The story of Tradebank in Saskatchewan centers around Dan & Lauren Benesh. Prior to them bringing Tradebank to Regina, there was not even a single Tradebank member in Saskatchewan. Since they took the reigns of the Regina, they have added over 200 members to the Tradebank Regina franchise as well as helped launch the Saskatoon and Moose Jaw franchises. There are now over 400 active trading members in Saskatchewan.
But how did Dan find out about Tradebank to begin with?
It was early in 2011 and Dan had just launched his blinds business Blinds by DB in the late part of 2010, was also doing renovation projects and teaching business at a local college in Regina. Lauren was working in an administrative role at a large corporation in town. One of his friends, Lance, had recently moved to Medicine Hat and was launching a web design business there with no customers to start. As luck would have it, Lance was introduced to the Tradebank rep in Medicine Hat and joined the Tradebank network to land a few local contracts. It was working really well for Lance and he recommended Dan find the local Tradebank rep in his area and join the network so that he too could benefit from the Tradebank network.
Dan tried to find the local Tradebank guy, and when that failed thought there might be another local exchange -- there wasn't -- so he called the President of Tradebank Canada directly to find out whether or not Tradebank had plans to launch in Regina. After several discussions, Dan knew that he would be interested in operating the Tradebank himself and he purchased the franchise. Dan kept Blinds by DB and hired his brother to run that business as it was too much to try and run both companies alone. After their first child, Leo, was born, Dan and Lauren decided that rather than go back to the corporate job, Lauren would work for Tradebank Regina as well and fill in administrative and brokering duties to relieve some of that burden from Dan.
According to John Porter (President of Tradebank Canada), "I felt in my gut from the first phone call that Dan was the right fit as a Tradebank owner. As I have gotten to know him better, I have had that initial faith in him grow further. He has the integrity and intelligence to develop and maintain long-term client relationships. The ability to foster relationship is the cornerstone of managing a barter exchange. Dan is also very creative and has keen marketing insights that are valuable to the Regina members."
In 2014 (and into 2015), Dan ran the House That Trade Built project using TRADEdollars he had earned from both Blinds by DB and Tradebank businesses. Dan leveraged that project to obtain additional exposure for Tradebank Regina and for clients in the construction fields obtain exposure to the general business and consumer market in Regina by leveraging it into both social media advertising as well as traditional media avenues.
Upon completion of that project, Dan sold his blinds business in order to dedicate 100% of his time to growing and managing Tradebank.
Through out his time with Tradebank, Dan and Lauren have won many honors including numerous monthly "Top Franchise Awards", the 2014 President's Award, and the Silver Cup for outstanding sales achievment. As much as Dan loves to win these awards and will continue to strive to win more, his true satisfaction comes from helping his clients achieve their goals. "When I help my clients achieve their goals and help them succeed, I know that it will pay off in direct and indirect ways, and even if it doesn't, the appreciation and knowledge of having done the right thing makes each day more rewarding."