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July 2021

since 1986.

w w w. u n i t e d f l o o r s . c a

#104-2520 Bowen Road, Nanaimo • 250-758-4664


Michael Espinoza




Summer is here. For us, that means playing catch up on the growing “to-do” list built during our busy season. We hope you are enjoying the heat (fires notwithstanding), and are taking time to recover from the crazy spring as we prepare for the roaring fall of 2021. While you’re continuing to build your business and brand, our team continues to tell the stories of Capital Region business leaders like, and keep you informed on news impacting your organization. This edition focuses on Building Science & Sustainability. The Island boasts an incredible number of innovators in the space, we hope you enjoy! Alongside this feature, we have our popular curated Movers & Shakers content, with updates from Capital Region Chambers of Commerce, our CITIFIED update, stories from Orca Masonry and a whole lot more. Keep forging ahead, John MacDonald, Director, Business Development Contact Us 25 Cavan Street Nanaimo, BC V9R 2T9 +1 866-758-2684 Office Hours Monday – Friday: 9:00am – 5:00 pm Saturday – Sunday: Closed Editor: Lise MacDonald ( Press Releases & Story Ideas: ( Sales: John MacDonald (

July 2021


8 BILL C-208


















NANAIMO – The blistering heat that finally gave way to slightly cooler temperatures mirrors what is happening in our housing market, as scorching real estate activity continued its cooling trend in June. Last month, the Vancouver Island Real Estate Board (VIREB) saw sales of 533 single-family detached properties compared to 531 the previous month and 473 in June 2020. In the condo apartment category, sales dropped by 10 per cent from May 2021 (150 to 134). Row/townhouse sales decreased by 18 per cent from May and were 15 per cent lower than in June 2020. Sales in the VIREB area are tracking at around 400 units more than at this time in 2016, which was our strongest market historically. Inventory is rising slightly, which opens up a few more opportunities for buyers, but it is still historically tight on Vancouver Island. Although active listings of single-family homes dropped by two per cent from May, condo apartment and row/townhouse inventory rose by 16 and 23 per cent, respectively. The  British Columbia Real Estate Association (BCREA) forecasts that market conditions may begin to even out somewhat by the end of the year. However, it would take approximately 2,500 new listings in the VIREB area to create an actual balanced market if activity continues at this pace. Read Full Report here.

The Federal Government of Canada announced the investment of a minimum of $50M from the Tourism Relief Fund (TRF) in Indigenous tourism projects. The Indigenous Tourism Association of Canada (ITAC) is very pleased with this renewed commitment from the government to support the recovery of the Indigenous tourism industry across the country. The aforementioned investment is part of a total commitment of $500M in the TRF to support the tourism industry overall, of which $485 million will be delivered by Regional Development Agencies (RDAs) directly to tourism businesses and organizations to help aid in the creation of new tourism experiences, or enhance existing ones. Of this $500 million, a minimum of 10% will be invested in Indigenous tourism projects ($50M). Additionally, $15M has been allocated in part to support national ITAC projects. Individual businesses and Provincial/Territorial Indigenous Tourism Organizations will need to apply for repayable or non-repayable funding directly through their respective RDAs. Contributions to Indigenous entities (not generating profits) will normally be non-repayable. Indigenous applicants are invited to apply through the process described below.: For communities in Western Canada: Western Economic Diversification Canada (WD) Full press release here July 2021


CITYWEST ACQUIRES WEST ISLAND CABLE IN BAMFIELD BAMFIELD– In 1901, a trans-Pacific undersea telegraph cable was laid from Fanning Island (south of Hawaii) to Bamfield, a small town on the west coast of Vancouver Island. The telegraph station allowed for worldwide communications in a very short time span. Although the station was decommissioned in 1959, it now houses the Bamfield Marine Science Centre. And now, Prince Rupert’s CityWest is happy to be part of that telecommunications history with the purchase of West Island Cable, based in Bamfield, which will link up to the Connected Coast project. Once the Connected Coast project is activated in Bamfield, customers will see even faster Internet speeds at reasonable prices – and, they won’t have to worry about any data limits. The Connected Coast project will bring new or improved high-speed internet accessibility to 139 rural and remote coastal communities, including 48 Indigenous communities – representing 44 First Nations – along the BC coast from north of Prince Rupert, to Haida Gwaii, south to Vancouver, and around Vancouver Island. The project is currently in the permitting stage, and will begin construction later in 2021. WWW.BUSINESSEX AMINER.CA

