Kyle lives a passionate life. He built satellites at Boeing, explored Africa on wheels and runs a smoothie business now in Brazil. Kyle said IE changed his life in a surprisingly pleasant way. He met his Brazilian business partner at the MBA class, explored the idea at IE Venture Lab and felt empowered to follow his heart to Brazil. Now every day he makes fresh smoothies in the kitchen, rides bicycle to work and occasionally enjoys a sunny break at the beach. The business name Santa Hora encourages people to relax and enjoy simple pleasures in life.
By Wang Lin
A cool breeze
Lin: What brought you to the MBA program?
Kyle: I love experimenting with my life. In the past 415415 Over five years at Boeing, I optimized satellite code, facilitated communication between developers and management and 415415 for the US government.
However, as one of the over 5000 people at Boeing, I felt like a small gadget fixed in a huge machine. The prospect of growing old doing the same work terrified me. I wanted to do the MBA to explore new possibilities and live a more creative life.
Lin: Why did you prefer IE over business schools in the US?
Kyle: In US business schools, Americans tend to be the majority on campus. The charm of IE lies in the neat percentage of people coming from everywhere. Since there is no dominant group on campus, there is no pressure to fit in. We just enjoy more freedom to be ourselves!
What’s more, most people left familiar circles and came to Madrid alone. Their burning desire to make friends makes IE social life so much easier and fun!
Lin: What are your secrets to enjoy your IE MBA life?
Kyle: Just dive into the flow, experience the fun and chaos and see where it takes you. If you want to free yourself from the hustle and bustle of IE, club activity can be your oasis. At 415Many of them tried soccer for the first time and their joy was infectious.
If you want to truly embrace Madrid, step out of the IE bubble. Within IE everyone speaks English. If you go out to eat, drink and have fun, you will encounter more locals and absorb more of the Spanish culture.
Last but not least, don’t worry about the bell curve. Grades will fade but friendship will accompany you long after your IE life.
Lin: How was your graduation adventure to Africa?
Kyle: In August 2013 I ventured to Africa with my crazy friends. We encountered lions in the safari, hiked to the top of the Mount Kilimanjaro and enjoyed snorkeling in the crystal blue water of Tanzania.
The highlight was our bizarre bus ride. From the moment we got on the bus, everything started rolling downhill. It was jaw-dropping to witness an old man coming naked to his seat and calmly reading a book. Then the bus pulled off for the toilet break. We got off only to discover two bushes by the roadside. When we realized it was the last minute to switch the bus, we ran to jump on the other bus and squeezed ourselves between old ladies and crying babies. Along the way, the local music blew to our ears and made us more confused in this alien land.
Lin: Why did you move to Brazil after MBA?
Kyle: New country, new business, new adventure! I met my Brazilian friend Marianna Peretti at the MBA class. She loves recharging herself with fresh smoothies, yet in Brazil she found only small bottles of juice or frozen smoothies in the supermarket. So we explored the idea of selling fresh and tasty smoothies in Brazil at IE Venture Lab with other classmates. Curitiba, a vibrant city in Southern Brazil. Why not? MBA empowers me to follow my heart. Everything I learnt at IE influences my smoothie business today in Brazil.”
A real delight
Lin: Why did you name the business Santa Hora?
After trying different recipes and hearing feedback from people, we are proud to present our first two flavors: strawberry with banana and mango with passion fruit. You can find our smoothies in coffee shops, gyms and cafeterias around Curitiba.
Lin: How different is running Santa Hora from working a normal job?
Kyle: I feel like a happy free kid. Every day I can wear whatever I feel comfortable with and happily grow my business. I don’t have to wrap myself with suit and tie and get bored in the office. 415
However, running a smoothie business in Brazil is not always rosy. Every day I resolve a different issue, from dealing with supplier and retailers to studying tax and legal policies here. The responsibility is high when it is my own business. But I am upbeat and hopeful. If life throws a lemon at me, I will make it a smoothie!
Lin: How do you feel about living in Brazil?
Kyle: I ride my bicycle daily, travel to the beach whenever I can and grow my knowledge about Brazil day by day. Whether it is buying fruits at local market or watching football with new friends, everyday little happenings bring my heart closer to Brazil.