instance a personal guarantee, it is something I would have fought tooth and nail not to do about 2 years ago. However, as time moves on and you are constantly taking chances and risks, what at one time seemed risky, now seems somewhat ordinary. A good analogy would be bungy jumping. The first time is scary as hell, the second time a little less so, and so on. By the 15th time, it is still a rush, but a lot of the fear and inhibition has left the process.
So here we are, development permit in hand, building permit submitted, yet our brewery still has no name and still has no firm lease. It is exactly the opposite of where I thought we would be considering my personality and this process. It is where we are however, and I wouldn’t change it for the world. I hope that we can have our lease signed in the next week, but it seems to keep dragging out and being delayed. I am sure this will come to a rapid close in the next week, as there is literally nothing left to be done. Luckily, I have a great group of friends, advisors and family members that have supported me. Even with all these people around, and experience I have gained, I have learned that nothing is for sure, so my fingers are crossed.
Moving forward, we are going to have to make some big decisions. Things like contractor, name, equipment, branding and marketing, finishing of tasting room, types of beer, exact size of serving bottle/can, financing to be finished, first hires, legals, accounting, delivery vehicles, etc, etc. It seems like a mountain of work, but when you work in your own garden, it doesn’t feel much like work. We potentially take possession of our space February 1st, and while we won’t be able to do much until we get our building permits, I do anticipate some epic floor hockey games. Anyone want to join me :o)
My next blog will hopefully share some great news about our lease and officially help our brewery become the newest entrant to the craft beer scene in Vancouver.