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Kiana "Rookz" Eastmond poses for a photograph outside Sandbox Studios in Toronto on Wednesday, September 26, 2018. (Christopher Katsarov/The Globe and Mail)Christopher Katsarov

This week we had a big response from readers who were touched by the all-too-rare story of a landlord who helped a young entrepreneur launch her business. Read about studio owner Kiana “Rookz” Eastmond’s unlikely friendship with her landlord, lawyer Paul Copeland, below. If you have a personal story relating to entrepreneurship you think our readers would like, drop me a line at -Sarah Efron, Globe and Mail small business editor

She was eight months behind on her rent. Instead of kicking her out, the landlord issued a challenge

Back in 2013, Kiana “Rookz” Eastmond, then 24, had perfected the art of “dodging” her landlord. “I’d see his car and I’d be, like, ‘Nobody move!’” recalls the owner of sound recording facility, Sandbox Studios. At the time, she was leasing a 400-square-foot sound studio in Toronto’s Cabbagetown and she owed her landlord money. He’d already shown his willingness to take chances on her, and she knew she was pushing the limits of his faith. Little did she know that the man she was avoiding might soon become not just a landlord, but a mentor. Story

Lack of legal cannabis seeds fuels spike in black-market sales

Some illegal cannabis seed vendors are reporting big spikes in sales since recreational cannabis was legalized last month, driven by the lack of legal seed supply outside the medical marijuana system. Story

Fintech startup that bases loans on artificial intelligence assessment helping many small businesses

Two months into the launch of her dance studio, Natalie Borch needed a loan. The 34-year-old first-time business owner had opened the doors to The Pink Studio in February after she and her brother invested $40,000 of their own cash and took out a $100,000 loan from the Business Development Bank of Canada. Story

The need to forge partnerships in order to compete outside Canada

Since it was founded 11 years ago, Halifax-based CarbonCure Technologies Inc. has pursued collaborations with investors, clients and others to accelerate the adoption of its environmentally friendly approach to manufacturing concrete. Story

Dragons’ Den star raises $70-million for startup that finances e-commerce retailers

Michele Romanow started to notice a pattern as she sat through pitch after pitch as a star of TV’s Dragons' Den earlier this decade. While Ms. Romanow didn’t want to invest in many of the e-commerce businesses appealing for her money, she did think she could provide them with capital in a more effective way by temporarily underwriting their online advertising in exchange for a cut of revenues. Story

Montreal software firm Lightspeed prepares for initial public offering

Montreal software firm Lightspeed POS Inc. is gearing up for an initial public offering, with the firm selecting banks to lead the deal and adding new directors with experience inside publicly-traded technology companies. Story

AI-for-auditors Ottawa software startup Mindbridge scores venture financing deal

One of Canada’s most promising artificial intelligence startups, Mindbridge Analytics Inc., has raised $8.4-million in a venture financing deal to fund its efforts to transform the auditing business with machine learning. Story

Spartan Bioscience’s Paul Lem: DNA testing, med school and Marvel comics

Your DNA holds the answer to every question you have about your body, but for the most part, those answers have been inaccessible because of cost and time. In this episode of The Globe’s podcast I’ll Go First, Spartan Bioscience’s CEO and founder Paul Lem talks about the secrets hiding in your DNA, his past career as a doctor and his love for comic books. Story

Business owners often underestimate hiring costs. The lowdown on CPP and EI

Hiring employees is a sign of success for a small business, but it comes with additional costs beyond wages, and they can quickly add up. Story

Cleantech startup programs bacteria to turn table waste into bioplastics

Soon your table scraps could turn from trash to plastic bottles, medical equipment or 3D-printing filament. One Canadian small business is using clean technology to turn carbon-packed food waste into biodegradable plastic. Story


Atlantic Canada’s female caterers getting a crack at government contracts

The federal government is looking to connect with catering businesses in the Atlantic region for future contracts, with one caveat: they must be women-owned or women-led. Story

Small businesses say Montreal’s new tax breaks a positive step

Montreal small business owners are pleased with one part of the city’s budget – a tax break. The city’s 23,000 restaurants and stores will see tax cuts between $800 and $2,000. Though it’s not a game changer, businesses say it sends a positive message. Story

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