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www.BusinessExaminer.ca

February 2021

FUNDING SPURS GLOBAL EXPANSION FOR CERTN - 12 Team members of Victoria-based Certn

PLAN SUBMITTED FOR MCKENZIE PROFESSIONAL CENTRE REDEVELOPMENT – 14

www.mazzeielectric.com

HME KEEPING CLIENTS MOVING FORWARD – 16

Serving Vancouver Island, Okanagan & Northern BC


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Another month into 2021 and we are moving closer towards herd immunity. Construction continues to support the Island’s economy, supporting its subtrades, suppliers and the many other industries who depend on the industry. Aside from construction, tech is doing well, alongisde some aspects of auto, manufacturing and professional services, but no matter where you’re at or how your company is doing the show must go on. With that in mind we hope this issue of the Business Examiner is able to help your organization move forward. Inside you’ll find sales leads in the Movers and Shakers section, market intelligence from the Who is Suing Whom currated column, articles on great businesses in Victoria like our lead story on Certn. There’s some great news from the Family Business Association of Vancouver Island inside, Capital Region Chamber of Commerce updates, CITIFIED’s column and much more. Best of luck battling through, John MacDonald, Director, Business Development Contact Us 25 Cavan Street Nanaimo, BC V9R 2T9 +1 866-758-2684 info@businessexaminer.ca www.BusinessExaminer.ca Office Hours Monday – Friday: 9:00am – 5:00 pm Saturday – Sunday: Closed Editor: Lise MacDonald (lise@businessexaminer.ca) Press Releases & Story Ideas: (media@businessexaminer.ca) Sales: John MacDonald (john@businessexaminer.ca)

February 2021


6 NEWS UPDATE

10 GREATER VICTORIA

12 OFF THE COVER

9 WEST SHORE

14 CITIFIED


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20 TASTE OF BC AQUAFARMS SOLD

HME

18 FAMILY BUSINESS ASSOCIATION

22 WHO IS SUING WHOM


25 RG EXCAVATING

26 MOVERS AND SHAKERS

24 TOURISM

28 OPINION


NEWS UPDATE

A RECORD-SETTING START TO 2021

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BRITISH COLUMBIA – The British Columbia Real Estate Association (BCREA) reports that a total of 7,169 residential unit sales were recorded by the Multiple Listing Service (MLS) in January 2021, an increase of 63.3 per cent over January 2020 and over a thousand sales higher than the previous record for the month of January. The average MLS residential price in BC was $845,169, a 16.1 per cent increase from $728,269 recorded in January 2020. Total sales dollar volume was $6.1 billion, an 89.6 per cent increase from last year. “It was once again a record-setting month for the provincial housing market,” said BCREA Chief Economist Brendon Ogmundson. “While sales were strong across all regions of the province, the Fraser Valley, Interior and Vancouver Island regions shattered previous sales records and pushed January sales to new heights.” Total active residential listings were down 21.5 per cent to 20,254 units in January, the lowest level of provincial active listings on record, going back to 2000. With strong sales and so few listings, market conditions are exceptionally tight with less than three months of total supply. “The supply of listings continues to be held back by the pandemic,” added Ogmundson. “With so few listings, markets are starved for supply and prices are under extraordinary pressure.”

CAMOSUN COLLEGE LAUNCHES MICROCREDENTIAL IN CLEAN ENERGY, EFFICIENT BUILDING VICTORIA - The future of education is now, as Camosun College launches its first ever micro-credential to equip learners with the skills to create net-zero energy buildings that are efficient, healthy, long-lasting and climate-friendly. The college’s new Clean Energy and Efficient Buildings micro-credentials will power the sustainable economy and society of the future. Camosun’s approach will prepare students for internationally recognized certifications offered by the North American Board of Certified Energy Practitioners, Natural Resources Canada and Passive House. The new micro-credentials are offered primarily by distance on weekday evenings, allowing learners to continue to work while upgrading their skills. They can be stacked to earn specializations or taken as standalone course offerings. Hands-on experience opportunities will be available with specific micro-credentials in all streams. In September 2020, BC’s Ministry of Advanced Education, Skills and Training put out a call for proposals under the BC Micro-Credential Initiative. Camosun applied and received $211,000 for new micro-credential initiatives centred on clean energy and energy efficient buildings. Camosun aims to have students enrolled in the first cohort in March 2021. www.camosun.ca/clean-energy February 2021


NEWS UPDATE

VICTORIA REAL ESTATE MARKET SEES STRONG START TO 2021 A total of 646 properties sold in the Victoria Real Estate Board region this January, 57.2 per cent more than the 411 properties sold in January 2020 and 2.4 per cent more than the previous month of December. Sales of condominiums were up 83.1 per cent from January 2020 with 216 units sold. Sales of single-family homes were up 48.5 per cent from January 2020 with 297 sold. There were 1,321 active listings for sale on the VREB Multiple Listing Service at the end of January 2021, 32.5 per cent fewer properties than the total available at the end of January 2020 but a 3.3 per cent increase from the 1,279 active listings for sale at the end of December 2020. The MLS Home Price Index benchmark value for a single-family home in the Victoria Core in January 2020 was $860,700. The benchmark value for the same home in January 2021 increased by 8.3 per cent to $932,000, a 1.8 per cent increase from the previous month of December. The MLS HPI benchmark value for a condominium in the Victoria Core in January 2020 was $523,400, while the benchmark for the same condominium in January 2021 remained close to last year’s value at $518,800, a 0.9 per cent decrease. WWW.BUSINESSEX AMINER.CA

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REAL ESTATE

CRD ARTS COMMISSION APPROVES 23 OPERATING GRANTS TO LOCAL ORGANIZATIONS

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The Capital Regional District (CRD) Arts Commission has approved funding for 23 local notfor-profit arts organizations through the Arts & Culture Support Service. A total of $621,150 will provide annual operating assistance to established organizations for programming and administration expenses. “These organizations have shown extraordinary ingenuity over the course of the COVID-19 pandemic, reimagining programming through digital formats, virtual gatherings and even drive-in events,” said CRD Arts Commission Chair Jeremy Loveday. “This funding will support recipient organizations as they weather challenges over the next year, while continuing to offer residents exceptional programming.” While requests were 28 per cent more than available resources, the Arts Commission funded two new recipients, Ptarmigan Arts and SNAFU Theatre. In addition, nine other organizations receive multi-year support through the program. The approved grants meet the CRD’s mandate to support, promote and celebrate arts and culture. The CRD Arts & Culture Support Service is supported by Saanich, Victoria, Oak Bay, Esquimalt, View Royal, Highlands, Metchosin, Sooke and Southern Gulf Islands.

NEW HOUSING RELIEF FUND LAUNCHED TO HELP VICTORIA RENTERS The Community Social Planning Council of Greater Victoria and BC Rent Bank are launching a Rent Bank which will provide short term financial help for low-to-moderate income households at risk of losing their housing due to a temporary financial crisis. In conjunction with this the Community Council is also launching the Greater Victoria Housing Relief Security Fund, a one-time housing grant program between February and the end of April to provide eligible applicants with support for rent, essential utilities, and basic needs. The Greater Victoria Rent Bank Program will provide small, interest-free loans to eligible renters who have the ability to repay the loans over a six- to 24-month period. Loans can be used for money owed for rent, overdue essential utilities, and security deposits or first month’s rent to secure housing. Some applicants may be eligible for small onetime grants. The one-time housing grant program is funded in part by the Government of Canada’s Reaching Home: Canada’s Homelessness Strategy. The Government of Canada designated the Capital Regional District (CRD), as the community entity to administer the program. CRD.ca February 2021


