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by Divya Samtani
The Savvy Sapiens Podcast

The Lifestyle Entrepreneur



On our final episode for Season 1, we have Gianni Melwani. Gianni grew up in Hong Kong, an avid football player. But rather than going pro with his football career like he had hoped, he decided to go to university in the States instead. Upon returning to HK after college he decided to start his own company, and what began as a small events business quickly became Hong kong’s largest fitness and lifestyle platform, with massive events such as the Spartan Race which you may have heard of, and IRIS - Hong Kong’s largest health and wellness festival.  

Since then Gianni has left the company to start a new one, a multi-purpose wellness studio called IKIGAI which if you’re curious, means to find your purpose. And today he’s here to share his tips on building a business, dealing with failure, and growing the confidence in yourself to succeed, no matter what you choose to do.  Show-notes: 0.00 - 2.30:

  • Did he know he was going to grow up to be an entrepreneur? 
  • Gianni grew up playing sports, played a lot of football, became his first passion and love and wanted to turn football into his career 

2.30 - 5.00:

  • Doing his GCSE’s and realizing at university he didn’t know what he wanted to do  
  • Learning what he liked through a process of trial and error 
  • Why he chose to go to the US for university when his friends all went to the UK  
  • What he felt he gained from university and the people skills he learned that have helped him in his career today  
  • The experience of trying and failing in various things 

5.00 - 7.30:

  • Why he ended up majoring in psychology in the end  
  • Why he thinks there’s too much pressure on kids in this generation to know what they want to do  
  • Tapping into our own skills and finding what works for you vs. succumbing to the pressure to please others 
  • There’s no “wrong” decision when it comes to personal development, career and life  
  • Not knowing in life is great, it’s about experimenting , and eventually filter and fine tune  

7.30 - 10.00:

  • Managing expectations from parents and his initial regret around not being able to do football as a career 
  • Realizing as individuals that we don’t have to be a direct follow on from our parents  
  • The universal feeling of “wanting to make our parents happy” regardless of what age you are  
  • Gianni’s advice on how you can build the confidence to believe in yourself and stand your ground with your parents 

10.00 - 12.30:

  • Starting your own business and whether there’s a right path or not  
  • The truth behind what it takes to start your business and Gianni’s thoughts on what he would have done differently  
  • The multiple roles required in being an entrepreneur and what’s truly required 

12.30 - 15.00:

  • How to know whether it’s worth building your own business or not and how to know what you’re really passionate about  
  • Gianni’s story on how he found the passion for wellness and fitness that led to his first business  
  • How he started Hong Kong’s largest health and wellness festival  

15.00 - 17.30:

  • Gianni’s latest transition to a new business and how it fits around his preferred lifestyle  
  • The way he’s been able to design his life by paying attention to the details of what he enjoys and what makes him feel most energized  
  • The value of understanding his own mind and how the mind in general functions  

17.30 - 20.00:

  • Why yoga and meditation has helped him understand the human mind more than anything e


Episode 8

Season 1

by Divya Samtani