Interview: Tomo Nakamura - co-founder of Goen Matcha
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Looking for a change in direction? Co-Founder of Goen Matcha, Tomo Nakamura, is the man to ask. Former banker Nakamura turned his life around when he left his 7 year corporate career for an entrepreneurial path, making the decision to start up Goen Matcha after spotting a gap in the UK market. Noticing the quality of UK green tea was still not in line with Japan, Goen Matcha aims to provide good quality Japanese Matcha green tea to the UK market. Speaking to The National Student, Nakamura has a lot of entrepreneurial advice when it comes to funding, finance and the mindset needed to start up your own business... What were you doing before Goen and what drove you to make a career change? Was it difficult to resign from your previous position? I was working in a Bank in Tokyo then in London. The reason I resigned is to do with values; the banks and my values were different. Some people call the corporate career a rat race and want to drop out, but they have financial commitments so it’s hard for them to retire from the race. I think the structure and the goal of the team and the management can potentially make people unhappy. It wasn't difficult to resign. It's similar to a relationship, at that time things didn't work out. Will we get back again? It depends on the timing and where we are in our lives. Considering your background, what advice would you give to young entrepreneurs looking to start their own business, but are too afraid to venture outside of their comfort zone? Look at the problems that you face and decide if you would be willing to pay to fix the problem. Talk to entrepreneurs and people who have gone through the journey before – but above all start early and be imaginative. Calculate your risks and financials. For finance don't forget compounding interest and discounting cash flow. Try to have assets, especially those which can generate income, before the start up journey. Don't forget your skill and knowledge is an asset. Also make friends with other entrepreneurs going through the same journey and keep positive!
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