NEW CIRCULAR ECONOMY FACILITY REIMAGINES USED TEXTILES NANAIMO – The Gabriola Island Recycling Organization (GIRO) upcoming incubator project is set to facilitate entrepreneurial growth in small scale textile manufacturing while tackling the growing and global challenge of clothing waste, with support from the Island Coastal Economic Trust (ICET) DIVERSIFY Capital & Innovation Program. The “C2C Threads Entrepreneurial project” is a circular economy initiative that will develop a maker/workshop facility, offer business support and access to a consistent textile waste stream. By providing targeted business development information, mentorship and a supportive network, this project will facilitate the growth of an Island-based community of upcycle textile entrepreneurs that could eventually expand beyond the collection of local waste. The C2C Threads – Upcycle Textile Entrepreneurs Incubator project includes construction of a new facility, the Threads Building and purchasing of equipment. The Facility will include a makerspace, workshop space and a third space to produce shredded textile products and textile repair work. The workshop space will be used by entrepreneurs to share information on upcycling, repair, weaving, Sachiko, Boro mending and other approaches to diverting textile waste. Sewing machines, sergers and textile shredders will also be purchased.




8 Michael Espinoza

Family members wanting to sell their companies to other family members will now find it less expensive to do so, with the passing of Federal Bill C-208. The bill was granted Royal Assent on June 29 after passing through the Senate and House of Commons, and the legislation now provides the same tax treatment to the transfer of a family business as the sale of a business between arm’s length parties. “When the owner of a business wanted to sell the business or retire prior to Bill C-208, their best alternative from a tax perspective was to sell to an arm’s length party, rather than to pass down their business to their child (who was often

already active in the business),” states Michael Espinoza, Senior Manager, National Tax for Grant Thornton LLP. “It would cost the business owner significantly more in taxes to sell to his or her child.” Espinoza gave an example. “Transitioning a business in BC that is worth $850,000 to an arm’s length purchaser could be undertaken tax free in many circumstances by utilizing the life-time capital gains exemption,” he notes. “That same sale to a child would have cost the owner $415,000 in taxes before Bill C-208. This is because any sale of the owner’s shares to a corporation that is owned by the child would result in the capital gain being taxed as a deemed dividend, prior to Bill C-208. “The changes in Bill C-208, which apply to qualified small business corporation (QSBC) shares and qualified farm or fishing property, puts these transactions on even footing from a tax perspective. This means that the business owner’s decision is not driven by the potential negative tax consequences of a non-arm’s length transfer or sale.” Bill C-208 provides the same tax treatment to the transfer of a family business as the sale of a business between arm’s length parties now, and the tax savings can be significant. “Firstly, the BC combined federal-provincial tax rate on capital gains is approximately 22 per cent lower than the rate on non-eligible dividends. On a $1 million capital gain, that means savings of

July 2021

OFF THE COVER over $220,000,” Espinoza points out. “Secondly, since the sale would be taxed as a capital gain, the business owner may be able to access the capital gain exemption, resulting in the potential to access almost $900,000 tax-free. On that same $1 million, this means an overall tax savings of over $460,000. Espinoza notes that for many clients the pre-Bill C-208 legislation made it difficult, and often impossible, to transfer their family business to the next generation without incurring a significant amount of tax. “This often meant that family businesses had to undergo costly alternative tax planning resulting in significant additional costs to effect the intended transfer,” he says. “Bill C-208 addresses this perceived unfairness by providing exceptions to small business owners, farmers and fishers, making it easier and more cost-effective to pass their business to the next generation. Bill C-208 puts business owners on the same playing field now, regardless of whether they sell to their children or an arm’s length party.” Espinoza says that overall, Bill C-208 is a positive change to facilitate the intergenerational transfer of a family business in a tax-effective manner. “The changes in this bill will benefit business owners however, they still need to be prudent in implementing family transition planning,” he points out. “The rules on intergenerational transfers introduced in Bill C-208 can be confusing and somewhat unclear, so business owners are cautioned to consult with their accountant and lawyer well in advance of undergoing any planning to take advantage of these changes.”


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Xtend Rentals is continuing its rapid g row t h, add i ng to its two current operations at 1910 E a st Wel l i n g ton Road in Nanaimo and 1030 Oyster Bay Drive in Ladysmith by purchasing the property halfway MARK MACDONALD between the two operations, at 13230 Trans Canada Highway where Chakalaka Restaurant and Market operated just south of the Nanaimo Airport in Cedar. Owner Bill Robinson says the new location will include 10,000 square feet of buildings on 1.2 hectares of land. Plans call for not only tool rental and landscape/garden Bill Robinson Xtend Rentals supplies, it will include Airbnb rentals, chain saws, a small engine repairman and used machinery for sale. The opening of the new outlet is targeted for August 20.

