Two of Canada's leading entrepreneurs share the secrets of their successes at Toronto's Small Business Forum|
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Economic Development - The City of Toronto's Economic Development Division
hosted a Small Business Forum, Toronto's largest small business event of the
year, at the Metro Toronto Convention Centre today.
The highly informative event started early with a presentation by John Anania,
assistant chief economist with RBC Financial Group, on the economic trends and
indicators that affect the future of small business. Anania is currently
responsible for producing interest rate and currency forecasts, and generates
the Canadian, U.S. and broader G7 macroeconomic outlooks for the Royal Bank
Financial Group. In his presentation he gave his take on the future and
discussed the Canadian dollar, interest rates, U.S. markets, international
trade issues and recent world events. During a question and answer period,
Anania dealt with the impact of the economy on particular businesses.
Two keynote addresses followed the business briefing. Renée Unger, president of
Renée's Gourmet, a multi-million dollar Canadian food company, and travel guru
Bruce Poon Tip shared the secrets of their successes.
Unger discussed her path from being a North York housewife to becoming
president of Renée's Gourmet. Unger is a role model and an inspiration to
people who dare to pursue their dreams to fruition. Apart from producing the
number one refrigerated salad dressing in Canada, Renée's Gourmet Caesar,
Unger's company now produces 250 different products including sauces, marinades
and dips and is expanding into the U.S. market.
Bruce Poon Tip told his own remarkable story. In 1991, at 23 years of age and
frustrated with the stagnant travel industry which he relied on for employment,
he withdrew every penny in his bank account and G.A.P. Adventures was born.
G.A.P. Adventures offers authentic adventure travel experiences rather than
'week-on-the-beach' package holidays. Today, G.A.P. Adventures is the largest
adventure travel company in Canada and has sold adventures to 20,000 travellers
over the last decade. Poon Tip has been selected as one of the three finalists
for the Entrepreneur of the Year award, the world's business award.
As well as the featured speakers, the forum offered a tradeshow promoting the
latest in business products and services, interactive round table discussions,
the Knowledge Café, special forums for women and youth and the "Chinese
Canadian Entrepreneur Business Conference 2002."