In December 2019, the ThriveNorth program successfully completed its five-year mandate. Managed by Futurpreneur Canada, the program helped young entrepreneurs in Northern B.C. launch and grow their businesses by connecting them with resources, financing and mentorship.

After seeing a need in her hometown of Prince Rupert, British Columbia for alternative passenger transportation, Michelle Bryant and her husband, Trenton Gravelle, started Silver Grizzly Transportation this past year.

Silver Grizzly Transportation offers luxury transportation within Prince Rupert and surrounding areas, as well as to destinations in Terrace and Kitimat. The transportation company specializes in corporate and business transportation and is also available for weddings, proms and special events. Passengers travel in luxury, comfort and style and enjoy personalized services including refreshments, WiFi, DVDs, in-vehicle iPad use and a selection of newspaper and magazines for your ride.

With the many opportunities for people to apply their knowledge and skills in starting a new business in Northern BC, and the support that is readily available through places like Futurpreneur Canada and TRICORP, Michelle explained that the community really comes together to support local start-ups. “I guess that comes from being in a small town and everyone wanting to support each other.” Michelle and Trenton had help from the NRT and First Citizens Fund through TRICORP and Futurpreneur Canada, and after the long and tedious permitting process, the pair was able to get Silver Grizzly Transportation off the ground.

Although being an entrepreneur has its ups and down, Michelle said that there is nothing like the satisfaction from starting a business from the ground up and at the end of the day knowing that it is yours. “Trenton and I are working together to get the business off the ground and to get the word out about the new type of passenger transportation,” Michelle said. “It has definitely brought us closer, and we are very proud of the end result of our hard work and effort.”

As for advice for other aspiring or new entrepreneurs, Michelle wanted to leave everyone with this: “Keep going, even when things don’t seem like they are going your way, look for another avenue, another supporter, or someone who can give you some constructive criticism. Don’t be afraid of failure, take it as a learning experience and keep moving forward.”

Written By: Lauren Marinigh, Social Media & Content Creation Coordinator, Futurpreneur Canada
Photo Credit: Love Prince Rupert

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