The first task of any entrepreneur is to recognize a niche that needs to be filled; the second is to do the job brilliantly
When Carolyn Doyle moved to Fernie, British Columbia, for the skiing, she noticed the dearth of good, fresh bagels—the kind she had grown up with in Ottawa, Ontario. She first started baking bagels to sell in local farmers markets, and that success allowed her to rent a space to bake bagels in a pizza shop for a year. In July 2009, with the increasing bagel buzz, Big Bang Bagels moved into its own space and has also opened a satellite location at Fernie Alpine Resort. Not too shabby for a woman with little business experience.
“I did a program through Community Futures for self-employment,” said Doyle, “and that was a really good basis from which to start off, and I’ve just gone from there.”
It’s been a steep learning curve but Doyle said the residents and business community in Fernie have been very supportive of her endeavour.
“I love Fernie—it’s such a great community,” she said. “It’s everything you could want in a wonderful little package.”
Doyle said it’s been a bit of a whirlwind with the rapidity of going from baking bagels in her home to owning a business at two locations, but she’s excited about expanding the operation and taking the lessons as they come. That positive attitude infuses the entire company.
“We have a great product that people like,” she said, “but also—and maybe more so—we have a great staff that give a friendly, warm atmosphere that’s fun to come into.”