Founded in 2012 in Vancouver, Canada, we are a team of creative professionals integrating strategy, design, and technology into cross-cultural branding and marketing innovations. We strive to bring our talent and expertise to ambitious clients who share a global vision and anticipate building strong connections with their audience through ingenious brand aesthetics, creative marketing campaigns, and frontier business management technologies. We are PLAYHEADS, your branding and marketing specialist in the Digital Age.
In Business Since 2012
Best Immigrant Entrepreneur
Please tell us your personal story and about your business. How you started, and how you have overcome challenges.
My name is Nick Ma, founder of PLAYHEADS. Now one of the top-rated branding agencies within the Chinese-speaking communities across Metro Vancouver, PLAYHEADS didn’t hit the ground running when it first opened its doors at 306 Water Street in Gastown as a street fashion boutique in 2012. On quite the contrary, we closed the shop for good in three years due to a lack of deep understanding of what entrepreneurship really is about. To be fair, when you’re 23, passion, dream, and meaning override everything else. When I confided in my friends about the difficulties of entrepreneurship, I unexpectedly gained a lot of "empathy". Apparently, I’m not the only one struggling with these obstacles. I suddenly started to realize that market, capital, business management are troubling countless young people who have the same dream of starting a business as I did. For international students, these problems also include language barriers, culture shock, ideological differences, so on and so forth. I wonder how many young people with entrepreneurial dreams are discouraged from this path due to these barriers. As confused and lost as I did, deep down I’d always believed that in the middle of difficulty also lies opportunity. So after PLAYHEADS, which started as a clothing store waved goodbye to the community in 2015, the idea of starting a branding agency occurred to me. The goal was to help newcomers to create their own businesses as they settle in. Nine years later, we carry great pride in serving our community as we once committed to.
Why do you deserve to win the Best Immigrant Entrepreneur award?
The biggest motivation for me to apply for this award is not to gain recognition for myself, but rather, to present the works PLAYHEADS has accomplished as a team in promoting cross-cultural collaborations and building mutual understandings among different ethnic communities. PLAYHEADS is a hub where entrepreneurial ideas and creative inspirations collide, business ventures and strong brand philosophies intertwine. We’re committed to helping local businesses to succeed both financially and culturally in the years to come. Nine years strong, we're as excited today to contribute to our community as Day One.