About a year or so after launching the Regina market and seeing the success the franchisee was having there, Tradebank saw the potential benefits of launching the Saskatoon marketplace. Rather than seek a franchisee, the Tradebank Corporate team planned on hiring a Sales Manager and growing the market and then either sell the franchise to the Sales Manager or as a turnkey operation to a new individual. When they placed an employment ad online, John Porter (President of Tradebank Canada), received a cold call from a representative, Kim Groff, from another employment agency about placing an ad with them as well. In discussing the position and what Tradebank does, Kim understood the concept right away became so intrigued by what it could do to benefit Saskatoon businesses that he expressed a strong interest in acquiring the franchise.
John felt that Kim would be a good fit to take on the responsibility of managing and growing the Saskatoon marketplace. After a month or so of back and forth emails and conference calls, an agreement was reached on the franchise and a launch plan. Within two months of starting operations on May 1, 2013, Tradebank Saskatoon had over 60 member businesses and hit their 100 member mark after only 9 months. Kim is very focused on only adding quality businesses to the network. Saskatoon businesses really seem to understand and gravitate toward barter.
Tradebank Saskatoon consistently ranks in the top 5 franchises across Canada and provides a high level of service for its members. Kim is also a strong propnent of making the system more user-friendly for his members and makes sure that clients know how to accept the TRADEcard directly, and has the highest proportion of clients utilizing the mobileTRADE payment processing app to process transactions. His dedication to making the process easy for clients has resulted in happy, long-term clients.
Kim spent 8 years in the employment advertising agency working directly with business owners and leaders in business large and small. Kim has a strong interest in local business and government. Kim and his wife Val are also huge Roughriders fans.