Messi saves local business from going bankrupt

By Thanh Quy   February 25, 2024 | 05:18 pm PT
Guillermo Fernandez was able to maintain his business in Argentina when his BBQ grills began flying off the shelves after receiving an order from Lionel Messi.

The Argentinian football superstar used Instagram to order the grills from Fernandez, who owns Lebohierro, a BBQ grill and appliance manufacturer in Buenos Aires, Argentina, last December.

"Recently I bought a grill from you and you sent it to Miami. Can I buy a bigger one and can you send it to the same address?" Messi texted Fernandez.

When Fernandez received the message, he couldn't believe his eyes. It took him a while to realize that his customer had 499 million followers on Instagram.

Gia đình Fernandez và hai lò nướng cung cấp cho Messi. Ảnh: Instagram

The Fernandez family and two BBQ grills for Messi. Photo by Instagram

"It’s my pleasure and honor to make a grill for you, Leo," Fernandez replied.

Fernandez sent him a bigger grill along with a gift – a smaller, customized grill with the image of Messi celebrating a goal and three stars symbolizing Argentina’s three World Cup titles.

With Messi’s approval, Fernandez posted the screenshot of Messi’s message online and received positive feedback. Labohierro's sales increased worldwide and its Instagram account grew to hundreds of thousands of followers.

According to Argentina news site Ole, the pandemic greatly affected Labohierro's business. Just before Messi placed the order, Fernandez was thinking about closing his business.

"Overseas sales saved me. Messi saved me and let me pay the workers. That's the light at the end of the tunnel," Fernandez said.

Last year, after Messi placed an order, a churro production facility in Rosario, Argentina also reinvigorated its business and opened stores in other cities.

Messi led Argentina to win the 2022 World Cup, the country's first world title in 36 years. The 36-year-old forward also owns a record of eight Ballon d’Or trophies and is considered by many to be the greatest player in history. Messi currently plays for Inter Miami in the U.S.

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