by Taylor Batson —
Rick Farwell spent most of his time as a child watching his family operate their own businesses. His uncles owned laundromats and repair businesses, his father owned his own liquor business and his grandmother owned one of the first Black-owned daycares in the city.
Since he was six years old, Farwell was able to observe the people that he loved the most make a living for themselves through the fruits of their own labor. It was around that time that he started to realize that he wanted to follow in his family’s footsteps and be an entrepreneur.
“I think it was in my blood. During that time, that was all I was looking at,” said Farwell. “Older people in my family, people that I look up to, are their own boss.”
Now, Farwell is a second-generation entrepreneur.
Farwell was inspired to go into the liquor business specifically after watching his dad run his own liquor business when he was younger. When Farwell was in the fifth grade, his dad opened his first liquor store, and since then, Farwell has worked hard to be in the position that he is in today.
After completing high school, Farwell pursued a college degree to become more knowledgeable in how to navigate entrepreneurship, and after graduating college, he went into business with his father.
In 1995, Farwell partnered with his dad and opened Pyramid Liquor” in Downtown Memphis. Since then, the liquor business has been a passion project for him for the last 35 years.
Although he grew up watching his dad, it was at this time that Farwell learned the ins and outs of how to truly run a business. He was also able to apply the skills he learned in college to become more active in the business side of everything.
While it is his passion, being an entrepreneur is not easy. Freedom is one thing that Farwell enjoys, but one of the hardest parts for him is the amount of work he has to put in to keep his company rolling smoothly.
“I dislike wearing all the hats, but it’s part of it,” said Farwell.
Since his businesses mean so much to him, it was important to Farwell to go the extra mile and learn how to operate his business in every position. He wanted to be sure that he understood each role before hiring someone else for the job.
The work Farwell has put into his businesses for the last 35 years has continued to pay off. Earlier this year, Farwell opened a new store in the same neighborhood that he grew up in.
Double R Wine, Spirits & More was opened in the Raleigh-Frayser area. As a kid, Farwell saw this same area thrive in more ways than one.
After a period of economic decline and an increase in crime and poverty, the Raleigh-Frayser area is back on the rise, and it was important to Farwell that he was part of the resurgence of the neighborhood that meant so much to him growing up.
He believes that even though the household income in the area is not the same as other areas his businesses were in, the people are the same. It was important to Farwell to give the people the store he felt they deserved; one with a positive shopping experience.
Why he would go into the Raleigh-Frayser area and invest in such a nice business? Farwell had a simple answer.
It is now Farwell’s mission to bring high-quality services and products to his community while also educating them in the process.