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Frank O'Dea

Founder of Second Cup

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Frank O'Dea: Founder of Second Cup

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Frank O’Dea is a wonderful speaker who inspires and motivates his audiences wherever he speaks. His presentation is a highlight of any event. Whether it is his Hope Vision Action motivational talk, or his Spirit of an Entrepreneur talk or his Move to Good Governance presentation, Frank never fails to engage his audiences.

As a founder of the Second Cup, he has instant credibility because anyone who has ever had a cup of coffee or tea in this country knows that company. This represents an instant connection with the audiences.  

When his listeners hear that he had been living on the streets only a few years before, and that he also went on to found other businesses and charitable foundations, they want to know his "secret of success".  

This story of triumph over adversity is a genuine local Canadian success story that people are thrilled to be associated with. Event organizers find that a presentation by Frank O’Dea is a high point because he delivers a message that motivates and empowers his audiences.
The Power of Hope Vision Action
With hope -- all things become possible.
With hope, one has the courage to change the present into a very different future.
With hope, dreams are possible;
With hope one has the persistence to follow the dream and
With hope one can - and will - become much more than you ever dreamed possible.

Frank demonstrates this power by using his own story as a real-life experience of hope, courage, change and persistence. You will see from his biography that much has been accomplished. The story becomes remarkable when you add the real life story to that bio. In real life, Frank was in the bowery-- panhandling for nickels and dimes not so many years ago.

This is truly a motivational story. Audiences from all walks of life identify with this very real story of achievement, and Frank’s warm style convinces his audiences that he is speaking directly to them, personally.

The Spirit of the Entrepreneur
Frank shares with his audience how he started his various businesses. The engaging story of the early years of the Second Cup gives his listeners the inside story on the growth of a Canadian retail landmark. He also talks of the challenges that he overcame in starting Proshred Security, a document shredding service, before people knew they needed such a service. He will describe the unique solutions that he developed in financing very expensive, one-of-a-kind equipment that conventional lenders wouldn’t touch. The result became a national business stretching across Canada and into the USA and Europe. He will talk of his role in starting Samaritan Air, Ontario’s first fixed-wing air ambulance service, which expanded into a major emergency transporter of auto parts.  

Bringing his entrepreneur spirit to the not-for-profit sector, Frank’s listeners will hear about the serendipitous meeting that became Street Kids International, and how the War Child (Canada) came into existence, and how a late-night phone call from the Minister of External Affairs became the Canadian Landmine Foundation.

Tying all this together with his view on the three fundamentals that made all this work for him, Frank leaves his audience with fine examples of where one person can go, and provides a roadmap on how to get there.

Blue Ocean Strategy
Frank O’Dea will introduce you to the powerful theory and practical applications of Blue Ocean Strategy, creating uncontested market space. These concepts are based on fifteen years of research across thirty industries by Professors W. Chan Kim and Renee Mauborgne of the European business school, INSEAD.

In today’s overcrowded markets, competing head-to-head and searching for competitive advantage results in nothing but a bloody" red ocean" of rivals fighting for a shrinking pool of profit. You will be introduced to a radically different way of thinking about business strategy, and learn how companies have created "blue oceans" by challenging conventional assumptions about their industries and making the competition irrelevant. With actual examples of these companies that have created uncontested market space by rewriting the rules of established industries, the presentation will show you that the methodology exists, along with the tools, for companies to create their own "blue oceans".

Blue Ocean Strategy: Creating Uncontested Market Space and Making Competition Irrelevant
Blue Ocean Strategy is all about the process of owning brand new markets. It is all about creating value in your product or service to a market that is not currently on the radar. Who better to talk about this than Frank O'Dea, the man who, in the face of an unattractive declining market, took a mundane product like coffee and created a whole new market (a Blue Ocean), establishing the Second Cup, a brand that is still strong 30 years later. In his talk, Frank will show how this can work for any organization. He will illustrate how he again found his Blue Ocean in launching Proshred Security and again in the not-for-profit sector with his success in fundraising, when he launched The Canadian Landmine Foundation, an international success story.

The authors of a new book published by Harvard University Press, Blue Ocean Strategy, show us that creating new markets is not a matter of luck or even entrepreneurship, but is a process that can be learned and used by the management of any company. The book describes, in detail, this process that the authors call Value Innovation, which was identified after 10 years of research by the two authors, W.C.Kim and R. Mauborgne, both professors at the prestigious INSEAD University, France. Over the past five years, their value innovation process has been used successfully by a wide range of companies, from electronics (Samsung) to insurance (Norwich Union).

In collaboration with the authors, Frank O’Dea is an international spokesperson for "The Value Innovation Network", a worldwide group of experts supporting the Blue Ocean Strategy to the corporate community. As a successful businessperson who has repeatedly created new markets for his companies, the authors feel that Frank O'Dea’s depth of experience is the perfect bridge over the gap between the corporate and the academic worlds.
"In my ten years here, Frank O'Dea's convocation speech is the only one that ever received a standing ovation"
Royal Roads University

"I really enjoyed Frank’s kept me motivated...! And I am sure the [audience] felt the same way..."
Bell Canada

"Frank's talk and his example have changed the way we approach our business here."
CIBC Wood Gundy
"… my people, all 400 of them, stood and applauded Frank when he ended his talk."
Manufacturers Life Assurance Co.

"Of all of the convention speakers that we’ve had over the years, I don’t think anyone captivated the audience the way you did. You have such a good message that empowers people. "
Association of Parent Support Groups in Ontario