I had a chance to interview Daniel Lieberman, the CEO behind Montreal-based fitness apparel company, Cory Vines.  Cory Vines has been featured for its extremely comfortable, aesthetically appealing, and affordable clothing, on platforms such as Forbes and Bloomberg Business.  This interview gives us a glimpse on what it’s like starting and growing this business as a “David” amongst the “Goliaths” of the fitness apparel industry:

Hey man, thanks for taking the time to chat with me, and before we start, I just wanted to say congrats on your new kid!  Any thoughts on being a new father while leading the charge on a growing company such as yours?

Yeah, it’s been a little bit of a crazy week (laughs), but if anything, it gives me more motivation to step it up.

Nice. Well since we’ve jumped right to the topic, what was your inspiration for starting this whole thing (CoryVines)?

Well, my family has been in the apparel space for over 60 years and it was a mix of my passion for the family business and the changes in technology which excited to start a direct to consumer activewear brand.  At that time specifically, I saw that the active-wear consumer was changing.  I saw a shift, where groups of people were becoming focused less on going to the gym purely to get jacked, but more-so defining what being active meant to them, and I saw need for apparel to fuel and support this kind of lifestyle.

dl_coryvinesWhat does your fitness routine look like, running this company and now having even more to juggle in your life?

I try to do cardio 3-4 days per week, whether playing basketball a couple times a week or running…oh, and I have standing desk at work (laughs).

What has been your most memorable experience while building Cory Vines?

What has been, and continue to be, my most memorable experiences, are working with great people who share the same vision and love what they do.   Also, some of the press has been terrific and being on CNBC and Bloomberg was really cool.

Other than that, overcoming the challenges that have brought my team and I here has been the highlight of building this.  In the beginning, I honestly wasn’t sure what the future of the company looked like, but now I’m seeing the light at the end of the tunnel.

What does a day-in-the-life of Daniel Lieberman look like?

Very focused on work and very focused on family.  Those are my two biggest things right now.  I’m typically in the office by 7:30 and working until I get home at 7:30 to be with family.  I wish I had a more exciting answer (laughs), but those two parts of my life are really all I have time for right now.

Looking back, what’s one thing you wish you understood about entrepreneurship before you ever got started?

Think big.  I know that sounds cliché, but to put it into the context of apparel companies, sometimes people are trying to figure about how to get in the door of stores (wholesale) and taking crazy paths to get through, but sometimes it’s really just about going directly through the front door.  Call the buyer or walk in, and see what happens!  Sometimes the answer is very straightforward, and that applies to lots of different parts of business and life.

According to your Forbes article in 2013, you were just a team of four, and you compared your 2013 selves to “David against the Goliaths of the marketplace”. How has your progress been so far against these “Golaiths”, and what would you attribute your progress to?

Well, to be honest, that’s still the scenario (laughs).  But as far as our progress, we’re focusing a lot more on wholesale, and being omni-channel and paying attention to what works best.

What I’ve come to realize for myself and really anyone working on a business is to not get so fixated over certain obstacles, and realize that sometimes you just need to make small changes to find successful results.  For me, it was paying attention to the shift in business models. But yes, right now we’re very focused on various channels of distribution and maybe eventually having our own store!

Awesome, man.  Until that happens, where can people get hooked up with some clothes in the meantime? 

Yeah, if they head to coryvines.com, they can take a look at our whole collection for men and women, including lots of our newest stuff!