Douglas Magazine

  • Tessa Bousfield posted an article
    Collaboration and action can make this cultural movement a positive turning point for us all see more

    Author: Erin Skillen

    The Power of #MeToo

    Collaboration and action can make this cultural movement a positive turning point for us all

    I’ve been an entrepreneur for much of my career, first as a producer/co-owner of an independent TV production company and then as a tech- startup founder.

    Most of the companies I have joined or founded were female-led businesses in male-dominated industries. I’m used to being the only woman in a group of men in a variety of professional contexts. I have learned to navigate those spaces and be comfortable within them while being conscious of having to keep myself safe.

    I’ve faced my share of obnoxious moments in my career. Having a former mentor greet me at a professional event by loudly telling me how sexy I looked, and then asking everyone around us if they agreed with him. Meeting with an investor who had requested to learn more about my company, only to have him ask if I could host an open house for his condo because I had “the right look.” And even having someone offer to fund my career early on if I left my partner at the time and became his girlfriend instead.

    These are pretty minor infractions compared to what other women have dealt with. I was never in danger. But the fact that these things happen regularly, that there is an accumulation of these inappropriate moments, is both infuriating and exhausting.


  • Tessa Bousfield posted an article
    Deadline is November 16, at 5:00 p.m. see more

    Nominate Your Business — or a Business You Like — for Douglas Magazine’s 10 to Watch Competition 

    Know a great Island business that’s three years old or less? (It could even be your business!) The deadline for Douglas magazine’s 10 to Watch Awards — the popular annual competition that recognizes the very best of Vancouver Island’s new businesses — is November 16, at 5:00 p.m.

    The exposure winners receive through 10 to Watch gives them well-deserved applause, builds brand recognition and shines the spotlight on the Island’s spirit of innovation and entrepreneurship. Past winners include TOPSOIL, Roll Focus Productions, Flytographer, Pretio Interactive, Rumble Energy Drink and 85 other impressive local enterprises. 

    The deadline for nominations for 10 to Watch is November 16, 2018 at 5:00 p.m. Every nominee will then receive an email confirming that they have been nominated for 10 to Watch 2018. They will be sent an application form to fill out, which includes details such as a short biography, indicators for success and how the business contributed to the community and/or environment.

    Winners of 10 to Watch will be recognized at an invitation-only special event in the spring and will be showcased in the April/May edition of Douglas magazine.

    Visit for the nomination form and more information.

  • Tessa Bousfield posted an article
    In workspaces tucked away on second floors of commercial buildings or in industrial warehouses... see more

    Source: Douglas Magazine
    Author: Nevin Thompson

    An Inside Look at Victoria’s Gaming Companies

    In workspaces tucked away on second floors of commercial buildings or in industrial warehouses, Victoria’s gaming companies are punching above their weight in a multi-billion dollar market.

    “In Canada there are more people per capita working on video games than in any other country in the world,” says Eric Jordan, CEO of Victoria video game company Codename Entertainment. “They’re part of an industry worth $100 billion in North America alone that continues to grow.”

    Victoria is also a player in that global video game industry, with a vibrant tech sector employing at least 15,000 people and steadily transforming the city from tucked-away, renovated offices above Fort Street, Bastion Square and Chinatown, or in industrial parks and home studios. There, you’ll find at least 20 video game companies employing about 250 people who are creating games that are popular with millions of people all over the world.


  • Tessa Bousfield posted an article
    How 2 Leaders encourage creative thinking and tackle new projects in innovative ways see more

    Source: Douglas Magazine

    How Local Leaders Inspire Creativity and Outside-the-Box Thinking In Their Teams

    How much does creativity drive a business’ success? According to a 2014 study conducted by Adobe and Forrester Consulting, 82 per cent of companies believe there’s a strong correlation between creativity and business results. For many businesses, regardless of the industry, creativity is a key differentiator and integral to a business’ success.

    So how can you help foster a creative office environment? We asked two local business leaders, Dan Dagg of Hot House Marketing and Brianna Wettlaufer of Stocksy United, to share how they encourage creative thinking, tackle new projects in innovative ways, and deliver unique results.


  • Tessa Bousfield posted an article
    As a driven entrepreneur, she wanted to meet other ambitious, hard-working women. see more

    Author: Karin Olafson
    Photography: Courtesy of Humaira Ahmed

    A Made-In-Victoria Social Networking App Aims to Tackle Loneliness Among Local Women

    Two years ago, Humaira Ahmed, the founder of Locelle Digital Inc., struggled to make meaningful connections while she was on maternity leave with her second daughter. As a driven entrepreneur, she wanted to meet other ambitious, hard-working women. But she had trouble finding them.

