January 2022 Newsletter




Upcoming events and opportunities

Entrepreneur Spotlight – Locke’s Electrical

Funding Agency Spotlight

In case you missed it – Recap and video link to our December Entrepreneur Ecosystem Coffee Break: Shop Local Bonanza!

How to connect with us!page2image24217472



Navigate presents: January Entrepreneur Ecosystem Coffee Break – The Importance of Mentorship

Know what Richard Branson, Steve Jobs and even Leonardo da Vinci all had in common? They all had great mentors.

As Branson puts it, “No matter how incredibly smart you think you are, or how brilliant, disruptive or plain off-the-wall your new concept might be, every start- up team needs at least one good mentor. Someone, somewhere, has already been through what you are convinced nobody else has ever confronted!”

Join us on January 18th to discover why having a mentor could be the best decision you make for you and your start-up. Also, learn more about Navigate’s new mentorship program.

January 18th, from 11:30 am – 1:00 pm Please register in advance here!
This is a free online event.

In partnership with Spicer Facilitation and Learning

ENTREPRENEUR SPOTLIGHTpage3image24220352page3image26655568

Gertrude Bradbury, Co-chair of the Advisory Board of Navigate, and recent winner of NLOWE’s Entrepreneur of the Year, is the subject of this month’s Navigate Entrepreneur Spotlight. Locke’s Electrical began as a motor repair shop in Curling in 1948. It was incorporated in 1952, at which time Sterling and Vera Randell, Ms. Bradbury’s parents, joined Vera’s father Elias Locke in the business. At the time of incorporation, the business expanded to include electrical supply sales and electrical contracting.

Since then, the certified Indigenous business has grown into the multi-sector construction firm, taking on critical projects that allow communities and economies to grow, such as health and education facilities, airports, power lines, transmission lines and substations. With more than 70 years of construction experience and with dedicated staff, Locke’s operates with the highest level of quality, safety and technical expertise, collaborating with customers and supporting local communities.

“We are passionate about applying our skills to local and regional projects,” said Ms. Bradbury, President of the company. “We do so by sharing our knowledge and expertise and by adopting a thoughtful approach to how we work. We pride ourselves on our attention to detail, learning from and drawing on our experience, leading by example, and engage our team and partners to add value for our customers and the communities we serve. Because of these efforts, we continue to build on our reputation as a successful First Nationconstruction company.”

Today, Locke’s offers services in the following industrial sectors in these areas.

  • Electrical
  • Power line
  • Transmission line
  • Substation
  • Civil
  • Equipment rental
  • Maintenance and support for utility and mining companiespage5image24222464

Ms. Bradbury has a focused vision for growing entrepreneurship in western Newfoundland.

“Working in western NL has been a blessing as I get to work and live in the community in which I grew up,” she said “It meant I remained close to family and the businesses core group of employees, some whom worked their entire career at Locke’s. Today, more than ever, employers and employees look for a balanced work life with a fulfilling lifestyle. People and businesses can work from anywhere and reach a larger or global market. My vision is that Navigate becomes a key part of an entrepreneur’s journey, providing information, support and mentorship along the way thus giving them the tools to succeed.”

As for advice for up and coming entrepreneurs, Ms. Bradbury had this to say:

“Seize every opportunity to learn, however big or small, grow your network and build relationships,” she said.

For more information about Locke’s Electrical, visit

NLOWE 2021 Entrepreneur of the Year Award for Leadership – Gertrude Bradbury video here!



Mitacs is a national not-for-profit that funds innovation and research projects, connecting Canadian industry, not-for-profits and many other types of organizations to academic researchers to co-fund a research team to take on

that organization’s challenge. So far Mitacs has funded more than 40,000 projects across Canada. Since the pandemic especially, Mitacs has found no shortage of companies turning to post-secondary institutions for help. Mitacs plays a connector and funding role in that, with a budget of $708 million over five years.

Navigate asked Libby Carew of Mitacs’ NL operations a few questions to learn more about her organization.

Navigate: What is your role with Mitacs?

LC: I am Director of Business Development for NL. Together with Niraj Shukla, Mitacs Team Lead, Atlantic, we put together projects for the province in every industry you can imagine. Our job is to find out where industries need innovation and research help and then connect them to a research team of faculty and students.

Navigate: Whom do you support?

LC: Easier to answer whom we don’t support! We work with tech companies, natural resource-based companies, small businesses, industry associations, hospitals and municipalities and more. We support start-up events, which involve all the incubators in the province – including Navigate! – as we have a stream of funding for ventures started by students. International students are eligible for our funding too so we are seeing great uptake there.

Navigate: What types of support/funding/programs are available?

LC: We have a discount on now for small-to-medium enterprises where Mitacs will cover 75% of the cost for the first 4 months of a project or a “single internship.” We have research funding and also innovation funding, which amounts to four months of consulting for a HQP (highly qualified personnel) student to take on a project. So for instance, $2,500 from the participating organization plus $7,500 from Mitacs means a total of $10,000 paid to an intern to do a project. We see this as a great way for multiple industries to tap into the great talent we have at the campuses of Memorial University and College of the North Atlantic. And Mitacs can also work with not-for-profits – we just need to vet them to make sure they are eligible before we start a proposal.

