Tess Ngan Tian, the founder and owner of Lots’ a Pizza, is more than just a successful businesswoman; she’s also a mentor who generously imparts her wisdom to aspiring entrepreneurs.
With 200 branches and three commissaries under her belt, her journey from humble beginnings to pizza mogul has been nothing short of inspiring.
Gone are the days when she struggled to find suppliers for her modest startup requirements. Today, the memory of those early challenges is a distant one, as she stands at the helm of a thriving pizza venture.
So, what’s the secret to entrepreneurial success, according to Tess? In her own words, “The most important thing is the product itself.” She passionately conveys this message to a hopeful pizza entrepreneur during a mentoring event organized by Go Negosyo.
Her advice is simple yet profound: Create a unique product that captivates customers and keeps them coming back for more. In the highly competitive pizza market, setting your product apart with a distinct flavor is the key to success, and Tess knows it well.
While online sales have their merits, Tess emphasizes that it’s not enough. To make a lasting impact, you need a physical presence where people can see, taste, and experience your product.
Tess points out that schools are a ready market, and entrepreneurs should seek out locations that enable them to reach their target audience.
“Improve your product, and the market will follow,” Tess urges. By continuously enhancing your offering, you can not only recoup your initial investment but also generate the funds needed for expansion.
She advises against taking out loans to start a business, stressing the importance of having capital upfront. Only after your business has a healthy cash flow and solid growth should you consider the possibility of a loan.