    “I realized that meeting like-minded women easily is a challenge,” says Ahmed. “Not everyone is an extrovert, meet-ups can be hard and intimidating, and other online platforms aren’t always successful.”

    Personal experiences, and the fact that feelings of loneliness and isolation are known to be increasingly problematic, Ahmed began thinking of what a women-only social networking platform would look like and how it could make forming meaningful friendships a little easier.

    [Click here to read the full article on]

  • Tessa Bousfield posted an article
    It seems Victoria has its entrepreneurial wings at last... see more

    Source: Douglas Magazine
    Author: Pamela Roth

    Victoria Is a City of Entrepreneurs

    With angel investors arriving en masse this spring, and startups, popups and meetups infusing our lingo, it seems Victoria has its entrepreneurial wings at last. But don’t expect a copycat of Silicon Valley. This city has its own vibrant attitude...

    [Click to read more]

  • Tessa Bousfield posted an article
    First Light is actually in the business of “un-sucking” solar lighting. see more

    Source: Douglas Magazine
    Author: Alex Van Tol

    The Story of First Light Technologies' Improved Business Strategy

    Across North America, thousands of parks, parking lots, playgrounds and Pathways feature solar lights from First Light Technologies. Douglas explores this fast-growing firm’s steep learning curve, and how an improved strategy and process have helped it push back the darkness.

    [Click to read more]

  • Tessa Bousfield posted an article
    The winners were announced at an awards ceremony on April 4 at The Leonardo Da Vinci Centre see more

    Top New Island Businesses Announced at 10 to Watch Awards

    Including two VIATEC Members!

    April 5, 2017 (News Release) VICTORIA — Douglas magazine is proud to announce the winners of their eighth annual 10 to Watch Awards for 2017. These awards highlight the very best of Vancouver Island’s new businesses.

    The winners were announced at an awards ceremony on April 4 at The Leonardo Da Vinci Centre in Victoria, B.C. and were selected by an independent panel of judges that included local business owners and representatives of the University of Victoria Peter B. Gustavson School of Business and Royal Roads University School of Business.

    The 2017 10 to Watch winners are:

    On April 5, you can read more about the 2017 winners here.  

    “We celebrate each of these innovative 10 to Watch winners for their entrepreneurial spirit and courage to leave the comfort zone,” says Lise Gyorkos, co-owner of Page One Publishing, which produces Douglas magazine. “A 10 to Watch Award is a strong vote of confidence from the experts, and these are businesses who demonstrate sound business models, scalability, talent and great market potential.”

    Now in their eighth year, the 10 to Watch Awards recognize Vancouver Island’s best new companies, which have been in business for three years or less. Previous winners include: LlamaZoo, DeeBees Organics, Flytographer, Indochino, Rumble Energy Drink, Elate Cosmetics and Stocksy United.

    Douglas is Vancouver Island’s business magazine, published by award-winning Page One Publishing. Page One also publishes YAM magazine, Victoria’s lifestyle magazine.

    The 10 to Watch Awards are made possible by the generous sponsorship of Title Sponsor Peninsula Co-op and supporting sponsors.

    Douglas Editor-in-Chief, Kerry Slavens and select winners will be available for interviews, upon request. 

    For further information and interviews, contact:

    Kerry Slavens, Editor-in-Chief, Douglas Magazine

    Cell: 250-516-0152

    Phone: 250-595-7243





    The only commercial laboratory in Canada to use laser ablation for biological tissues to answer questions regarding health, nutrition and metal exposure.

    Roll.Focus. Productions

    A video production company that combines a journalistic approach with simple digital marketing strategies, striking the balance between budget and value for its small-business clients.

    Cultured Kombucha

    The maker of kombucha — a probiotic beverage made of fermented tea — which uses organic ingredients and sells it primarily on tap and by bulk-fill, leaving a low environmental footprint. 

    FreshWorks Studio

    A tech firm that uses a collaborative team approach to develop elegant and sophisticated mobile apps for private- and public-sector companies, on both iOS and Android platforms.

    Studio Robazzo

    A multi-faceted design firm that takes on everything from interior design to graphic design to websites to industrial design to retail displays and even stage sets. 