Greg Constable’s IWCD continues its record breaking pace, as the company celebrated the ground-breaking of its latest project, The Commons at Royal Bay in Colwood. It’s a 76,000 square foot retail village anchored by Quality Foods and Cascadia Liquor. A proposed commercial and residential plaza at Northfield and Boxwoods Roads has passed first and second reading at Nanaimo City council. IWCD’s proposal includes zoning for a 40,000 square foot supermarket, as well as three five-storey buildings that include retail space on the ground floor and four floors of residential units above, as well as another office building. This follows a public information meeting in May, where IWCD Vice President Patrick Brandreth presented the concept. A public hearing was held July 22. Congratulations to Tony Harris upon becoming the new Ch a i r m a n of t he Nanaimo & District Hospital Foundation. Tony’s father, Tom Harris, was the foundation’s first Tony Harris Chair, from 19931996. He was a candidate in a recent provincial

July 2021

NANAIMO election, and is a real estate developer and investor. Tony is also Chairman and CEO of Billy Goat Brands Ltd., and partner in Harris Mazda, Harris Kia and the Nanaimo Chrysler Dodge Jeep Ram vehicle dealerships. Cody Dreger of Layzell Dreger and Associates, Anu Mayer of Bastion Management Ltd. and David Lindblad of RBC Dominion Securities are new board members at the Foundation. Brian Sabourin has sold Berk’s Intertruck on July 1 to a Pacific heavy truck group, a Volvo dealer on the lower mainland. Brian and Dan Grubac are leaving the company, and all employees remain with the company under the new ownership. Laurie Bienert, Executive Director of the Nanaimo Foundation, is the new President of the Rotary Club for downtown Nanaimo. Tali Campbell, forLaurie Bienert mer General Manager of the Nanaimo Clippers, is enjoying life as General Manager and Vice President of the Coquitlam Express club in the BC Hockey League. As if he’s not busy enough, Tali has put on another hat, as General Manager of the Pacific Coast Amateur Hockey Association Female District Development Program. Westmark Construction Ltd. and Mazzei


Electric are busy building a four-storey residential building at Holland Creek in Ladysmith. Central Vancouver Island needs a meat processing site, and Ben Glassen, a Nanaimo farmer, wants to establish one on leased land on Jingle Pot Road. He has applied to the Agricultural Land Commission for an Agricultural Land Reserve nonfarm use permit, and he would like to include a cooler, freezer, inspection area, plucker with feather chute, and a rotary scalder in his operation. There are only three small meat processing sites on the Island currently, in Black Creek near Campbell River, Cobble Hill and Saanichton. Ben Hyman, currently Chief Librarian at Vancouver Island University, is the new Executive Director of the Vancouver Island Regional Library. A 72-room hotel at 3679 Shenton Road to be called Diver Lake Inn and Suites has received unanimous passing of first and second readings from City Council. Western LL Holdings Ltd. is the property owner, and the hotel would feature four storeys, although only three storeys would be visible from Shenton Road, and the project will include surface parking and a parkade. Permanent supportive housing units are projected to be built at 285 Prideaux Street, the current location of the 7-10 Club. When built, the John Howard Society will


NANAIMO operate the building as a personal care facility. The new Courtyard by Marriott currently under construction on Gordon Street downtown will feature new technology from Nexii Building Solutions Inc., which produces structural panels made with a sustainable alternative to concrete. By using 140 of the Nexii panels, it is expected to accelerate construction of the PEG Developments project by 8-10 weeks. The targeted opening for the new hotel is either in the spring or summer of 2022. Snaw-Naw-As Market on the Island Highway in Nanoose will soon have four new charging stations for electric vehicles. A $210,000 grant from the provincial CleanBC

Go Electric Public Charger program will enable the Nanoose Economic Development Corporation to install the stations, notes Chief Gordon Edwards. Nanaimo Airport has extended its offer for free use of its electric vehicle quick charge stations jay until the end of the year. An Ind They started offering the service on February P 1, notes President and CEO Dave Devana. “Keeping them free of charge for the rest of the year is part of our commitment to environmental leadership and stewardship,” he states. Mark MacDonald is President of Communication Ink Media & Public Relations Ltd. and can be reached at​


Jay Cousins jay cousins realty

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NEIGHBOURHOOD PUB Nanaimo - $299,000

