Founded in 2010 by Sharon Quann (President) and Reid Barnett (CEO), BioSpa (Quann) Cosmeceuticals Inc. is Atlantic Canada’s only manufacturer of a full-service fully integrated professional skincare line based on natural ingredients for esthetician clinics and home use.
BECOMING AN ENTREPRENEUR
Sharon Quann was 18 when she arrived in P.E.I. from New Brunswick to work in a beauty salon. “My Dad drove me over the bridge, and I never left.” By the age of 20, she’d launched a Summerside holistic beauty clinic and has been entrepreneurial ever since. “It was meant to be. A friend was closing a business and had equipment to sell. My clinic’s name — Mystical Touch – suddenly came to me.” Sharon studied at the German institute of renowned naturopath Dr. Rudolf Hauschka and vowed to create her own product line – with natural ingredients for skin health and wellbeing – in P.E.I.
She connected with seasoned industry professional Reid Barnett to envision a unique skincare line addressing existing gaps in the sector. The two became a dynamic business team. Reid creates formulations, manufactures product, and manages operations. “There’s a huge opportunity in skincare. People are concerned with wellness, not just cosmetics.” Their strengths are complementary. “The lab’s on one side, and Sharon’s on the other. She’s creative and intuitive; I’m the pragmatic scientist. We develop products and see results in the clinic.”
There was slow progress early on with door-to-door sales and esthetician training. “We had to do everything ourselves,” says Sharon. “I’m a single mom and had to work.” Federal and provincial support, plus assistance from the NRC and BioFoodTech to develop bioactive ingredients and extraction technology, have propelled BioSpa to a new level. It also participates in the P.E.I. BioAlliance Emergence incubator program for startups pursuing commercialization. “Regis Duffy and others are mentors,” says Sharon. “What an amazing gift for a young company.” Maritime Beauty Supply is promoting regional distribution and, with growth doubling annually, there are plans to expand throughout Canada.
“Fine P.E.I. Skincare” is prominently featured on all products with various ingredients locally sourced. “It’s the essence of our brand reflecting the Island,” says Sharon. “People across the country are intrigued by the P.E.I. connection. Something pulls them here.”
It’s not about making the sale, or the money. If it is, you don’t truly love what you do. Create something great for people, educate them, and the money will come. If you follow your passion and don’t listen to naysayers, there’s nothing you can’t do.Sharon Quann