Two years ago, Kendal Netmaker took an idea and ran with and today he is being honoured for his perseverance and entrepreneurial excellence.
Last week, Netmaker’s company Neechie Gear – which makes youth designer sportswear such as hoodies, sweatpants, caps and t-shirts – was given an award by the Saskatchewan Young Professionals and Entrepreneurs.
Neechie Gear labels itself as the “Canadian brand with a social conscience” and the 26-year-old Sweetgrass First Nation member says a big part of his business is giving back to the community.
“We created the Neechie Gear NG Athletics Club Inc., which is a separate non-profit and what we do his help kids through this non-profit to be involved with Neechie Gear youth sport teams,” he says. “So, right now we have all these sports teams that we’ve helped – we’ve helped a over a dozen in Saskatchewan, Alberta and British Columbia from soccer, hockey, volleyball and so on.”
Netmaker has only a few words of advice for other young potential Aboriginal entrepreneurs who are thinking of starting their own businesses.
“Just do it,” he says.
Neechie Gear currently has locations in the Centre Mall in Saskatoon and Gateway Mall in Prince Albert and employs six people.
As part of winning the SYPE award, Netmaker received $5,000 in cash.