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Busy High Volume Operation   Well-Established with Loyal Clientele   175 Seats including Patio   Full Kitchen, Price Includes Inventory   Turn Key Operation   Information Portfolio Available

Toy & Teacher Resource Retail Store   28 Years in Business - Loyal Clients   Amazing Selection of Classic Toys, Games, Puzzles, Science Kits etc.   Plus Inventory   Information Portfolio Available






y Rd st Ba hwe Nort UNDEVELOPED LAND Nanoose Bay - $1,750,000 High Exposure Corner Property   1.7 Acres + Registered Access & Parking

Lot Easement on Neighbouring Property

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30,000 SF Commercial Complex with a further 26,000 SF approved for Phase 2 Information Portfolio Available

FOR LEASE - Two 2nd Level Units



Two 2nd Level Walk-up Units   Both with office configurations   Two Shared Washrooms   Gross Lease   Unit A -1,130 Sq. Ft. $1,600/Month + GST   Unit B - 450 Sq. Ft. $625/Month + GST   Information Portfolio Available

Prominent Corner Location on 1.04 Acres   18,000 SF Building over 2 Levels   25,000 SF Pave Parking Lot   Multiple Commercial Tenant Units plus 5 Bedroom Residence on 2nd Level   Information Portfolio Available

3 - One Bedrooms, 7 Bachelor Suites   3 Storey Complex with stable Tenants   10 Yr Old Roof, Coin-Op Laundry   Ocean Views from Top floor   Well Priced Revenue Opportunity   Close to Old City Quarter & Downtown   Information Portfolio Available

Downtown Nanaimo



2,100 Sq. Ft. Quality Office Space - North Nanaimo, high visibility, ground level access, 2 entries, open layout, private offices, boardroom, kitchenette, storage, 2 Washrooms $14/SF + TN Downtown Nanaimo Commercial Space - 1,712 Sq. Ft. located in the Dorchester Hotel, fantastic location across from the Waterfront, Great visibility $1,700/Month + Hydro & Property Taxes 2,033 Sq. Ft. 2nd Floor Office Space – Downtown Nanaimo, T.N. includes HVAC, Hydro & Utilities. Available for Immediate Occupancy $9.50/SF + TN 1,100 Sq. Ft. Sub-Lease space available now - Currently configured as a Retail Store, 2 Entry/Exit Doors, shared Washroom CC1 Commercial Zoned in South Nanaimo - $1,800 Mo + GST Huge 1, 900 Sq. Ft. Unit with 1,300 Sq. Ft. Bonus Storage area - Large open 2nd level space downtown Nanaimo. Incl. Hydro/HVAC - $2,200/Month + GST 800 Sq. Ft. Office Space in Metral Centre - Great Exposure & Fully Accessible Unit, Private Office, Open Configuration 2-piece Washroom $14/SF + TN 1,130 Sq. Ft. 2nd Level Downtown Office Space - Nanaimo - Corner of Terminal Ave & Commercial St. Current configuration is for several offices, 2 shared washrooms, Gross Lease $1,600/Month + GST 450 Sq. Ft. 2nd Level Downtown Office Space - Nanaimo - Corner of Terminal Ave & Commercial St. Current configuration is 2 offices, 2 shared washrooms, storage area-Gross Lease $625/Month + GST 2,500 Sq. Ft. Main Level Space with Yard - Errington/Parksville Area, Great Visibility, Paved Parking Lot, current use is Montessori School, Available July 2021 $3,000/Month + GST Vacant Land Available for Lease – .75 of an Acre across from Cassidy Airport, Great for Storage of Vehicles, RV’s etc. $2,000/Month + GST Large Downtown Nanaimo Office Unit – 3,948 Sq. Ft. 2nd Level, Quality Building, Triple Net expense incl. HVAC, Hydro, Utilities, Available Immediately $12/Sq. Ft. plus T.N. 900 Sq. Ft. Corner Unit with Great Exposure – Near Old City Quarter, DT2 Zoning allows for a broad range of uses, Available immediately $13/Sq. Ft. plus T.N.

