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Our History
locally owned, dedicated to the community

Mills truck (vintage)Mills Basics is one of the last locally owned and operated office supply teams in BC, a status we are very proud of. We have been in business for over 63 years and believe our success is because of our dedicated customer care, great prices, and sustainable business practices!

Mills is a member of the Basics Office Products buying group, which means we are part of a dealer network that spans coast-to-coast in Canada. Together we pool our national buying power to ensure each locally owned dealership has access to competitively priced products. More information about Basics Office Products can be found at www.basics.com

How it all started.

Don Mills (desk)In 1949, Don Mills set out from his parents’ home in Kitsilano, British Columbia at the early age of 19 to become the youngest person in Canada to establish a commercial stationery company. In the beginning, there was very little in the way of capital. He had to ride interurban transit and street cars to deliver goods to his customers. It took great determination to solidify the vendor base necessary to open and maintain a broad product selection. Mills soon became a thriving business where its employees and customers enjoyed great service.

Since these early days, much has changed in the industry, but Mills continues to grow under the leadership of Don’s son, Brad Mills.

 

Milestones along the way.

2012
Mills wins the 2012 Green Award from the Better Business Bureau Torch Awards
Mills receives its BCorp Certification
Mills begins partnership with Call2Recycle

2011
Mills purchases first Electric Truck in Canada – the Estar-EV
Mills partners with Shift Urban Cargo Delivery to deliver using electric cargo trikes

2008
Mills is named the official Supplier of the 2010 Vancouver Olympic Organizing Committee (VANOC)

2007
Mills supports to opening of H.A.V.E. Café – a training program on the Downtown Eastside

2005
Mills wins Ethics in Action Overall Leadership in Small/Medium Business category

2002
Mills Begins a partnership with Fast Track to Employment – hiring staff with employment barriers

1995
Mills Joins Basics Buying Group

1960
First Printing Shop Opened

1953
Warehouse-stocking unit opens in gastown

1950
New location opens on Broadway and Granville Street

1949
Store opens in Kitsilano

 

Mills Building (vintage) New Picture (1) (copy) New Picture (copy) New Picture (7) (copy)