October 2019 – Making Waves

With a mission to inform, empower, celebrate and advocate for British Columbia's current and aspiring business leaders, BCBusiness go behind the headlines and bring readers face to face with the key issues and people driving business in B.C.

Issue link: http://digital.canadawide.com/i/1173482

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BCBUSINESS.CA C O - F O U N D E R A N D P R E S I D E N T + C O - F O U N D E R A N D E X E C U T I V E V I C E - P R E S I D E N T , M O N A R K M E D I A V E N T U R E S n If there were such a title as serial disrupter, Monty Sikka (above right) and Mark Catroppa would qualify. The two met at then–Kwantlen College in 1991 before becoming business part- ners 10 years later, when they started an e-commerce-based pharmaceutical distribution company. "We noticed price dis- crepancies, particularly in the EU, of prescription drugs," Catroppa recalls. "So we set up a company trading them, mostly in Europe." After growing the business to 300 employees and selling it off, they developed the Monark (Monty+Mark) Group banner and began compiling a diverse portfo- lio. In 2010 it was ReShip, which simplifies buying and shipping from other countries; a few years later it was Kater, a ride-hailing service that is "disrupting the dis- rupters," says Sikka; and Zenabis Global, a cannabis producer with facilities in Delta, Langley and Atlantic Canada. –N.C. R U N N E R - U P Karm Sumal C E O , D A I L Y H I V E n Karm Sumal and his co-founder Manny Bahia got the idea for what became a national media power while sitting on the couch playing video games in his parents' basement in Southeast Vancouver. "We stumbled on the idea talking about Vancouver from a lens that hadn't been talked about," Sumal recalls. "Younger, not from the west side, maybe a little more raw in the sense that we were never trained in journalism." But the two and third co-founder Farhan Mohamed didn't let that dissuade them. They plugged away at their day jobs, using early mornings and late nights to start Vancity Buzz, an online publication targeting millennials, in 2008. Sumal, who earned a BBA in accounting from SFU, finally left his job in the finance department of Blenz Coffee in 2015, a year before the site went national, rebranding as Daily Hive. Today, the company has about 80 staff and offices in Van- couver and Toronto, with an eye toward expansion into Seattle and Portland this year. –N.C. R U N N E R S - U P Monty Sikka + Mark Catroppa R U N N E R - U P Stephen de Jong C E O , V R I F Y T E C H N O L O G Y n After serving as president and CEO of Integra Gold for five years and growing it from a $10-million business to a $590-million sale in 2017 to fellow Vancouver outfit Eldorado Gold, Stephen de Jong didn't stay unemployed for long. At the start of 2018, he already had four clients on board his new venture, Vrify, which helps companies redefine how they present information by using tools like virtual reality, 3D model- ling and 360-degree photography. "Most public companies market the same way they did 20 or 30 years ago–a corporate pre- sentation and a tech space press release," says the 35-year-old. Thanks to de Jong's experi- ence and that of co-founder George Salamis (former executive chair of Integra), most of Vrify's 90 or so clients are in mining, including Newmont Goldcorp Corp. and Teck Resources. The firm, which has 40 staff, plans to hit 200 in two years. –N.C. HOW WOULD YOU DESCRIBE YOUR LEADERSHIP STYLE? I strive to make sure that my team is happy, over everything else. If you take care of them, the rest will come easier. I don't like to microman- age. I'm a firm believer that people will do great things if you step back and let them – Karm Sumal OCTOBER 2019 BCBUSINESS 37 E N T R E P R E N E U R O F T H E Y E A R 2 0 1 9 / B U S I N E S S D I S R U P T E R

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