July 2021

Busy   Full K   Inform


18,00   5 Bed   Plus M


Well e   28 Yea   Plus In


Bake   Highl   Inform


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Over the last few months, the two issues I hear consistently from every sector is: “We just can’t find employees and the ones we do find, can’t find housing.” The housing shortage is a crisis right across the country and seemingly, at least on Vancouver Island, all three levels of government and the builders are working in tandem to begin to address the shortage. The missing employees are another story. As predicted the baby boomers have begun to retire and it would seem the pandemic had an amplification effect on the trend. So, what can employers do? I would encourage you to explore the student options. We did and with tremendous results! Engaging with our secondary schools and our post-secondary institutions has led to a great new website for us built by a secondary student, the launch of an 8-month social media campaign highlighting local businesses and we were able to update our internal database. We are currently exploring the next group of interns for projects this fall. Providing real world working opportunities to students will assist your business, will enhance the student’s education and will ensure

our collective future. Nearly a year ago North Island College (NIC) and Vancouver Island University (VIU) collaborated and launched a new web portal to connect employers and students: Vancouver Island Work Integrated Learning … “Engage with and mentor highly motivated students to successfully contribute to the workplace in a rapidly changing world. Local businesses and community organizations are important partners in creating workforce diversity and delivering education that is responsive to current challenges and industry needs. Together we can make a difference on Vancouver Island.” You’ll find onboarding resources, potential funding sources, and one-on-one support from VIWIL staff. You can create an employer profile, upload employment opportunities and then this gets ‘pushed out’ to every post-secondary campus north of the Malahat. Just imagine how transcendent your company can become with an injection of unbounding enthusiasm, insight, and a working knowledge of the latest technology, and industry developments! Feel free to reach out to me directly if you would like more information about our experience. For More Information contact Mary Ruth Snyder, Executive Director, Campbell River & District Chamber of Commerce @ 250.650.7575, or Stephen Watson, Stakeholder Engagement Advisor, BC Hydro @ 250.616.9888  

July 2021


INTERNET PERFORMANCE TEST TO ASSESS STATE OF CONNECTIVITY IN COWICHAN Economic Development Cowichan has lau nched the I nter net Performance Test to better understand the state of internet connectivity throughout the Cowichan region. BARRY O’RIORDAN In 2020, the Cowichan Valley Regional District (CVRD) Board of Directors identified connectivity as a priority in their Corporate Strategic Plan. The Board looks to develop a regional connectivity strategy and pursue provincial and federal funding to support the delivery of broadband internet service to all communities in the CVRD. “The last sixteen months have shown us just how essential good quality internet is to making and maintaining connections, both in our personal and professional lives,” said Aaron Stone, Chair of the Cowichan Valley Regional District. “A regional connectivity strategy is the first step in determining how we can improve access for all residents and businesses in Cowichan.” In order to build the most complete picture of the current state of internet connectivity in Cowichan, Economic Development Cowichan (EDC) is asking residents and businesses to complete the Internet Performance Test (IPT) at their home and/or workplace. The IPT is a free tool that measures internet speed and service quality. Armed with this information, EDC will seek to develop a strategy to meet the connectivity needs of the region long into the future. The strategy will identify areas of concern, and


explore funding sources and appropriate technologies to improve connectivity in those areas. “Digital drives the world economy,” said Barry O’Riordan, Manager of Economic Development Cowichan. “In 2017, the Canadian digital economy produced an estimated $109.7 billion in GDP.1 Everyone in Cowichan should have access to this essential service. We encourage everyone to complete the Internet Performance Test so we can assess the gaps and develop a strategy for addressing them.” The Internet Performance Test (IPT) was developed by the Canadian Internet Registration Authority (CIRA), the agency responsible for Canada’s .CA domain names. The IPT is a neutral measurement of Internet performance and is not affiliated with any internet service provider. The tool looks at over 100 different internet connection factors to determine the speed and quality of your connection. Over 1 million IPT tests have been performed across Canada to date. Whether you have great internet, or no connection at all, EDC wants to hear from you! Visit to learn more and complete the Internet Performance Test. Barry O’Riordan is Manager of Economic Development Cowichan and can be reached at 250.709.1119 or

1 Statistics Canada, May 3 2019, “Measuring digital economic activities in Canada: Initial estimates”,




Affordable housing provider Pacifica Housing is one of the largest builder-operators of below-market homes in the Capital Region, with state-of-the-art projects in planning like the Burnside School Affordable Housing development earmarked for Cecelia Road (pictured). Pacifica has secured $230,000 from the province’s CleanBC Building Innovation Fund for fuel-switching measures and structure envelope upgrades at one of its Victoria-based multi-unit residential buildings. © Pacifica Housing


GREEN CONSTRUCTION BOLSTERED BY INDUSTRY ADVANCEMENTS AND PROVINCIAL INVESTMENTS Innovation and technological improvements among construction industry stalwarts are helping deliver a more efficient, environmentally sustainable and economically competitive generation of buildings and infrastructure projects across Vancouver Island, while provincial dollars

are helping showcase made-in-BC initiatives to broader markets. The provincial government, through the CleanBC Building Innovation Fund has earmarked nearly $10 million for 21 low-carbon building solutions throughout British Columbia,

