"He's got to be a marketing genius or he doesn't know what the heck he is doing," Trujillo exclaims as they begin their friendly chat.
Villa was not a marketing major in college, but he does have a BA in Art and Design from Santa Clara University's Art Department. Villa attributes his immense growth in the field to his professors, but his love of art stemmed from his earliest memories as a child. He also received a BS in Sociology from SCU which Villa says really opened his eyes to the way groups of people define themselves and how that relates to their interaction with the media.
"I love the name "Fúchila Fresheners. If you get then you get it and you think its funny. It makes you laugh," says Villa. A former designer at Apple, Villa thought of the name "Fúchila" while sitting in his second office (a.k.a. the bathroom). "Fúchila" is a colloquial term in Spanish used when something is off-putting or smells bad. He thought the word was so funny he just had to come up with a product for it. So he did and Fúchila Fresheners was born.
Villa doesn't just want these air fresheners to be seen as a disposable product, he believes people will want to collect them and see them as a little piece of art hanging from their rear view mirror. Villa feels that Fúchila Fresheners taps into the nostalgia of our childhood and can make us smile everyday during our commute, something he says no gas station air freshener can do now.
No gas station air freshener ni que nada!
Villa plans on expanding the line to include other Chicano and Latino iconic imagery such as papel picado, piñatas, pan dulce and more. He also hopes to collaborate with local artists to create limited edition collections as a way to provide the community with an easy-to-consume form of art.
"So it was all you. You did it alone?" asked Trujillo. Villa laughs and responds quickly that his wife and his family inspired and motivated him to follow his dream of becoming an entrepreneur. "My wife also helps me with the packaging and shipping" says Villa. "You mean with all the real work!" laughs Trujillo.
Villa also focused on his philanthropic vision of the future for Fúchila Fresheners. He says he has started building the funds for a Fúchila Familia Scholarship aimed at empowering the young artists and designers of the future. He sees philanthropy as a vital component for our success as a Comunidad del Valle.
You can view the entire interview in English and Spanish below. Be sure to share follow Fúchila Fresheners on social media. Please help spread the word and share this article. Gracias!