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Catey Burget, left, and Brett Gilliam right, owners of Live Fresh Juice + Smoothie Bar in Homestead just outside of Pittsburgh.

Saving pennies to build a business

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By Staff


Have you ever thought of leaving your job to start a business even when the risk was high?

Brett Gilliam did — and then he did it. Now he and his partner, Catey Burget, are planning a second location of Live Fresh Juice + Smoothie Bar, they tell host Jess Iacullo of Hungry Grl Big Podcast. The couple opened the business in 2019 in Homestead, a former steel town along the Monongahela River just outside of Pittsburgh. He and Burget had discussed opening a business four or five years ago.

“I had just hated my job enough to make sure I risked it all to leave and took a chance,” he said.

Now he works at the couple’s store every day. “Like, people always see the glory and not the story, you know?  I did all of the construction myself. My uncle, he’s a master plumber. There were a lot of hands that came into play to make sure that this came into fruition.

It was something in my mind I always wanted to do. In my heart I am always entrepreneurial spirit. I always took ownership and responsibility as far as my business acumen. 

If you don’t bet on yourself, then who will?

So he saved up. “All of my pennies,” he said. “I lived in my mom’s basement for about two years. I put my pen to paper. And I went out and I did it. 

And it’s really as simple as that. And support. Family is everything.”

Be on the lookout for Live Fresh North later this year on Western Avenue in Pittsburgh’s North Side neighborhood.

Listen to the whole conversation, here, with host Jess Iacullo.

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