Networking gives food business the sweet taste of success
Tara Bosch is helping consumers kick sugar and keep candy. The entrepreneur began testing recipes in her kitchen before dropping out of university at the age of 22 to pursue the venture at an incubator.
Entrepreneur: Tara Bosch, CEO and founder
Location: Vancouver, BC
Services used: Business Women in International Trade, women-focused trade missions, Trade Commissioner Service
“I wanted to empower people with the choice to kick sugar,” explains Bosch. She founded SmartSweets in 2016, and now sells gummy bears across North America in 11,000 stores, including Whole Foods & GNC stores nation-wide in the U.S.
Bosch’s ingredients for success include:
- social media marketing
- networking with organizations like Business Women in International Trade (BWIT)
Bosch caught BWIT’s attention when she appeared on CBC’s Dragons’ Den in 2017. She was introduced to a member of the BWIT team shortly afterwards at a WEConnect International conference in Toronto.
BWIT connected Bosch with trade commissioners in Boston, Los Angeles, Dallas, Seattle and Europe. This gave SmartSweets access to local market knowledge and business contacts through the worldwide network of Trade Commissioner Service (TCS) offices.
Bosch has also attended BWIT women-focused trade missions to Detroit and Florida. This helped her explore the U.S. market first-hand.
Bosch’s advice to women entrepreneurs
“It’s all about connecting and finding resources. I started looking for contacts who had expertise. I worked hard to address my knowledge gap. I took a crash business course and the woman who gave it became my mentor.”
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