Launched in February of 2020, eSupply Canada faced the realities of entrepreneurship quickly as the Covid-19 pandemic swept the globe one month after their successful launch and forced a quick pivot in the business world. This economic shift affected businesses across the globe; however, eSupply Canada was already set up to succeed in the changing economy. eSupply Canada is an Indigenous-owned online distributor of office, janitorial, and industrial supplies, based out of Saugeen First Nations in Ontario, Canada. Owned by Indigenous entrepreneur and Saugeen community member, Steven Vanloffeld, eSupply Canada was created from a need within Indigenous communities to source supplies from an Indigenous supplier. As the pandemic continued to affect businesses on a global scale, eSupply Canada turned to their ability to source PPE through their industrial supply chains in order to support Indigenous and non-Indigenous communities and businesses, and governments.
Founder and CEO of eSupply Canada, Steven Vanloffeld, served as an elected council member of Saugeen from 2016-18, and in that time, realized the necessity for community-based suppliers. He was able to recognize the economic leakage within the community, noting that there weren’t enough businesses within the community to keep revenue circulating, and that millions of dollars were being spent outside of the community on various supplies. Understanding the magnitude of that revenue with the consideration of the more than 630 Indigenous communities across Canada, Vanloffeld envisioned the successful business that he owns today. “When I realized that we were getting all of our supplies that keep operations running from outside the community, that was the impetus for what would become eSupply Canada”, says Vanloffeld. “I really set out to prove the thesis that Indigenous communities and businesses, industry, and governments want to partner with a credible Indigenous supplier”.
Vanloffeld took eSupply Canada to the finals of this year’s Pow Wow Pitch competition, where his impressive year of growth and community commitment was selected out of over 1,600 Indigenous applicants. His perfected pitch included exciting plans for exponential growth, proving incredible support and success for Indigenous communities as eSupply Canada prepares to franchise across Canada over the next 7-10 years of business. “In order to purchase a franchise, you must be majority Indigenous owned and partner with the Canadian Council for Aboriginal Business” says Vanloffeld, “We are working on franchising the company, to see 300 Indigenous entrepreneurs across Canada using our system to support economic development within their communities”. With thorough concepts, incredible support, and a focus on the importance of continued supply chain within Indigenous communities, the expectation of growth for eSupply Canada is mountainous.
eSupply Canada is an active participant in our innovation economy, helping to bring equity and business opportunities to first nations and continuing to give back to Indigenous communities in a multitude of ways. Founder Steven Vanloffeld dedicates 1% of all eSupply Canada revenue to their Future Leaders Scholarship Program, supporting Indigenous students pursuing post-secondary education in the fields of business, economics, law, and the trades – all relative to fields that Vanloffeld recognized were underrepresented by Indigenous folks within their community.
As a current participant in TechAlliance’s GROW Accelerator, eSupply Canada will be able to benefit from the multitude of mentorship and opportunities provided to continue their impressive growth and work towards franchising through GROW Accelerator learning sessions lead by experienced growth-coaches in areas such as scaling, operations, and funding opportunities. Building partnerships and Indigenous businesses across Canada, eSupply Canada’s participation in GROW Accelerator is an exciting opportunity to highlight the incredible and important work Vanloffeld is dedicated to. Continuing to shine a light on the importance of supporting Indigenous communities in Canada, eSupply Canada is an impressive feat of home and community focused business. “Even though our focus is on Indigenous markets, we partner with anyone from small businesses to large companies and even government entities to allow Canadians to continue to support Indigenous communities”, says Vanloffeld.
To learn more about eSupply Canada or find your supplier of industrial products for your business of any size while committing to supporting Indigenous-owned and operated business, go to www.esupplycanada.ca.