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Students in Business Starting a Business in Nova Scotia
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Brendan Wilton, Mathew Archibald and Alex Russell

MBA Yard Services
Halifax, NS

High school graduation was just around the corner, and buddies Brendan Wilton, Mathew Archibald and Alex Russell knew they had to get a summer job – but none of them really wanted to. What started, begrudgingly, as a small lawn-mowing business with an old station wagon and a basic utility trailer has quickly turned into a full-scale landscaping company for the three friends, now 20.

As their fourth summer in business gets underway, the guys can’t stop talking about their latest equipment purchase. With the help of Students in Business funding, MBA Yard Services was able to buy a hydraulic dump trailer. “We are twice as fast now,” explains Wilton, “partly because we don’t have to shovel it all out of the back of the trailer – we can just dump it. But also because the new trailer is twice as big as the one we had before, so we can carry twice as much stuff.”

The three commerce students had learned about the Students in Business program online. During the past winter, they put together a solid business plan, which they used to apply for funding through the Students in Business program. Archibald was amazed at how straightforward the funding application process was. “Even though we were all in Ontario at university, we were able to sort everything out over the phone and by email.”

The Students in Business funding program gets three thumbs up from Wilton, Archibald and Russell. “I think more students need to take advantage of these student loans because it is opportunities like these that give students the funding to create a proper business, and only as a student will you receive interest terms like these,” comments Russell. “It’s the best and easiest way to get your business started – except for money from your parents, of course, but then they’re in your ear about how much money you’re making,” adds Wilton with a grin.

They see many possibilities for their business as they look forward. “We want to do everything we can to reduce the seasonality of the business,” Archibald says. They are working hard to extend their summer season by creating a network of contractors who need landscape construction services for newly-built homes. “Snow plowing could also be of interest,” adds Russell. But no matter how busy they get, they still manage to find a bit of time for their other passions – sailing and golfing.


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