July 2021


A rendering of the City of Fort St. John’s net-zero energy-ready RCMP detachment, which received a $100,000 provincial contribution under the CleanBC Building Innovation Fund from the province for the state-of-the-art facility. © City of Fort St. John

including a $230,000 investment towards Pacifica Housing’s fuel-switching measures and structure envelope upgrades at one of its Victoria-based multi-unit residential buildings. The changes, according to proponents, could yield an 80 per cent or greater reduction in greenhouse gas emissions and their successful adoption likely to set the stage for rapid uptake of similar programs. Additional monies were awarded to concepts like testing and design certification of FPInnovations’ 3D-printed high-quality, low-cost and energy-efficient homes utilizing residual wood fibres in lieu of traditional materials, the City of Fort St. John’s net-zero energy-ready RCMP detachment, and StructureCraft Ltd.’s software platform to assist with the design, engineering, fabricating and installation of mass timber structures. Financial awards totalled $450,000, $100,000 and $380,000, respectively,


250-385-8439 ● 250-754-2232 734 Tyee Rd, Victoria | 113 Gava Pl, Nanaimo


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At Gescan, we believe that we work better when your unique voice and ideas are celebrated and encouraged. Whether you’re ready to start a challenging new career, or you are an experienced industry professional, come grow your career, your way, with one of the largest electrical distribution networks in the world. We’re more than just an electrical distributor, at Gescan we work with some of the largest electrical brands to provide the clean energy of the future. Join us on our journey towards net zero emissions and contribute to something greater than yourself. Development & Learning • Paid Training • Inside Sales Customer Base Growth Program • Tuition Reimbursement Leave work at work attitude • Work Monday-Friday during the day only • No need to work late or on weekends • 3-week starting vacation, sick and appointment days Competitive Salary, Bonuses & Discounts • Competitive salary • Bonuses • Employee discount of 5% above costs on all products Extended & Flexible Benefits • Insurance for health, prescriptions, dental, paramedical, travel, life, AD&D, optional critical care, long and short-term disability • Complimentary counselling, healthy eating strategies and financial advice


Nanaimo’s upcoming nine-storey Courtyard by Marriott Nanaimo will utilize 140 exterior structural panels developed by Nexii. Able to fit together like jigsaw puzzles, Nexii’s panels improve a building’s energy efficiency and significantly lower energy costs for ongoing building operation, according to the company. © Nexii Building Solutions

among this trio of the 21 chosen applicants. “These projects are great examples of how homegrown innovation and technology are putting us on the path to a cleaner, better future,” said Bruce Ralston, Minister of Energy, Mines and Low Carbon Innovation. “Through the Building Innovation Fund, we are investing in projects that showcase British Columbian expertise, reduce pollution, increase energy efficiency and stimulate local economies. By using clean energy more efficiently in our buildings, we’re helping people reduce energy costs, mitigate climate impacts, and improve air quality.” On the Island, emerging technologies already in use in other regions are quickly gaining local market penetration thanks to a growing number of firms helping change the way builders and municipal governments solve familiar issues. As the first company in western Canada to offer a revolutionary method of modernizing or WWW.BUSINESSEX AMINER.CA


Nexiite, a powdered material from Nexii similar to dry concrete, is as strong as concrete but made with what the company calls “greener materials.” ©Nexii Building Solutions

repairing storm and sewer culverts, Parksville’s Leuco Construction brands its new Thermoform PVC Fold and Form service as a cost-cutting effective alternative to open-cut trench excavations. “Trenchless rehabilitation has been around for many years, but PVC lining is a much newer technology, especially on the west coast,” says William Cottrell, President of Leuco Construction.

BUILDING GREEN “The technology avoids excavation, removal of existing piping, extensive utility shutdowns, or public disruptions. There are also no hazardous water-soluble chemicals within the material, no chemical reactions required for it to work, no


volatile monomers such as styrene, no noxious vapours to pollute the air and no leaching.” Cottrell estimates several kilometers-worth of underground utility and stormwater culverts on Vancouver Island will require replacement over the next decade that could benefit from Thermoform, particularly in urbanized areas with high traffic loads. Victoria’s West Coast Waterproofing (WCW) is pioneering the use of Polyurea as an industrial waterproofing process capable of adapting to a wide variety of situations requiring protection from water exposure or penetration. Through the use of Polyurea, a sprayable elastomer, WCW is able to avoid the complexities of open flame torch-on waterproof membrane installation to protect environments like green roofs, parkades, concrete decks, balconies and walkways in less time, yet within the same budget as traditional options. WCW promotes Polyurea as fast applying, trafficable within minutes, extremely durable and its use negates the need for carbon emissions during installation. The firm estimates it can handle 5,000 square feet of coverage per day. In Squamish, Nexii Building Solutions is operating at-capacity to deliver its made-in-BC environmentally-friendly building technologies. Demand, Nexii says, is so strong that a 150,000 square foot production plant is now targeted for Vancouver Island.

