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My First Business Died - But It Helped Make My Next Company a Success

When government policies and decisions killed my buzzy New York startup, I learned to build a better (and more sustainable) operation.

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This story appears in the March 2020 issue of Entrepreneur. Subscribe »

In 2016, New York City made an announcement that locals had been dreading: Starting in 2019, the L train subway tunnel — a major connection between Manhattan and Brooklyn — would shut down for 18 months of repairs. It would be so disruptive that people actually moved to different neighborhoods in order to be closer to a functioning subway line come 2019.

Courtesy of Nowaday

Then, just four months before the shutdown was going to begin, New York’s governor sprung a surprise. He announced that the L train wouldn’t shut down after all. (The repairs would happen on nights and weekends.) Some people were elated. Others were annoyed. And me? I was shocked…because I’d spent the better part of the past year building a business designed to serve people impacted by this closure.

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