Mandy Farmer

BC Business Magazine - - Entrepreneur Of The Year 2018 - –D.H.


Mandy Farmer grabbed the reins as CEO of her fam­ily's mo­tel chain, Vic­to­ri­abased Ac­cent Inns, in 2008, just as the global econ­omy was col­laps­ing. The busi­ness was tak­ing on wa­ter, lit­er­ally and fig­u­ra­tively. Leaky condo syn­drome af­flicted its five build­ings, and fall­ing prop­erty prices sank the com­pany's val­u­a­tion.

Farmer bailed out Ac­cent with two fresh ap­proaches. First, she re­vi­tal­ized her mo­tels to set them apart from their deep-pock­eted cor­po­rate com­peti­tors. Be­ing a smaller com­pany has its ad­van­tages: “We can do what­ever we want,” Farmer ex­plains. She gave her team free­dom to add fun, per­sonal touches: rub­ber ducks in the tubs and night­stands stocked with of­fice sup­plies.

Next, Farmer pushed bound­aries fur­ther with two freshly re­mod­elled prop­er­ties un­der Ac­cent's four-year-old Ho­tel Zed brand. Guests can bor­row bikes, roller skates and games. In the closet, there's a mini-disco with a fog ma­chine. Farmer, who es­ti­mates that the com­pany's value has grown four­fold, plans to add more prop­er­ties to the seven it op­er­ates now.

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