We are pleased to present you Ilija Randjelovic, a hard-working 25-year-old guy from Aleksinac who, thanks to the YourJob project, got the opportunity to start his own business. Ilija has a degree in economics, but he wanted to become an entrepreneur and be a tailor of his own destiny. His wish was to start his own distillery for the production of domestic gin. he heard about YourJob, got involved in the project, participated in a three-day boot camp for the development of entrepreneurial skills, applied for a grant, convinced the commission that his idea was worthy of support and deservedly fought for his dreams. We talked to Ilija some time after he found out that he would get financial support to start his business.
How did you come up with the idea to start a business?
My family has a long tradition in the production of homemade brandies. For the last three years, I have also actively participated in the production and I wanted to start a distillery “Three brothers” for the production of homemade gin and various types of homemade brandy. I learned the process from my grandfather, but by studying the expert literature, I learned many more important things and significantly improved it. I try to combine the traditional with the modern, to take the best of both.
How much does the received grant mean to you?
Without this support from the YourJob project, I would not be able to start a business. No matter how hard you try and save money, it would be almost impossible to raise the necessary funds. I hope that this will grow into a business from which my whole family will be able to live. The plan is to hire my brothers. Also, the local population that is engaged in the production of cereals and the collection of medicinal herbs will benefit, and these are mostly unemployed middle-aged people.
How did you feel during the Pitch? Did you believe you would get a grant?
I was nervous, but I believed in my idea. I was very excited because I felt that I was very close to realizing my dreams. I think The Commission recognized my passion and desire to start this business.
How did you feel when you found out you received a grant?
I was overjoyed! I immediately told everyone to share my enthusiasm. Of course, there was also a family celebration with gin, at which we immediately started making plans.
What are the reactions of the environment?
Everyone is thrilled! The good news spread quickly and many people congratulated me! As far as I have heard, the interest in the YourJob project has also increased, because people have seen the quality of the project and realized that with a good idea and perseverance you can succeed.
How are the preparations going?
We work hard to get everything ready when the company is formally opened and the funds are transferred to its account. We are arranging the space where the distillery will be located, we have selected and reserved the equipment, we are negotiating with suppliers, we are working on the design of the label, we have already started with the promotion… I believe that everything is going in the right direction.
What are your plans?
For a start, I plan to promote my brand, a wonderful note that will ignite everyone’s senses. Perfect for cocktails. Over time, I plan to gradually start producing new types of brandy.
Do you think that participating in the Boot Camp helps you achieve your goals?
The advice of mentors and experienced businessmen means a lot to me, as well as analyzing the problems they have encountered. Boot camp will remain in my fond memory. I met some wonderful young people there. I hope that everyone will succeed in achieving their goals. I think that as many similar programs as possible should be organized.
What do you have to say to your peers in Serbia?
Believe in what you do. Be active and persistent and you will make it.