Christine Stanschus struggled to find daytime activities for her son when he was a toddler. With few professionally run programs available, Stanschus started her own soccer classes for her son and his peers. Word spread among parents, and she was soon putting together about 35 classes per week in London, U.K., where she lived at the time. Stanschus, who previously worked at JPMorgan Chase & Co., saw a business opportunity. In 2002, she started a company called Little Kickers to provide soccer lessons for kids. “Little Kickers was never set up with the intention of being a mom-and-pop shop business,” she says. “We realized early on that there was strong demand for a more professionally run program.” The company has since expanded to 16 countries (including Canada, where Stanschus now lives) and has amassed 250 franchisees.
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This article is the feature article in the September 2014 edition of Canadian Business Magazine.