June 16, 2024

The Queens County Citizen

Complete Canadian News World

Roommates in business are more prosperous

Roommates in business are more prosperous

A trio of Frankie Jani, Borderon et Fils and Contouc took root in the Saint-Sauveur district in 2021. They are now working to open a second drop-off point in Vieux-Limoilou from July.

If Jonathan Marcoux of Frankie Johnny's Sandwich Shop had a desire to expand, he wouldn't have struck out alone. None of the three are personally involved in another opening, Francois Borderon, who will move his bakery from 3rd Avenue to this new location.

Diversified investments, complementary specializations and stability gained over the years motivate the forces. After the first experience, they now know what to expect.

“You shouldn't think you can make all the decisions. You want to be able to put water in your wine,” says Simon Fabi, the man behind Contook Cafe.

The partners do not hide the fact that there are many negotiations. But through democracy they decide.

“We are at the head of companies that are well-known in Quebec. We all stick to our winning recipe. We all care about our brand image. We want to do our business our way,” agrees Mr Fabi.

We find joy in it. But it's not all pretty and rosy.”

Jonathan Marcoux, co-owner of Frankie Jani's

Each has their own synergy. For their part, they managed to find something that suited them. One of the greatest challenges, they admit, is maintaining their identity while presenting themselves as a group.

“Everyone should find what they want at the end of the line. No one wants to be penalized for service and visibility. […] It should be fair to everyone,” said Mr. Marcoux emphasized.

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The first benefit is to reduce the risk burden. Having access to premises on the famous Vieux-Limoilou artery is another.

“Finding premises here is very difficult. “Having so many businesses in one place will allow more people to establish themselves in Limoilou,” says Matthew Ainslie, owner of Fix-ton-Padgett and investor in the project.

Coffee and plants go well together

Less than 200 meters away, a duo is setting up shop at 986 3rd Avenue in the former premises of Société des Cafés.

The only person to open Cafe Mila, Maud Roy-Carpentier knows that organizing unexpected events is easy with so many people.

She called Marie-Michelle Corneau and Camille Ferland-Tousignant, lovers of rare plants at the online store Verdure, on the 4th.

“When I saw the space and the windows, I immediately thought of them,” says the woman looking for a partnership.

Marie-Michel Corneau and Camille Ferland-Tousignant of Verdure with Maud Roy-Carpentier of Café Mila on the 4th

A well-crafted argument convinced the two entrepreneurs to be part of the project. With a clientele that likes to see and touch before they buy, Verdure Sur La 4e takes advantage of its establishment in the neighborhood.

“Maday wanted it to be turnkey for us. She will furnish us with 10% of the premises. We are a really small company. This allows us to have a presence on the street,” Ms. Ferland-Tousignant said.

The renovation work is going on at a fast pace and the inauguration ceremony will be held on June 7. Two employees have already been hired, who have been trained for plant sales and 100% vegan counter service.

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And spaces are marked so that no one steps on each other's toes.

“We also separate the back, which is closed to the public, so they can potter and store. Try to turn their home warehouse into a warehouse here,” Ms. Roy-Carpentier said.

“I think this is how we succeed in growing our businesses: by helping each other.”

Maude Roy-Carpentier, owner of Cafe Mila

Flexibility, open-mindedness and communication are the watchwords for three women new to the business, who want to create a small community around 5 to 7 hours, craft workshops and a book club.

Mutual aid is also added to this list.

“The two stores are technically separate. On the other hand, I found that it really is fun Be part of the whole. “Camille and I volunteered at the cafe,” said Ms. Carno, a longtime barista.

It remains to be seen what the future holds for these two companies. “Currently, as I am building the cafe, there is not necessarily much space available. If they ever want a bigger space, it will be a long-term challenge,” says the owner of Cafe Mila.

Adapt to another

A short ad led to the partnership of Fougères Amérés and Madame Alice on 1st Avenue.

After discussing nearly fifty candidates to share her beauty care salon, Alexandra Taka fell in love at first sight with Andrean Simard, the florist behind Madame Alice.

Andrea Simard, owner of Madame Alice, and Alexandra Taka, owner of Fougeres Améres, who share 1195, 1st Ave.

“We were complete strangers when we started. I was looking for someone with the same work ethic and the same focus on running the business,” explains the woman who owns the building.

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Looking back, Ms. Simard says she jumped into the adventure in 2021 without much thought.

“I do not know this woman at all. Today, she is a very important friend. I wouldn't have done it without it, but it would have gone badly,” she said, looking at her companion.

Kicking off ideas, challenging yourself, and trusting each other are some of the benefits of sharing daily life with another entrepreneur.

“Alexandra knows a little about how things are going business, but not much. She is in business without being in business. A florist who won the Ascension competition of the Young Chamber of Commerce in Quebec could easily give me her opinion.

While Madame Alice has the wind in her sails, the owner of Fougères Améres knows how to adapt. “Andrian is expanding. She needs more space. It doesn't bother me at all.”

Valentine's Day and Mother's Day are busy in flower shops. Bitter ferns, for their part, need to rest for a few days, while the room can be filled with bouquets.

Although the offer from both companies seems far-fetched, important dates allow the duo to join forces by offering. Candles or bath bombs complement the flowers.

10% discount is also applicable on purchase from any brand. A way to increase clientele, delights Mrs. Taka.

“For me, it's important that she feels at home too.  When I get ideas, I go and talk to him,” says florist Andrean Simard.

Here are the addresses

Frankie Janney + Borderon et Phils + Contook

  • 1101, 3e Avenue since early July

Cafe Mila + Verdure on 4th

  • 986, June 7 to 3rd Ave

Bitter Ferns + Madame Alice

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