The service-based business sector is made up of businesses that primarily earn revenue through providing services. Examples include tradesmanship, computer services, domestic work, child care, pet services, and estheticians.
After working with kitchen dealers in the Collingwood region for 12 years, Dean and Patti Mills decided to open their own showroom in the spring of 2000, and Premier Kitchens opened its doors to the public. Now, in 2015, they have grown from 2 employees to 6, and have been the recipient of 11 Reader’s Choice Awards from The Collingwood Connection and The Wasaga Sun. A haven of excellent customer service and high quality Canadian-made kitchen and bath renovation products, Premier Kitchens is a homegrown service landmark in Collingwood.
Dean started working at Canac Kitchens in Downtown Collingwood in 1988, and found helping clients design their home spaces both creative and rewarding. Dean continues to be inspired in his work by new trends, styles, colours and materials being used in contemporary kitchen and bath design. His own shop has evolved over the years into a complete kitchen and bath renovation company, as well as a cabinet and countertop supply company. The showroom is continuously being updated to provide customers with the latest styles and finishes.
This family-owned business has been part of the community since before its inception. Dean was part of the Optimist Club for 15 years and helped raise funds for youth projects, while Patti is actively involved in the First Presbyterian Church as an Elder, Artistic Director, choir member, and MC/Host. Patti and Dean decided to open their business in Collingwood because of everything that the region has to offer. Both enjoy golfing, skiing, boating, and walking along the waterfront. They were also attracted to the area because of the Downtown Collingwood Farmers’ Market and the numerous festivals and events that bring South Georgian Bay to life year-round. They cite recreational amenities and small-town appeal as key reasons why they decided to launch and grow their business in Collingwood.
Looking to the Future
Supporting Canadian products is part of Premier Kitchens’ mandate. They are a dealer for Aya Kitchen and Bath Cabinets that are manufactured in Mississauga. They also work with dealers across Canada and northern United States. Premier Kitchens continues to provide high quality kitchen and bath cabinets, laminate, quartz, and granite countertops, cabinet door re-facing, sinks and taps, along with design and colour consultations to the Collingwood and surrounding area. They also specialize in custom design. Dean and Patti plan to continue to grow their business, provide excellent service, and enjoy the beautiful scenery and plentiful activities of South Georgian Bay.
Find out more here. Visit Premier Kitchens at 20 Balsam Street Suite 4, Collingwood.
The Early Years
Georgian Flooring started back in 1992, headed up Dave Labelle. The first location was on Hume Street (now the Honda Dealership), and in 1996, they moved their showroom to the Harbour Centre in Collingwood. In those days, was known as a one-stop-shop for all things ‘flooring’. 25 years later, Dave and his wife Helen, took on the formidable task of renovating their home kitchen, and the kitchen became the inspiration to expand Georgian Flooring.
Frustrated by the fact that they had to go all the way to Toronto in order to source taps and the sink – it occurred to Dave that Collingwood needed plumbing suppliers! Georgian Flooring began to grow – it now offered a full range of plumbing including designer accessories. Work continued on the kitchen. When it came to lighting, the couple experienced the same issues as they had with the plumbing. There was only one store that offered lighting supplies in Collingwood, and the owner had 3 other stores which his son was taking over, and the doors would soon be closing on the Collingwood location. So Georgian Flooring grew some more and offered a full range of lighting including accents.
The next challenge was Georgian Flooring needed more space and Dave spent a year looking for the perfect location. In 2007, when Dave found it on High Street, the business became Georgian Design Centre. The ‘mom and pop’ business was renamed The Georgian Design Centre, a fourteen thousand square foot lighting showroom, complete with plumbing, flooring, accents, accessories and décor.
Dave speaks passionately about his business, which he proudly says is “Still a ‘mom and pop’ shop; we’re just very good at what we do because we made this business a long term investment, spending time creating a one –of-a-kind shopping experience.” The company employs twelve full time staff, four of whom are children in his family. Two more of his children have enjoyed the privilege of working part-time over summers and helping out in major events. Over the past couple of years, Dave and Helen’s 15 year old grand-daughter has worked part-time, continuing the family tradition
The company enjoys close ties to the community, supporting a number of minor sports, Campbell House and the local hospital. The community also benefits from clients who come from Toronto to be serviced by Georgian Design Centre, and then they use local companies to transport their product to their homes/offices in the city.
When we asked Dave about what makes Collingwood so special, he didn’t hesitate – “No better place to raise kids!” he replied emphatically. Add that to the fact he enjoys golf and this area is home to not less than 7 top of the line golf courses, while his wife is all about family, it’s easy to see why they love to live where they work.
Looking to the Future
Dave says they pride themselves on being able to offer 35 years of expertise and quality products at prices lower than the box stores, because they have 35 years of established credit and loyalty with their suppliers. Their mantra is to serve every kind of client, with every range of employment, education, lifestyle, from every demographic, with the highest level of personal service. Dave says “First timers into the centre can often feel overwhelmed when they walk through the doors – but once they experience the personal service and see how affordable and convenient it is to be able to receive expert advice, quality product, and have the installation all taken care of after only stepping out of their car once – they never go anywhere else. The level of experience of our staff is unique. The least experienced person has 10 years!”
The future looks bright for the Georgian Design Centre. “Continuing to offer every client affordable pricing, with quality product and generations of expertise are the keys to our future success.”
Visit Dave, Helen and the family at http://www.georgiandesigncentre.ca/
The Early Days
Brother and Sister duo, Ryan and Madison, found a synergy of their skill sets that drove them to launch Nanite, a technology sourcing, installation and support company.
