Pita Pit

Darin Gentes has been serving the people of Winnipeg healthy options for 15 years. Being a franchisee of Pita Pit is very exciting and rewarding, being able to help people with healthy options, but also great tasting products.

When attempting to buy a second location this year, I encountered a lot of obstacles trying to get financing in place. With the help of the LRCC grant, I was able to secure financing and finalize this purchase. Without them, I never would have been able to expand my business to a second location. LRCC was also very helpful with recommendations for other sources of financing for me when some extra expenses occurred. Throughout the whole purchase order, Karen and Tyler were always available and ready to help with any questions I had. The first 3 months of the business, I've been able to market the surrounding area with the help of LRCC, which is helping my store achieve greater sales and new customers.

A big thank you to everyone at LRCC for making my expansion possible and successful.

Darin Gentes, Owner

Freshii Sage Creek

I'm Laura Mulvena, owner of Freshii located in Sage Creek. We have been open since November 2016. I always knew that I wanted to own and operate my own business, I just needed to figure out one that aligned with my personal values and goals.

I have over 10 years of management in various roles in various retail companies. It was then when I was doing a large amount of traveling with my one regional role that I came across Freshii. Being a health-conscious individually I know how hard it is to eat healthy when you are on the go. Freshii intrigued me, along with the fact that the menu is lead by an in-house nutritionist which you will never find in a typical fast-casual restaurant.

After extensive research and going through the whole Freshii franchise application process, they deemed me a candidate to purchase the franchise.

Since being open we have seen business growth of about 30% in the first 6 months of operating. We are looking to be involved in as many community events that align with our brand and values and really help citizens of the world live better by making healthy food convenient and affordable. Freshii is one of the fastest growing franchises in the world and I am hoping to grow my 1 store into multiple locations.

It would not be possible for me to achieve any of this success without the support and guidance of the LRCC. They were with me every step of the way offering business advice whenever I needed it. I highly encourage anyone to utilize this great program, you will not be disappointed!

Laura Mulvena, Owner

Kid City

I'm Deena Caplette, owner of Kid City, Manitoba's Ultimate Indoor Play Center! Since I can remember, I have always had an entrepreneurial spirit and dreamed of being a business owner. I had many business ideas, but it wasn't until I thought of Kid City that my passion was truly ignited.

Kid City is an indoor play center for children ages 1 to 13. Our massive 3-level play structure features; slides, tunnels, ropes, mazes, trolley glide, plus many more activities that will inspire social and physical development within your child. We even have a separate toddler area just for the little ones. In addition, for enjoyment we have a bouncy castle, foosball and air hockey table! Come visit us for drop in play, birthday parties, field trips and more. We have 2 locations in Winnipeg; 801 Century Street & 550 Archibald Street. We also have a 3rd location in Portage la Prairie.

I can't begin to thank LRCC enough for helping make my dreams a reality. Going through LRCC's program was seamless and extremely beneficial. It was a great jumpstart for me as a Métis business owner to have qualified for the LRCC's Business Non-Repayable Equity Contribution Fund. LRCC has many contacts and connections and I encourage entrepreneurs to reach out to them for guidance. Thanks again for all your support. Today, I am the proud owner of 3 Kid City's and am forever thankful to LRCC for taking a leap of faith on me.

Many thanks,
Deena Caplette

Mr. Gravel Inc.

Mr. Gravel Inc. is a Sand and Gravel supplier in Eastern Manitoba supplying aggregates to Winnipeg and surrounding areas. Mr. Gravel Inc. started by the efforts of 2 individuals, Gil Ross and Matt Kiemeney. When starting a company as a partnership, you must have total trust and confidence in each other, both must bring something to the table. Gil and I put everything on the line to start this business, so we have no choice in making this business venture a successful one.

There will be times when starting up a business that things seem impossible, being financial, legal or personal etc. you will have to make sacrifices. You must confront each problem one at a time, and focus all efforts into solving one before you move to another. don't kid yourself there will always be another issue arising that will have to be addressed.

By using all available resources such as internet, friends, family, financial institutions, LRCC, Business planners, etc. you will find solutions to issues that you will find along the way. You must be open and listen to all options, work together to make sure that you can start the business and maintain a longevity in whatever business you are in. Constant communication with each other and clientele is very important in any industry. Search people within the industry, and ask them questions on how they started and how they are doing it now. We had a rapport with a few companies in the industry and learned a lot of useful information from them, and gained some customers at the same time.

LRCC was the focus for us to start our business. With the help of Karen Catellier and the staff at LRCC in partnership with financial institutions, we were able to get the funding we needed to acquire equipment to get our business going. LRCC's application process makes you go through information that you may not have though of initially, but it had great value for us in giving us better information on how our business will be successful.

