Suneet Singal

Suneet Singal is an innovative entrepreneur and financial strategist based in the Greater Sacramento region of Northern California.

As the CEO of First Capital Real Estate, he operates in diverse sectors such as consumer retail, finance, financial technology, real estate, and renewable energy.

With expertise in acquisitions, corporate strategy, and deal structuring, Singal has successfully led various public and private companies, marking two decades as a thriving entrepreneur.

Throughout his entrepreneurial journey, Singal has chaired a prominent equity real estate investment trust, led a Nasdaq-traded real estate operating company, and held C-level positions in highly successful enterprises.

His experience spans building, acquiring, operating, and selling businesses across different industries. Internationally recognized for his expertise in direct investment, equity and debt placement, and structured finance, Singal is a renowned figure in the business world.

While focusing on commercial property, land entitlement, principal sponsorship, real estate master planning, and transportation-oriented development for many years, Singal now balances his attention between real estate and non-real estate assets.

Collaborating with family office operators with significant asset portfolios, he provides guidance on capital structures through complex domestic and foreign transactions.

In addition to his role as CEO, Singal has served as a director, officer, or principal shareholder in various joint ventures, partnerships, project holdings, and investments. A California native, he continues to contribute to the business landscape, residing in El Dorado County with his family in the Golden State.

Where did the idea for First Capital Real Estate come from?

Where did the idea for First Capital Real Estate come from
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First Capital emerged in response to the rising demand for a comprehensive, vertically integrated provider of real estate industry services, offering crucial value-add potential.

Two decades later, we persist in fulfilling the ever-growing demand for such services, serving clients across nearly every conceivable industry. The core concept that drove the establishment of First Capital remains central to our operations today, albeit evolved through a continuous process of refinement.

This evolution has led us to venture into various secondary and tertiary markets, expanding our reach to serve a more diverse clientele across an ever-expanding array of sectors.

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What does your typical day look like and how do you make it productive?

Many entrepreneurs emphasize the unpredictable nature of each day, but I believe in establishing and adhering to a routine that works for me. While entrepreneurship often brings unexpected challenges and deviations from plans, this reality extends to daily life as well.

To maintain a semblance of order, I schedule meetings at specific times, providing clarity to those seeking my availability. Regardless of the day’s demands, my priority is maximizing quality time with my family. 

Whether sharing breakfast or enjoying family moments in the evening, this routine not only enhances my productivity but also ensures that I dedicate ample time to my loved ones, minimizing professional distractions outside of business hours.

How do you bring ideas to life?

I embrace a proactive approach to turning ideas into reality. In my view, spending minimal time contemplating ideas is key. If I believe in an idea, I initiate action immediately.

Whether the idea succeeds or fails, taking prompt action accelerates the journey to success or failure compared to prolonged contemplation. For smaller ideas, minimal determination and initiative are often sufficient to launch them. However, with larger ideas, involving a team becomes essential.

In such cases, I swiftly inform my team, ensuring they are up to speed, and initiate action without unnecessary delays.

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What’s one trend that excites you?

What’s one trend that excites you
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Since my childhood, the idea of fully autonomous vehicles has captivated my imagination. Over the past decade, we’ve witnessed significant strides toward the realization of completely self-driving cars, trucks, and various other vehicles. 

I believe we are now at the brink of a widespread implementation of fully autonomous technology, and this prospect is incredibly thrilling.

What is one habit of yours that makes you more productive as an entrepreneur?

As I mentioned briefly earlier, my family-centric approach to life contributes to making me a more effective and productive entrepreneur. The motivation to provide the best for my family, both presently and in the future, drives my work. 

Simultaneously, the more productive I am in my daily business activities, the greater opportunity I have to dedicate time to my family beyond work hours.

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What advice would you give your younger self?

I would advise my younger self to strike a balance between ambitious pursuits and a commitment to well-being. Many entrepreneurs can attest that the journey of entrepreneurship is demanding and all-encompassing.

Therefore, it’s crucial to prioritize individual well-being, even while pursuing significant professional goals. This approach to entrepreneurship and life is something I’ve instilled in my four children.

As a society, we often underestimate the crucial role that both physical and mental health play in every aspect of our lives. Maintaining a healthy work-life balance is more critical than ever in today’s world.

Tell us something that’s true that almost nobody agrees with you on:

Tell us something that’s true that almost nobody agrees with you on
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Wow, that’s a thought-provoking question. For me, it’s probably the impermanence of everything. Whether it’s our experiences, relationships, possessions, or even our own existence, nothing in life remains constant or lasts forever. It’s an undeniable reality.

People might not necessarily disagree; it could be more about not wanting to accept this truth, which is understandable. However, it’s crucial for individuals to remember that impermanence applies equally to both positive and negative aspects of life.

