Mobile Business Opportunities of Entrepreneurs

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Here’s a great example of the interesting and innovative business ideas that can be brought to life in a truck. Edmonton man, Fadi Farhat opened up a mobile barber shop in response to increasing brick and mortar rent costs in downtown Edmonton. The barber shop on wheels allows him to maintain competitive prices on quick haircuts. 

At Venture Food Trucks we have been seeing this phenomenon more and more. Originally, it was about food trucks. Then the inquiries started rolling in – boutiques, nail salons, pet grooming, and hair salons are just a few of the concepts we have seen go mobile in the last year or so. 

If you have any custom truck or trailer concepts, share them with us. If you are an entrepreneur or are considering working for yourself, the mobile business is a great platform to get yourself going with lower start-up costs and high exposure. We would love to help you bring your great ideas to fruition. We offer creative consulting, financing options, and worldwide delivery. 

Check out these articles on some cool mobile businesses operating in Canada right now:  

Mobile Barber Cut and Run:

http://globalnews.ca/news/3066752/need-a-cut-on-the-run-edmonton-man-opens-citys-first-mobile-barbershop

The Loft Girls:

http://www.kingstonregion.com/whatson-story/6564485-mobile-fashion-truck-loft-girls-set-to-launch-in-kingston

Napanee BIA awards

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As it so happened, the Greater Napanee Business Gala’s newest award was presented to one of the town’s oldest establishments.

Founded in 1876, Lennox and Addington Mutual Insurance was a perfect fit for the Milestone Award, which was the final honour handed out during the town’s annual salute to its businesses. Presented by Napanee Chamber of Commerce director Art Dolan, the award is given to a business with a track record of long-standing success in the community, strong community involvement, ability to adapt in a changing business world and to implement innovative business strategies.

What started as a group of farmers banding together to establish an insurance policy against fires in the village of Newburgh back in March of 1876 has grown into one of the town’s most successful and longest tenured enterprises.

In his opening remarks of the ceremony, which was held Thursday at the Strathcona Paper Centre, Greater Napanee mayor Gord Schermerhorn made note of the diversity of the businesses that were being awarded.

“We just thank you for doing business in our municipality,” said Schermerhorn. “Downtown or wherever you may be, council supports you and I think the municipality as a whole supports you. I get quite upset when some of friends say they leave town to do their shopping and I say we have everything right here, why the heck would you have to go anywhere else?”

The mayor’s comments were backed up by the wide range of businesses that earned hardware on the night.

Ellena’s cafe/restaurant was the top awarded establishment on the evening as owner Ellena Harris-Fleury earned the Napanee Business Improvement Area’s Business of the Year Award while employee Bree Williams was the Greater Napanee Youth Employee Award recipient.

Harris-Fleury was awarded the BIA’s top prize not only for her hard work and successful business practices, but also for her community involvement as the host venue for the Starstop Concert Series.

As for Williams, she rewarded for her ability to maintain good grades while demonstrating a great work ethic and being community-minded. She was presented with a cheque for $250 and a letter of reference from the mayor.

Claire Bouvier and Niki Hodgskiss earned the Young Entrepreneur Award for their Loft Girls business. The award goes to individuals under the age of 30 that have demonstrated entrepreneurial success and a commitment to the community. They have shown effective leadership, profitability and business growth. Though based in Napanee, their mobile fashion truck can travel to various markets. Featuring the latest in eco-fashion, their business model includes a 90 square-foot shopping space located in the back of a pink truck. Their goal is to bring the latest fashion trends to rural communities. Loft Girls officially launched in July with help from the Prince Edward Lennox Addington County Community Futures Development Corporation. In just a few short months the business has already been featured on CBC and in the National Post.

Because the entire community as a whole earning the coveted five blooms score from Ontario’s Community in Blooms, there were plenty of options for the Communities in Bloom Award. Ultimately voters went with Dr. Paul DeMan Dentistry. Owners Paul and Meghan recently completed a one year renovation of their office, adding several colourful plants to their outside landscaping.

Duncan Burke of Burke’s Printing was presented with the Chamber of Commerce Business of the Year award. He was selected based on his business growth, excellent custom service and environmental leadership over the last year.

At the close of the ceremony a moment of silence was observed for Chamber of Commerce manager BJ McDonald, who passed away earlier this month.

“BJ was a very family orientated person, he was very proud of his wife and kids,” said Art Dolan, director of the Chamber of Commerce.

He was noted for his tireless devotion to the business community and helping many of the entrepreneurs in attendance to help get their ventures up off the ground.

 

Benny & Co. Brand New Truck

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The Relevancy of Food Trucks Today

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I was pleased and a little bit surprised when I saw the advertisement, for Royale paper towel come on TV the other day. Paper towel, a commonly used product, is being used in a food truck to demonstrate its effectiveness!

“Food Trucks” have existed for decades (who hasn’t enjoyed fries at a chip truck), picked up speed in the few years, and very recently become completely mainstream. The Royale ad is a testament to that. Not everyone owns a food truck – most people don’t – but it’s interesting, fresh and everyone knows what they are.
Thanks to the redefined use of food trucks, a new way of advertising has emerged. Companies are turning to these rolling billboards to demonstrate their products in nationwide mobile tours and using marketing trucks to do advertising blitzes that really are effective. If you think an experiential advertising truck might work for your business, get in touch with us!

Successful Entrepreneurs

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Niki here! I was asked to do a short segment on Entrepreneurs and why manufacturing, and doing business in Napanee in general, is great. This is a family business, and we started the same way that a lot of our food truck customers started their own business – hard work ethic, dedication, and a good idea! Watch the video to get an idea on how Venture Food Trucks was started.

The Office at Venture Food Trucks

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Will Hodgskiss in the nerve centre – A colourful office filled with family photos, achievements, and tacky (red and yellow) furniture. The food truck industry requires one who not only has a hard work ethic and an entrepreneurial spirit, but also a healthy imagination. That’s why it’s a good thing that Will Hodgskiss is at the helm of it all!
The Innovation Centre
At Venture Food Trucks, we have a huge manufacturing facility (30 000 sq. ft.) for trucks and carts, but we have room for other things too. A couple years ago, Will was approached to help launch the “Napanee Innovation Centre” and provide a home for it here at 212 Camden Road. This involved refurbishing an old school house, and creating a space where budding entrepreneurs could come and use technical equipment to create interesting projects (think 3d printers and laser cutters). The program continues to be a success. Will is also involved with PELA CFDC, where he mentors in a youth entrepreneurship program (E.Y.E) held at the innovation centre.