A worker applies Polyurea, a sprayable Waterproofing elastomer used in waterproofing situations. West Coast Waterproofing can save clients valuable time with the Polyurea product while negating the need for open flame torch-on waterproofing material applications. © West Coast

Nexii has certified Alexzi Building Solutions to produce its near-zero waste precision-designed, pre-manufactured Nexii panels in a purpose-built factory that is in its final stages of site procurement. Nexii reports that its state-of-the-art panels significantly reduce the climate impact of construction and slash onsite build times by up to 75 per cent without sacrificing water or fire resistance, or earthquake resiliency. Such efficiency, according to Anne Tanner, Executive Vice President of Royal LePage Commercial’s leasing and sales division (assisting Alexzi’s site selection), can yield

July 2021

BUILDING GREEN significant budget savings critical to providing attainable housing in southwestern BC. “As Nexii’s manufacturing partner, accessing leading green construction technology and products, Alexzi is at the forefront of breakthrough 21st century building materials with a proven track record in British Columbia and expanding in jurisdictions throughout North America,” Tanner said. Created by construction industry innovators Michael and Ben Dombowsky, Nexii was born out of the energy crisis of the 1970s when research and testing first began at the hands of the brothers in pursuit of efficient and sustainable methods of building. Today’s material science advancements coupled with market demand for innovative alternatives to steel and concrete have created a niche for Nexii’s

Leuco Construction crews work at installing a Thermoform PVC Fold and Form culvert liner. Leuco’s unique culvert rehabilitation service saves time and money, and is an environmentally friendly alternative to traditional culvert repair or replacement options. © Leuco Construction

solutions and an impetus for expanding its network of certified manufacturers to markets across North America.


Project Address

Project Type

Project Details

Low Bid / Award


Various locations

Roads & bridges

AAA Neighbourhood Bikeways & Traffic Calming

Don Mann Excavating


Government St

Roads & bridges

AAA Cycling Network - Government St North Corridor

BD Hall Constructors Corp


Oak Bay

1975 Bee St

Mechanical, elec & plumbing

Ammonia Chiller Replacement and Plant Upgrades

Fraser Valley Refrigeraton


View Royal

Various locations

Consulting services

Official Community Plan Review

EcoPlan International



Various locations

Roads & bridges

2021 Paving Program

Capital City Paving



Various locations

Consulting services

Neighbourhood Wayfinding Strategy

The Cygnus Design Group

Capital Regional District

Hartland Ave

Civil work

Hartland Landfill Airspace - Aggregate Production

Jacob Bros Construction

CRD - Gulf Islands

Mayne Island

Roads & bridges

Road work - Mayne Island

OK Industries

Nanaimo RD

Englishman River

Roads & bridges

Pedestrian Bridge Replacement - Englishman Hatchery

Pacific Industrial and Marine


Nanaimo RD

737 Jones St

Institutional add/alter

Ravensong Aquatic Centre Mech Upgrade Phase 2

Archie Johnstone Plumbing & Heating



19 Wing, CFB Comox

Institutional add/alter

CFHA Kitchen and Bathroom Renovations

Don Saywell Developments


Comox Valley RD

Various locations

Civil work

Bus Stop Construction

Simon Stubbs Consulting

Comox Valley RD

1331 Williams Beach Rd

Institutional new

Merville Auxilliary Fire Hall

Kinetic Construction


Campbell River

FSR near Eve River

Roads & bridges

Road Construction

Far North Contracting


Haida Gwaii

1647 Collison Ave, Masset

Institutional new

Construction Management Services

Unitech Construction Management


Amount 2,792,601

N/A 11,045,606 2,947,150




WHO IS SUING WHOM The contents of Who’s Suing Whom is provided by a third-party resource and is accurate according to public court documents. Some of these cases may have been resolved by publication date. DEFENDANT Access Welding & Coating Inspection Ltd 122 8-6014 Vedder Rd, Victoria, BC PLAINTIFF M c Ph e e , M e n n o Kenneth CLAIM $17,216