WEST SHORE

INTRODUCING WESTSHORE CHAMBER’S 2021 BOARD OF DIRECTORS While our 2021 Directors were elected at our Annual General Meeting in November, it is in January that the Board elects the Executive for the year. Now that we’re set up for 2021, it is my pleasure to introduce you to the WestShore Chamber Board of JULIE LAWLOR Directors: • President Ingrid Vaughan owns and operates Smart HR, a consulting service geared towards helping business owners create and sustain strong leadership and HR practices. • Vice-President Kelly Darwin is the owner of Seriously Creative, a web design & marketing agency with offices in the WestShore, Vancouver, and Kitchener/Waterloo. • Secretary Sharon Mitchell is a Certified Financial Planner and Associate Portfolio Manager with Raymond James in the WestShore. • Treasurer Clark Lawrence is a Chartered Professional Accountant and Principal at Baker Tilly Victoria Ltd. • Past-President Mike Reilly is a financial advisor with Freedom 55 Financial. • Sarah Alasaly practices in the area of Family Law, Wills & Estates, and Personal Injury at Alasaly Law Group. • Paula Blazina has 20+ years banking experience with Coastal Community Credit Union and is the Branch Manager of the Eagle Creek Village location. • Chris Burdge is the owner of bWEST Interactive, an online marketing firm based in Langford and is the founder and CEO of SOHO Victoria. • Rachelle Dallaire is the Executive Director of Indigenous Perspectives Society, which provides culturally relevant training, research, and policy that advances and strengthens the lives of Indigenous peoples. WWW.BUSINESSEX AMINER.CA

• Michele Hansen has over 25 years of business experience as a successful entrepreneur running Signs of the Times. • JRR (Reg) Létourneau is President and CEO of Island Tigers Energy Corporation, a project coordination and consulting firm. • Annette Siewertsen has worked at Royal Roads University since 2005 and also coaches people in small business or career transitions with her business SeaStar Coaching. I’d also like to take this opportunity to thank our departing directors. Our former treasurer Todd Troyer is a principal at Baker Tilly Victoria Ltd. and leads the practice at the Westshore office. Bruce Simpson is the Branch Manager of Hatley Memorial Gardens Cemetery & Cremation Centre in Colwood and MC extraordinaire for the Best of the WestShore Awards. Bruce and Todd were both on the WestShore Chamber Board of Directors from 2017-2020. Thank you to all our directors, past and present, for your dedication and countless volunteer hours! Julie Lawlor is Executive Director at the WestShore Chamber of Commerce.

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GREATER VICTORIA

TRENDS EMERGING THAT CAN HELP BUSINESS PLAN FOR POST-PANDEMIC WORLD

10 BRUCE WILLIAMS

As we continue to adapt to new ways of doing business, we are starting to get a much clearer idea of what lies ahead. This is good news for businesses that have been forced to leap into the future sooner than planned. Knowing where we’re going can help an organization ensure it has the capacity and resources to fulfil its potential. RBC recently published an excellent article titled “Eight ways COVID-19 will transform the economy and disrupt every business.” Written by John Stackhouse, former Globe and Mail editor and current Senior VP at RBC, the piece highlights a few ways we might eventually be better off despite the unprecedented pace of change.  For example, the pandemic has accelerated

technological adaptation, forcing us into the future much sooner than any of us expected. The way we work has changed forever, Stackhouse says. Three-quarters of Canadians are hoping to continue working from home in some way after restrictions ease. That’s going to require new ideas for managing employees, and new challenges to ensure the networks we use to communicate are secure. We’ve also experienced a profound shift in how we shop. The great news is Canadians have overwhelmingly embraced calls to “buy local.” Online shopping, for many years, has been a nebulous threat for brick-and-mortar businesses. But with 78 per cent of Canadians choosing Canadian brands, the pandemic has shown that people are more than willing to support local businesses if doing so is convenient. To add a dimension of engagement to shopping local we have a social media campaign underway titled #ChamberLocalVicBC. Chamber members define how they are local by completing the sentence “We are local because…” This is a means to help followers better understand what local really means. Travel has also refocused on local experiences, with people staying close to home. There is no question Greater Victoria’s tourism sector is suffering, but Stackhouse’s forecast offers a few reasons for optimism. He’s predicting higher demand for wilderness tourism experiences, as well as high-end destinations within driving distance of major population centres. Time will tell what that means for the South Island, though, the loss of another cruise ship season will hurt. We need all levels of government to make sure our larger hotels and private transportation providers have an opportunity to survive and get back to contributing to our economy.   The pandemic has also caused disruptions

February 2021


GREATER VICTORIA to the way we trade, how we learn, how we share and how we heal. To this last point, at The Chamber we’ve noticed an increase in interest in our Teladoc benefit which allows Chamber members 24/7 access to doctors and mental health professionals virtually.  Many of Stackhouse’s points are echoed in another excellent article put out by MNP, about the top risk management trends for 2021. MNP calls the shift to working online a “cyber tsunami” that creates an opportunity for tech services, as companies update their culture and strategy to align with remote working. “Now that team members understand remote options are viable, it’s likely they will expect greater autonomy, flexibility, and trust from employers,” MNP’s article says. “At the same time, employers need to re-evaluate how they create cultural alignment and support employee engagement.”  I should mention that RBC and MNP are Chamber Champions, a new echelon of membership we introduced this year. In addition to

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the leadership both companies are exhibiting nationally, this demonstrates their local leadership. Champions help provide stability for The Chamber, and offer support and guidance to our organization. It’s one way we’ve adapted to the new reality facing businesses now, and for years to come.  Bruce Williams is CEO of the Greater Victoria Chamber of Commerce 

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OFF THE COVER

FUNDING SPURS GLOBAL EXPANSION FOR CERTN $9.5M INJECTION BOOSTS FUNDING TO $43M IN SEED CAPITAL SINCE 2020

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VICTORIA – Certn has just received a substantial funding injection that will enable the company to expand their human risk intelligence solutions operation globally. The Victoria-based tech startup, founded in 2016, secured a $9.5 million Series A+ funding round – boosting their funding to a total of $43 million in seed capital since 2020. Certn is a leader in human risk intelligence solutions, focusing on providing real-time comprehensive background checks and ongoing risk monitoring for employees, contractors and tenants around the world. Used by employers, staffing firms, property management companies and the gig economy, Certn returns domestic and international criminal background checks, credit reports, reference checks, education verification, employment verification, motor vehicle records, identity verification and more in minutes. “Certn is incredibly grateful for the support and funding provided by our capital partners,” states Certn CEO and co-founder Andrew McLeod. “There are simply no other background check programs today that create a simple and positive experience for both organizations and candidates. As Certn continues to expand in geographic reach and hire innovative personnel, faster cross-border background screening will allow the gig and contract economy to flourish on a faster time frame.” As companies and employees shift to remote

Certn CEO and Co-founder Andrew McLeod

hiring and work due to the global COVID-19 pandemic, the need for a trusted and intuitive background screening solution continues to grow. In assisting the growth of the global trust economy, Certn’s machine learning technology allows for a seamless screening process that February 2021


OFF THE COVER connects individuals to relevant organizations and life changing opportunities. “The move to remote work is accelerating global connections and as the leader in human risk intelligence solutions, our services allow organizations and individuals to not only connect, but also gain trust in one another,” McLeod notes. “With the help of this funding, we can continue to invest in growing our products beyond North America and facilitate trusted connection on a global scale.” In support of Certn’s global expansion, three funding rounds in 2020 allowed Certn to advance product and solutions development. The initial seed round in February 2020 was led by Tribe Capital, and included Preface Ventures, Moxxie Ventures, Weekend Fund, Scribble Ventures and Basement Ventures, for a total of $6.1 million. In November, Certn secured $27.8 million through the Series A round, led by Inovia Capital, 01 Advisors and included additional funding from Preface Ventures, Scribble Ventures, Moxxie Ventures, Basement Fund, Weekend Fund, Owl Capital and Panache Ventures. The Series A+ round in December secured an additional $9.5 million and was led by Telstra Ventures and B Capital Group, with funding also provided by Cyber Mentor Fund.  Through this funding, Certn has added additional key individuals to expand product strategy and customer success, including Chief Revenue Officer Rory Capern. Formerly an executive with Google and Twitter Canada, Rory’s background in the mass digital space provides a unique perspective to Certn’s sales, marketing, partnership, and customer success objectives. www.certn.co

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Inez Louden, FRI Associate Broker 250-812-7710 inezlouden@telus.net Pemberton Holmes – Sidney 107 – 2360 Beacon Avenue Inez was raised in a family of 6 children and was taught to work hard, do the best she could and always work honestly and ethically. “My Grandfather, who lived with us in his last years, told me to treat others as I would want to be treated – but do it first.” In honour of her Grandfather, and in keeping with the way she was raised, Inez has always tried to follow this one simple rule in life. Inez believes education and staying current on changes in the real estate industry is very important in representing, and providing. the best service to her clients. Her FRI (Fellow of the Real Estate Institute) and Associate Broker designations, plus membership in the Real Estate Institute of Canada and Better Business Bureau are part of her education achievements. “I love my job and have been very fortunate to have met so many wonderful people who have referred me to their family and friends”. If you are thinking of making a real estate move, give Inez a call at 250-812-7710 and put her 31 years of experience and knowledge to work for you.

