We had the good fortune of connecting with Sebastien Abonnel and we’ve shared our conversation below.
Hi Sebastien, what role has risk played in your life or career?
As an entrepreneur, the risk is part of your life, of your process. What I’m supposed to do? What I’m supposed to say, how the decision that I’m taking right now will affect the future of my company or my own life ? So many questions to which we have no answers at this time…. I accepted this. I have learned that is impossible to anticipate every detail but our role is to significantly reduce the risk in every situation, on every deal or during every decision process. It’s called the “calculated risk” What is my exposure ? How far I’m willing to risk my moral, physical or financial exposure ? How is the market I am in ? I always try to find the good balance to these questions to measure the risk I’m taking – potential setbacks vs reap the highest rewards.
The risk to fail, to lose or just to get out of the comfort zone is a real challenge but you need to understand you risk probably more by not doing. As an entrepreneur paving new paths and making mistakes are expected or even recommended because you have to take risk if you want to see your business take off but also your career, it provides valuable experience and learning opportunities.
In my life, risk motivates me, and helps me to push the limits, I started my entrepreneur life at 22, at this age you have no experience and it’s a big jump to the unknown so the risk is everywhere and I have learned from that.
Can you give our readers an introduction to your business? Maybe you can share a bit about what you do and what sets you apart from others?
I founded LAB FIVE, an LA based company. We are a full-service organization, supporting the installation and the operations of the new state of the art five a side soccer sport. We work in every aspect of the modern soccer entertainment including the new technology to serve the game as data tracking system, high performance analysis equipment and video system analytics.
The first LAB FIVE has opened in 2020 in Los Angeles. Not so easy with the pandemic, I had to face a unique situation like every business owner but my experience in the industry learned me how to navigate during a crisis cycle.
I launched my first soccer center in France at 22 and a couple of years ago I met my partner and we decided to open the concept here in the US and especially in California. I had to face so many challenges, learn a new sport culture, a new way to practice sport but more generally the main difficulty was to convince people that the soccer is not on the bottom tier of sports anymore. As I use to say, Soccer has a voice and LAB FIVE is one of them.
So, to overcome these challenges, I have failed a couple of times, and the lessons i have learned is applicable to all business… Never give up. If you have a good product or service, you will find way.
Something that I want people know about me ? I’m resilient and I never give up ! For LAB FIVE, I’m convinced that we have an important role to popularise the soccer over there, and I hope you will see many LAB FIVE everywhere in the US in the nexts couple of years.
Any places to eat or things to do that you can share with our readers? If they have a friend visiting town, what are some spots they could take them to?
Well, LA proposes a large variety of landscape but Malibu is one of my favorite spot as I just started surf lessons ! But I will probably bring my friends at the Griffith observatory for the panorama, a ride on Mulholland Drive for the scenic view and a trip at Joshua Trees where you can chill and relax in the desert with beautiful landscapes. You can also find so many spots to hang-out Soho house West Hollywood is a good spot but also a couple of restaurant DTLA as Le Petit Paris, Maccheroni Republic and because i’m French I love spending time in the French bakery Picthoun in Beverly Hills or DTLA.
Who else deserves some credit and recognition?
I just want to thanks all my family who supports me from the beginning even in my wildest dreams, we under estimate that the entrepreneur life is a long journey with a lot of concessions but having the support from the people you love is a real strength. It helps you for sure. Also want to thanks my partners to support me and all stakeholder that I had a chance to go with.
Linkedin: Sebastien Abonnel