From a barbershop that sells suspenders and a lake-floating convenience store to a life celebrant for baby-naming ceremonies, this year’s Enterprize Challenge finalists have some unique and inspiring business ideas set to enhance the Okanagan’s already impressive entrepreneurial landscape.
Community Futures North Okanagan, which hosts the annual Enterprize Challenge, has announced the first five of 10 finalists competing to share nearly $35,000 in prizes.
“This year’s participants have brought forward some really unique and innovative business ideas as well as some traditional business ideas with a new spin,” says Leigha Horsfield, executive director, Community Futures North Okanagan. “The judges have definitely had their work cut out for them.”
The 2017 Enterprize Challenge, now in its third year, brought forth 23 contestants—the most ever. Judges have now released their list of 10 finalists, and here are the names and business descriptions of the first five:
1. Susan Cairnie, Earth to Sky Celebrant Ceremonies
As a certified Life-Cycle Celebrant and ordained inter-faith minister, Susan Cairnie creates and officiates custom ceremonies for weddings, sacred unions, blessing ways, vow renewals, baby-naming ceremonies and more. Earth to Sky Celebrant Ceremonies caters to a growing demand for an alternative to standard religious and civil ceremonies.
2. Leanne Mollica, The Rumpus Raft
What if you could order a roll of toilet paper or a tall iced tea while you’re boating on Kalamalka or Okanagan Lake? The Rumpus Raft brings boaters all the hot day necessities of a convenience store right on the water.
3. Elle Bourcet, Ritual Barbershop
This Main Street Vernon shop will offer complete unisex barber services as well as high end men’s retail items such as pocket squares, suspenders, neck ties and bow ties.
4. Rob Raybould, Sellable
Which properties have a higher probability of listing for sale within the year? Sellable is a predictive real estate search engine that uses analytics and industry trends to help real estate agents focus marketing on and grow their inventory of houses likely to sell soon.
5. Rebecca Hackman, BITES Creative Catering
Whether you need appetizers for a party or an intimate dinner for just a few, this catering service brings gourmet organic and local dishes right to your door. BITES Creative Catering can take care of everything, from menu planning and shopping to decorating and cleaning up.
The next five finalists will be named next week, and the top three winners will be announced at the 2017 Enterprize Challenge Tradeshow and Awards event being held at Okanagan College April 13.
Tradeshow begins at 4 pm and the awards will begin at 5 pm.
To learn more, visit EnterprizeChallenge.ca. The Community Futures Enterprize Challenge is presented by VantageOne Credit Union.