KARL MICO “MICOPHOBIA” Quitlong’s Season 10 campaign can be described as... forgettable.
Nexplay has clearly suffered from some in-game and off court woes, leading to their Season 10 exit in the elimination stage. But while his team is left to ponder during the offseason, not everything was going downhill for Micophobia.
The remorseful regular season has given him the opportunity to venture into other activities.
Mico founds Fries the King
During the regular season, Micophobia started his food business, Fries the King, a milestone moment in his career.
It's something he's been thinking about since his youth.
“Actually, high school pa lang ako and college, iniisip ko mag-business. Kasi pagdating sa trabaho, hindi naman masyadong malaki yung kita, and syempre kapag magtatrabaho ka kailangan araw-araw kang nagtatrabaho," said Quitlong to Spin.ph.
"Pag negosyo, kumbaga magpupuhunan ka tapos gagalaw yung pera."
This is Mico’s first venture into business, and he admitted that he needed the help of his peers to run it. In fact, it was them who pushed him to explore numerous flavors for his fries.
“Ako syempre, paborito ko talaga ang french fries," explained Micophobia, "'Yung mga classic flavors. Pero ang idea ng french fries na business ko is yung [galing sa] friend ko lang, sa business partner ko, kasi hindi ako mahilig sa may mga flavor na fries."
Their prescient advice made a big splash when the store first opened.
“Yung business partner ko sina Jonie at Heins, sila yung nag-a-asikaso. Noong nasa bootcamp ako, kasagsagan ng MPL, sila lahat yung nag-a-asikaso. Nagbibigay ako ng pera para pambili sa shop tapos sila yung kumikilos talaga.”
So far, the results have been optimistic. Mico is already planning his expansion.
“Sa ngayon, maganda yung first month, para sa akin worth it yung paghihirap ng mga business partner ko. Ngayon magtatayo kami ng branch next week sa Tanay, Rizal. First week [ng December] siguro meron na kaming branch sa Taytay.”
While establishing a business could be a dream that’s worth pursuing, given the added income and sustainability it brings, you should still know what you're getting into.
“One of the struggles we had was the word 'how'," said Mico’s business partner Heinrich “Heins” Picar to Spin.ph.
"How do we get to know kung saan suppliers ni ganito? Ni ganyan? It took us months to even figure out everything. Luckily, Jonie had experience in his thjree coffee shops in Rizal kaya things were eased up a bit under the roof.”
Heins even gave some tips to those who wish to establish their own business.
"To aspiring people who wants to put up a business, the number one and most basic factor to consider is the nature of business. What market are you trying to introduce your product? You need to consider a lot of factors by then you have figured it out, it's not as simple as one plus one."
One thing Heinz emphasizes is scalability, or how easily and efficiently it can grow.
"There are businesses kasi na ang growth is limited lang, not to an extent na it will earn you millions. Kaya nga mga successful businessmen ay iba't ibang negosyo ang tinatayo. Kasi if you would stick to one and limited lang ang scalability. hanggang don lang siya. Unless you're Facebook or Google who built their own economy of their own business,, [na] kahit doon lang sila mag-focus," he said.
"You gotta have the guts to do business. It's not for the faint of heart. Bawal mahina loob, bawal dito takot sumugal. Maraming failures along the way pero part siya ng journey talaga. And most of the time pa, you need to risk in order to move forward, diyan naman papasok si calculated risks. There were countless times na we needed to do these and that, para lang magwork yung plan. If not, plan B agad is in place."
The benefits of having a business
With his business running, Mico was able to reap the rewards.
“Sa ngayon sobrang nakakatulong siya para maging productive ako araw-araw. Aminado ako tamad ako pero kapag may business ka napapakilos ka araw-araw.
“Sa pamilya naman, actually yung mga kapatid ko yung nagbabantay sa shop. Ano sila, nag-aaral pa at medyo nakakatulong ako papaano sa pagiging working student nila, nakakapagbigay pa ako sa kanila.”
And with the offseason underway, Mico is hoping to establish a third branch before turning his focus back to the MLBB scene.
“Sa ngayon nasa bakasyon pa talaga ako and balak ko ng bumalik ng bootcamp sa Pangasinan this first week of December. Hintayin ko lang matapos yung pangatlong branch then balik na ako sa bootcamp para mag-grind.”