    Angela Cote Consulting Inc.

    A franchise consultant and business-growth specialist who helps business owners convert to the franchise model, and assists established franchisors take their business to the next level.

    SOHO Victoria

    An annual one-day conference and networking event for small companies and home-based businesses that includes speakers, workshops, round-table discussions and one-on-one expert advisor sessions.

    Miiko Skin Co

    A natural skincare line that focuses on using high-quality local ingredients, delivering its products with education and keeping its environmental footprint low.

    Rep Lab Communications

    A public relations and marketing company that enhances its clients’ reputations in the good times but whose grounding in crisis management can also help when issues arise.

    Victoria Soda Works

    Maker of handcrafted, small-batch soda pop, available in 16 different flavours sweetened with cane sugar, as well as a line of sugar-free selzers.

  • Tessa Bousfield posted an article
    CEO Brianna Wettlaufer has led Stocksy United in a strategy that has disrupted the global stock... see more

    Source: Douglas Magazine
    Author: Alex Van Tol
    Photography: Jeffrey Bosdet

    Why Stocksy United's CEO is a Rebel With a Cause

    High energy, big enthusiasm, formidable smarts — CEO Brianna Wettlaufer has led Stocksy United in a strategy that has disrupted the global stock photography industry — by doing the right thing.

    On a chilly day in December, I march into the rabbit warren that is Market Square in search of one of Victoria’s fastest rising entrepreneurs, the CEO of Stocksy United, the stock photography and video-footage sensation launched by industry veterans who set out to reinvent the highly competitive but endlessly derivative microstock industry.

    A third-floor frosted door opens into Stocksy’s office space, which can only be described as old barn meets hipster warehouse. The space hums with quiet activity. Most of Stocksy’s 25 Victoria employees are clustered around a long bank of enormous screens that stretch across the centre of the room. In the foreground, two Gen-Xers share a late-afternoon conversation.

    I’m soon joined by Stocksy’s CEO Brianna Wettlaufer, a tall, stylish thirtysomething who easily slides into the interview, her smile authentic, her laugh surprising in its depth — and its inclusiveness. When you’re with her, you feel like you belong.

    Wettlaufer and her partners founded Stocksy in 2012. Just four years later, this artist-run cooperative has made a big dent in the microstock industry. Wettlaufer recently announced Stocksy had doubled its revenue in 2015 to US$7.9M, paid out more than $4.3 million in royalties to artists and paid its first dividends of $200,000 to member artists who sold imagery in 2015.

    Making the announcement, Wettlaufer boldy said: “At a time when some stock imagery companies are slashing artist royalties and others suffer from bloated, outdated collections, Stocksy’s success proves that clients at the major design firms and Fortune 500 companies we serve agree that the combination of fair pay combined with meticulous curation equals a far better product. Our member artists are invested in the company’s growth and paid equitably, so they can spend more on photo shoots, making the Stocksy collection uniquely vibrant and current.”

    No wonder competitors have taken notice. Stocksy has truly emerged.

    You have a global outlook, but I understand you are an Islander?
    Yep, I was born here. I did the usual: moved away. My mom was American, so I grew up between here and San Diego. But Victoria has always felt like home. I can’t live anywhere but Victoria. Everywhere else is ruined.

    Did you go to university here?
    I didn’t go to university [laughs]. I have no regrets. I kind of dropped out in grade 11, homeschooled myself for a year and then it was like, Do I finish this? Or do I just start my life? And the teacher I was working with was like,Dude, you’ve got this. Nobody cares if you graduate high school. And I was like,OK, that’s how I feel.

    You were self-taught in graphic design, so how did you get into the industry with no formal training?
    There was a place called PCN Creative at the time. I walked in and said, I think you should hire me and they were like, Yeah, just sit and wait. They let me wait for four hours, and I was thinking, Nope, I’m not going anywhere until I get a response. The creative director eventually came out said, All right, we’ll give you a chance. I worked my way up from the bottom. I was there a year, then got hired by one of their clients to be their creative director. That was a leadership consulting firm, which I think had a pretty big influence on my idea of leadership.

    So you skipped over all those other levels of doing leadership wrong and got to work with experts whose role is to teach others how to do it right?
    Yes, they let me take some of the tests they administered, too. I did one that was really traumatizing! At 19 or 20, you have this self-assured perception that you know yourself so well. No f-ing way you do. The results came back and showed I was insecure and constantly seeking validation. I’m like, What is this? OK, this is going to change NOW [smacks table]. I realized if I wanted to do things, I had to do them for myself.

