The annual Small Business BC (SBBC) Awards is a great chance for business owners and entrepreneurs across B.C. to test themselves against their peers. SBBC announced a list of finalists on March 22nd, and we’re delighted to see so many BC Marketplace businesses represented in the various categories.
We’re especially proud of MisMacK Clean Cosmetics. Based in small town Canoe, B.C., Missy MacKintosh’s company is a finalist in three categories. Missy started MisMacK to offer Canada’s newest and most innovative clean makeup line. All of the company’s products are Peta Cruelty-Free-certified and Peta Vegan-friendly. This small-town business with big ideas does much more than sell products; it educates customers on how best to use them and even offers free Zoom consultations. Their innovation, attention to detail, and customer service contributed to MisMack Clean Cosmetics being a finalist in the Best Community Impact, Best Youth Entrepreneur, and Best Innovation categories for the Small Business BC Awards.
The awards judges commented: “MisMacK Clean Cosmetics, and its founder Missy MacKintosh, was selected because she has built a successful business showcasing innovative, ethically sourced, clean makeup that is professionally performing at the same time. Along with many of our nominees’ this year, Missy’s entrepreneurial spirit, ambition and passion is exemplar in defining what it means to be an entrepreneur.”
Here are the other BC Marketplace businesses that impressed the judges.
This award honours businesses that are truly making a difference in their community. They see social responsibility as an integral part of the success of their business.
Sḵwálwen Botanicals, Squamish
Sḵwálwen Botanicals is an Indigenous business that creates small batch botanical skin care products using wild-harvested plants and organic ingredients. Founded by ethnobotanist Leigh Joseph, who honours traditional Skwxwú7mesh (Squamish) plant knowledge through his products, the company is also a finalist in the Premier’s People’s Choice category.
Judge’s comment: “Sḵwálwen Botanicals was selected as a finalist for the Best Community Impact Award because of their commitment to contributing to Indigenous communities by donating sales proceeds and creating a Give Back program that raises awareness for Indigenous issues.”
Bubbles Blossom Design, Clinton
Jessica Lawrence’s Bubbles Blossom Design delivers fresh Bouquets, custom arrangements, wreaths, and other floral arrangements around Clinton. More than flowers, her company delivers much-needed moments of joy during tough times.
Judge’s comment: “Bubbles Blossom Designs was selected as a finalist for this award because of how they spread joy back into the community by donating bouquets to local residents, and for their participation in local fundraisers and committees.”
Sisters Sage, New Westminster
Lynn-Marie and Melissa-Rae Angus are the sisters behind this Indigenous brand that handcrafts wellness and self-care products. The pair use their traditional knowledge and ingredients to create a range of soaps, smudge sprays, bath bombs, salves, and other wellness products. As well as growing their own business, the sisters work hard to close the socio-economic gap between Indigenous and non-indigenous peoples and inspire other indigenous entrepreneurs.
Judge’s comment: “Sisters Sage was selected as a finalist for this award because of how they use their platform as an Indigenous business to raise money for vulnerable local communities, while also raising awareness for causes they believe in.”
This award recognizes an outstanding new Canadian who has started a successful business, while also overcoming adversity and displaying business and community leadership.
Artemex Mexican Handcrafts, West Kelowna
Artemex is a small, family owned business that offers authentic, ethically-sourced Mexican handcrafts in the heart of the Okanagan. The company works directly with partner artisans, pays them above average prices for their handmade art pieces, and strives to build lasting relationships with them.
Judge’s comment: “Saul Gomez, the owner, showed how the need for change, to grow and support his family is what strongly drives immigrants and how this drive moved them to do great things! And he has been doing it while supporting his local community. Well done, Bravo!”
Kleiner Services, Burnaby
Kleiner Services Inc. offers pre- and post-moving services such as the packing, storage, and assembly of the personal possessions of households on the move. The company prides itself on a customer-focused approach that treats customers more like family and aims to reduce the stress and worry of moving time.
Soul Bite Food, Coquitlam
Soul Bite Food Inc. takes the term “comfort food” seriously. The company specializes in delicious vegan fare, such as stuffed veggies, cabbage rolls, and mushroom and Persian-spiced pastries. However, Soul Bite Food has a bigger aim than just filling hungry bellies among Canada’s vegan eaters. It donates 50 per cent of profits to charities that fight global hunger and food waste.
