Juan Ibarra

What is your background, Juan?

I’m an Argentinian living in Panama, studied Business Administration in the US. I had the opportunity to live in many different countries in Latin America such as Paraguay, Mexico and Venezuela (also Argentina 😊). After graduating from college, 12 years ago, I moved to Panama where I had the opportunity to work at the Colon Free Zone and managed a consumer electronics distribution company for a couple of years, until I decided to go on my own in 2009. Today, we are a group of four companies, with 30 members in the areas of consumer electronics, hotel supplies, advertising and condoms.

When you meet somebody for the first time, what is your answer to the “What do you do” question?

I’m an entrepreneur, always on the seek for something new.

Did you always know you were going to be an entrepreneur or was there a particular trigger at some point in your life?

Yes, my dad always encouraged me to be one, that being part of the corporate business wouldn’t help me achieve my lifetime goals. At the same time, there was a major trigger in my life to actually make the jump that was the EYES event in Panama - that basically blew my mind and made me realize that I couldn’t wait much longer because…there is not a better timing than Today.

How do you maintain a positive working atmosphere?

Trying to make it simple with everybody while they know the task they have to do. I’m not a fan of the boss style but while I can help to encourage people to be the best at what they do, I’m extremely happy so our atmosphere is really family style, we have a co-working environment. Everybody can count on everybody.

What entrepreneurial achievement are you most proud of?

Being able to give jobs and knowing that families are living because of the work we create…simple but extremely gratifying. 

Which book is a “must-read” for any entrepreneur?

I don’t know if it’s a must read but it’s a good one: “Rich Dad Poor Dad”, first book I read that made me really understand that I didn’t want to be part of the Rat Race.

What would be your best advice to starting entrepreneurs?

As an entrepreneur, you can fall many times just learn from the experience and come out stronger every time.

-  Love what you do! Be passionate! The more you feel like that the easier will be to go all in in every sense.

-  Time management, maintain a time routine of work even harder than the one you had at a regular job in the end this is yours and it’s important to lead by example.

- Listen and listen and ask and ask….as much as you can to people that are entrepreneurs or experts in what you are doing, knowledge is wisdom and if you are part of this incredible group of people dig as much as you can…..learn from other people’s mistakes and success….

- Trust your instincts!

- Power of thought, the path might or might not be rocky, but you will be able to succeed! Maintain yourself focus and really believe you will make it! The world will help you achieve your goals!

-  Always be grateful.

Why is EYES valuable to you?

It’s always a pleasure to say that I’m a member of EYES. The members, the energy that you get from going to an event, I feel I can make it happen while having my back covered if needed.