Whether You Sell Code or Clothes: We Can Help.

Regine Paquette, Co-founder, Victoire Boutique
Regine Paquette, Co-founder, Victoire Boutique. (photo provided)

BY BRUCE LAZENBY

Entrepreneurship in Ottawa has never been stronger. Every week I meet new people rolling up their sleeves and working hard to turn their business dreams into a reality. As someone who’s been a member of Ottawa’s business community for many years, I find it very inspiring.

Many of these encounters happen right at Invest Ottawa. Since opening our doors in 2012, we have provided 32,000 hours of advice and mentorship to Ottawa entrepreneurs. In addition, nearly 22,000 people have taken one of our workshops or seminars to upgrade their business skills. Many attendees have come back multiple times.

One of our favourite success stories is celebrating a major milestone as well. Victoire Boutique specializes in curating pieces from Canada’s top fashion designers. Co-Founders Regine Paquette and Katie Frappier are now celebrating ten years of success and have recently opened their third location.

When they were starting up, neither partner had experience working in the fashion industry or running a small business. They simply had the entrepreneurial spirit and an idea. The duo spent a lot of time attending workshops to learn their small business basics and at any major crux of their development, returned back to Invest Ottawa, to once again utilize the resources. Even now, a decade after their original launch, they are still attending classes. Except now they are now learning how to grow their online business instead of ways to grow their employee base, and they are attending SEO workshops instead of cash flow seminars.

"You have to learn about (how to run your business) and there’s really no other way than Invest Ottawa."

The two friends can attest to the fact that mentorship was a critical factor in their success. Even today they continue to receive advice as well as mentor other founders. Regine says collaboration and support among businesses is the only way to grow and thrive as entrepreneurs.

For all of us at Invest Ottawa, they are just two out of the thousands of intelligent and exciting entrepreneurs we work with on a frequent basis. Whether your business is selling racks of clothes or lines of code, we can help. 

Find out more at investottawa.ca.