Kim Nasipayko

Kim Nasipayko

Career path makes new impression

Couple tackle new challenges by purchasing Vernon's Caufields Engraving

When Kim Nasipayko’s mom suggested she and her husband Aaron buy an engraving business to solve their job search, after moving back to the Okanagan, they laughed. On second thought, they decided to check it out.

It turns out Kim’s mother was right.

Armed with an entrepreneurial spirit, but no experience in engraving or graphic design, they knew there would be an extreme learning curve, but they saw potential in the niche business that had been around for 22 years.

“You can learn anything so we thought we would try and if we hated it we could sell the business, but we loved it,” said Kim.

Caufields Engraving recently celebrated its 30th year of business, and in the last eight years, of their ownership, the Nasipaykos have doubled the size, the staff and the revenue. It was named small business of the year 2015 by the Greater Vernon Chamber of Commerce and was a finalist for employer of the year.

“It has been a lot of work, I’m not going to say it was easy and we had two kids in there too,” said Kim, who brought both of her children to work with her after they were born.

“I came back to work with my son after three months, he was first, and then with my daughter, my husband had started a new job with SunLife, so I had to come back two weeks after having my daughter,” she said.

“When you have your own business you don’t have a choice you just do it and get through it. We are on the other side now and we are better for it.”

They have worked hard in the last eight years, receiving training, attending trade shows, upgrading equipment and mastering the programs and technology that goes into the business.

“We definitely wrecked some stuff but that is part of it, that’s how you learn. We just always have a little extra product in case we need it,” said Kim.

She has taken to the creative side of engraving, designing most of the graphics. She designed and donated the medals for the Women2Warrior adventure race  for Easter Seals.

Caufields has a laser engraver that can engrave photos onto most surfaces, including stone.

“Monuments traditionally had the graphics engraved using a plotter, which uses two knives. The problem is they can’t cross, so the graphics turn out very simple. We can take a picture of anything and put it on stone,” said Kim

She loves the various applications they are able use the engravers for, such as steel, wood, glass, doors and even surfboards.

“Engraving is the most permanent way to mark anything,” said Kim.

Caufields is a national company with 70 per cent of its market out of town.

It supplies 50 stores across Canada in the equine industry with tack tags and stable plaques as well as suppling stainless steel signage for industrial applications like mine shafts and mills.

“When people think of engraving, they think of awards, and jewelry. We do so much more than that,” said Kim.