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Category: Business

Canada’s best entrepreneurs and business people have succeeded, failed, and learned a ton along the way. Now it’s time to hear their stories.

August 8, 2017

Wild Tea Kombucha - Why Athletes Make Great Entrepreneurs

Emily Baadsvik and Brigette Freel are co-founders of Wild Tea Kombucha, but they seem like an unlikely pair to start a business together. One is a former Olympic Team Member, the other is a former government worker - but their shared love of Kombucha led them to flip off the status quo, and instead pursue the entrepreneurial life.

July 24, 2017

Wave Accounting - Build Your Small Business Through Elbow Grease Marketing

James Lochrie is the co-founder of Wave Accounting, and had a crucial insight less than a decade ago: for many entrepreneurs, accounting is one of the worst parts of running a business, and very few people want to pay for something they don't really want to do in the first place.

James took this insight and turned it into Wave Accounting, a business that has grown to serving over 2 million customers with an innovative "pay-as-you-go" model. 

Of course, growth like Wave's usually leads to questions like "What's your secret?" and "How did you get such rapid growth after you launched?" For people looking for shortcuts though, James' answer is bound to be underwhelming: there are none. It was only through "elbow-grease" marketing, doing the hard work and hunting down your customers, wherever they are, that most companies are able to find success. There may be no silver bullet, but success is available to anybody who is looking for it, and are willing to put in the effort to get there.

July 10, 2017

Camp Brand Goods - Mastering Social Media & Taking the Leap Into Entrepreneurship

Camp Brand Goods is an apparel company that was originally designed to be a creative outlet, nothing more. Instead, it morphed into something far bigger, and took founders Connor Gould & Leslie McNeilly for an incredible ride. 

Over the course of our 45 minute interview, we sit down with Camp to chat about how they were able to amass over 165,000 followers on Instagram, what it's like to turn your passion project into a full-time gig, and much more.

June 26, 2017

Keith Driver - The Undiscovered World of Agricultural Entrepreneurship

Keith Driver is a social justice entrepreneur, whose goal is to help create businesses that feed the 7 billion people on the planet. The agricultural world is not always assumed to be hyper-entrepreneurial, but according to Keith, those who ignore it do so at their own peril. We sat down with Keith to talk about the opportunity the ag-world provides, and how Keith has been able to learn from failure on his path to success.

June 12, 2017

Amanda Hehr - How to Go From Wantrepreneur to Entrepreneur

Amanda Hehr is the Co-Founder of Cru Juice, UNDRCARD Boxing, and VP of Alberta Operations at the BC-based JuSu Bar. An entrepreneur for less than 5 years, Amanda dreamed of starting her own business for years, but for a long time felt like she didn't have the skills necessary to be successful. We chatted with Amanda about whether the barriers keeping her from starting her own business were real or perceived, and how she was able to build Cru Juice into such an attractive acquisition target.

June 5, 2017

Patrick Lor - “Experience Comes from Success and Failure”

Patrick Lor is the Co-Founder of iStockPhoto, the stock photography behemoth that was acquired by Getty Images in the mid-2000s, and sent Pat head first into the world of investing into Canadian startups. Today, Pat is a Managing Partner at 500 Startups, a Silicon Valley-based accelerator investing into Canadian startups.

Bootkik sat down with Pat to learn a little bit more about the story of iStockPhoto, what investors look for in a startup, and how high potential businesses can get the attention of investors.

May 29, 2017

Advertiise - “The shotgun approach won’t work anymore”

Meet Mark Vella, Founder of the "AirBnB of advertising", Advertiise. A serial entrepreneur from Sydney, Australia, Advertiise is quickly becoming a global platform set to overhaul the advertising industry. We sat down with Mark to chat about the back story behind Advertiise, how to build a global tech platform, and the way digital advertising has turned the marketing world upside down.

May 22, 2017

Suzanne West - “I realized I wasn’t making a big enough difference”

Suzanne West is an energy entrepreneur and visionary, who is on a mission to change the world. Specifically, she is building a business that values three things: people, planet, and profit. After spending time with Sir Richard Branson, Suzanne realized that, while successful, she hasn't made as much of a difference as she could, which didn't sit right with her.  Over the course of our 50 minute interview with her, we tackle the vision behind Imaginea Energy, the potential for clean energy in Alberta, and how to share your vision with employees and customers.

May 15, 2017

Baby Gourmet - “Every Entrepreneur Has a Story”

Jen Carlson is the co-founder of Baby Gourmet, an organic baby food company from Alberta that has gone from Farmer's Market to 30% market share in a highly competitive industry against heavyweights like Heinz and Gerber. What has been Jen's biggest advantage? Sure, her planning orientation, and bold vision help, but it's been her ability to craft an exciting story that her customers can unite around that has allowed Baby Gourmet to rise so rapidly in such a short period of time.

May 8, 2017

Uber - “The Story of Uber is a Calgary Story”

Uber, the ubiquitous ride-sharing app worth billions of dollars, may be associated primarily with San Francisco, but at its heart it's a Calgarian story, according to Uber's Western Canada GM, Ramit Kar. We sat down with Ramit to learn about Uber's origins, some of the hilarious marketing campaigns Uber ran in its early days, and what the process of figuring out its business model was like.