    So then iStock hired you as a writer. Did you bring those leadership skills to that position?
    Possibly. I think I’ve always been very process-focused. I quickly came in and was like, Well, this is nice how you’re running this, but we’re going to fix it[laughs]. The photo process when I came in was pretty much a free-for-all — anybody could upload anything, the team was a mess, there were no standards. So I was like, Why don’t you let me take this over? They let me.

    You knew you could do more and do it better if you put parameters in place. That’s a big part of your heavy curation process at Stocksy too. You still have final say, I understand.
    I had to fight everybody when we first started — even some of the other co-founders — about what my vision was. I wasn’t going to accept anything else. I put together the first creative brief for our membership: Here’s what stock looks like now. It’s a joke. Here’s what it should look like. It was photo-to-photo comparisons, good to bad. We would break them down into what was working and what was wrong. It didn’t make sense why stock had to have a different look in comparison to things that were in magazines. It was breaking down the patterns that people had fallen into. We spent a lot of time writing creative briefs and education pieces, and we’ve got a really hands-on editorial team. When you’re consistent with people while challenging them, once they hit that bar you’re trying to push them to, they’re usually really thankful that you did.

    Stocksy is different because you hand-pick your photographers and pay them well. How did you decide on your business model?
    Until we came into the scene, there was the notorious line where the industry was racing to the bottom. Subscription models had just taken over. When you have subscriptions, you’re literally paying pennies to the photographers. When we came in, the point of things being sustainable was really important. You can’t be sustainable if you’re not paying people the true value of what they’re creating … I think that’s what gave us a competitive edge. Everybody’s fighting with the subscription thing, saying you can’t bring value back — and I think we’re showing that you can.

    The platform co-operative based on fair pay is a new and different thing. You give 90 per cent of profits to your artists?
    It was a very deliberate choice of wanting to prove that you don’t have to take that much money away from photographers and artists in order to run your company. Run it on a shoestring budget, keep your staff low, be intentional — and when you give back to your community and your artists, they give back to you to create a stronger product. It creates a cycle and feeds the success of your product. It was a gamble that might not have worked out, but we’re lucky. I think we did validate that with the loyalty we have from our members. All the other agencies have gone through our member directory trying to poach [our photographers] and our photographers are like, I left you for a reason. This company is treating me well, I want to support them.

    In your second year, you extended ownership to staff. What prevents other companies from doing that?
    Even as I’m listening to other people wanting to set their companies up like that, they’re like, Well, we’re going to do it but we’re not going to do it as a co-op, and I’m like, Why wouldn’t you want to do it that way? and they’re like, Well, I’m not sure I can trust everybody. There are major trust issues. It’s not going to happen overnight. If you want everybody to be collaborative, working together, you have to share your information and invest in the education of everybody’s understanding. We’re accountable to everybody who is a shareholder, which is no different than a traditional business model. But we get the pleasure of being accountable to people who are actually invested in the product and the integrity of the product and its long-term success, versus a venture capitalist who’s just looking to cash out as quickly as possible. We get to be much more long-term focused.

    Stocksy serves Fortune 500 companies, household names and even banks. How have you managed to work with such well-regarded companies?
    I think we’re lucky in the executive team that came together to formulate the way we do things. We weren’t learning things for the first time; most large agencies have a fairly rigorous onboarding process with legal and accounting. Our goal was: how do we make that as easy and as personal as possible for them? We make sure we do everything we can to be excited about what [our clients] are doing. We have a full-time creative research person helping clients uncover photos quickly. We’ve made a very deliberate effort in our tone and in the way we talk to people. This is just how we do business, trying to keep it as human and sincere as possible.

    How does Stocksy manage to compete against the “big guns” in stock photography?
    The fact that we love photography and want to support artists creates a much different approach to our business versus just, How do we make a ton of cash? We have a really high ratio of photographers on staff, so we end up championing it …There is an infectious quality to that. Focus on quality over quantity and give clients the great stuff they want — that’s our edge.

    I can’t let you go before you tell me what it was like to have Stocksy featured in the New York Times!
    We met the writer at the first-ever platform co-operative event (which is testament to how much people are paying attention to the co-op model). We stayed loosely in touch, and when [the New York Times] was preparing to run the article, we got a call saying they were going to send a Seattle photographer up to shoot the team. Which was so strange! That they sent a photographer up from Seattle?! We were like, Wow. We were one of the most read articles in the New York Times that day. People care about the why. 

