Cape Breton's Magazine

> Issue 41 > Page 38 - Robin Stuart, Salmon Farmer

Page 38 - Robin Stuart, Salmon Farmer

Published by Ronald Caplan on 1986/1/1 (800 reads)

started formulating a company to see if I could get some funding. During that winter I took a small business management course at U.C.C.B. My instructor turned out to have a consulting firm--so I hired him to help me with my business plan. Then I went door-to-door knocking. I went to open for? ums all around the place trying to get to people to tell about fish farming, what I was planning to do with it, the potential. I wanted them to invest in my enterprise. I'd gone to the bank and they'd laughed at me 'cause it was too high risk for them. And federal money--the interest was ridicu? lous . They wanted too much of a down pay? ment. And I'd gone to most of the govern? ment departments. I went to Supply and Ser? vices , I went to Department of Fisheries and Oceans, Nova Scotia Fisheries, Fisher? ies Loan Board. All the same. You could tell the effect of Devco's way of getting out of Marine Farming. It wasn't portrayed clearly. So much of what looked like loss was really Research and Development money. Made it look une-conomic, and financial in? stitutions wouldn't support me. You could tell, talking to the banks, all the finan? cial institutions--as well as business peo? ple when I started looking for money--"How can you make it when Devco couldn't?" Besides, none of them would provide working capital, which really is the major part of this business. There was a lot of money available through these agencies for just capital fixed assets--structures, build? ings, facilities--you can get money for those. But for working capital, which is basically feed and labour, which are the major expenses in this business--it's virtually impossible to get it. I decided to try Sydney after I didn't have any luck in Baddeck. Started on Charlotte Street, and hit Harvey Webber. Harvey lis? tened to me and suggested Danny White. I was a bit leery of him because he had been connected with Devco Marine Farming, admin? istratively, and I didn't really think that he was the guy. But as it turned out, he was good for my purpose. In a lot of ways he helped me, and I appreciated it. It cost quite a bit of money. But he was willing to take me on, and if it didn't work, it didn't cost me very much. And at that time, I'd spent something like 8, 9 thousand dollars of my own mon? ey trying to get the thing off the ground in terms of incorpora? tion and my expenses of the win? ter months. I didn't have a cent. I don't know what would have hap? pened if it hadn't worked, 'cause I don't know how I would have paid him. But I had to try something. My back was to the wall. So an3rway, we held press confer? ences, which is the way Danny wanted us to do it--go public through the media. He orchestrated the thing for me, told me what to say and when to say it. The CBC were incredibly suppor? tive of the whole thing all along. And I find that really strange, because my exper? ience with the media generally was they don't tend to be that supportive. You know, they're looking for bad news more than good news. But in my case they seemed to be just the opposite. Well, I got the ini? tial impression that the reason they wanted to follow me was they were always trying to dig the information about my re? lationship with Devco, why Devco Marine Farming folded. But I never gave them that. But it sort of developed, they got so caught up in the spirit of the thing, and positivism. I was trying to look for some sort of sup? port, I was really looking for support from the Cape Breton people. I wanted to stay in this business that I'd spent 11 years of my life working in; that it was worth investing in, despite the risks, and that it was a good thing to invest in. I was ready to take the risk. Were they? I was curious about that. As it turned out, it overwhelmed me, really, the way people "The impact of the success of JOB CORPS has been felt throughout the Industrial Cape Breton area" • Brian Duffy, President of Industrial Cape Breton Board of Trade (Sponsor) INDUSTRIAL CAPE BRETON YOUTH JOB CORPS WORKS! YOUTH JOB CORPS has completed one full year. The participants received academic upgrading, shared in a life skills program, practised good work habits, and had a chance to focus on their career goals. And the results: 85% of YOUTH JOB CORPS participants who completed the course have been placed in employ? ment or employment-related training. More important, these are permanent jobs, not part-time. Our record • when compared with YOUTH JOB CORPS na? tional ly--shows a higher percentage of placement than anywhere else in Canada. In Year Two, YOUTH JOB CORPS will have more partici? pants, a wider range of programs and training, and further outreach. Our Success Is the Community's Success Contact Us - We Care About the Future of Industrial Cape Breton AN EDUCATIONAL ALTERNATIVE FOR EMPLOYMENT PREPARATION fiffi INDUSTRIAL CAPE BRETON VVff/YOUTH JOB CORPS '' L' 268 Chariotte St, Sydney 539-2630 (39)
Cape Breton's Magazine
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