Honouring BC’s Top Small Businesses: 8th Annual Successful You Awards

Small Business BC honoured British Columbia’s top small businesses at the 8th annual Successful You Awards on Tuesday, March 29th

The networking event and ceremony took place at the Hyatt Regency Vancouver with over 300 attendees including sponsors IBC, BC Hydro, WorkSafe BC, CGA and TELUS.

Since its inception in 2003, over 1,600 entrepreneurs have participated in the awards across retail trade, manufacturing, technology services, arts, entertainment and recreation.   Each year the awards have served as a great launch point for many small businesses, offering them recognition, networking opportunities and a continued relationship with Small Business BC.

“We were thrilled with the quality of nominees and the array of communities they represented,” said Small Business BC CEO George Hunter.  “In fact, the talent pool was so deep we even had a tie in one category. The five award winners in 2011 are a group of innovative entrepreneurs who make up some of BC’s finest small businesses.”

By the end of last year Small Business BC received over 100 nominations from 32 communities for the 2011 awards.  With the top ten businesses selected through an online voting system, the successful nominees then completed applications forms and awaited the judge’s verdict. The top five finalists were then asked to present a ten minute business pitch to a panel of industry judges, either in person at the Small Business BC Education Centre or via video conference.

Moira Stilwell, Parliamentary Secretary for Industry, Research and Innovation to the Minister of Jobs, Tourism and Innovation attended the ceremony and was impressed with the five winners.  “It’s important that we recognize small business excellence because of what this sector does for our province,” said Stilwell. “The entrepreneurial spirit of small business propels our society forward with innovation and creativity, and they are the largest provider of private sector jobs for B.C. families.”

The Winners

  • Best Company: Quicktech Computer Consulting Inc. – Vancouver
    An information technology consulting company specializing in managed I.T. services for small to medium sized businesses.  Quicktech started out providing residential onsite support but switched to corporate clients three years ago.
  • Best Concept: Hapi Foods Group Inc. – Sechelt
    In less than 2 years, with a $28k investment, Corin and Brian Mullins have created a million-dollar company based in Sechelt on the Sunshine Coast. Following and appearance Dragons’ Den in November, the company sales rose from 10 to 20 orders a day to 1,000.
  • Best Employer: Tasktop Technologies – Vancouver
  • Tasktop has never lost an employee, largely because it won’t trade off the organization’s culture for business and their ability to be flexible with the changing needs of employees. Co-founders Mik Kersten and Gail Murphy provide task-focused interface technology for the computer programming industry.
  • Best Green Business: Tie:
    Down to Earth Health Shop – Fort Nelson
    Kym Gillet and husband Kevin Friesen built the Down to Earth Health Shop using soy based insulation, coconut oil based wood finish and other eco friendly products — all in a community that doesn’t even have a recycling program.FROGBOX Inc. – Vancouver
    FROGBOX rents reusable moving boxes as a substitute for cardboard boxes. Entrepreneur Magazine named FROGBOX one of 10 “Hot Startups for 2010” –the only Canadian company on that list.

View photos from the 2011 Successful You Awards.