LRCC was always available to help us when we had questions. Don't be afraid to ask a lot of questions.

We have now been operational since June 2017, our customer base is increasing weekly and our goal is for that to never end. Gil and I are focused on growth for the long run. We know that LRCC will be there for us as we continue to grow. We are forever thankful and grateful for what LRCC has done for us.

Thank you,
Gil Ross, Matt Kiemeney

Nonsuch Brewing Co.

We at Nonsuch Brewing Co. want to make our fellow Manitobans proud. Our dream of starting a high-end micro-brewery without any major capital was not only ambitious but impossible without the help of LRCC.

We began our business with a clear vision of our final destination but we needed help taking our first steps. LRCC's financial support allowed us to invest in the foundation of our business from our business plan, equipment, and even marketing efforts.

We're very appreciative of this program and their wonderful team.

Pattyn Concrete

To be a successful entrepreneur, there are 3 things that are needed. Goals, hustle and help. In 2015 at the age of 23, I graduated college with a degree in entrepreneurship, I had big goals to do big things and I was ready to start Pattyn Concrete. I sought out the LRCC for help. The staff made sure I had what I needed to hit the ground running. Whether it was advice or mentorship, to the grant allowing me to purchase equipment needed to get the jobs done; the LRCC was an extremely valuable resource that allowed me to build a brand and grow the company to unforeseen heights in the last 2 1/2 years. The staff is still always there to answer any of my questions and send me in the right direction with other resources available that have helped me in my businesses.

We are very fortunate to have such a great program as business owners to help us take on the biggest challenges that come with running a business.

Steph Pattyn

Into The Blue

Two is better than one! Lyndon and Derrick Jameson, identical twins, realized their dream to be entrepreneurs in their chosen field of study and passion, marine biology. Now, in their 4th year of business as co-owners of a salt-water livestock and aquarium store, the two couldn't be more fulfilled. The Jameson Twins share the same interests and professional curriculum vitae and find it easy to deliver consistent quality customer service and messaging because of "the twin factor", a unique appreciation for each other.

The first year of business presented the usual and expected challenges around start-up capital, operating cash-flow, and learning marketing trends. Now, our regular customer and service client base have almost tripled in size and measurable growth continues to be observed and predicted. In the first year of business, Lyndon and Derrick were sole operators; owners, managers, installers, retail clerks, and janitors. Now, with the addition of four staff members Lyndon and Derrick are more available to do the things they're great at; servicing their clients and meeting new ones.

Their story doesn't end here, because they have a long list of ambitious projects to grow and develop Into The Blue/Jameson Saltwater Ecosystems Inc. Special marketing strategies, sales opportunities and infrastructure, and personal and technical public educational programs are also being planned in the near future. Lyndon and Derrick attribute their success to motivation, perseverance and financial and business support provided by the Louis Riel Capital Corporation (LRCC). The Into The Blue Team says: "Thanks LRCC for being there"!

GT Performance Hockey

The heartbeat of one's town is most often its arena. The Rink/Arena/Community Centre, whatever you choose to call it in your town, is a gathering place for all members of the community, whether it be as participants on the ice, as parents/grandparents or fans of the game.

Our goal in establishing GT Performance Hockey was to provide valuable year round skill building opportunities to both hockey and ringette players in the Eastman & Pembina Valley Regions. Traditionally players have had to travel to Winnipeg to seek instruction & ice time.

Located in the arena in St Malo Manitoba, we pride ourselves on being on the cutting edge of innovation not only with our instruction but also with the tools we use to accomplish our skills coaching. To that end, LRCC was instrumental in aiding us in acquiring the 1st sheet of synthetic ice of this size in Manitoba! With an area of 8000sq feet (half a rink), the surface allows players to get valuable skills training all summer and be ready to put those skills on display in the fall either for competitive regional teams or even at home in our communities. Our message is skill building is for everyone!

As a company, we continue to look at breaking new ground as we make ourselves available to Northern Communities beginning in January 2018. As Canadians, we take great pride in our triumphs on the ice and in our communities hockey is a unifying force. Our goal is to make skill development accessible to all communities, not only in Southeastern Manitoba but in communities that traditionally have not been serviced within the industry.

LRCC made the process less cumbersome for me, gave great advice on business planning, and ultimately I was able to better focus my efforts on the ice, instructing the future generation of hockey players in Southeastern Manitoba. We are truly blessed to have LRCC's support through our start up!

Skill building is for everyone.

