Stephen W. Preston
Where are you from originally, where do you live today, and where do you plan to retire?
I am from Regina, Saskatchewan and currently reside in Calgary. I plan to retire in Brazil (where my wife is from).
What led you into the finance industry?
I flipped houses to pay my way through university and wanted to get into apartment buildings in Texas. To do this, I knew I would need a lot of funding so I started to explore if there were ways I could utilize RSPs to invest in US real estate. Information was slim (the head of the Finance Department at my university had never heard of the exempt market) but I eventually stumbled upon the world of offering memorandums and private capital – I have been hooked ever since.
Tell us about your current company and role in the industry?
I am the Business Development Manager at Olympia Trust Company. I currently manage a portfolio of over 400 dealing representatives in Western Canada. This position has enabled me to meet so many incredible entrepreneurs, both on the issuer side of the business as well as the dealing reps themselves. Working for an entrepreneurial company like OTC has been a tremendous learning experience.
What business goals do you want to accomplish over the next five years?
I want to continue building my real estate investment portfolio and become a catalyst for helping entrepreneurs fund their businesses.
What are your passions outside of business and family?
I love to surf, read, watch football, and spend time with my son who is 4 and a half months old.
What is the one piece of advice you would give to young entrepreneurs?
Get good mentors, surround yourself with good people, and constantly find ways to get outside of your comfort zone. Don’t let failure stop you - use it as a learning experience to propel yourself forward.