William Granleese

Forty Under 40 Winner 2017: CEO, Antrim Investments Ltd., Age 39

After receiving his bachelor of business administration in finance from Simon Fraser University in 2000, William Granleese landed a job working for Toronto-Dominion Bank. However, he soon found out working for one of Canada’s Big Five financial institutions was not for him.

“I quickly realized that the rigid organizational structure of large organizations combined with many other smart people working hard to get noticed would make it very difficult to effect change, add value and move up the corporate ladder,” he said.

Granleese, who completed his master of business administration in finance at Dalhousie University in 2004, decided on a different mantra for approaching his career.

“I realized I would have a much better chance at success in business if I were a big fish in a small pond.”

In January 2006, he was hired by Antrim Investments, a mortgage broker and lender firm based in Fort Langley. He is now the chief executive officer.

“When I entered the private mortgage market the industry was growing rapidly and was very fractured with many small players,” Granleese said. But he knew after landing at Antrim that he’d found where he belonged. “This would be my pond,” he said.

Granleese said he incorporates two principles in approaching his career. The first is being a glass-half-full type of guy. Granleese said his ideals line up with the company’s.

“Back in the 1960s, business people took courses on the power of positive thinking,” he said. “You’re going to get a lot of doors slammed in your face when you take your product to market. Even if you have an amazing product or service, most people are just too lazy to listen to the pitch. The key is keeping a positive attitude and keep persevering.”

Raised in Langley, Granleese said he has an image of one of his parents that has stuck in his head over the years, and which he applies to the business world.

“When I was a child I remember my mother cleaning the kitchen floors on all fours with her hands. Timing is very important in business, but nothing is as important as rolling up your sleeves and old-fashioned hard work to get the job done.”



Where you live now: 

Fort Langley

Highest level of education: 

MBA, finance

Currently reading: 

My Years with General Motors by Alfred P. Sloan

Currently listening to: 

Deep House Summer, various artists

When you were a kid, what you wanted to be when you grew up: 

A businessman who wore a suit

Profession you would most like to try:

Formula One racing

Toughest business or professional decision:

Realizing I can’t do it all

Advice you would give the younger you:

Life is a marathon; it’s not where you start but where you finish

What’s left to do:

Receive the Order of British Columbia. I plan on using my skills to help work towards a solution to the homeless problem in B.C.

Join us to celebrate the 2017 Forty under 40 Awards on January 23, 2018, at the Vancouver Convention Centre. For tickets and event info visit http://www.biv.com/events/40under40