Gerald Tetrault

Western Safety Sign

Western Safety Sign is a family owned and operated Sign manufacturing business. Since 1982 we have been committed to working with our Customers to improve their work environment, encourage safety, and promote their business by creating quality Signs. It is an exciting time for our Company with the third generation of our family taking the management reigns! With their fresh ideas and outlooks, our business continues to grow and expand through our focus on customer service, purchase of the newest technology in sign making manufacturing equipment and web based marketing.

One of our Company's Owners, Anita Bihun, was honored in 2013 to receive the City of Winnipeg's Lifetime Achievement Award from the Woman Business Owners of Manitoba. It was such a thrill to be recognized by business peers and awarded for our over 30 years of work in business. It was definitely one of the best days of our lives!

One of our goals over the past few years has been to create a comprehensive e-commerce website to reach new markets and to enable Customers to easily purchase Signs online. LRCC helped us see this goal come to fruition this year. We cannot thank LRCC enough for their support and interest in our Company. One of the points they made at our first meeting is that LRCC had not had the opportunity to work with such a long running Company as ours and they were very excited to do that. After a very long year of many, many hours of work, our new e-commerce website has been up and running since May. Without the financial assistance of LRCC, we would not have been able to put such a highly technical website in place. We are seeing online Sales increase each week and are very excited about the future of Western Safety Sign with this integral addition to our business.

Thank you LRCC!

Included photo is our Western Safety Sign team that participated in the "Batting Against Breast Cancer" event held in July 2017. We have been a Sign Sponsor of the event for many years and are happy to be able to give back to the Community through The Canadian Breast Cancer Foundation.

Style Bar

From a young girl, Regan always knew two things, that she wanted to run her own business and that she loved Fashion, and after working in retail for many years she decided that owning her own store was what she was going to do. She moved to LA and began school at The Fashion Institute of Design and Merchandising with her goal after graduation to move back home and finally open her store. Fast forward 9 years, 4 moves, and 3 careers, Style Bar opened its doors in Sept 2013.

Regan first reached out to LRCC when she first opened in 2013, and again 3 1/2 years later when Style Bar was ready to get to the next level. Style Bar is now able to take the next steps and expand into the ecommerce market thanks to the LRCC and all of their extremely knowledgeable and supportive staff. Style Bars online shop will be up and running in Sept 2017.

Regan was recently nominated by her peers for Manitoba's Women Entrepreneur of the year Award, as well took 1st place in LRCC's own Dragons Den style "Pitch Perfect" competition in 2014.

"Thank You for believing in Style Bar, and making this very daunting task of expansion easy and pain free. Without the guidance and support from the LRCC i wouldn't of been able to accomplish this expansion. I look forward to many more years of working with the LRCC, and to see where Style Bar will take me in the future"

Regan Greenwood, Owner

Aspire Dance Studios

From a very young age, Lindsie knew that dance was going to be a part of her life for a very long time. To what extent, was unknown. After many years of taking classes all over Winnipeg, Saskatoon and Mexico, assisting teaching classes at the age of 13 and teaching by the age of 17, it was evident that this was her passion. Lindsie taught dance for about 10 years before an opportunity came about and she jumped on it. With business guidance from her husband, Greg, support from her friends and family, a number of professionals in finance, legal and book keeping backgrounds, Lindsie was able to make a lifelong dream possible. This dream however, would not have been able to flourish without the extreme generosity and wealth of knowledge and support of the Louis Riel Capital Corporation.

From first contact with the LRCC it has been nothing but readily available and extremely helpful staff members to mentor me through the grant process. Keeping in touch with the LRCC and their events has also helped me network with other professionals and increase our marketing presence to expand in years to come. I would definitely recommend the Louis Riel Capital Corporation to anyone looking at starting or expanding a Métis business. Thank you to all the staff for guiding me through this process. I will definitely be keeping the LRCC close for all future business expansions.

Lindsie Dick, President

Luxe Barbeque Company

In July of 2015, we had an idea to bring a specialty BBQ retail store to Manitoba. We had great ideas, a short business plan, and a ton of ambition. We quickly realized that getting started would be an expensive and challenging venture.

With the support of LRCC and its team, we opened our doors April of 2016. The help that LRCC provided was invaluable, with a lot of debt, and in need of business upon opening, we had a huge marketing injection that helped us get our name and purpose out quickly to market. I strongly believe the start and continued success we have had would not have been possible without the help of LRCC.

I truly thank everyone that had a hand in helping us get the kick start we needed to become what we have today.

Prairie Berry

Prairie Berry Accepts Award for Best Farm Home Grounds in Manitoba

Meet Matt and Jen, owners of Prairie Berry! Prairie Berry is new to the market and excited to serve southern Manitoba with delicious strawberries at their u-pick and pre-pick strawberry farm.

