Brian J. Esposito is Founder and CEO of Esposito Intellectual Enterprises, a boutique investment company. Esposito Intellectual Enterprises source and back some of the most exciting global developments in beauty, fashion, technology, music, entertainment, charities, government, transportation, liquor, and many more new and exciting industry developments.
In our interview with Brian, he talks about his entrepreneurial journey and challenges he had to overcome.
Hello Brian. Thank you for participating in this Q&A session. Please give us an overview of your background, initial career aspirations and your entrepreneurial journey to date?
Brian: I am an award-winning serial entrepreneur, business leader, and the founder and CEO of Esposito Intellectual Enterprises (EIE). I was a core part of the innovative team that built Nodle—the world’s largest wireless network and ecosystem of connected devices. In addition, I was also a core part of team TurnCoin and the successful launch of VirtualStax through TheXchange. TheXchange is the company behind VirtualStaX and the VirtualStaX App: A people-driven platform that empowers individuals to achieve their dreams, while giving their fans a vehicle to support them, share in their journey, and participate in their success. TheXchange currently has the public support of Drew Brews, Patrick Mahomes, Randy Jackson, and Jean de Villiers.
I was ranked among the world’s Top 10 CEOs for 2020, in The World CEO Rankings Awards by Adria Management. One of my early businesses, which ranked among The Fastest-Growing Private Companies by INC. 5000 for six consecutive years. In December 2019, I was featured in The Corporate Investment Times, and the next-gen investment magazine in the Middle East. With over 20 years of experience in high-profile executive roles involving complex business challenges and high-stakes decisions, I founded Esposito Intellectual Enterprises (EIE) in New York in 2013.
EIE is wholly owned and operated by myself, EIE currently has 75+ entities within its 150+ joint ventures that have been accumulated from around the world over the last 20 years. To date, there are over 25 industry focuses with a presence in over 25 cities throughout the globe, and just one degree separating any industry or market that I may want to enter into and do business in. With a technique that I spent years perfecting, I have learned to connect not only the right people but the right people at the right time. “Integrity is at the core of who we are and what we do at EIE. We strive to do good business with good people,” Integrity and the appreciation of time is always at the core of what we do; with a daily reminder of EIE's company motto that; "The Is Our Most Precious Commodity"
What originally attracted you to entrepreneurship?
Brian: Ever since I was 8 years old I have been doing some sort of work. I started in one of my father's warehouses filling nail polish bottles and creating products. I always loved establishing real tangible value and understanding the importance of hard work. I am not money oriented, for me it was having pride in doing something, doing it to the best of my ability, and learning from my experiences.
My journey has not been an easy one, but I would not trade the path I am on for anything. I was used, abused, beaten up, and taken to the school of hard knocks. However, through that, I found strengths I never knew I had, vulnerabilities that I am proud of and work on daily, and created a world in which I am surrounded by a small wonderful inner circle, and a world that I am in full control of.
It's hard for someone like me to say that there was an initial moment that attracted me to entrepreneurship. I am a believer it is just in my DNA, and this is my purpose and reason for being on this planet. To create something great, leave a positive mark on this world, and help as many people as I can while I am still here.
What are the key challenges you have faced in your entrepreneurial journey and how did you navigate them?
Brian: The biggest challenge I had to face was properly valuing me and reprograming my brain to be first to eat. For over 15 years of my professional career, I thought being last to eat was the right thing to do. It is not, and I learned that the hard way. I was faced with an awful life changing situation in February of 2016 when I was hit in a head-on car accident by a drunk driver. This caused my entire world to turn upside down because I was the core of all my businesses at the time. I was the deal maker, the one creating opportunities, the one putting their ass on the line, and the one getting loans and lines of credit to keep everything moving.
When you ripped me out of that equation all I was surrounded by at the time was a world of people that added no value and had their hands in my pocket. When these individuals realized there was nothing more to take, rather than help me as I helped and supported them, they just disappeared. With that I quickly realized i cannot be bitter or mad at the world for what I was going through. I knew that would only add more stress and anger into my life. I did not blame anyone but myself for putting me in that position, and knew I had to build back what I once had, but this time stronger, smarter, and with the right people around me.
I am very grateful that that woman crashed into me because she could have killed someone. With that, I'll always say I'll take that hit, and it forced me to have to change everything as my model was completely wrong. Over the last 5 years I perfected a world in which I now have complete control of.
I no longer am invited into other people's worlds and hope they do the right thing by me. I invite people and companies into mine where I ensure the expected outcomes are what happens, and that myself and Esposito Intellectual Enterprises (EIE) is first to eat so we can properly support and fuel all projects. When the day comes that I am no longer here, EIE can continue to flourish on.
Has your entrepreneurial journey been influenced by any past or present business leaders?
Brian: Not particularly, however I have always gravitated towards Henry Ford. Whenever I read his quotes or how he built what he built, I connect immediately to that information and piece of history. I do not like unicorns, I like building real businesses, or supporting real businesses, that go into a market, create a product, service, piece of IP, or technology that is priced accordingly, can be properly distributed, and create real profitable earnings. I like businesses that generate real earnings and are valued at a multiple of those earnings that is sustainable. I am very old school in my business practices, philosophies, and strategies. However, part of my strength is not only connecting the right people or opportunities, but connecting them at the right time to create immediate value. This is something that would not have happened if it was not for my experiences, relationships, network, and capabilities.
You are the Chief Strategy Officer at a number of companies. What does this role entail and what is your involvement in these companies?
Brian: This is a role in which I love to hold inside companies that are part of Esposito Intellectual Enterprises. This allows me to not only be me, but properly speak on behalf of those companies. It's important to have a role inside companies that you believe in and that your name is attached to for many reasons. First and foremost, it shows your network and relationships, that you believe in that company. Secondly, everyone understands everyone's role. I never act as a broker or commission type person. To me that does not work, and adds no or limited value to the company. For example, acting as Head of strategy, I get to create and build opportunities that are supposed to add value for all parties involved. If I were acting as a commission based entity, and I bring a million dollar deal to the company and I am expected to earn 10-20% of that deal, I immediately destroy the profit margins and the entire value of that deal for the company. By operating as a member of the management team with a goal to create real growing value, while protecting the company, employees, stakeholders, and investors, I create an outcome where everyone wins. That's why I love to hold real roles inside these holdings and never act as a passive person with just a name on a deck doing nothing. People that do that should be ashamed of themselves and shouuld always do what they can for companies that they are a part of. This means ensuring you share resources, relationships, and time to give those companies the support they need to not only succeed, but survive.
Before concluding the interview please tell us what impact COVID 19 had on Esposito Intellectual Enterprises, if any?
Brian: Because of the journey that I have been on, experiencing COVID 19 and a global shut down, was just yet another problem that we needed to quickly address and overcome. There is always problems, some greater than others, but to be an entrepreneur and not expect to have to deal with issues is quite naïve.
During this time we grew exceptionally by quickly observing the market needs and creating technologies, solutions, IPs, and services that consumers and enterprise businesses needed. Unfortunately there were a lot of businesses, brands, and assets completely destroyed by this awful situation. However, when that happens and leaders are strong, focused, and have resources, they can find some exceptional value and opportunities. That is exactly what we did, and I am proud to say that we did it very efficiently and with style.
Thank you Brian for participating in this Q&A session, we wish you all the best.
Brian: Thank you so much for the opportunity to be part of such a wonderful publication.
Contact: Brian J. Esposito CEO and Founder Esposito Intellectual Enterprises, LLC website: www.eie.rocks Twitter: @brianjesposito LinkedIn: https://www.linkedin.com/in/brianjesposito/