For over a decade, Ryan has been building custom computers and fixing basically anything that can be plugged in for family, friends and small businesses. For his younger sister, Madison, it meant she enjoyed a life where technology worked, was easy to use, never experienced data losses and enjoyed ready access to honest and expert advice. Entering the corporate work force it was a shock to discover what businesses, including her multi-national corporation clients and employers, made do with in terms of technology. Computers crashed regularly. Printers failed often. Internet was inconsistent. File sharing between colleagues was difficult.
Ryan and Madison came to the realization they were in a unique position. Lifelong passions for learning, researching, designing and operating ecosystems of technology enables them to enjoy keeping up with the rapidly evolving technology sector.
Nanite, was born from the desire to bring unbiased, experienced and personal technology support to individuals, property owners and businesses. The concept of the Nanite ShowHome was to provide a place to demonstrate what technology looks and runs like when it is properly designed, sourced installed, setup and supported.
Ryan and Madison began their search for a house they could create the ShowHome experience in. The desire to find a community that offered a lifestyle and welcoming to new and small businesses led them to Collingwood. Excited by the idea of a four-season backyard, Collingwood’s growing population, interesting demographics and the volume of cottages/vacation homes made Collingwood the ideal home for Nanite. In February 2016, the siblings purchased a 1905 home, charmed by the historic nature and spent 4 months renovating, restoring and integrating their SmartHome solutions throughout.
Looking to the Future
Ryan and Madison are excited by the prospect of working with Collingwood as technology needs grow and change. Nanite works with you to understand your objectives, the research and provide unbiased advice on what clients need, they source what is required from all reputable suppliers, and provide a quote for the equipment at their bare cost without any mark up and clients pay for only their time, all in keeping with your budget.
Madison and Ryan are active members of the Collingwood Chamber of Commerce and are focused on helping more individuals, home owners and businesses love their technology. They see a future with more Tech Advisors and fewer people over paying for technology that disappoints. To find out more about this growing business, visit www.nanite.biz or email email@example.com.
The Col-Can Service Centre has been in business since 1979 and has been located on Ronell Crescent since 1991. The company is known most widely for its work on transmissions, but provides a full range of automotive repair services.
The Early Days
In 1979 Dave Bowes purchased Collingwood Fina when the owner retired. The following year Petrocan bought Collingwood Fina out and so Dave wanted to rename the business Collingwood Petrocanada. When he filed for this new name, it was not accepted in full and what was registered was only the first 3 letters and the last 3 letters of the original name request submitted. Col-Can was born!
In 1991, the business moved location to Ronnell Crescent – where it has been located ever since despite a downburst that hit the area last year and destroyed the building premises as a result of a tornado touching down in Stayner.
On Oct. 17, 2016, Dave Bowes was running upstairs at his Col-Can Service Centre in Collingwood to turn off computers because he could see a storm was coming. “It really didn’t seem threatening, we see lots of thunderstorms come in off Georgian Bay all the time,” he recalls. And then it happened. “I was coming down the stairs, I could see our big sign blow across,” he said. “I saw the sign take off and then the roof blew off and the sign became quite insignificant.” He said his staff moved from the garage into the office area to avoid the massive amount of water that was pouring into the building. “The rain that came in, in the short time, you would’ve thought it was a fire hose,” he said. “It was flooded, instantly. In about three minutes it was all over.”
“People always say, it sounds like a train,” he said. “That’s exactly what it sounded like, you would’ve thought there was a locomotive coming through.” The building had to be destroyed as the roofing being torn off caused severe damage to the back wall. And for the next week, he and staff worked to pick up the pieces. “It actually probably took a week to set in,” he said. “About a week later, I was sitting with my wife and I said ‘you realized what just happened? I guess we were kind of in shock.” Dave took the rest of the fall to discuss his options with his insurance company before deciding to rebuild.
“It probably wasn’t until early in the year, we decided I wasn’t going to let it end this way,” he said. Friends, colleagues, customers and the community came together in an outpouring of support and encouragement. There was nothing they were not willing to do to help. Says Dave, “The community support was the real reason we chose to rebuild. Besides, I’m not ready to retire yet. Ask me in another five years and I may feel differently,” he says with a smile.
After months of building, Col-Can officially reopened on Oct. 18, 2017, almost a year to the day of the incident. During the month before the official opening, Dave and his team of 7, were in every day cleaning, painting and reorganizing. “Not a day went by without an old-face or a new one, stopping by to ask about the progress or say welcome back!” says Dave. The new building has 6 full bays now, a transmission rebuilding area and a storage area.”What we have and can offer now, is better than ever. The roof has solar panels, we have energy-efficient lighting and heating, and brand new, top of the line, machinery and equipment throughout. “ And they have the same great team looking after Col-Can’s customers!
Dave Bowes was raised in maple and always had an eye to the north so when a business opportunity came up in 1979 he didn’t hesitate .and has never regretted his decision. “I met my wife Patricia in 1981 and together we raised our four children Lisa, Randy, Debbie and Matthew here. We now have three grand kids and one more on the way. We all enjoy the outdoors and the activities that this area has to offer including skiing, snow boarding, snowmobiling, skating, [hockey for some] and curling. So many great ways to have fun in the winter, while boating, four-wheeling, hiking, fishing and even a round of golf now and then fill the other months. And of course ‘our accident’ in 2016 where the true Collingwood community showed and shared their support through a difficult time reminds us why we live here.”
Looking to the Future
Col- Can has had to rebuild itself literally from the ground up. Today they are stronger and better equipped thanks to the new equipment and machinery installed which allows an already great team to provide the very best service to old and new clients alike. “Our diagnostic equipment is state-of-the-art. Today’s machinery is held to very high standards. I’m confident our customers will enjoy benefitting from that.” says Dave. To book your vehicle with Dave and his team at Col-Can, telephone (705) 445-8712 , and check out their full range of services online at www.Col-can.com