For Enrico Andreoli Montreal small business owner, the pandemic nearly saw his micro-brewery forced to close down forever. This business had been a labour of love for him and after many years of dreaming about the business he was finally able to set it up. The last year was one of the best for him, and then the pandemic hit. Beyond selling this micro-brewery relied on visitors coming to the bar and for the tour, selling bottles made up only a small portion of the revenue which the business made.
Enrico recognized quickly, that he would have to act if he wanted tis ave the business, and here is how he did it.
The business did have a small online presence prior to Covid-19 but once the lockdown hit this is what Erico focussed on. Production did cease for a short while, but the business had a lot of stock and given that people were bored at home, there was certainly a market for those wishing to buy beer. The business got set up on social media and WhatsApp and began to take orders, this was the first stage of the company’s survival plan.
Despite the fact that the company could make a bigger mark-up on beer, Enrico and his team decided that a smarter business move, and one which would benefit the community, was to switch up production. He and his team began to look into how to make antibacterial gel using the alcohol in the business, they bought a job lot of plastic containers and bottles and they began to sell liters of alcohol gel. This proved to be a huge hit, not only because of the times, but also because many pharmacies and businesses had ran out of gel in those early weeks following the lockdown. This not only helped the business to keep cash coming in, and to support the local area, but from a marketing standpoint it has done the business the world of good too, despite this not being the original intention.
Focusing on What Sells
Once the business got back to main beer, Enrico was more than aware of the importance of not being too financially exposed, and so instead of the 5 beers which the company usually makes, he instead stuck to the 2 big sellers, which also happened to have lower cost ingredients. This is the kind of decisions which businesses had to make, they had to recognize what sold and focus on that, this was very much a time for getting money in the cash register, and nothing more.
Enrico is a great example of what so many in business have done this year, they have used their skill and their creativity to survive. Tough decisions always have to be made in business, those who do this better than most, are those who recognize that the decisions have to be taken quickly, and that is just what this business has done.