Jānis UzāriņšPhoto: Gunta Matisone/Latvijas Radio

Return to Valmiera: Now I'm a millionaire!

Valmiera native Jānis Uzāriņš has returned to Latvia after seven years in England, and regaining the feeling of home along with his family and career makes him feel like a millionaire, according to a Latvian Radio broadcast on February 13.

Uzāriņš returned to his property management company that maintains city territories during the summer and mows the grass, but during the winter they clear the snow and do additional jobs. Last summer his company helped the Valmiera municipality tidy up the former Valmiera Meat Factory territory, which has been vacant and overgrown for several years.

“I alway like this: you drive in, it's been overgrown, you tidy it up, and the view afterwards - it's so satisfying! One thing is the work, the other is satisfaction,” said Uzāriņš.

When he returned he tried paid employment and various entrepreneurial ventures before coming to property management. This winter was quite relaxing for Uzāriņš and his team due to the lack of snow. In one sense it's financially tough, but at the same time it means the summer is longer, which is generally their busy season. But that doesn't mean he sits around doing nothing.
Photo: No privātā arhīva
Photo: No personīgā arhīva
Photo: No personīgā arhīva
Photo: No personīgā arhīva

“I'm currently training for the tractor driving licenses, over the summer I also completed welding courses. I've always been attracted to practical things, and if you can get government support, why not make use of it,” said Uzāriņš.

He first went to London during his high school summer vacation. After high school he thought he would go make money for a few months, but ended up staying seven years. He worked in a hotel, in the property industry, and met his next wife who is also from Valmiera. When the first of three daughters was born he realized that Valmiera is where his heart is.

“I look at that time as a meaningful experience, but the quality of life, I think it's all much higher here, because there you're a guest. Right now I'm a millionaire in the sense of happiness, that I have a super family, that I have three healthy children and there's nothing more important,” said Uzāriņš.

A busy new season is soon starting for the newly returning entrepreneur, but the calmer winter has given him a chance to improve his skills and develop future plans.