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Entrepreneur delivers something fresh

Co-founded by alumnus Daniel Perel, FreshMint delivers its freshly cooked, healthy meals by bike to offices and homes throughout downtown Montreal
July 22, 2016
By Susan Attafuha-Callender

Daniel Perel, BComm 10, says the company he co-founded, — an online gourmet on-demand lunch and dinner delivery service — was inspired by “seeing what’s really important to professionals and what is sustainable as a business model.”

In turn, FreshMint’s sustainable business model inspired the Claudine and Stephen Bronfman Family Foundation to sponsor Perel to attend the international business conference C2 Montreal this year.

Daniel Perel “It’s good to know that you’re feeding hungry professionals everyday who face the same dilemma that my business partner and I used to face; wanting to eat healthy, wanting it to be convenient and wanting it to be affordable,” says Daniel Perel, BComm 10.

All FreshMint’s orders are placed and paid for online, then cooked up in FreshMint’s kitchen in Montreal’s Old Port and delivered by bicycle to offices and homes throughout downtown.

“We don’t outsource any parts of the experience, that’s what makes us quite unique.”

Not just unique but innovative. By using biodegradable packaging, delivering by bike and striving to use local and seasonal produce, FreshMint is changing the food delivery industry for the better.

“We have the environment and local community at heart,” Perel says. “And when it comes to eating local produce, I think it’s pretty obvious that the closer the farm is to where you are located, the fresher and healthier the ingredients are.”

Those simple, sustainable innovations made FreshMint stand out to the Claudine and Stephen Bronfman Family Foundation.

Annually, the foundation sponsors 25 young entrepreneurs to attend C2 Montreal. Entrepreneurs are selected from a group of more than 300 in recognition of their innovative business models.

vegan dish Perel teams up with local companies, most recently popular vegan restaurant Aux Vivres, to offer their food through FreshMint’s platform alongside their own home-cooked meals.

“It’s amazing to send emerging entrepreneurs to a conference that promotes innovation and creativity with commerce at the heart of it all,” Perel says of the initiative. “It was good to be surrounded by like-minded people who are doing something positive for their communities.”

How did all this get started?

“From an early age I knew I wanted to be an entrepreneur; I just didn’t necessarily know where, when or how,” says Perel, who pursued his bachelors of commerce in finance at Concordia’s John Molson School of Business.

“I had a blast” Perel says of his Concordia experience. “What I value most about going to university is the fact that the skills I learnt were hard work, discipline, la debrouillardise [resourcefulness], how to research topics properly and how to find information.”

After graduating in 2009, Daniel Perel went on to earn his Chartered Financial Analyst designation and landed a job at Accenture, a management consulting firm.

“My business partner and I both used to work in consulting. We were used to working in office settings, where it’s a high pressure job, you’re working long hours and you don’t necessarily have time to wait in line in a food court. We thought, ‘There has to be a better way to do this,’” Perel says.

What’s next for Daniel Perel?

“I absolutely love what I do,” he says. “The team that we have here is amazing and it’s great to be in an environment where everyone is excited about what they’re doing and excited about the company’s purpose.”

Still, FreshMint is always looking to improve by offering more selection, expanding its delivery zone and working with other local companies. “We keep growing and keep it local as much as possible,” says Perel.

Wise Words

Modestly, Perel says, “I haven’t succeeded at anything just yet. I’m just working hard towards something I really believe in.”

Still, he has some expert advice to share with anyone trying to eat healthy amidst a busy work schedule — besides ordering FreshMint, of course: “Grab an apple — or an espresso.”


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