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Citified.ca

PLAN SUBMITTED FOR MCKENZIE PROFESSIONAL CENTRE REDEVELOPMENT Sponsored by Esquimalt A new phase of condominiums at Aragon Properties’ Esquimalt Town Square (ETS) development adjacent to Esquimalt’s town hall is set to be released to the public this weekend as the mixeduse project nears completion in the township’s civic district. The 36-home offering is situated along Carlisle Avenue. The project also includes a new branch of the Greater Victoria Public Library planned for the base of an office block constructed out of mass timber, and a rental component with retail spaces at ground level.

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Langford The Royal Canadian Legion on Station Avenue is poised for redevelopment into seniors housing and a new home for Prince Edward Branch #91. The proposal for 753-761 Station Avenue at Aprell Place, currently before the City, calls for over 60 affordable residences and a food bank within a six-storey mid-rise and an adjacent two-storey, 9,000 square foot commercial complex that will house a modern legion facility, a 400-seat banquet space and 17-rooms of transient lodging for the Wounded Warriors organization. The City is seeking grants for the construction of a two-storey clubhouse adjacent to the E

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municipality’s Jordie Lunn Bike Park currently under construction. Envisioned as a social gathering space with bicycle rental facilities, storage, a cafeteria, washrooms and a bike repair service, the ‘Wheelhouse’ will be situated along the bike park’s Irwin Road frontage in the Westhills neighbourhood. Saanich A recently built townhome development in the Royal Oak neighbourhood has reached sold-out status amid growing demand for Victoria’s ‘middle ground’ of housing. The Reeve, comprised of 36 three-bedroom residences along Viewmont Avenue just a stone’s throw from West Saanich Road and the Royal Oak Shopping Centre, saw a surge in purchasing activity throughout 2020 as rapidly rising single-family-home valuations gave buyers further incentive to consider the option of townhome living. Redevelopment of McKenzie Professional Centre at McKenzie Avenue and Shelbourne Street could yield hundreds of rental residences and modern ground floor retail spaces. Vancouver-based architectural firm Musson Cattell Mackey Partnership has submitted plans to the district on behalf of developer Nicola Wealth calling for a six-storey, some 400-unit, three-building rental The Haro Cordova Bay, BC Café/Bistro Opportunity Opportunity to purchase ground floor retail space ideal for a cafe or restaurant within a 91 unit condominium lifestyle development. $830,000

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February 2021


Citified.ca

Esquimalt Town Square from Aragon Properties, a mixed-use project nearing completion in Esquimalt’s civic district, has launched its final phase of condominium sales with The Arbutus (at-right), a 36-home offering. Esquimalt real-estate has become highly desirable amid shifts in purchasing trends during COVID-19. © Aragon Properties.

complex across a two-acre parcel. Councillors have unanimously approved a mixeduse condominium and retail development on Gorge Road at Tillicum Road on the site of a strip mall anchored by Il Greco Restaurant. Containing just over 50 studio, one, two and three-bedroom suites and a trio of ground floor retail spaces, the five-storey project at 2900 Tillicum Road at 300 Gorge Road West – overlooking Gorge Park and the Gorge Waterway –  will deliver residential density while providing modern business frontages along two primary traffic corridors. Sooke An oceanfront townhome development 14-years in the making is launching its tenth and final phase of sales on the heels of record-breaking demand in 2020. The Heron View community overlooking Sooke Harbour from the 6900-block of Nordin Road (near Whiffin Spit Road) sold-out of available inventory in phases seven and eight, with only one home remaining in phase nine, amid shifts in real-estate trends brought on by COVID-19. The final phase includes nine homes. Victoria One of the first public parkades to open in WWW.BUSINESSEX AMINER.CA

downtown Victoria since the 1990s is slated to welcome motorists this spring as part of a twin tower condominium project nearing completion in Harris Green. Chard Development’s 20-storey Yates on Yates and its counterpart Vivid at the Yates were constructed above a shared underground parking garage that will feature a 62-stall public parking component accessible via the 800-block of Johnson Street. Downtown Victoria’s $100 million  Telus Ocean proposal has undergone several design changes as developers Telus Communications and Victoria-based Aryze Developments pursue approvals for their 11-storey complex touted as the Capital’s most environmentally sustainable construction project. Chief among the revisions is the relocation of Telus’ logo along the tower’s Douglas Street frontage from the apex of the building to just above street level, and an increase in the usage of opaque spandrel panels at the corner of Humboldt and Penwell streets where the proposal backs onto residential and hotel highrises. Improvements to glazing and the addition of solar shades will lower cooling demands in summer months, while a special glass film only visible to birds will be used adjacent to exterior flora to reduce the appeal of interior spaces as perches.

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FEATURE STORY

HME KEEPING CLIENTS MOVING FORWARD MEDICAL EQUIPMENT COMPANY FOCUSED ON MOBILITY SOLUTIONS FOR CUSTOMERS

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VICTORIA - Keeping clients with mobility issues moving forward is the mission of HME. Doing that in the midst of the COVID 19 pandemic has been an enormous challenge that HME has met with flying colours. “The COVID 19 pandemic has affected everyone, and HME has been kept busy supplying products and services to families during this challenging time,” notes President Robert Boscacci. “During COVID 19, HME responded quickly to offer enhanced solutions for allowing families to stay at home.” HME (HealthLinc Medical Equipment Ltd.) began operations over 30 years ago as a medical equipment company on the lower mainland, and it has become one of the largest independent dealers of mobility and home medical equipment in the province, with offices in Richmond, South Surrey and Victoria.

Rachel Mackeigan, Seating & Mobility Consultant, left, and Sales Manager Graham Plant

Robert Boscacci, President of Sales & Finance, left, and Cameron Fleming, President of Operations

Boscacci has led the sales and finance operations of the company since purchasing the firm with business partner Cameron Fleming in 2012. “The business was operating as Healthlinc Medical Equipment back then,” he recalls. “The company was small, with about eight staff, and was focused on the leasing and purchasing of medical equipment from one office in Richmond. Since then, Cameron and I have rebranded the company and put it on a new strategy focused on providing pediatric and adult medical equipment options for the home, long term care, and offering solutions to the government for medical equipment. “The business is now at over 85 staff, and 3 locations, with 2 new locations being opened February 2021


FEATURE STORY

David Manuel, Seating & Mobility Consultant, left, and Brianna Germain, Customer Service Lead & Sales Support

up on Vancouver Island and the lower mainland in 2021.” HME is the largest independent stairlift dealer in Canada, offering accessibility solutions in residential homes. In 2020, HME installed over 400 stairlifts across BC, as their most successful products are stairlifts, home hospital beds, and wheelchairs and patient lifts. “HME works closely with therapists and other practitioners to measure and assess medical equipment for clients, and then offers these solutions to the home with full setup and delivery,” Boscacci notes. “HME’s team will repair and service all equipment we sell, and our local team members service communities on Vancouver Island and the lower mainland.” During COVID 19, HME is a provincially designated essential service provider, and Boscacci notes “we helped front line workers discharge patients into their homes using our home medical equipment. HME also continued to service our pediatric families, as we are the provincial provider of pediatric children’s loan pool. During this time we continued to provide vital pediatric equipment to families.” HME offers a variety of options for equipment such as leasing and financing of the equipment, and has experienced 20-25 percent growth, year over year. “HME’s strong strengths are investing in our team and utilizing technology to achieve