Jen grew up on a farm and both Matt and Jen knew that they wanted to keep an element of farming in their lives. When the chance arose to purchase Jen's family 24- acre farm, they jumped on the opportunity to start their own strawberry farm. They knew there was a need for this in the area and what better way to spend time outdoors and create memories with their two children! In 2016 Prairie Berry opened their doors to the public with 5 acres of strawberries to pick from and the season was a great success.

They recently won the Award for the Best Farm Home Ground in Manitoba. Not only do they take pride in their strawberry fields but maintaining the couple's 10 acre farm yard is just as important for their customers who come and visit the grounds during picking. We are always looking at new and innovative ways to grow and run our farm in order to produce the best berries for our customers. This year Prairie Berry planted another 5 acres and look forward to another season of delicious berries.

"We would like to thank the Louis Riel Capital Corporation for their supportive staff during the application process and also their ongoing support of our business. We would recommend LRCC to any entrepreneur looking to start a business." - Matt and Jen

Little Caesars Steinbach

We decided to open up a Little Caesars in Steinbach earlier this year as a family venture. Little Caesars is a very family oriented company and we were ecstatic when they said our family had what it took to be a part of theirs. After being told we were prime candidates for the business we recruited the help of LRCC as we are a family of proud Métis Canadians. LRCC helped us in so many ways; from financial help to emotional by making our dream come true.

We have now been open for 5 months and are excelling as a team under the guidance of Little Caesars. We scored 98% on our most recent review from Little Caesars and received a plaque marking this recognition, making us the highest scoring store in Canada. This was a huge accomplishment for us as we were being recognized for all the hours and hard work we have put into this business and will continue to put into it for years to come. We owe LRCC a huge Thank You in giving us their full support in our venture.

Irene and Kianna Cook, Owners

Voilà par Andréanne

The LRCC impressed upon us that successful businesses don't "just happen." Their support in the application and the development of our business plan for the Business Equity Contribution Fund, sponsored by Aboriginal Affairs & Northern Development, has given us the opportunity to grow, hire new staff, increase sales and position Voilà par Andréanne as an important Aboriginal Designer in Canada.

LRCC's business knowledge in the principles of inventory management and sales has kept us focused to attain the growth objectives we had set in our business plan. Their business network gave us the opportunity to be part of the visit of Prince Charles to Innovation Alley, by setting up meetings with other very successful business people to get advice and the possibility to be highlighted in SAY magazine has all contributed to achieve our goal.

What we appreciated most about LRCC's services was the personal touch and quick response to any of our questions. Their visits to our manufacturing premises gave us the assurance that their objectives were to insure that the financial assistance we were receiving would truly mobilize our business to the next step of being a reality.

David Dandeneau, Business Manager & Andréanne Dandeneau, Owner, Designer

Apprentissage Illimité Inc.

With our revamped website it is now possible for Apprentissage Illimité to provide passwords, grant licenses for using our products as well as the ability to sell our e-products directly from our website instead of having to reply to resellers.

Many of our products feature Métis content and we are able to highlight all of our Aboriginal products in a special section on our website. We are very happy with the end product and it has already started to pay off as these new capacities were instrumental in helping us close a significant sale to hundreds of Ontario schools.

I would like to thank the LRCC for providing the help I needed as the project evolved and making the process as easy as possible.

Raymond Poirier, President

La Belle Baguette

LRCC: Making it all possible!

My name is Alix Loiselle and I am a proud franco-manitoban métis. Being born and raised in Winnipeg, I have lived and travelled across the country to become a trained pastry chef. Having moved back to Winnipeg in 2013, I wanted to establish myself in my native community of St.Boniface and share with everyone my dream and passion of owning a bakery.

Reality hit very fast when I started calculating the costs involved in getting all the equipment put in place to make this come true. The "BUSINESS EQUITY CONTRIBUTION FUND" program from LRCC was the perfect fit for me and after being accepted into this grant program, I knew that my dream was finally going to become true.

Everyone at LRCC was extremely supportive and readily available to answer my many questions. Coordinating funds for large sums of money towards my equipment was very stressful to me, but again, the staff at LRCC really understood the process and did everything they could to make it a smooth process.

I would recommend this program to everyone qualifiable for it, in a heartbeat! My bakery has known a lot of success since we opened our doors and LRCC definitely played a major roll in this! I can now say that I am the very proud owner of La Belle Baguette, a franco-manitoban bakery in the heart of Winnipeg's French Quarter.

Alix Loiselle, Owner

Big Chill

Expert Electric

Unite Interactive