This story was originally published on mcscorp.org.
FoodJets is a local franchise web and app-based platform that allows you to order food from local restaurants. You can track your delivery driver and enjoy your delicious piping hot food without delays from other orders. FoodJets delivers one order at a time.
Most entrepreneurs would agree that being your own boss isn’t for the faint of heart. Being a small business in a corporate dominated economy can be terrifying. Many small business owners wonder how they can survive or make a difference. Not Cosimo Allegretta. He is making big waves in the San Luis Obispo community. Cosimo has been on the frontlines of this pandemic by giving back to essential workers. He offers his food delivery services free of charge, day and night, to more than 15 local hospitals.
Enterprising since childhood
Cosimo is a passionate and caring spirit who brings a little touch of authentic Italian culture everywhere he goes. Growing up in Italy, at the age of seven, Cosimo was an intuitive and observing young boy. He found inspiration in his mother’s hard work and dedication to her family. Watching her tirelessly care for three young boys and his dad, he wanted to help too. She prepared homemade Italian dishes every day, on top of managing a cleaning business. Cosimo found the perfect opportunity to provide some relief to his mother. He pitched the idea of buying her a dishwasher and together they secured a bakery gig for him. Within a few short years, he bought her the dishwasher. At the age of nine, he was overseeing four other bakers to ensure that their baking was top notch.
Cosimo’s attention to detail, care for others, dedication and hard work ethic has translated into his career. After serving a few years in the military, Cosimo migrated to the U.S. to help his brother’s restaurant business, “Mama’s Meatballs”. As a chef Cosimo enjoyed bringing smiles to his customers’ faces with his exquisite, aromatic, fresh Italian dishes. After 20 years of being a chef, an opportunity sparked his interest. A former customer and acquaintance was seeking Cosimo’s well rounded talents. He wanted him to take over his business that was merging with the FoodJets franchise.
A new venture
It took two months of consideration before he took his leap of faith. Cosimo travelled to Sacramento to immerse himself in the FoodJets business model, structure, and process. He launched in May 2019; an investment that cost over $100,000. “I had no clue, when I launched…” he shared. Even with the robust training he received from the former owner, Cosimo underestimated the learning curve and transition times of his customers. Even so, in under five months his customers fully accepted and adapted to the new ways of the business.
Cosimo struggled with getting new customers on board, especially while competing with big companies like GrubHub and UberEats. So he reached out to MCSC SLO Women’s Business Center. With mentorship from WBC Consultant Louis Camassa, Cosimo was able to refine his advertising strategies. This increased his revenue like never before.
Cosimo has expanded his team of contractors from eight to 14 and increased his revenue by 25%. Cosimo admits that being an entrepreneur during a pandemic is a wild ride but following the example of his mother’s hard work and his own instincts and dedication has led to resiliency and success. To others he offers the following advice:
Be very, very persistent for your dreams. Everything can happen- it is about your will to get it. Give yourself time and never give up, be true to yourself.