  • Tessa Bousfield posted an article
    10 to Watch winners include three VIATEC Members and a VIATEC VAP Program Participant! see more

    Douglas Magazine is excited to announce the winners of their seventh annual 10 to Watch Awards. These awards highlight the very best of Vancouver Island’s new businesses.

    Victoria, BC - April 7, 2016 - The winners were announced at an awards ceremony last night at The Union Club in downtown Victoria and were selected by an independent panel of judges that included business owners and representatives of the University of Victoria Peter Gustavson School of Business and Royal Roads University School of Business. The 2016 10 to Watch winners include three VIATEC Members and a VIATEC VAP Program Participant!

    The winners are:

    “These 10 winners are an inspiring group who dare to think different,” says Lise Gyorkos, whose company Page One Publishing produces Douglas magazine. “Not only do they demonstrate innovation and a dedication to their businesses, they embody the entrepreneurial spirit that the 10 to Watch Awards were created to champion.”

    Now in their 7th year, the 10 to Watch Awards recognize Vancouver Island's best new companies, which have been in business for three years or less. Previous winners include: DeeBees Organics, Flytographer, Indochino, SendtoNews, Rumble Energy Drink, Parc Modern Interiors, Cook Culture and Shaw Ocean Discovery Centre.

    Douglas is Vancouver Island’s business magazine, published by award-winning Page One Publishing. Page One also publishes YAM Magazine, Victoria’s lifestyle magazine, and Salt, a Vancouver Island travel and lifestyle magazine for Calgary, Edmonton and Vancouver readers.

    Douglas Editor-in-Chief, Kerry Slavens and select winners will be available for interviews, upon request. 

    For further information and interviews, contact:

    Kerry Slavens, Editor-in-Chief, Douglas Magazine

    Cell: 250-516-0152

    Phone: 250-595-7243




    E-Quick Eco Courier (Victoria),

    Can a courier company make the world a better place? E-Quick Eco Courier is a zero-emissions courier, delivery and distribution system that promotes sustainability and environmental awareness in everything it does.

    Easy Job Quote (Victoria),

    An online marketplace that brings homeowners and contractors together for a fair bidding process, Easy Job Quote helps homeowners prepare projects for tender and its blind bidding system simplifies the process for contractors.

    Echosec (Victoria),

    This tech company is making waves globally with its location-based social-media monitoring and analytics platform. From city happenings to war zones, Echosec takes you beyond the nightly news, straight to the people posting.

    Enigmatic Events (Victoria),

    This event planner helps your business by facilitating team building. Enigmatic Events provides a "gameful" way of doing meetings, allowing for real results that carry over into a business’s project work.

    Joma Environmental (Victoria),

    A triple-bottom-line company focused on protecting the quality of our drinking water, soil and air, Joma Environmental’s waste and recycling systems manage contaminated-site remediation, emergency–spill response, hazardous waste-disposal and ecological reclamation.

    LlamaZoo Interactive (Victoria),

    An edtech platform that allows veterinary students to learn anatomy from 3D digital models instead of textbooks and dissection, LlamaZoo helps students become more engaged and universities reduce the big costs of running labs.

    Resthouse Sleep Solutions (Duncan),

    Sleep specialists who know that one-size-fits all doesn’t work when it comes to bedding, Resthouse Sleep Solutions focus on customized solutions and organic options to help its customers get the best night's sleep.

    TellWell (Victoria),

    A self-publishing company that gives its authors 100-per-cent net royalties, TellWell makes its money on services rather than mark-up and book sales, keeping its authors’ best interests at heart.

    The Wandering Mollusk Oyster Catering Co. (Victoria),

    This boutique catering company’s passion for oysters is turning Victoria into a mollusk-lover’s paradise, as The Wandering Mollusk brings its ocean-to-table philosophy and a contagious enthusiasm for the seafood to its venues.

    Toque Catering (Victoria),

    A catering company that knows farm-to-table is more than a trend, Toque Catering uses local and sustainable products in its aim to fill an untapped niche in a Victoria market that craves upscale comfort food and customizable menus.

    Athena McKenzie | Associate Editor
    Page One Publishing Inc
    580 Ardersier Road, Victoria, BC V8Z 1C7
    T 250-595-7243 | F 250-595-1626 |
    YAM magazine | DOUGLAS magazine