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The name is Shabbir Hossain. I am a tireless seeker of knowledge, occasional purveyor of wisdom and also, accidentally a small business owner.
My philosophy is simple and it is to make MONEY and if you are reading this, I hope you share the same philosophy. The idea is to stand out in the crowd and do things just a little differently than the rest.
I graduated from University of South Alabama with a BS degree in Marketing. After graduating, I started looking for a job but it was early 90’s and other than fast food chains no one seemed interested in hiring a fresh college graduate with a marketing degree, so I decided to go for my MBA. I started my MBA program at Lynn University in Boca Raton, FL but after 2nd semester I ran out of money and had to quit, I was only half way through the program.
HOW I GOT STARTED
Gas station wasn’t my first business, but it was my 3rd venture. Obviously as you can guess I did terrible in the first two businesses. My very first business was a computer retail store (pre internet days), it was with a very good buddy of mine; we both had a passion for computers and knew how to put one together. So we decided to open a retail store and sell custom build PC’s.
My second try was buying selling used cars. The reason I got into it? I LOVE Cars period. Love to play with them, thought why not make money doing something I truly enjoy. But after only 4 months and 3 cars later I realized it’s not as glorious as I thought it would be, anything I said to the buyers about the cars, they thought I was not being truthful, thanks to a few dishonest used car salesman! I had to give that up!
I than realized that I should get into something more conventional as I needed to do something very soon, I started talking to a friend who owned a Gas Station business in Palm Beach. FL. He always told me how it made good money and that it was not that hard to operate. I than started to look for a store and only place I knew to look was in the newspaper.
I found an ad in a Tampa newspaper for a gas station that was offered for sale which looked really lucrative and very reasonably priced. I didn’t know much about the business and thought my business degree should be good enough handle business as simple and ancient as gas stations. My confidence landed me with a group of not to honest sellers who told me this was the greatest money making store and it was for a very little money! So I jumped (like a fool) and cashed in everything I owned and even took cash advance from my credit cards and bought the store and moved to Tampa.
It was one great learning experience to say the least, looking back; I think I needed that failure to teach me a valuable lesson about gas stations and how tricky it can be fool someone so easily.
I will talk more in detail about my failure in my blog, so keep your eyes out for it.
WHAT I DO NOW
I still do the same business what I started in Tampa 18 years ago. I own and operate few gas stations and couple of Quiznos franchise restaurant.