Saskatchewan businessman earns BDC Young Entrepreneur Award
The chief executive officer of Wow Factor Media, a graphics and signage business in Moose Jaw, Sask., is the winner of this year’s BDC Young Entrepreneur Award. Joel Pinel, 28, says the $100,000 award makes it possible to take the rapidly expanding, four year old print media design and marketing company to the next level.
“We will be getti tiffany’s ng a CNC [computer numerical control] machine that does engraving and fine detail cutting,” says Pinel, “so that we can become as fluent in the production of interior, directional signage as we are on the marketing and branding side.”
Many new highrise buildings across the Prairies, Wow Factor Media’s target market, require custom made directional signage inside at every level, he says. “Adding this new expertise to our services means that we can provide clients with complementary products, and being able to do the work in house lets us maintain strict quality control standards while decreasing turnaround time and increasing profits.” tiffany’s
Wow Factor Media is a family business that started when Pinel and one of his sisters (a self taught graphic designer) began selling reusable shopping bags imprinted with company logos. The company now has a staff of 17, including Pinel and his wife, Jessica, his two sisters and his brothers in law. In addition to the head office in Moose Jaw, the company has sales offices in Saskatoon, Regina and Edmonton. Pinel plans to open sales offices in Calgary and Winnipeg within the year.
“Beyond that, we will finish going west and move into British Columbia,” he says. We’re going to keep growing and pushing wherever the business takes us.”
He says the company has expanded to meet new opportunities. When Wow Factor Media was offered its first interior signage job and had to outsource sections of the work, “we saw it as a huge opportunity to expand in that direction.” The next step was to acquire the machinery that would enable the company to keep the work in house, which it can do thanks to the BDC Young Entrepreneur Award.
“Joel’s proven ability to turn a potential business opportunity into a success story bodes well for Wow Factor’s future as he plans for expansion,” says BDC senior vice president, marketing and public affairs, Michel Bergeron.
The Business Development Bank of Canada, which created the BDC Young Entrepreneur Award in 1988 to pay tribute to remarkable Canadian entrepreneurs between 18 and 35, introduced the $100,000 cash award last year.
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