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better services for our clients,” Boscacci notes. “HME has low employee turnover of around two percent, and most of our team have been here since they were hired.” HME has a family-style culture, with an open and inclusive workplace, focused on diversity, and their team comes from a variety of backgrounds and cultures. T he c ompa ny a l so i nve s t s he av i ly i n technology. “During COVID 19, HME upgraded our CRM system, and utilized Zoom and Microsoft teams to set up and provide digital fittings and services for families that were not able to let us into their homes,” he notes. “For long term care, HME had ‘hands-free delivery options’, where equipment was delivered to the door, and then our technicians would hold Zoom meetings with health care professionals to help them set up the equipment for families that were in long term care homes under lock down orders.” www.HMEBC.com.

Seating & Mobility Consultant Jeff Lang, and a client Rovi Delivery

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FEATURE STORY

BRYAN BURNS TAKES THE REINS OF THE FAMILY BUSINESS ASSOCIATION VANCOUVER ISLAND STEPPING INTO HIS NEW ROLE, BRYAN BURNS MAINTAINS A CLEAR-EYED VISION TO SEE FAMILY BUSINESSES SUPPORTED, SUCCEEDING AND THRIVING

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VANCOUVER ISLAND - Bryan Burns relocated to Victoria almost two years ago from the Okanagan, excited about what Island life had to offer both naturally and professionally. “I love the ocean and hills. It’s a beautiful place to balance business and life,” Bryan exclaims. Bryan came to Vancouver Island with significant corporate and not-for-profit organization leadership under his belt, and a strong entrepreneurial spirit to go with it. It was only natural he be drawn to his most recent role, stepping into long-time Executive Director Bernadine Rudichuk’s shoes to helm the Family Business Association Vancouver Island. The FBA-VI focuses on providing educational events and advisory teams to help support and contribute to the success of family businesses, welcoming members of all sizes and industry types. With an incredible cross section of members from small businesses to large corporations in a variety of industries, the association creates lasting connections in a number of different segments of the economy that generate different perspectives. Those relationships provide growth opportunities to each of the FBA-VI’s active members. Bryan came into his role with a goal to continue enhancing the membership growth of FBA-VI by building strong relationships in the community with new member development, maximizing the value for the association’s current membership base. Bryan is also compelled to nurture the culture within the FBA-VI. His personal ethos and the way he lives his life even outside of his position colours everything he does within it.

Bryan Burns brings an enthusiastic approach to his role as new Executive Director of the Family Business Association Vancouver Island.

Explains Bryan, “I love to be part of the development of people and processes by valuing leadership to create inspired company cultures; that is exactly what the FBA provides. I am an active trail runner who believes in the power of play to lead a dynamic life. I continuously strive to find fun solutions to build workplace relationships, connect people and increase communication. Outside of the FBA I spend time on Inspired by Play, a corporate and personal team building organization, which is coincidentally a family startup as well. I want my energy and passion towards personal development to be contagious.” The FBA-VI was created from its departure as a member organization of CAFE, the Canadian Association of Family Enterprises. In 2016 the FBA-VI was established with a new

February 2021


FEATURE STORY non-profit organization, bylaws and mandate. At that time, FBA Atlantic Canada struck out on their own as well, with FBA Saskatchewan rebranded later. Today, they share best practices and ideas to increase value to their members. This cooperation and shared goals build a strong support structure for family businesses across the island. “With so many family-managed businesses on Vancouver Island, the FBA-VI provides a place to promote the well-being and understanding of family enterprises through idea exchange, education, experiences and practices pertaining to the issues surrounding family-owned businesses,” notes Bryan. As with many, the FBA-VI has had to adapt to the difficulties if pandemic, but the association has taken the altered state of serving their members in stride, with the board making adjustments to ensure members, sponsors and partners know Bryan and his colleagues are there for them. “We have taken our educational and FBA Teams on-line and our signature event, the FBA Awards, will be virtual in April 2021. We are family, and strive to move forward with new strategies and connections to continue to build from this experience even during these complicated times,” Bryan elaborates. And while, like the rest of Canada, Vancouver Island is working through the various impacts of pandemic life, Bryan is as committed as ever to supporting current and future members, striving to create an environment of prosperity for family businesses across Vancouver Island. “I’m immersing myself in the past history of our association. Over the last eight years, outgoing ED Bernadine Rudichuk has done a tremendous job, and I look forward to continuing in her footsteps. I’ll continue meeting the board, members, sponsors and partners, reviewing our current strategic plans and creating action items to continue to move forward. We’ll always be there for family businesses across Vancouver Island.” www.familybusinessassociationvi.ca WWW.BUSINESSEX AMINER.CA

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FEATURE STORY

LAND-BASED FISH FARM PURCHASED BY U.S. FIRM BLUE STAR FOODS CORP. OF MIAMI BUYS TASTE OF BC AQUAFARMS OF NANAIMO

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NANAIMO – Blue Star Foods Corp. of Miami, Florida has signed a term sheet on December 28 to acquire Taste of BC Aquafarms Inc., a landbased Recirculating Aquaculture Systems (RAS) salmon farming operation on Jameson Road in Nanaimo. The family-run company, incorporated in 2010, is the oldest, continuously operating RAS full grow-out salmon farm in North America. It has been selling its steelhead trout under the Little Cedar Farms since 2013, and it is Ocean Wise certified. Blue Star is a sustainable seafood company

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that processes, packages and sells refrigerated pasteurized Blue Crab meat and other seafood products in Canada, the United States, Mexico, the Caribbean, the United Kingdom, France, the Middle East, Singapore and Hong Kong. “We are delighted to be joining Blue Star Foods through this acquisition,” says Steve Atkinson, President of Taste of BC Aquafarms, who is joined in the company by wife Janet and children Amanda, Benjamin and Bill. “From the beginning, I wanted to create an RAS model that we could easily replicate in multiple locations, with predictable outcomes, and leave a legacy of a new industry of land-based salmon production in British Columbia and beyond. “We took a different approach than others in developing RAS for salmon production,” Atkinson adds. “First, we wanted to develop a proven, successful culture system, and now we are looking to deploy this system in multiples. Our modular design strategy works and is highly scalable.” Blue Star Chairman and CEO John Keeler states: “We believe land-based salmon farming can be part of the solution of healing our environment and will meet the gap between the growing global demand of salmon and a supply that is limited by its environmental impact, as well as geographical and governmental constraints. “While there are other public companies pursuing a similar business strategy, we believe this opportunity is massive and has plenty of space for several participants,” he adds. “We are very thrilled to partner with the Atkinson family, the founders and operators of Taste of BC Aquafarms, who have been pioneers in RAS farming since 2010. They’ve built a proven and February 2021


FEATURE STORY

Taste of BC Aquafarms team members, with President Steve Atkinson, seated in the centre

scalable model and we are excited to strategically fund their next level of growth and use our sales platform to market their delicious, sashimi-grade steelhead salmon.”

BUILD THE

According to a press release announcing the sale, RAS technologies are non-invasive, landbased aquaculture method “that is expected to reshape the seafood industry over the next several decades. RAS land-based farming avoids some of the current pitfalls of existing methods of sourcing salmon”, including fish harvesting in open environments and oceanbased net pens. With the global population expected to rise to approximately 9.8 billion people by 2050, an increase in demand for protein food sources, particularly marine protein, is anticipated. Atkinson notes: “I see no reason why the RAS salmon production in BC cannot potentially exceed 100,000 metric tons annual production in the next two decades. Along with Blue Star, we intend to be leaders in this new industry.” Blue Star’s acquisition of Taste of BC Aquafarms is being done through a combination of cash, equity and assumption of debt, and is expected to close in the first quarter of 2021.