Navigate: What advice would you give to new entrepreneurs starting out?

LC: Go for it! The pandemic has disrupted the labour market, broken many supply chains and how businesses operate and service their markets. There are new opportunities in the current market landscape. Get involved with the start-up community and connect with people who share your vision for your business and we’ll help chart the course for you.

Navigate: How do entrepreneurs/students/others apply?

LC: Get in touch with me and start an application!

Libby Carew

Director, Business Development (NL)

Ask me about our SME discount on projects!


IN CASE YOU MISSED ITpage8image24226304page8image26603088

December’s Entrepreneur Ecosystem Coffee Break was the Shop Local Bonanza!

bo·nan·za noun


“a situation or event that creates a sudden increase in wealth, good fortune, or profits.”

In case you missed it! Check it out here:

During last month’s coffee break we heard from local entrepreneurs and shop local champions about the many tools and supports that are out there to help local businesses reach customers and thrive. Several guests and participants shared information on shop local initiatives including the following:

Tobi Biggin ( from CBDC Humber ( introduced us to The Atlantic Shop. Community Business Development Corporations (CBDCs) support small businesses in rural Atlantic Canada, and are dedicated to their success. As Atlantic Canada has navigated the COVID-19 pandemic, CBDCs have offered various supports to small business clients and the rural Atlantic Canada business community. The Atlantic Shop, at, provides a unique 3D retail experience, offering a wow factor to make online shopping memorable and entertaining. Shoppers will find select retailers from across Atlantic Canada with featured products ideal for gift giving. Make sure you check out this interactive website!

Janis Evans ( from The Roost at York Harbour ( provided us with an overview of the Business and Arts NL Local Holiday Gift Guide. The Roost was featured in the guide along with several other artists from Western NL.

Jason Janes ( from Juniper BBQ Scraper ( highlighted the Inaugural Mountain Market held at Marble Mountain on December 15th. This brand new market was located at the most beautiful venue on the west coast – the Marble Mountain lodge in Steady Brook – where local creators showcased their creations. We can’t wait for next year’s market! The Mountain Market is also a spin-off of the successful Hump Day Market in Deer Lake. Learn more at

Kim Todd ( from Guide to the Good ( introduced us to this eco-conscious shop local organization. Guide to the Good makes it easy for people to choose local, social, and green for their everyday purchasing and lifestyle choices. It was built because local choices build strong, resilient communities. This site is supported by social media channels, outreach, and an amazing collection of people who believe in the power and value of collaboration. They are the social enterprise of, and they are all about building a sustainable, resilient Newfoundland and Labrador. They also shared their Top Tips for Shopping Season Hits 2021 shopping-season-hits-2021.

Charlene Connors ( from Grenfell Extended Learning let us know about their “give the gift of learning” initiative! They were offering gift certificates redeemable for upcoming courses. For information about what courses they have on offer visit ( services/Pages/community/extended_learning.aspx.)

Another local initiative is Open Deer Lake ( Open DL is a collection of like-minded, proactive business leaders in the greater Deer Lake area getting together in person and online to share best practices, products and services with one another as well as with the marketplace. In short, if you are interested as a business owner/operator/entrepreneur in the greater Deer Lake area, Open Deer Lake is for you!

And don’t forget gift certificates! Consider purchasing certificates from local providers to give the gift that gives twice.

A big thank you again to everyone who highlighted opportunities to support local businesses this holiday season and beyond!

December’s coffee break also provided local entrepreneurs and support organizations an opportunity to connect and to highlight their businesses and programs including:


Edwina Bateman, Avail HR Training Solutions, Port aux Basques

From empowering employees to customized leadership development, Avail provides a learning experience that will assist organizations to break through communication barriers to build a happier, healthier and more engaged workplace. For more information contact Edwina at or 709-694-3513 or visit

Evan Brake and Jackie Bauman, Sustainable Lifestyle Solutions, Corner Brook
This start-up is focusing on educating folks on sustainable lifestyle solutions so that when there is a choice, they can make the right choice.

Sheldon R. S. Crocker, St. John’s

Sheldon is a motivational speaker. Be sure to visit him at for more details on him and his book!


Support Organizations

Carla May, NLOWE, Corner Brook

Carla is the Start-Up Advisor for Western Region with NLOWE. She can be reached at

Brent Decker, Department of Industry, Energy and Technology, Corner Brook
Brent is an Economic Development Officer with the Government of NL. He can be reached at

Thank you again to everyone who attended this session! We look forward to connecting with you during our next virtual coffee break on January 18th!


Why Shop Local?

  • Keep your $ in the community – stimulate local economy
  • Local businesses support other local businesses
  • Local businesses donate more to local charities
  • Local businesses define character and quality of life of a community
  • Lower carbon footprint
  • Local businesses are the largest local employers
  • Personalized customer service
  • Customer satisfaction and offering the products and services you wantmatters more to small business owners
  • Local business owners invest in community
  • Having many small businesses drives competition, diversity andinnovation



Looking for tips to show up online?

Check out this Free Five Easy Ways RoadMap from Guide to the Good! Proven, easy, free tips to help you get your awesome work out there in front of people who want to buy what you’re selling!page14image24492864page14image24490944page14image26556224

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