Calgary Small Business Wins $20,000 National Grand Prize in Scotiabank's 'Get Growing Challenge'



    CALGARY, Oct. 23 /CNW/ - Scotiabank is pleased to announce that Alisen
and Mike Dopf, owners of Ingrained Style Furniture Co. based in Calgary, are
the national grand prize winners of its 'Get Growing Challenge' contest.
    The contest, which closed on September 12, 2008, was part of Scotiabank's
'Get Growing to a Million' Campaign launched in June 2008. Small business
owners who visited Scotiabank's www.getgrowingforbusiness.com were invited to
submit a written 500 word entry or a two-to-three minute video to explain how
$20,000 would help their business grow to the next level. Small business
owners from across Canada had a chance to win one of six regional prizes of
$5,000 cash and be eligible for the national grand prize of $20,000.
    Ingrained Style Furniture Co. is a family-operated business with five
employees, including three craftsmen. From its Calgary workshop, Ingrained
Style Furniture Co. manufactures custom, solid wood furniture for the
residential, corporate and hospitality industries. The Dopfs were also the
Prairie regional prize winners of $5,000, bringing their winnings to a grand
total of $25,000 cash. The company's growth plans are focused on "lean
manufacturing" principles, with the goal of producing high-quality products
with half the effort and space. Alisen and Mike plan to use their winnings to
help finance the purchase, installation and training on a CNC router, a
manufacturing tool that will help reduce their workshop space by 700 square
feet while increasing production four-fold. To view a short video on Alisen
and Mike, please visit www.getgrowingforbusiness.com/challenge.
    "On behalf of Scotiabank, I would like to congratulate Alisen and Mike on
their win. They exemplify the entrepreneurial spirit that is alive and well
across Canada," said Kyle McNamara, Managing Director of Small Business
Banking. "I would also like to extend our congratulations to all the regional
finalists and thank the more than 700 small business owners across the country
who entered the 'Get Growing Challenge'."
    "At Scotiabank, we understand the importance of small business to Canada
and are constantly working to find new and relevant ways to help small
business owners succeed. The online contest was part of Scotiabank's
commitment to small business owners and was created to encourage and spotlight
entrepreneurialism coast-to-coast," explained Mr. McNamara.

    
    The Dopfs were one of six regional winners that included:
    -  Davin Peterson, Owner, Base Technology Ltd B.C. - Yukon Region Winner;
    -  Donna Murphy Del Cueto, Owner, Shin Wa Kan Dojo - Ontario Region
       Winner;
    -  Marc Javet and Mark Wilson, Owners, Marcket Fine Foods - Toronto
       Region Winners;
    -  Driss Barrada, Saad Sebti and François Baron, Owners,
       Concept 3Dvisionic Inc. - Quebec Region Winners; and
    -  Travis Barlow, Owner, Blazin' Barlow's BBQ - Atlantic Region Winner.

    The six finalists of the 'Get Growing Challenge' contest were interviewed
individually via conference call by a national judging panel of top business
experts that included:

    -  Catherine Swift, Chairwoman, President and CEO, Canadian Federation of
       Independent Business, Willowdale, Ontario;
    -  Richard K. Power, C.A., Partner, Belanger Clarke Follett & McGettigan,
       Chartered Accountants, Clarenville, Newfoundland;
    -  Dean Magnus, C.A., Partner, Meyers Norris Penny, Winnipeg, Manitoba;
    -  Andrew Patricio, Vice President of Marketing, BizLaunch.ca, Toronto,
       Ontario; and
    -  Diane Giard, Senior Vice-President, Scotiabank Quebec & Eastern
       Ontario Region, Montreal, Quebec
    

    "While the interview was an intense experience, it provided a rare and
valuable opportunity to showcase our business model and growth plans to high
level business experts with the knowledge and experience to make informed
decisions on our strategy's viability," said Mike Dopf, President of Ingrained
Style Furniture Co. "We would like to thank Scotiabank for recognizing that
small businesses have a profound impact on Canada's economy, and for fostering
and encouraging our growth with positive contests like the 'Get Growing
Challenge.'"
    In addition to the online contest, the 'Get Growing to a Million'
Campaign included a five-month cross country tour, live speaker events, and
the launch of www.getgrowingforbusiness.com, all aimed at helping Canadian
small business owners get to the next level of success in their businesses.
Since June, the touring 'Get Growing to a Million' RV has made more than 80
stops across the country, giving local small business owners an opportunity to
visit the new 'Get Growing for business' website and test drive the tools, as
well as discuss their growth plans with local Scotiabank Small Business
advisors. The tour is wrapping up in Halifax this week as part of Small
Business Week.
    "We were on more than a road trip. The RV tour gave us the opportunity to
meet and speak with small business owners in communities, both large and
small, from Vancouver right through to Halifax," added Mr. McNamara. "We got
first-hand accounts from the entrepreneurs who are truly the engine of the
Canadian economy. They told us about their challenges and opportunities, and
along with our local Small Business advisors in each community, we discussed
practical strategies to help them take advantage of opportunities for business
growth."

    Scotiabank is one of North America's premier financial institutions and
Canada's most international bank. With more than 60,000 employees, Scotiabank
Group and its affiliates serve approximately 12.5 million customers in some 50
countries around the world. Scotiabank offers a diverse range of products and
services including personal, commercial, corporate and investment banking.
With $462 billion in assets (as at July 31, 2008), Scotiabank trades on the
Toronto (BNS) and New York Exchanges (BNS). For more information please visit
www.scotiabank.com.





For further information:

For further information: Deborah Spence, Scotiabank Public Affairs,
(403) 254-6830, deborah.spence@scotiabank.com.


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