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21


WHO IS SUING WHOM The contents of Who’s Suing Whom is provided by a thirdparty resource and is accurate according to public court documents. Some of these cases may have been resolved by publication date. DEFENDANT Arrowsmith Roofing Ltd 2767 Powder Point Rd, Nanoose Bay, BC PLAINTIFF Canada Gypsum Management and Supply Inc CLAIM $10,156 DEFENDANT Cancor Cutting & Coring Ltd 1106 Surfside Dr, Qualicum Beach, BC PLAINTIFF AB Edie Equities Inc CLAIM $201,500

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DEFENDANT Coast Capital Insurance Service Ltd

110-29 Helmcken Rd, Victoria, BC Towes, Michael James CLAIM $35,276 DEFENDANT Cosmo Prof 7385 2-772 Bay St, Victoria, BC PLAINTIFF Cardinal Point Health Centre CLAIM $15,036 DEFENDANT Dons Boat Transport Ltd 3rd Flr 26 Bastion Square, Victoria, BC PLAINTIFF Burrell, Mike CLAIM $13,371

DEFENDANT Dscreet Health Inc 4029 Blackberry Lane, Victoria, BC PLAINTIFF Cheng, Gary Chi Lap CLAIM $35,216

DEFENDANT ER A Strata Corp Exec Council EPS 2516 728 Yates St, Victoria, BC PLAINTIFF McBride, Richard Alan CLAIM $35,000

DEFENDANT Dscreet Health Inc 4029 Blackberry Lane, Victoria, BC PLAINTIFF Cheng, Randal Gee Chong CLAIM $35,216

DEFENDANT International Composting Corporation 4th Flr 1007 Fort St, Victoria, BC PLAINTIFF Lundy, Christopher CLAIM $15,556

DEFENDANT Dscreet Health Inc 4029 Blackberry Lane, Victoria, BC PLAINTIFF Mok, Henry Kwok Ming CLAIM $35,216

Kania Industries Inc 2345C Delinea Pl, Nanaimo, BC PLAINTIFF Vonisenburg, Alexander Furst CLAIM $20,496

Region

Project Address

Project Type

Project Details

Low Bidder / Award

Budget

Oak Bay

2251 Cadboro Bay Rd

Demolition/deconstruction

Construction Management - Demolition of Oak Bay Lodge

Unitech Construction Mgmt

Esquimalt

CFB Esquimalt

Institution new

Replacement of Existing SS Tower at Naden-92A

Luxton Construction

273,000

Esquimalt

CFB Esquimalt

Supply

Generator Rationalization

Kingsview Construction

872,000

Saanich

3100 Foul Bay Rd

Services

Roof Projects

Parker Johnston Industries

n/a

Saanich

4461 Interurban Rd

Institution add/alter

Camosun Innovates Lab ITT

Century Group Inc

n/a

Saanich

770 Vernon Ave

Institution add/alter

Municipal Hall and Annex Refit

Brenric Construction

276,800

Saanich

3100 Foul Bay Rd

Institution add/alter

College - Wilna Thomas Building Renewal

Heatherbrae Builders

n/a

Langford

3100 Constellation Ave

Institution new

Pexsisen Elem School - digital controls system for HVAC

Kerr Controls

n/a

Capital Regional Dist Jordan River

Supply

Delivery of Concrete

Independent Concrete

n/a

North Cowichan

6444 Ford Rd

Institution new

North Cowichan Civic Building - cast in place concrete

Scansa Construction

1,499,400

Nanaimo

745 Third St

Institution add/alter

Serauxmen Fencing & Netting

Milestone Equipment Contr

2,035,920

Cumberland

3699 Bevan Rd

Institution new

CVWMC Recycling Depot - Building Construction

D Mills Construction

226,550

Comox

19 Wing Comox

Institution add/alter

Barracks B25 Lounge Renovation to Quarters

Rolling Tides Construction

135,000

Comox

CFB Comox, Lazo

Supply

Overhead Doors

Island Overhead Door

300,000

Campbell River

Various locations

Roads & bridges

Road Construction & Maintenance

K & D Contracting

167,604

Port McNeill

355 Km Highway 19

Roads & bridges

All Steel Portable Bridges

Surespan Structures

350,000

46,000

February 2021


WHO IS SUING WHOM DEFENDANT Karmanah Wood Design Ltd 101-797 Goldstream Ave, Victoria, BC PLAINTIFF Arsenal Rentals Ltd CLAIM $11,343 DEFENDANT KD Gold Enterprises Ltd 5379 Kenwell Dr, Nanaimo, BC PLAINTIFF Silva, Juan CLAIM $5,020 DEFENDANT Leading Edge Roadworks Inc 102-575 10th St, Courtenay, BC PLAINTIFF Castle Fuels (2008) Inc CLAIM

$7,730 DEFENDANT Metchosin Properties Inc PO Box 525, Shawnigan Lake, BC PLAINTIFF Belton Bros Structural Movers (2006) Ltd CLAIM $29,080 DEFENDANT Monjo & Associates Financial Services Ltd 109-335 Wesley St, Nanaimo, BC PLAINTIFF Hinkkala & Associates Financial Services Inc CLAIM $47,110 DEFENDANT PJS Powerblasting & Mobi le Water T reatment Service 963 Herd Rd, Cowichan

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Valley, BC PLAINTIFF Dobos, Cheri Louise CLAIM $33,196 DEFENDANT PJS Powerblasting 963 Herd Rd, Cowichan Valley, BC PLAINTIFF Dobos, Cheri Louise CLAIM $33,196 DEFENDANT Rivers Inlet Sportsmans Club Ltd 201-909 I sl a nd Hw y, Campbell River, BC PLAINTIFF LMP Publication Limited Partnership CLAIM $7,273 DEFENDANT Toulmin Construction Inc

409 Leighton Ave, Courtenay, BC PLAINTIFF Adams, Linda CLAIM $35,235 DEFENDANT Victoria Nannies & Caregivers Placement Agency 301-1321 Blanshard St, Victoria, BC PLAINTIFF Freeland, Geff CLAIM $10,156 DEFENDANT Victoria Silver Spring Distillery Inc 1230 Merridale Rd, Cobble Hill, BC PLAINTIFF Beacon Construction Consultants Inc CLAIM $7,290

23


TOURISM

FEBRUARY TOURISM FOCUSED ON LOCALS

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Fe b r u a r y i s traditionally off-peak season for v i sitat ion to Greater Victoria. In recent y e a r s e f fo r t s were made to increase visitation to the destination during this time, especially PAUL NURSEY with meetings, events, and conferences. Due to the COVID-19 pandemic and the necessary health orders limiting gatherings at this time, travel to Greater Victoria is minimal. Meetings, events, and conferences that were booked had to be cancelled or postponed, as did the corresponding hotel room bookings. Despite the setbacks, Destination Greater Victoria has remained nimble and pivoted two of its mainstay off-peak season events. The first is Dine Around & Stay in Town Victoria (Dine Around). With our partners at the BC Restaurant and Food Services Association Victoria Chapter, over 50 of Greater Victoria’s best restaurants offered set three-course menus from January 14 to February 7 at low prices. This year our marketing was geared to locals. The feedback we received from our members is that Dine Around exceeded expectations and generated revenue following months of challenges. I would like to thank those in Greater Victoria that supported local business during Dine Around. It was a

great event, and we look forward to doing it again next year. The second community event Destination Greater Victoria is helping to organize is Greater Victoria Flower Count. Taking place from March 3-10, 2021, this will be the 46th edition of the event. In the past Greater Victoria Flower Count has been about poking good-natured fun at the rest of Canada due to our milder climate, but this year themes will be inclusivity, well-being, and renewal. It is also a great way to position Greater Victoria as welcoming and start the healing process for those in the visitor economy. Like previous years, there will be competitions between municipalities and elementary schools to see who can count the most blooms. Greater Victoria Flower Count will engage the community as we move into spring and look forward to sunnier days. With the ongoing roll out of vaccines to the most vulnerable slated to be complete by the end of March, we are hopeful that later this spring and into summer some regional and Canadian travel will return safely. We look forward to welcoming visitors again. Paul Nursey is the President and CEO of Destination Greater Victoria

