John Pocekovic is a measured man. He says it comes from his years as a banker. Risk management is after all the exercise when you have a client’s business plan in one hand and the bank’s money in the other. For John, it’s always been a numbers game – but not all numbers are created equal. “The first place to start with any business plan is to identify the opportunity,” he explained. “It doesn’t matter what you make or how much of it you make, you have to know if there are customers for your product or service. In

this situation, for example, the starting point is not the distillery or the product, it’s the market place. What is the consumption in the local market where we’re going to operate? We have a licensing restriction that only allows us to operate in BC, therefore our market is restricted to BC. So the question that naturally comes out of that is how much vodka is consumed by all vodka consumers in British Columbia. Then there’s determining the age range of your customers, your potential client group, which is from 19 to 55 or 65, say. Then you have to determine how much vodka the average person from your client group drinks. Once you have that, you’ve started to figure out the potential market and that allows you to look realistically at limitations when you’re putting up a facility.” John is the President of Stealth Distillery in North Vancouver, British Columbia. The facility is on Orwell Street and the potential market for his high quality hand-crafted spirits was well-established before opening day. John wouldn’t have had it any other way. He’s a measured man. SPOTLIGHT ON BUSINESS MAGAZINE • NOVEMBER 2017 2

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