Skip the Dishes co-founder defends government subsidy
'It takes a village to raise a startup,' says CEO Josh Simair
One of the founders of the food delivery business Skip the Dishes says the good news of job creation is being overshadowed by a focus on the $3-million government subsidy it's receiving.
Josh Simair spoke with host Leisha Grebinski of CBC Radio's Saskatoon Morning on Thursday.
"When the original announcement was made, before the CBC article went out about $3 million going to Skip, there was a lot of positivity that people saw this as jobs are being created in the province," Simair said.
He says the money to train 300 workers in Saskatoon will "level up Saskatchewanians to work at a world class level."
"Probably just about every city in Canada would want a tech company of 300 people coming to their city," Simair said. "These are good jobs, jobs that people would usually move for."
He says the jobs will include software engineers, as well as accounting and administrative jobs.
Company is grateful
Simair says he and his company are grateful to the governments of Saskatchewan and Manitoba, which last December gave the company $5.5 million to create jobs in Winnipeg.
"It takes a village to raise a startup," Simair said. " And we've been really blessed by both Saskatchewan and Manitoba helping us along the way because it's not easy to be growing 10 to 20 per cent a month."
Simair says that rapid growth means hundreds of thousands of people are using Skip the Dishes across North America.
And they're finding that it's a meaningful service, he said.
"It's like a single dad or a group of nursing students that want an extra 45 minutes while their food arrives," he said.
The government of Saskatchewan is defending its subsidy to Skip the Dishes. However, the premier says it cannot afford to do the same for others, given the budget constraints.