Guilherme Paulus is the founder of both the CVC travel agency and the GJP Hotels and Resorts network. He has recently been ranked as one of the wealthiest people in the world as has a net worth of over 1.1 billion.
He was born in Brazil in 1949 and has almost 50 years of experience in the tourism industry. Guilherme Paulus has also been able to acquire and sell a small airline that he transformed into a national success. So, how did Guilherme Paulus become such a successful entrepreneur?
Guilherme Paulus first worked for IBM as a trainee and quickly realized that computing taught him a lot but was not for him. His opportunity for change came to him in an ad in the local newspaper. The ad was placed there by the Casa Faro travel agency and they were looking to hire a salesman. He became an employee of Casa Faro and found his passion for bringing joy to tourists and travelers alike. The opportunity for him to realize his dream of founding his own travel agency came when he met a politician named Carlos Vicente Cerchiari during a trip. The politician offered him a partnership to start their own travel agency. Guilherme accepted.
Guilherme Paulus and Carlos Vicente Cerchiari founded the CVC travel agency in 1972. Carlos left the business venture only four years after its founding and sold his shares to Guilherme. The CVC still managed to become the largest tourist operator in all of Latin America with the leadership of Guilherme. Guilherme sold a big part of the company to the global investment firm, the Carlyle Group in 2009. The CVC now generates an annual revenue of approximately $5.2 billion.
For Guilherme, the secret to success is to love the customer. To place the customer before anything else. For the Brazilian entrepreneur, the customer is the coffee, the lunch, the dinner, and the gas. Guilherme advises other aspiring entrepreneurs to always innovate, create, and plan for yourself. Mr. Paulus has also listed the main characteristics that he thinks are necessary in any profession and has shared the successful numbers of the CVC.