February 2021


FEATURE STORY

RG EXCAVATING DIGGING DEEP FOR CLIENTS

VICTORIA COMPANY SPECIALIZES IN LARGE COMMERCIAL EXCAVATION AND DEMOLITION SERVICES VICTORIA - RG Excavating was founded by Rob Grant in 1992. Rob bought one Komatsu 200 size excavator and operated it himself as an owner/operator. In his first few years he did mainly residential work for a number of builders including Limona Construction. From 1994–97 Rob worked a lot for the Department of Highways on the Thetis Lake interchange for 20 months and then at Transfer Beach in Ladysmith for 8 months. Rob also did a lot of the house demolitions for highways projects through the B.C Purchasing Commission. Once the government work was completed Rob went to larger more commercial projects and started to grow his company, buying more machines and adding more employees, as he was no longer operating, since managing and estimating became a full-time job. Over the next 20 years RG grew relationships with Campbell Construction, Abstract Developments, Axiom Builders, Townline Construction and Bosa Developments. RG was a family run business with Rob running the day to day operations and his wife Kim running the office end of things. Rob and Kim were hands-on and felt they could do everything themselves, and as the company grew, so did the workload. In 2017 they were approached by a  group of four individuals wanting to buy RG. Rob and Kim never did have a retirement plan, but this was their opportunity. Kim is now retired and Rob continues as the general manager of RG. They were both supposed to be retired by now, but with COVID putting travel plans on hold,

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RG Excavating machinery and team members on the job

Rob decided to stay on longer. Two of their sons work for RG, with Jeff running the day to day operations and John being one of the main operators. When Rob retires, Jeff will take over as General Manager. Some of the larger projects RG is currently working on are Hudson Walk for Townline which is a six story underground parking structure for a new condominium building, and an excavation for three towers of mixed use rental and condos for sale at Dockside Green for Bosa Developments. They are also doing Hazmat and demolition of the Tally Ho pub and lounge for Townline Construction the on Douglas Street, then excavating for a low cost housing building for the Cool-Aid Society. RG has 14 full time employees between operators, labors and superintendents. “We pride ourselves and being fair and building lasting relationships with our customers,” Rob says. www.rgexcavating.ca

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FEATURE STORY

DEVELOPING AN INSPECTION PROGRAM FOR MUNICIPAL AND COMMERCIAL OPERATIONS

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The BC Fire Code requires that all owners of buildings shall be responsible for carrying out the provisions of the Fire Code regardless of local Fire Commissioner, Fire Inspector or other AHJ (authority having jurisdiction) inspections. There are also various CSA standards that discuss the requirements for recreational and play equipment.

3. You are required to inspect air movement systems, filters, boilers, electrical equipment, HVAC systems, etc. 4. You are required to inspect all fire protection equipment (fire extinguishers, fire suppression systems, fire alarms systems, sprinkler systems, standpipes, etc.).

Preventive Maintenance – Predicting a Problem before it happens Whenever there are cutbacks, preventive maintenance usually takes a hit. The need to provide a regular Digitally Documented preventive maintenance program cannot be overstated. How do we know how long your equipment will operate? What condition is the equipment in? What maintenance and testing should be provided if we don’t develop a Digitally Documented inspection program?

Inspection requirements should encompass A monthly inspection program, preferably digital: • All rooms, hallways, means of egress, exterior exit stairs, pathways and fire exits; • All mechanical systems, heating, electrical, plumbing; • Fire safety systems, fire alarms, sprinkler systems, fire extinguishers, fire suppression systems, etc.; • Hazardous Processes and Operations • All exterior areas including playgrounds, sports fields parking lots, sidewalks, steps, stairs and walkways.

What Applies in Buildings - Inspections 1. Safety Inspections – Emergency Exiting of Buildings, Fire Protection Equipment, Fire Alarm Systems, Storage Concerns, Fire Planning, Fire Drills, Fire Code Requirements, etc. 2. Preventive Maintenance Inspections – Filter Changes, Trash Can Inspections, Mechanical Inspections, Boilers, HVAC, Geo-Thermal, Electrical Systems, Roofs, Building Envelope Inspections, etc. 3. Interior Safety – Applies to Hallways, Steps and Stairs, Storage, Hazardous Occupancies (welding, wood workers), etc. 4. Exterior Safety – Applies to Playgrounds, Sports Fields, Sidewalks, Steps and Stairs, Parking Lots, Dumpsters, etc. Your Responsibilities 1. You are required to inspect your buildings. 2. You are required to maintain a record of inspection for any AHJ’s review.

Conclusion: 1. It is your building / facility - you are required to keep it operational and safe. 2. Identify all areas to be inspected. This makes it easier to determine specific ways of developing an inspection Program that will meet your requirements. 3. Develop a Monthly Inspection program. Monitor your progress, make changes if needed. 4. Stay informed. 5. Talk to Risk Management professionals, people in your industry, staff and various other organizations. Alan Kavanaugh, CRM, CCPI (Member NFPA), Director of Loss Control and Risk Management @ Noratek Solutions Inc.

February 2021


FEATURE STORY

DINE AROUND & STAY IN TOWN VICTORIA RETURNS FROM FEBRUARY 19 TO MARCH 8, 2021 Back by popular demand, Dine Around & Stay in Town Victoria (Dine Around) returns February 19 to March 8, 2021. This follows the success of Dine Around earlier this year from January 14 to February 7, 2021. Dine Around’s return will include many of the same restaurants, as well as new feature menus for customers. Furthermore, many hotel accommodations specials for Greater Victoria residents will also continue. “The feedback we received from many of our restaurant members on the success of Dine Around was amazing” said Paul Nursey, CEO – Destination Greater Victoria. “I am also proud of Greater Victoria restaurants and hotels for safety adaptations and taking safety seriously. I am looking forward to seeing locals dine on great culinary options restaurants create during Dine Around’s return as well.” The menus will focus on “Chef’s Feature Sheets”

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to help promote their cuisine. Restaurants will include options that are inventive and value-added for patrons. Like the first run of Dine Around, organizers are working with restaurants to ensure proper COVID-19 protocols are in place and food service is delivered within safety guidelines. Current provincial orders require diners to only eat with someone from their own household. If someone is single, they can eat with one or two other people who make up their pandemic bubble. “The Greater Victoria restaurant sector is proud to support the return of Dine Around” said Peter De Bruyn, Provincial Chair - BCRFA. “The COVID-19 pandemic has created difficulty for so many. The entrepreneurs and employees in the restaurant and hospitality sector have been amongst the hardest hit. I would like to thank Greater Victoria residents for their strong support of Dine Around.” Information on the return of Dine Around can be found here.

