The Victoria inventor of a sustainable alternative to plastic wrap is receiving $25,000 to help her business expand to new markets.
Toni Desrosiers’ re-usable, biodegradable and anti-bacterial food wrap Abeego, was the runner-up winner of the Young Entrepreneur Award, a national contest put on by the Business Development Bank of Canada.
Desrosiers beat out eight other competitors and rose from seventh to second place throughout the online voting period, which ended earlier this month.
“The media exposure we got through the contest was immense: we were featured at least 15 or 20 times in major publications,” she said. “We saw a lot of new Canadian orders on our website, and a number of new stores have connected with us, so we’ve got a lot of new accounts we’re working through.”
Desrosiers will use the $25,000 in consulting services to grow her business in U.S. markets. Her goal is to increase business 2,000 per cent by 2019.
“We’re hoping to see $5 million revenues by then,” she said.
Desrosiers thanked the Greater Victoria and B.C. community for helping her win the runner-up prize.
The $100,000 grand prize went to Ontario-based Gunn’s Hill Artisan Cheese.
“The winner said we had him very, very nervous,” Desrosiers said. “That made me very happy. He held that first place spot like a champ.”