Lost Creek Angling: Fishing for Profits and Navigating Mission Drift
Lost Creek Angling Co. (LCA), a fly-fishing operation accessible by helicopter, operated off the grid in a remote location on the Wigwam River, in southeastern British Columbia, Canada. LCA's clients were mainly middle-aged to retired businessmen from the United States. The company's season consisted mainly of weekends in the summer months, from mid-July to mid-September. The owner, an eco-centred leader who allowed the river to rest between visits and provided nature education to his clients, had a strong reputation within the local community and was closely tied to the business's brand. At age 70, however, he was considering a slow exit from his business. In the middle of 2015, he was approached by an angel investor but was concerned about losing control and abandoning the environmental mission of the business. In the meantime, LCA had the option of buying more permits to increase the number of guided fishing days (known as rod days) and grow the business in the near term. What was the best path forward for this unique organization and its laudable leader? Connie Van der Byl and Ryan Parks are affiliated with Mount Royal University.