27


OPINION

WHAT HAPPENS WHEN LABOUR LAWS BECOME ONEROUS

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MARK MACDONALD With the new United States government announcing its march towards a $15 minimum wage, and Canada on again/off again about doing the same, minimum wage earners are ecstatic. But should they be? Hiking the minimum wage is an amazingly simplistic way to woo voters – with the promises of increased income. Somehow, the conversation never winds its way around to explain that with wage costs rising, so will the price of goods and services. All such mandated increases are never usually borne by the business owner – the consumer at the end of the line pays. And pays. And pays. Despite current popular thought suggesting that business owners are rolling in the money (“their” money, really, since it’s the workers that make it all happen) the pandemic has revealed

the true state of the economy, especially small business. And that is this: Without deep subsidies and assistance, an alarming number of Canadian companies would have already closed. By the way, we’re not suggesting that these are hand-outs, but rather repayment of the thousands of dollars that businesses have already paid in taxes and fees to governments. It’s getting some of the money back they’ve had to inject into the “system”. So, while wage earners and voters buy into the $15 minimum wage mirage, how many bother to notice that the price of groceries and restaurant foods and gas have incrementally risen? Why are they more expensive? Because affected businesses must make sure their costs are covered to keep their doors open. Who really pays? Consumers. Minimum wage raises and other pro-labour socialist-minded government legislation, while garnering votes, actually make it more necessary for business owners to adjust to protect their investments. When the NDP government strongly hints about removing secret ballots for union registration, they are most definitely pleasing their most ardent fiscal supporters – the unions themselves that bankroll their elections, while the private sector shudders. Owners know how much more union-represented workers cost, not to mention the increased lack of flexibility of operation. What is a business owner to do? What do they do in environments like this? February 2021


OPINION They adjust, in clever ways. Restaurants have been pounded by the government’s prolonged restrictions, but you can see how many have adjusted by focusing on take-out and delivery. Skip The Dishes, DoorDash and others have slid into the market to get restaurant food to customers at their homes and offices. Some eateries have simply hired their own drivers to deliver. Is this a temporary fix? What if the restaurant owner likes the results of utilizing out-sourced delivery companies – read contractors – for which they pay either flat fees or commission. They have less staff, thus less to pay out in terms of benefits, and minimum staff issues. If they’re not happy with a contractor, then it’s “next”. The end result could be less restaurant jobs, especially if they’re $15 an hour. Those serving jobs, which include huge tip opportunities, could be gone forever. Self-checkouts at grocery and department stores started slowly, with one or two per store. Count how many there are now, and where the larger lineups linger. While it costs more up front for technology, that investment will pay off as the machines are paid for. And again, less staff – and related problems. Outsourcing to other countries – or out of province – also presents tempting opportunities. Employ someone in BC and typical benefits and related expenses total an extra 20 per cent each to the payroll. Using labour and contractors from lesser developed countries means lower wage costs, no minimum wage standards, and no benefits to be paid. These survival tactics and more become WWW.BUSINESSEX AMINER.CA

genuine solutions to protect investment, and come with tangible payback. The negative? Less workers employed in British Columbia, which means non-positive payback somewhere down the economic cycle. What else is a business owner to do to survive tough times and unfair, anti-owner policies? They’ll do what they must. Ultimately, the voters who applaud when their government of choice implements policies that please only them, will pay the price. Talk about a lack of political foresight: Buying votes via job-killing policies to please workers today, which forfeit future employments by ultimately eliminating jobs, especially those paying minimum wage. Mark MacDonald is President of Communication Ink Media & Public Relations Ltd. and can be reached at mark@ communicationink.ca​

From the Trenches British Columbia business stories and commentary

Dig deep with the frontline leaders of our economy

29


MOVERS AND SHAKERS

MOVERS & SHAKERS Announcements, business changes, celebrations and other hidden gems from around Central/North Vancouver Island. Curated just for you.

Submit your company’s announcement to: media@businessexaminer.ca

COVID-19 pandemic. Film production industry website MovieMaker Magazine has placed Greater Victoria fifth on its top ten list of best small cities to live and work as a filmmaker, behind only New Orleans, Santa Fe, Pittsburgh, and Savannah, all in the United States. https://www.moviemaker.com/ best-places-to-live-and-work-as-a-moviemaker-2021/6/

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Episode 7 of the Business Examiner podcast – From the trenches – is now live! It features Derrold Norgaard of Norgaard Kratofil Professional Group, Green Sky Labs, and the Ironwood Clay Company. Transport Canada has extended the suspension of cruise ships in Canadian waters across the country until February 2022 to manage the

Victoria-based EPIC Project Management is restoring ‘Muirhead House,’ the nearly 120-yearold home at 223 Robert Street, with plans to complete the project by the end of 2022. The house was severely damaged by fire in April of 2020. Unitech Construction Management out of Delta, BC will manage demolition of the Oak Bay Lodge building. Unitech will oversee a budget expected to be between $1.5 and $2 million to remove the 50-year-old building.

February 2021


MOVERS AND SHAKERS Saanich council voted unanimously in favour of a rezoning application for a four-storey complex planned for 3200 Linwood Avenue owned by the Baptist Housing Society. The development was first proposed in 2016, with a revised proposal submitted in 2018. The complex will replace Linwood Court, an existing 29-suite walk-up near Mayfair Mall. A multi-unit Fairfield residential development proposal was recently approved by Victoria council after a public hearing. A rectangular property at 1224 Richardson Street, roughly triple the size of a regular city lot, will become the site of twenty-four homes in three three-level structures. Four designated units will be sold at ten percent below market value. The University of Victoria has moved $80 million to the RBC Vision Fossil Fuel Free Short Term Bond Fund, focused on reducing carbon intensity of investments in the pool. The university also says it will invest $10 million in a renewable power impact fund that will measure carbon emissions negated by fund investments. Divest UVic is still pushing for the UVic Foundation to divest $40 million from its Long Term Endowment Fund, invested in the fossil fuel industry since March 2020. Sidney Council unanimously approved up to $100,000 for additional work on the Beacon Wharf project for consulting, engagement and technical investigation as the municipality ponders the future of the aging infrastructure. Four options are being considered for its future: replacement with a rock base; replacement with WWW.BUSINESSEX AMINER.CA

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MOVERS AND SHAKERS a piled structure; replacement with a floating structure; and no replacement at all, all with a wide variety of final costs for each. The City of Victoria is working with BC Hydro to install the city’s first electric vehicle (EV) Direct Current Fast Charger (DCFC) station with two chargers at the south end of Store Street, between Johnson and Pandora, near the Johnson Street Bridge. The stations are expected to be ready for public use by April 2021.

32 Denny Warner

Denny Warner is the new Community Relations and Marketing Manager with Sidney All Care. She had previously been the Executive Director of the Saanich Peninsula Chamber of Commerce since 2014.

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The province is offering businesses a $7,500 grant to improve their online presence. The grants come from $12 million Jobs Minister Ravi Kahlon says will go out to small and medium-sized businesses across the prov- Ravi Kahlon ince on a first-come-first-served basis. To learn more or sign up, visit https://launchonline.ca. Vancouver’s VSBLTY Groupe Technologies Corp, a leading provider of security and retail marketing technology, is partnering with Victoria innovative retail security and customer experiential technology company, SYNQ, to co-develop a public safety, security solution for Canadian Tire’s third-largest location in Victoria’s Hillside Mall. SYNQ will deploy VSBLTY’s Vector™ software in the Canadian Tire store. The proprietary technology uses AI and machine learning to provide real-time occupancy data, enabling stores to automate functions normally performed manually. The software is already used by over 2,000 retail locations in Canada and the US and has over 1 million users per day. Author Sylvia Olsen of North Saanich recently received the Delta Kappa Gamma International Woman of Wisdom and Passion Award for British Columbia. The award is in recognition of her long history working in and writing about First Nations housing. Sylvia is a married-in member of the Tsartlip Sylvia Olsen February 2021


MOVERS AND SHAKERS First Nation, and has worked for the National Assembly of First Nations’ Chiefs Committee on Housing and Infrastructure. The BC government is funding dozens of training opportunities for those interested in the forestry industry on Vancouver Island this year, spending nearly $775,000 to provide two rounds of certification courses and forestry training through Stillwater Consulting. During the roughly five-month program, participants will take part in sixteen weeks of occupational skills training and three weeks of on-the-job work experience with local employers, plus two weeks of job search support. Those interested can sign up at https://www.workbc.ca/Employment-Services/WorkBC-Centres/WorkBC-Centres-Listing.aspx

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MOVERS AND SHAKERS Victoria-based Aurinia Pharmaceuticals Inc. stock jumped 26.7 percent on the first day of trading since the US Food and Drug Administration approved the company’s drug treatment for lupus nephritis. Aurinia’s stock price (TSX:AUP) closed at $23.91 on February 1st, giving the company a market capitalization of more than $3 billion. The approval of their drug, Lupkynis, means patients in the US were able to begin the new treatment Monday. The Greater Victoria Harbour Authority has appointed Florence Dick as the representative from the Songhees Nation on its Board of Directors until December 2022, as well as Geoff Dickson as the representative from Destination Greater Victoria until December 2024.

