Next on the Honibe product list for John Rowe, president of Island Abbey Foods Ltd., are pure honey sprinkles and suckers. His Charlottetown-based companys Honey Drops and Honey Delights have already fast-tracked their way into North American markets since the first was launched in 2008. GUARDIAN PHOTO BY MARY MACKAY
Island Abbey Foods, a Charlottetown-based company, is among Atlantic Canada’s 2012 fastest growing companies according to Progress Magazine.
The magazine this week released its 2012 list of fastest growing firms during an event at the Crowne Plaza Moncton Downtown.
“The fastest growing company list identifies high-growth mavericks,” says Pamela Scott Crace, editor of Progress Magazine.
Founded in 2004, Island Abbey Foods is built around the Honibe (pronounced “honey bee”) brand, a line of candies, sweeteners and lozenges made from dehydrated honey using a method that founder John Rowe began developing in his kitchen more than two decades ago.
The technique removes the moisture from honey without diluting any of its sweetness, flavour or nutritional value. The company is earning accolades worldwide and, last year, landed a coveted deal with four of the Dragons from CBC’s Dragons’ Den, a deal Rowe ended up declining a few months later.
In the current issue of Progress Magazine’s fastest growing companies, Island Abbey Foods reports a 700 per cent growth rate, a 67 per cent employee growth and a company valuation of roughly $10 million.
Rowe predicts Island Abbey Foods will be worth more than $100 million in a decade.
Next for the company is to move beyond the candy and use Honibe as a platform for delivering everything from vitamins to pharmaceuticals.
Other fastest growing companies include: Halifax-based B4Checkin (1,808 per cent growth); Halifax-based Sheepdog Inc. (1,244 per cent growth); Halifax-based DSM Telecom (324 per cent growth); Kentville-based Maverick Communications Inc. (162 per cent growth); Moncton-based Major Drilling Group International Inc. (159 per cent growth); Halifax-based Trampoline Branding (56 per cent growth); and Hacketts Cove-based Nautel (35 per cent growth).