Winnipeg Free Press - PRINT EDITION

Jenkyns Electric lauded for business savvy

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THREE 30-something guys who took over a small electrical firm three years ago, diversified its operations, and more than tripled the size of its staff have been named Manitoba's Young Entrepreneurs of the Year.

Jenkyns Electric owners Todd Jenkyns, 34, Pete Chudley, 34, and Mark Kohaykewych, 33, were among provincial winners from across the country who were honoured at the Business Development Bank of Canada (BDC) 2011 awards gala in Saskatoon Tuesday.

The award is icing on the cake for the three business partners, who purchased Jenkyns Electric from Todd's father, Bob, in 2008.

When they took it over, the firm had nine employees and did mostly electrical service work in the Winnipeg area. They decided the best way to grow the business was to diversify into other areas.

Kohaykewych said the firm obtained certification under the Leadership in Energy and Environmental Design (LEED) program and began conducting energy audits for corporate customers and working with Manitoba Hydro's Power Smart program.

It also branched out into the installation of data, communication and fibre-optic lines, and began pursuing electrical contracts in northern Manitoba, where a lot of infrastructure projects are being undertaken.

BDC president and CEO Jean-René Halde said innovative spirit is one of the reasons the partners were chosen for a Young Entrepreneur award, which recognizes the accomplishments of entrepreneurs between 19 and 35 years of age.

"Mark, Todd and Pete have eagerly embraced new opportunities," Halde said.

-- Murray McNeill

Republished from the Winnipeg Free Press print edition May 4, 2011 B5

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