The most joyful moments and achievements are transient, just as challenging times and hardships will pass, hopefully making way for new, more positive experiences.

Personally, acknowledging and embracing the impermanence of life has given me a deeper appreciation of the present and a complete acceptance of the here and now. It motivates me to cherish my loved ones, seize the opportunities I encounter, and prioritize what truly matters.

As an entrepreneur, what is the one thing you do over and over and recommend everyone else do?

Embrace hobbies. Personally, I’m deeply involved in weightlifting and boxing, and I make it a point to train regularly. While I’m not suggesting everyone should become a weightlifter or a boxer, I strongly believe that everyone should allocate time for their passions, whatever they may be.

What is one strategy that has helped you grow your business?

Networking is a key aspect that is often overlooked, but it’s crucial for building both personal connections and business opportunities. Unfortunately, many people tend to shy away from networking, especially in the aftermath of the coronavirus pandemic when social interactions reduced.

Despite the challenges, we must recognize the value networking brings. Personally, networking has played a fundamental role in my success and the success of First Capital Real Estate.

It is essential for established business owners to advocate for networking as a vital tool in fostering the growth of future entrepreneurs’ ventures in the years ahead.

What is one failure you had as an entrepreneur, and how did you overcome it?

Reflecting on the past, there have been instances where I overlooked business aspects that were evident. While not outright failures, neglecting to act on intuitive feelings likely resulted in missed opportunities. 

Nevertheless, I have consistently avoided complacency, leaving no room for regret in that regard. It is intriguing to observe how others may have seized opportunities I might have let slip to some extent.

What is one business idea that you’re willing to give away to our readers?

What is one business idea that you’re willing to give away to our readers
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I believe it’s time for a significant transformation in the wine-making and alcohol industry. I envision a shift towards businesses that cater to the evolving preferences of future generations of wine enthusiasts.

There is substantial potential for high-end wineries and vineyards to concentrate on zero or low-alcohol wines. While such wines are not a novelty, they predominantly occupy the lower and middle segments of the market.

Initiating a substantial venture to alter this landscape would demand significant investment, but there are ample investment opportunities available for the taking.

What is the best $100 you recently spent? What and why?

Just last month, I invested $80 in a premium travel pillow. While there are plenty of acceptable options for just $20, I recognize that an $80 version might appear extravagant.

However, the noticeable difference in quality is significant. Importantly, the version I selected features a clever asymmetric design that ensures I can easily find a comfortable position every time I use it.

Similarly, I recently started spending a bit more, but still under $100, on priority boarding when flying. Nowadays, whenever priority boarding is an option, I always take advantage of it. Given my frequent travels, I used to opt for priority boarding only occasionally.

However, I am now convinced of its benefits and will never pass up the chance to board more quickly when it’s available.

What is one piece of software or a web service that helps you be productive?

I’ve relied on Trello since 2014 and can’t recommend it enough. I find myself suggesting it to someone at least once a week. Trello excels at organizing and prioritizing tasks, projects, and workflows. 

What sets it apart from many other products is its intuitive and highly visual approach. Additionally, it seamlessly integrates with other services I appreciate, like Google Drive and Slack.

What is the one book that you recommend our community should read and why?

What is the one book that you recommend our community should read and why
Source: google

One Billion Americans: The Case for Thinking Bigger” by Matthew Yglesias delves into the subject of population growth, advocating for the benefits of embracing larger populations to drive substantial economic prosperity. 

I highly recommend it to those seeking a thought-provoking perspective on the implications of population growth for both businesses and society.

What is your favorite quote?

“In both business and life, the journey holds greater significance than the destination. It encompasses the lessons learned, the triumph over challenges, and the achieved growth. It involves building relationships, cultivating a collaborative culture, and shaping a collective vision. 

Embracing diversity, fostering creativity, and empowering individuals to realize their full potential are essential. Balancing short-term gains with long-term sustainability, aligning decisions with values, and adapting to a changing world are crucial. Business extends beyond profits; it’s about making a positive impact on people’s lives and the world we inhabit.” – Indra Nooyi

Key Learnings:

Establish a daily routine that suits you and adhere to it confidently. Prioritize personal well-being consistently, even when pursuing crucial professional objectives. Proactively bring ideas to fruition, taking immediate action rather than postponing. 

Acknowledge and welcome the impermanence of life to foster a profound appreciation for the present. Avoid complacency; instead, seize every opportunity that comes your way.

Conclusion:

Suneet Singal, the visionary CEO of First Capital Real Estate, shares insights on the evolution of his entrepreneurial journey spanning diverse sectors.

Advocating a proactive approach, he emphasizes the importance of family, a consistent routine, and networking in driving personal and professional success.

His perspective on embracing impermanence, balancing well-being, and envisioning a transformative shift in the alcohol industry adds depth to his entrepreneurial philosophy, resonating with a holistic and impactful business ethos.

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