- Business & Development
- Economic Development
- Business Spotlight #5 - Feraud Calixte
Business Spotlight #5 - Feraud Calixte
City of Burlington
Economic Development Department
January 06, 2022
Serial entrepreneurship takes a great deal of grit and resilience. Running just a single business can be daunting, especially as a solopreneur. Imagine running two with a team of one. It may not be easy, but it surely isn’t impossible when you know how to leverage strategic partnerships. Look to this month’s entrepreneur spotlight, Feraud Calixte, the owner and CEO of Vantage Pointe Planning and District No. 3.
Feraud was led down the path to business ownership, because like many others, he had a strong inclination to own his own business and be a part of building something the community needs. He vocalizes his desire to “control my own destiny to an extent. As I’ve had a family, legacy is important to me... Business ownership is how you can do that.”
His first business, Vantage Pointe Planning, was created after sharpening his craft in the financial planning industry. The name, Vantage Pointe, reflects Feraud’s ability to step outside of his client's perspective to offer a professional perspective that looks at their finances and goals from an enhanced vantage point. The tagline “your net worth is not your self worth” mirrors Feraud’s mission to help move his client’s clarity around their goals beyond simply accumulating riches to building healthy relationships with money, so that it doesn’t become an idol.
His business model is unique because most traditional firms charge based on the percentage of a person’s assets, while he only charges an hourly fee. There is no minimum amount of assets that a client must hold, nor is there a requirement to move all their investments to his company. He doesn't sell any financial products either. His business is solely fee based! Feraud’s target market for Vantage Pointe is entrepreneurs and those who are nearing retirement or in retirement.
Throughout his time as a financial planner, Feraud identified a pattern between the habits of his wealthiest clients. All were involved in some level of entrepreneurship, real estate, or investing in the stock market, which contributed to their long-term wealth. To further his personal wealth journey, he began to explore real estate acquisition.
During the pandemic, Feraud found working from home to be difficult. Thus, District No. 3 was born. He knew he wanted his own personal office, and Feraud also knew there we people like him that were disinterested in working exclusively from home. He wanted to create a unique space where entrepreneurs can work, get out of isolation, and collaborate with other like-minded business owners in the community. Once he identified a space in West Burlington, Feraud put his vision into action and bought and redeveloped a former office into a collaborative co-working space.
Many wonder about the origin of the name, District No. 3. The “3” represents his three boys, while district is defined by “a distinguished or distinct area of a neighborhood or community.” District No. 3 lies between downtown Burlington and Elon University. Feraud observes “there is nothing like this here. We want our members to connect, collaborate, and create.”
District is unique as they offer individual private offices on a month-to-month basis and have collaborative open spaces for groups. There are various tiered membership options for customers to explore. Like Vantage Pointe Planning, District No. 3 is also geared toward people who are building businesses or are current entrepreneurs.
Secrets to Success
If you are like me, you are probably puzzled by how one person can juggle so many responsibilities. Feraud says “the hardest part of being a serial entrepreneur is that there is no set schedule.” However, he is improving his ability of creating his own structure and is constantly evaluating his processes.
Feraud makes a goal to “knock out three important tasks a day.” The part of his job that pushes him out of his comfort zone the most is “paying attention to the small details, because I am a big picture thinker. Sometimes I have to bring it down and focus on the smaller details, which takes practice.”
He attributes his success to his former managers that taught him essential leadership skills. Additionally, he is avid reader who uses books to increase his knowledge of entrepreneurship and wealth building strategies. Some of his favorites are listed below:
- “Rich Dad Poor Dad”
- “Why Should White Guys Have All the Fun”
- “The Millionaire Next Door”
- “Chop Wood and Carry Water"
When asked how he defines success, Feraud responds “I am successful right now. I don’t have to do anything else, and I would consider myself successful. I have a great family with a loving wife and three awesome boys... Success is the connections and the relationships that you build with folks.”
As a relationship and people-centered leader, Feraud plans on giving back to the community through partnering with local universities to host internship and mentorship opportunities. He also serves on various boards across the region, like the Burlington Downtown Corporation.
To aspiring business owners, Feraud explains “you cannot be afraid of failure. Don’t let a certain amount of fear, nervousness, or anxiety dissuade you from pursing something you would be good at, because that is just a part of the game. You have to be able to manage those emotions and surround yourself with people that are doing the things that you want to do.” Part of his strategy for success involved seeking out people who embodied characteristics or qualities that he was interested in emulating, which can be received through books or mentorship relationships.
Business in Burlington
Feraud fully believes in his frequently used phrase, “bullish on Burlington,” which reflects his optimism for opportunity in the community. His investment in the city can be seen through his recent business endeavors and strategic partnerships. He loves doing business in Burlington because it has great potential. Feraud states “I am impressed by the entrepreneur community’s love for Burlington.” He believes that it has a “bright future ahead. It is positioned well, location wise, and it will just take more people to invest here, which is already beginning.”
727 Kivett St. Burlington, NC 27215
Vantage Pointe Planning Socials
District No. 3 Socials
425 S. Lexington Ave.
Burlington, NC 27215