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5 things you (probably) didn't know were founded in Vancouver

From coffee to environmental advocates to a very disliked company all started here.
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Greenpeace was founded in Vancouver in 1971.

Vancouver is a hub for western Canadian business, but there are more than a couple of companies and organizations that got their start here before going beyond the Rockies.

Some are well known; for example Lululemon is famously from Vancouver and has become, in some ways, a part of the stereotypical Vancouverite. Others like Save On Foods, White Spot, or even Purdy's are very much a part of B.C., but have limited sway outside the area.

So here are five companies, organizations or brands that started here, but have gone further abroad.

1. Nabob

One of the most famous brands of coffee in Canada has a name that comes from India, but it actually started over a century ago in Vancouver. Created by the Kelly Douglas Company, a wholesale grocery company, it became a popular brand, eventually catching the eyes of a German firm in the 1970s.

It was then sold to Kraft Foods in 1994.

2. Greenpeace

It probably makes sense that Vancouver, a city often connected to environmental causes, would be the place Greenpeace, one of the most famous environmental organizations, was founded.

It started with opposition to nuclear weapons testing in Alaska. The group started meeting in Vancouver, including the home of Quakers who were founding members, and they eventually decided to crew a boat in 1971 that would bear witness to the tests, thereby bring attention to the issue.

That voyage got media attention, and the group's influence grew from there.

3. Impark

In 1962 the parking lot company started, and it's grown into one of the largest parking management companies in North America with that logo popping up above lots in 400 cities. You're welcome, world.

4. The Keg

Milestones, Cactus Club, Brown's Social House all trace their histories back to Vancouver as well, while similar restaurant chains like Earl's and Joey both have strong ties to the city, but The Keg is the biggest of these brands with 160 locations across North America.

It was actually founded across the inlet in North Vancouver, and it wasn't called the Keg when it opened, but the Keg and Cleaver

5. Lionsgate Films

So hearing the name of this massive entertainment company might have been a clue. Founded in 1997 by the son of a nickel miner who became a big-time mining and resource investor, Lionsgate quickly bought up production facilities and grew into a multi-faceted entertainment company.

Among the films it's been behind are American Psycho, The Hunger Games franchise, and La La Land.

Bonus: London Drugs

So this brand is well known in western Canada and doesn't extend much beyond. While its name may suggest ties with London, Ontario, the first one was opened on Main Street in Vancouver, named after London, England.