Sanyou Baijiu – Seedlab Tasmania Cultivator Update

We’re simply astounded to hear that Sanyou has won GOLD for their Tasmanian Made Baijiu – Sanyou in China!

Sanyou has won a Gold Medal in the 2022 ‘China Wine and Spirits Awards’ (CWSA).

Ian Sypkes makes baijiu following traditional Chinese methods using local Tasmanian grains and water in Launceston, Tasmania. Ian uses the traditional methods with no compromise, as a result of travelling to China in 2018 to learn baijiu making from the masters in Moutai.

Ian has a big dream. Ian joined Seedlab in our infancy, in our very first Bootcamp program. He has kept engaged with the Seedlab village, and we have followed and supported him and his business partners as they have expanded into a new factory in Launceston, re-branded and launched his products.

We asked him at several points over the last 2 years what he got from participating in our programs. Here’s what he said:

Q: Why did you want to be part of Cultivate?
A: I needed help in specific areas of my business launch and development. I also really liked the idea of doing a course with other small(ish) businesses in Tasmania.

Q: Has Cultivate addressed specific gaps or needs you had in terms of your business capability?
A: Yes. The course was very broad and also allowed for drilling down into the specific needs that I had. There is also a big pool of information waiting for me in the Seedlab Academy as I progress my business and encounter further issues.

Q: If you hadn’t become part of Seedlab – how would you have addressed these gaps or needs?
A: I would have likely engaged professionals (and probably the wrong ones at times…). I was about to start engaging a brand and marketing professional, Seedlab helped me find the best fit for this.

Q: What were the unforeseen/unexpected benefits of being in Cultivate?
A: It was amazing how broad the information was, while being flexible enough to double down on my specific needs, I did not expect that. I also didn’t expect that we would cover so much ground in the time. And finally some of the presenters were the specific people we would need to talk to in building our business, it has really taken the edge off introducing myself to these people further down the track.

Q: What are you now doing or feeling differently/better as a result of your time in Cultivate?
A: I feel much more confident in my launch direction. I feel like at the very least the Seedlab process accelerated my knowledge and ability to proceed by double. I also feel confident that there are a group of people and business owners that are more than happy to help if I reach out to them with specific issues or questions for advice.

Q: If the Department of State Growth asked you what you gained from being part of Cultivate, what would you say to them?
A: I gained a rapid knowledge of my specific business blind spots. I built confidence and knowledge in what is needed to launch my business successfully. And I gained a very strong network of contacts that I would likely not be able to connect with otherwise. There have been great real opportunities to create connections that will help my business.

Q: If a fellow startup asked you whether to apply for Seedlab – and what to expect – what would you say to them?
A: I would say to do it – but expect that it is a big time commitment. You need to look at your forward calendar and see if you can fit it in, the more committed to the process the more helpful it will be, if you can’t fit it in you need to assess the situation to maximise the effect. You need to be clear where you are and where you would like to be, and you will certainly find the help they need during the process.

If you want a drop of what Ian has had – apply for the FREE 4 month accelerator Cultivate Program, before the end of September.

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