From the Philippines to AK: Impact Alaska Handicrafts
Six years ago, Julio Pamintuan’s daughter asked him if he would like to come to America and without hesitation, he responded that he would. At the time the idea was just a dream and his life in the Philippines was a good one. He had a stable business and was working to grow.
Over the next year, Julio’s daughter was able to help him come to America and he felt conflict over the thought of leaving his life and his business to make a new life in the US. Over the next year, Julio’s daughter was able to help him come to America and he felt conflict over the thought of leaving his life and his business to make a new life in the US. His business was doing very well and it would be hard to leave it to pursue a new adventure in the last frontier. Around this time, his son reached out to see about working in the company. He was quickly followed by Julio’s other children looking to step up and take their role in the family business. This provided the exit that Julio needed to pursue the American Dream.
Julio began to divide up the company’s responsibilities and begin delegating to the overall operation. While his children run the day-to-day operations, Julio still works as a consultant. Since handing over the business to the kids, it has grown from 40 employees to 120 with a factory covering more than 10,000 square meters.
After arriving in Alaska, Julio immersed himself in learning to understand the local tourism industry and exploring downtown Anchorage. He further explored souvenir shops to learn what products sold well and what brought tourists to Alaska. His research led to learning about the Anchorage Downtown Market and Festivals and from this, his entrepreneurial spirit was sparked again.
He focused on local seminars and workshops that would help guide him with his ideas and experience. Julio attended a 2-day seminar on JBER called Boots to Business where he learned how to be vendor, which led him to the Alaska Small Business Development Center (SBDC) in Anchorage. There, he worked with a former business advisor, Andre Horton and a comment that inspired him from their meeting was, “your success is our success.” He was inspired to keep working on his dream.
He hit the ground running with Anchorage Business Advisor, Allan Carraway and began to work on his business plan, sales strategy, and financials. This groundwork and ability to check-in with a business advisor on his questions helped him keep the momentum moving. Before long, Julio created Impact Alaska Handicrafts focusing on woodcrafting, signage, and decorative items, which he will be launching on April 27, 2019, at the Spring Market at JBER. Readers will also be able to connect with Julio at upcoming Anchorage Markets May-September of this year.
“Moving in a new direction, SBDC is pushing me on a successful journey. Thank you for all the support, for helping someone that had a dream.” The Alaska SBDC is proud of Julio’s exceptional perseverance and passion for his craft. Keep up with Impact Alaska Handicrafts on Facebook or at (907) 406-8520