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Credit: Kat Willson 

At first, Peters had no plans to turn what is now Supercrush into a business

Courtney Peters, 29

Co-founder + CEO, Supercrush

Life Story: Courtney Peters found her way to business by way of banking and medicine. Although the Surrey native comes from an entrepreneurial family, she had no plans to head in the same direction. Peters, who got her first job when she was 13, began working as a teller for TD Bank while earning a communications degree at SFU.

She became a branch manager and got promoted to events and communications at the corporate office, which also gave her an opportunity to learn about business. Peters then took a similar position with advocacy group Doctors of BC, where she moved into marketing and learned that she enjoyed it. What’s now Supercrush began in early 2018, when she sewed a few scrunchies with some girlfriends and posted the results on Instagram. Friends and family asked about buying the scrunchies, so Peters recruited her mom, Shelby, a lifelong sewer, to help with production. “We had zero intention for it to become a business,” she recalls.

But demand was so strong that they hired a local home-based sewing team before quitting their jobs in September 2019 to work on Supercrush full-time. Keeping manufacturing in its hometown is important for the Vancouver company, which sources all fabric for its hair accessories locally, Peters says. “That’s always been at the heart of what we do, as well as giving back to our local community.” Supercrush started making face masks during COVID, giving a portion of sales to the Union Gospel Mission; so far, it’s donated $27,000.

Bottom Line: Revenue has grown dramatically each year, even though Supercrush did no paid advertising until last fall. About 70 percent of its customers are Canadian, with the rest in the U.S. “In 2021, we’re focusing on building a solid foundation for future growth,” Peters says of the business, which now employs 10 contract sewers on its team of 13.

The company pays its workers a fair wage, uses recyclable packaging and minimizes production waste. Among this year’s goals: expanding stateside and getting into more brick-and-mortar stores, including larger retailers. Supercrush also plans to release a haircare product this fall.