“The process was easy and very convenient, it was perfect.”
In Venezuela, Indira attended college and was in her fourth year of pursuing a degree in business when she made the bold move to relocate to Miami. She had fallen in love with the city as a hub for fitness, food, and art while on vacation. Upon discovering that most of her credits would not transfer to universities in the US, she reluctantly decided to put her education on hold. Indira always knew she wanted to own her own business, and the move accelerated her path dramatically.
“I was in this cloud, lost, trying to find myself. I started trying new activities such a crossfit and painting and meeting new people,” she said. “Then I started baking. The first thing I tried was muffins and brownies, but I tried to make them healthy. I loved it, and that’s how it all started.”
Guided by her love of baking and healthy eating, The Bettersweet Vegan Bakery was born.
But her journey was not easy. “There were a lot of challenges,” she said. “First, I only spoke Spanish, so language was a barrier. Second, I am an immigrant from a country with different laws and ways of doing things, so how do I make this happen?” And lastly, “The journey of owning a business…” she laughed, “how do I make this profitable?
Ascendus understood her passion and worked with Indira, helping her to establish credit and lending her money to buy equipment. “They were so helpful and supportive,” she said. “The process was easy and very convenient, it was perfect.”
Little by little, The Bettersweet Vegan Bakery was on its way – until the pandemic came along.
ADAPTING TO CHALLENGES
Indira’s business model was focused on making cakes for large parties and gatherings. Two things that took a hit during the Covid-19 pandemic. “Parties got canceled and my profits disappeared. I knew I had to adjust my business.”
After a lot of trial and error, she finally got some traction on social media by experimenting with smaller cakes. “I decided to make custom mini cakes for two to four people and offer free delivery.” Indira shared her small, artfully decorated cakes on Instagram and fans embraced them as a bit of sunshine during the quarantine. Her idea took off, “that’s how I survived.”
While Indira’s business has become a financial success, she values most the things she has learned about herself – improving her confidence and skills as an artist and chef – while also providing healthy foods to her community, in the city she loves.
In December of 2021 Indira went through one of her biggest challenges since the pandemic hit. Her entire staff contracted COVID-19, except for herself and one employee. She had a large increase in orders due to the holiday season, but she didn’t let it stop her. With just the two of them, they were able to complete all of the orders without missing a single deadline. Now, everyone is safely recovered and ready to start baking again. Indira is focusing on sculpted cakes and has been featured on season 3 of Food Network’s Holiday Wars.