The son of a preacher man, jazz musician and BE 100s CEO, Quintin E. Primo III helped kick off Day 2 of the 2016 Black Enterprise Entrepreneurs Summit at the Loews Miami Beach Hotel. During a one-on-one conversation with Black Enterprise CEO Earl “Butch” Graves Jr., Primo shared with a captive audience his passion for innovation, taste for competition, and never-quit mindset when it comes to entrepreneurship.
As the chairman and CEO of Chicago-based Capri Investment Group, Primo, 61, is the quintessential success story, having come back from a failed startup to give rise to one of the nation’s most successful global real estate investment management firms. Capri (formerly Capri Capital Partners L.L.C.), holds the No. 7 spot on the BE Asset Managers list, with $3.7 billion in assets under management for 2014. Still in all, he is quick to note that having $4.5 billion in assets under management (at the end of 2015) pales in comparison to multinational investment firm Blackstone’s $100 billion.
According to Primo, here are five things you need to know about entrepreneurship:
- “Success is stumbling from failure to failure without the loss of enthusiasm,” (per the late British Prime Minister Sir Winston Churchill) as an entrepreneur will face challenges and failures along the way. You can comeback from a setback in your business, even if that means starting over with a new enterprise.
- Necessity if the mother of invention. A failure in business teaches life lessons like how to find creative solutions in operating your business, especially when you are short on capital and have limited resources.
- Don’t limit yourself to being the largest black-owned entity; limit yourself to being the largest entity in your line of business. Also, diversify your workforce—it’s a competitive advantage.
- Think global. If you are a recent graduate, get a degree, get a passport, and travel. For entrepreneurs, get a passport or renew it and seek out rising market opportunities beyond the U.S.
- In entrepreneurship, to be successful you need to be creative, innovative, open to constant learning, and able to improvise—or pivot on a dime—in tough situations. And take risks.