Nicolas Ibarzabal is one of the three founders of 5411 Empanadas, a small chain restaurant that produces gourmet baked empanadas. Irbarzabal was the only founder working full-time on the restaurant during the first four years of business, after the restaurant started in 2009. Being a small business owner, Ibarzabal did and still does a little bit of everything. The business has been growing substantially, and with that, Ibarzabal’s roles and responsibilities are growing as well.


nico1 Cash Flow Challenge: Restaurant Entrepreneur Focuses On Money Management For Growth

Nicolas Ibarzabal
(Photo courtesy of Nicolas Ibarzabal)


What has been the biggest challenge you have had in your business?

The biggest financial challenge we face is having enough cash flow to keep up with our growth. We have opened three stores in the last 10 months and invested a decent amount of money in growing the company. Even though we raised money to build the new restaurants, the general business growth is financed through the profits we generate. The challenge is having enough cash flow for the daily operations and for investing in the future of the business.

What have you implemented to overcome that challenge?

Since access to capital, such as cash, loans or lines of credit, is not always easy for a small business, we decided to focus and work on growing revenue and a very precise money management. These are the two areas we constantly work on in order to keep our cash flow healthy, so we can keep growing and sharing our empanadas with as many people as possible.

What were the results after you implemented your solution?

We’ve been able to keep growing. We just opened our first store outside of Chicago, in Miami, and we’re considering other cities. Even though it is working for us and we’re pleased with the results, we still work on it every single day. There’s never a final answer or a deadline for it.



This article was written by Michelle Guilbeau for Small Business Pulse



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