“Failure makes you stronger or it screws you up.” There were no half measures for Félix Revuelta, 77 years old, a self-made businessman in a Catalonia that he longs for – that dynamism, alas – and to which he arrived in 1966 from Logroño to be a Civil Guard, like his father.

Your first service? Transfer to Mallorca a man convicted of murder in a small cabin on the Barcelona-Palma ferry. “All night without sleeping a wink, hours and hours in maximum tension, with machine guns.” Or the road trip to Madrid of the detained Juan Vila Reyes, president of Espanyol, in the middle of the Matesa scandal.

From Benemérita’s transition to founding Kiluva and the Naturhouse Group in 1986 and 1992, respectively, the book The failure is the beginning of success (Deusto publishing house), reflections and talks collected by the journalist Pedro Luis Gómez.

Anglicisms, few. There is a lot of imprint of underdeveloped Spain, which sharpened so many ingenuities and where the culture of effort was not an option but an obligation. From his childhood in Logroño, Revuelta arrives in Barcelona with an image that has never left him: the queue in front of the Cocina Económica, pure charity.

Years later – things of life – Revuelta would forge her business in dietetics. From post-war thinness to the concept of feeling good, which he arrived at by chance. He combined the Civil Guard with the Faculty of Economics, under the tutelage of a lieutenant colonel whose pedagogy was simple: failed subject, twelve-hour singing guard in a sentry box on the Model.

–Military education is fundamental –he explains by phone–, that is why I defend the reintroduction of military service, not as long as before. It gives pride, it gives unity, it teaches solidarity.

A book by Lee Iacocca, the man who revolutionized the automobile industry in the United States, guided him through business life. He leaves Benemérita and joins a public company, Térmicas del Besós, and by chance of life he receives a proposal from Dr. Antonio Puigvert: to take over Dietisa, a loss-making family business. He accepts, with a 30% stake. And he makes it profitable, to the point that it was acquired by a French multinational.

A pinch of millions. Bahamas? He founded his own diet firm. From dieting as a symptom of poor health, to dieting as a symptom of the opposite.

–How did you make that click?

–In the United States, the most advanced country then. There they were already with diets and vitamins. They always came with boxes of pills. Do you know why? The person who gets sick does not get paid.

With his wife Luysa, who died, and two children (Vanesa and Kylian, hence Kiluva), he ended up creating Naturhouse in 1992, two years after the liberalization of dietetics, a company that is listed on the stock market and currently has 400 stores. and 1,600 franchises.

He has tried not to be a “castrating” business father. “Children cannot be forced to do anything. I was hungry, my children were not. I only speak French and that way; she, six languages, and he, five. You have to let them even if you see that they are going to hit you.”

Revuelta regrets the poor culture of effort. “Goodism harms, failure wakes up. “We are cultivating lazy people.”

–Do you still have a crush on Catalonia (you founded Societat Civil Catalana)?

–My relationship remains the same, that of love. I have been here for 55 years, I met my wife here and my children were born, I love Catalonia with all my heart. Return? Some things have to happen. That there is legal security and that there are no such extreme politicians who harm it. Because they harm her, eh?