Judge’s comment: “Soul Bite Food is a new social enterprise approach to businesses! They are making big changes and helping others, which is a huge achievement. It’s great that they have both the community support and vision to help others!”
Finalists in this category have developed advanced or innovative technologies to meet the needs of industry in B.C.—helping to strengthen the province’s reputation as an innovation hub.
CORE Landscape Products, Courtenay
CORE Landscape Products specializes in sustainable landscaping solutions created with the environment in mind. Founder Caroline Rutledge had seen at first hand the effects impermeable (hard) surfaces and poor development practices have on our shared environment. She decided to offer developers affordable, eco-friendly alternatives to hard surfaces. Since 2010, CORE’s permeable foundations have kept over 5 million square feet of our planet alive.
Judge’s comment: “This company has excellent innovative and creative products where environmental impact is at the forefront of all their designs and manufacturing processes. Truly inspiring!”
These hard-working individuals are the unsung heroes of the B.C. economy. They embrace the challenge of entrepreneurship to start, manage, and grow a solo business.
Emerald Earth Organic Spa, Valemount
After the year we’ve all had, it’s a good time to be in the self-care and relaxation business. As well as offering customized massage, facials, foot bliss therapy, and hot stone massages through their location within the Valemount Best Western Hotel, the company sells a complete range of self-care products to help make every day a spa day.
Judge’s comment: “Emerald Earth founder Sherrie Houghton was selected as a Top 5 finalist in the Solopreneur category for combining her passion for nature and wellbeing, and her formal training, into a successful spa and self-care business that has had to pivot several times along the way, but in a way that always took her to the next level.”
These young entrepreneurs haven’t let relative inexperience, lack of credit history, and modest asset base hold them back from starting successful businesses.
Justo’s Craft Dips, Victoria
Justo’s Craft Dips was started by three best friends with a passion for food, sustainability, and positivity—and a desire to share all three of those things with their community. The company delivers hummus, vegan dips, and other healthy, locally-made snacks to their customers in Victoria. All products are packaged in zero waste, reusable glass jars, and the company donates 10 per cent of all hummus sales to local charities. Justo’s Craft Dips is also a Premier’s People’s Choice finalist.
Judge’s comment: “Justo’s Craft Dips and its founder Justin Kopetzki was selected as a Top 5 finalist in the Youth Entrepreneur category because of their incredible growth and resiliency amidst a pandemic. Justo’s Craft Dips does their best to build meaningful initiatives surrounding health, sustainability, and community support.”
Finalists in this category are tasked to engage with their community of customers, clients, and neighbours. The business with the most votes from their community wins the award.
Raven Reads Books Ltd., Logan Lake
This Indigenous-owned literary subscription box service delivers custom-curated books and goods from award-winning Indigenous authors, artists, crafters, and entrepreneurs to their customers’ doors every three months.
Summit Tiny Homes, Vernon
Summit Tiny Homes is on a mission to share their love of the sustainable, versatile, and free lifestyle afforded by tiny home dwelling with Okanagan home owners. Each tiny home is big on charm, quality, and craftsmanship.
Sḵwálwen Botanicals, Squamish
See Best Community Impact category.
Justo’s Craft Dips, Victoria
See Best Youth Entrepreneur category.
Learn more about the SBBC Awards, and register to attend the awards ceremony online.
Find more innovative, sustainable, and community-focused small businesses in your community on the BC Marketplace.
Taking place May 3-6, tickets for the 18th Annual SBBC Awards are FREE, and a single registration secures your place for the entire multi-day event.
All you need to do is register once and we’ll do the rest. Each day, you’ll be emailed a link to access the day’s activities, and we’ve broken the contest across a few days to make it more accessible for everyone (Zoom-fatigue…we hear you).
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We respectfully acknowledge our place of work is within the ancestral, traditional and unceded territories of the Xʷməθkʷəy̓əm (Musqueam), Sḵwx̱wú7mesh (Squamish) and səl̓ilwətaʔɬ/sel̓ílwitulh (Tsleil-Waututh) and that we serve the Peoples of the many Nations throughout British Columbia.