What led you to start your own company?
After I turned 21, I started looking at craft beer. I found a lot of small breweries from San Diego and San Francisco, and did not see many breweries in Los Angeles. I fell in love with craft beer and the craft beer industry and wanted to be a part of it.
Where did you get the startup money?
My parents loaned me a majority of the money, and I had some money put aside from working. My grandpa and my dad also own the building we operate out of, which helped us when we started Ohana.
What was the biggest challenge?
The biggest challenge was being patient. Once we moved into our building, it took a year to start brewing.
What was the most important lesson you learned?
Build good relationships with your customers. Sometimes they are really excited about when the next beer will come out. It is also important to find people that fit well with the company and have the same goals.
How many hours a day do you put in?
I work at the tasting room in the evening, and work on sales and deliveries during the day. I average eight or nine hours a day, but sometimes work up to 12. Sundays feel like a day off with six hours.
Does your youth lead to awkward situations, such as when you supervise older workers or meet with clients and investors?
A lot of people would not think I am the owner. When I go to bars and restaurants, most people think I am just a delivery driver.
Will you start another company?
It would be great to start another company, but my goals are to expand the brewery and expand this business first.
Could you ever work for someone else?
I left my day job when we opened the tasting room. I feel a lot more freedom but there is a lot more responsibility.
What do you do to relax?
I like to skateboard, take trips to Grand Central Market, search for rare bottled beers and relax at home.
ANDREW LUTHI, 25
Ohana Brewing Co., Los Angeles; Ohana Brewing Tasting Room, Alhambra
Financials: Not profitable.
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