The life of an entrepreneur: Interview with Aleks Liubimyi
Aleks Liubimyi, serial entrepreneur, has owned various multimillion dollar businesses from all over the world. His last business, OILENERGO, was sold for $120 million which is the largest sale he has had to date. He is currently the CEO and owner of ATLUXURYHOME which is a luxury real estate business that operates via its U.S. headquarters in Colorado. We interviewed him to get an insight into his life as an entrepreneur and what it has been like working with small businesses and moving onto bigger ones.
How did you become an entrepreneur? Can you tell us a bit about yourself?
I was 14 years old when my parents told me that I was on my own, so by the time I was 18 years old, I had worked around 20 different jobs. At that point, I decided to become self-employed because I genuinely hated needing to arrive and leave work on time. You’re more like a robot that’s doing the same thing repeatedly every day. The first 6-7 months were difficult after I opened the business, but I’ve got a non-stop work ethic and I became more creative. Plus, I actively look for different ways on how to work smarter so that the work doesn’t take hours.
I opened up my own transport company, but of course it has just been me for most of the time. I delivered oil and gas to gas stations in a rental truck, but then things gradually snowballed, and I started hiring employees to do that. Over the next 10 years, we hired hundreds of people to work for us, and it was not only for truck logistics, it was also for trains and ships all over the world. This is how I started my journey, but it’s not finished yet. A lot of things became complicated, and in Russia, doing business was very hard because of corruption at all levels, but this story is not about that. My advice is if you want to do any type of business, and you’re passionate about it, just go for it; no matter what, you will succeed. I also wrote a book called 3 Steps to Business Success; it is a short book, but you are going to like it.
You mentioned that the first 6-7 months were very difficult. How did you overcome that and what advice would you give others in your situation?
The problem that nearly all entrepreneurs or new businesses face is that potential customers often do not want to be the first ones to try. They want to see that your business idea is proven and tested before they try it. It can be very difficult to get that breakthrough, that first customer.
My advice is to build awareness and demand before approaching your major target audience.
It is also a perfect opportunity to research whether you have the right product and pricing, whether people really enjoyed working with you and whether your business model makes your customers happy.
So, in the first 6-7 months as an entrepreneur, it is crucial to listen to feedback to help point you in the right direction and to tweak and refine your business and/or product as you go. You shouldn’t see it as a failure if you end up changing your original idea.
As an entrepreneur, what is it that motivates and drives you?
I think a lot of entrepreneurs will say the same thing. It is not about the money. I don’t know if it’s a lack of confidence or an excess of confidence, but you always want to prove yourself and you’re never quite satisfied – and that might express itself by being very competitive. You just want to do your own thing and are prepared to take huge risks to do it. I always love risks and facing failure because only then can you succeed.
What would you say are the key elements for starting and running a successful business?
Knowledge, contacts and experience. These things are priceless.
Most successful businesses evolve from knowledge of the industry that you’ve been working in before and how successful you were in your previous career. You might not have an idea today, but get as many qualifications as you can and work as hard as you can in your career because that will help in the future
I’m told that, on average, most people start a business at 38 years old in Silicon Valley. They’ve done their time and they really know their stuff.
Who inspires you?
Kobe Bryant with his Mamba mentality, just Google it and watch few minutes on him talking about it.
How did you get involved with real estate? Why ATLUXURYHOME?
Over the last 20 years, I realised that real estate is one of most successful industries throughout the world. Look at the Forbes list for the world’s top 30 richest people, they all invest in real estate and it accounts for almost half of their business.
ATLUXURYHOME uses one of the most unique concepts of buying, selling and investing money. We allow people to relax and enjoy whole process no matter what. We deliver the best results.
Both my wife, Tatiana Pevtsova, and I are working together to grow it and it’s become one of the biggest passions that we pursue these days. We both have a lot of experience in design as well.
Tell us more about your wife, Tatiana Pevtsova, and why you’re better than other real estate investors.
Both Tatiana and I are working together to assist Colorado-based families to sell, purchase and invest in residences in Colorado and around the world. We focus on providing top-notch services and a luxury European customer experience from start to finish.
“We always do the right thing for our clients and always will. We have powerful marketing strategies and over 10 years of magnificent design experience that gives us confidence in visualising all of your needs as you transition to a new home.”
Tatiana has spent over five years in luxury fashion and hospitality, mastering the art of the sale. While residing in Moscow City and helping to design the family business, she was always inspired by LVMH brands, Net-A-Porter and renowned Italian design houses for creating interior ideas for clients. These extraordinary experiences have trained her eyes to recognise genuine craftsmanship, which she fully utilises for her real estate career.
When working with Tatiana, you will get exceptional attention to detail, refined taste and a passion for real estate excellence. Her vast sales experience will help you craft your perfect deal. She works tirelessly to help her clients find their dream home, investment property or weekend escape. She is someone who understands the beauty and importance of a transformative space and wants nothing less for her clients.
Tatiana holds a master’s degree for law studies from the All-Russian State University of Justice and has a lot of experience with the law. Since her earlier 20’s, she has been deeply passionate about the documents and number's world as well as architecture and history. Tatiana’s priority is her clients and their needs. She gives them a high-satisfactory, seamless service, saves them time and removes any transaction-related stress. Tatiana is particularly interested about healthy lifestyles and is ready to bring her positive attitude towards every client interaction,
“The biggest issue for me, as a client, was the quality of service. This is why I want to provide the best experience for my clients, not only regarding the customer service, but especially towards the attention to detail of every document and transaction. I have been inspired by recent opportunities; using great technologies that help to save time, money and gain a great position in the market,” Tania explains.
ATLUXURYHOME LUXURY REAL ESTATE COLORADO?
Yes, it is, we have a proven business model and received a lot of great feedback from customers who are very happy with us. Just go on our website (atluxuryhome.com) and submit a request with what you are looking for and we can definitely jump on it and help.
Time and achieving the best results possible is everything to me when it comes to business. I've been serving famous actors, football players, heads of companies and billionaires for more than a decade. You must be prepared to transform all of your client’s needs into reality.
What advice would you give to other entrepreneurs who are starting out?
Do it with a colleague, a partner or an associate - someone who shares your vision. The most successful start-ups that survive the first two to five years tend to be a team. That’s important because you need your ideas to be challenged. Partnerships tend to be more robust than singular entrepreneurs.
What are your future plans?
Over the last 12 months, I’ve become absolutely fascinated by the crypto currency industry and the dynamics of what is happening in the world. I think there is a new era coming with new rules, all electric cars and state-of-the-art technology. I would keep an eye on this trend and maybe buy some sort of new start-up companies and take more risks. I don’t like just managing things, I want to see them grow fast.
Best of luck with your new venture Aleks! A huge thank you for all your work with ATLUXURYHOME.