34

Oak Bay is looking to add a development tracker showing current development applications online, in line with most municipalities in the region. The cost will be around $16,500 in the 2021 budget. The tracker wouldn’t show up until after the spring approval of the financial plan. The city of Langford announced an application for rezoning of the Western Speedway and its 81 acres has been submitted for 2207 Millstream Road property. Neither city councillors or staff members could confirm the identity of the applicant. According to the application, the goal of the rezoning is to create the development of a business park for a variety of business park, commercial and residential uses. The new Tandoori Flavour restaurant at the

February 2021


MOVERS AND SHAKERS corner of Oak Bay Avenue and Amphion Street is now open for business.

for the first 130 metres north from the highway.

The Very Good Butchers vegan butcher shop is opening a new flagship location in downtown Victoria, featuring a quick service restaurant and retail outlet to accommodate more customers. The new shop is scheduled to open in the 500-block of Chatham Street in May.

president of the Victoria Real Estate Board, succeeding Sandi-Jo Ayers in the role. David is from Macdonald Realty Victoria and served several years David Langlois on the business standards committee of the real estate board. The VREB represents 1,400 real estate agents.

W

A

R

D

-S

C

E

N

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!

A Victoria pilot project run by AVI Health and Community Services providing pharmaceutical drugs to people at risk of dying from a toxic drug supply has received $4 million in federal funding to expand. The funding will allow them to support more people at risk and continue the project

A

More than $345,000 in provincial grant money was awarded to Vancouver Island mental health and addictions service providers to help offset the pressures of COVID-19. In Greater Victoria, Saanich House and Recovery Works each received $25,000. Eleven treatment service providers on Vancouver Island received support ranging from $25,000 to $45,000. The Ministry of Mental Health and Addictions’ grant program, designed to support existing bed-based treatment across the province, received fifty-three eligible applications from around BC, and awarded more than $2 million to providers financially challenged by the pandemic.

David Langlois is new

Sidewalks along O in Sooke could see improvements if a grant application by the municipality is successful. ™

Sooke council has agreed to apply for a $1.8-million Canada Infrastructure Program’s COVID-19 Resilience Infrastructure grant for sidewalk improvements along Otter Point Road. The proposed project involves constructing sidewalks on the northbound side of Otter Point Road linking Highway 14 to the transportation corridor of Wadams Way and include a separated boulevard

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for three more years. Funding for the project was set to expire in March. Phillips Brewing & Malting Beer Shop at 2010 Government in Victoria is open once again, and ready to serve customers. https://phillipsbeer.com Fifty-one community projects will be funded in Victoria thanks to more than $180,000 in matching funding from the 2020 intake of the City of Victoria’s My Great Neighbourhood Grants. All ideas have been designed to allow neighbours to support each other during the COVID-19 pandemic, and to create inviting, vibrant places for people to get outside. To find out more, visit www.victoria.ca/neighbourhoodgrants. Victoria’s Maritime Museum of British Columbia is inviting nominations for the 2021 SS Beaver Medals, an award recognizing outstanding achievements in and contributions to BC’s marine sector. The nominations’ deadline is June 4, 2021. Nomination information, forms and due dates are located at mmbc.bc.ca/ about-2/s-s-beaver-medal/. On March 4th from 7:30AM - 9:00AM, virtual fundraising event Breakfast to Remember, held by the Alzheimer Society of BC, will feature a keynote address and live Q&A with astronaut Colonel Chris Hadfield, the first Canadian to walk in space. To learn more, donate or purchase tickets, visit https://alzheimerbc.akaraisin.com/ ui/breakfasttoremember. Saanich council has greenlit a five-storey, mixed-use development, voting unanimously

February 2021


MOVERS AND SHAKERS in favour of the 53-unit multi-family building with commercial spaces at the ground level for 300 Gorge Road West and 2900 Tillicum Road. Seagate Pontoons is interested in a public-private partnership with Sidney regarding Beacon Wharf. The committee overseeing the future of the wharf has recommended the municipality invite Seagate Pontoons to submit a formal proposal for a potential partnership to replace the aging wharf. A report noted potential max cost for a floating pontoon structure at $6.5 million, compared to a possible cost of $10 million for a piled structure. It would cost about $2 million to remove the wharf at the end of its useful life, followed by enhancements to the waterfront. Victoria’s Aral Construction has been awarded

Oak Bay’s municipal hall renovation, beating out bids from three competing companies. Its work will be part of a renovation and redesign push for municipal hall’s open office area, stairs, and the offices that Oak Bay Volunteer Services currently occupy. Crystal Pool and Fitness Centre at 2275 Quadra Street in Victoria will reopen on February 1st for swimming and fitness centre use. Registration opens online and by phone on January 28th. https://www.victoria.ca/EN/main/residents/ facilities/crystal-pool.html The City of Victoria is exploring ways to partner with the Downtown Victoria Business Association to maintain the downtown area during the ongoing pandemic.

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MOVERS AND SHAKERS

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Victoria Design District mainstay, Sager’s Home Living at 1802 Government Street, is closing for good after fifty years.

in two intakes of its Health Care Assistant Plus diploma program. Those interested can contact their local WorkBC centre.

The Oak Bay Beach Hotel at 1175 Beach Drive in Victoria is presenting intimate brunches, romantic dinners, at-home offerings and more to Victoria locals this Valentine’s and Family Day long weekend, from February 12th to 15th. For details, call 250-940-0314 or visit http://www. oakbaybeachhotel.com/.

A BC SU PP OR T Un it grant of $10,000 will help Vancouver Island University Health and Human Services Professor Dr. Leigh Blaney and research partner Robert Fell, a volunteer firefighter and

Victoria’s Merchant House Capital Inc., a real estate investment and development company, has announced acquisition of Kinnaird Place, a 61-unit strata-owned residential building located at 65 First Street, in New Westminster’s Downtown community. They intend to operate the building as rental and have entered into a housing agreement with the City of New Westminster to preserve rental agreements for those currently renting in Kinnaird Place. Merchant House proposes to develop a plan with area stakeholders and the City to build a high-rise residential tower on the site at a future date. Up to thirty eligible British Columbians will get skills and training for jobs as healthcare assistants, recreational co-ordinators and community and personal-support workers via a new Community and Employer Partnership (CEP) project from the BC Government, intended for immigrants. The project will give participants skills and experience necessary to apply for and get good-paying jobs in these fields. The program provides nearly $365,000 to Cambria College Victoria to deliver skills and certification courses

Dr. Leigh Blaney

owner of tech company HYPERSURGE, develop a prototype firefighter resilience education video game called Firefighter Edge, designed to potentially help firefighters worldwide cope with stress and anxiety experienced on the job.

Robert Fell

Production of Netflix limited series, Maid, recently filmed in Saanich’s Cadboro-Gyro Park. The series is expected to finish filming in late March. New television show, Scaredy Cats, finished filming in the Victoria area earlier this month.

Carl Neilson

Carl Neilson is the new fire chief of East Sooke Fire and Rescue. Rick Moffat, a former chief of the department, will take over as deputy chief, replacing Falk Wagenbach.

February 2021


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Profile for Business Examiner News Group

Business Examiner Victoria - February 2021  

Featuring the latest business news and information for Greater Victoria, including Sidney, the Saanich Peninsula, Langford, Colwood, Sooke,...

Business Examiner Victoria - February 2021  

Featuring the latest business news and information for Greater Victoria, including Sidney, the Saanich Peninsula, Langford, Colwood, Sooke,...

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