DEFENDANT All Points Home Inspections Ltd 2023 Fernwood Rd, Victoria, BC PLAINTIFF Cameron, Darby James CLAIM $29,721

DEFENDANT AFC Industries Ltd Balmoral Investments Ltd 8 0 0-8 8 5 We s t Georgia St, Vancouver, BC Schug, Larry Robert CLAIM $35,216 DEFENDANT Bayside Oceanfront Resort 8 0 0-8 8 5 We s t Georgia St, Vancouver, BC Schug, Larry Robert CLAIM $35,216

DEFENDANT Brandywine Holdings Inc 533 Heat herd a le Lane, Victoria, BC PLAINTIFF Pellow, Monica CLAIM $12,406 DEFENDANT Comox Pacific Express Ltd 2900-201 Portage Ave, Winnipeg, MB PLAINTIFF Barnett, Tara Ann CLAIM $22,368 DEFENDANT Cube Project

Management Ltd 4th Flr 1007 Fort St, Victoria, BC PLAINTIFF Argus Excavating Limited CLAIM $34,313 DEFENDANT Earth Spirit Publishing Ltd 1681 Cowichan Bay Rd, Cowichan Bay, BC PLAINTIFF Fouts, Jason CLAIM $30,510 DEFENDANT Ea r th Spi r it Refurbishment & Restorations 1681 Cowichan Bay Rd, Cowichan Bay, BC

PLAINTIFF Fouts, Jason CLAIM $30,510 DEFENDANT Ea r th Spirit V W Restorations 1681 Cowichan Bay Rd, Cowichan Bay, BC PLAINTIFF Fouts, Jason CLAIM $30,510 Google Cloud Canada Corporation 900-1960 Upper Water St, Halifax, NS PLAINTIFF DB Appraisals Ltd CLAIM $28,426 DEFENDANT

July 2021

WHO IS SUING WHOM Island Cruising Ltd 104-9710 2nd St, Sidney, BC PLAINTIFF Love, Mitchell P CLAIM $28,816 DEFENDANT JBR Construction Ltd 2 7 0 0 -7 0 0 We s t Georgia St, Vancouver, BC PLAINTIFF Dalcon Construction (2001) Ltd CLAIM $187,823 DEFENDANT Mill Bay Enterprises Ltd 415-1788 West 5th Ave, Vancouver, BC PLAINTIFF Phoenix Carpentry


Inc CLAIM $19,446 DEFENDANT Noble Extracts Inc 1626 Ga r net Rd, Victoria, BC PLAINTIFF Paul, Zachary CLAIM $5,299 DEFENDANT O ve rl a n d We s t Freight Lines Ltd 2900-201 Portage Ave, Winnipeg, MB PLAINTIFF Barnett, Tara Ann CLAIM $22,368 DEFENDANT Peak Wellness Ltd 2751 Sea View Rd, Victoria, BC

PLAINTIFF Paul, Zachary CLAIM $17,008 DEFENDANT Pirate Excavating Ltd 1401 Sh aw n iga n Lake Rd, Shawnigan Lake, BC PLAINTIFF Alsco Canada Corporation CLAIM $15,245 DEFENDANT Polo Village Developments Ltd 202-1007 Fort St, Victoria, BC PLAINTIFF Argus Excavating Limited CLAIM $34,313

DEFENDANT Seabrook Developments Ltd 7 2 3 A Va n a l m a n Ave, Victoria, BC PLAINTIFF Clarke, Matthew Ivan CLAIM $16,384 DEFENDANT Tamarisk Enterprises Ltd 8 0 0-8 8 5 We s t Georgia St, Vancouver, BC PLAINTIFF Schug, Larry Robert CLAIM $35,216 DEFENDANT Ticket Rocket Enterprises Inc 3rd Flr 26 Bastion

Square, Victoria, BC PLAINTIFF Capital City Comic Enthusiasts Society CLAIM $11,216 DEFENDANT Up North Health Services Inc 469 T ipton Ave, Victoria, BC PLAINTIFF Marilyn Joyce CLAIM $22,389 DEFENDANT Westport Marina (2017) Ltd 2075 Tryon Rd, Sidney, BC PLAINTIFF Jordon, Foerster CLAIM $35,176





MARK MACDONALD Tax rates make an incredible difference when it comes to decision time for investors and companies. U.S. President Joe Biden’s recent push to get Group of Seven countries to agree to implement a minimal global corporate tax rate of at least 15 per cent was shot down in flames, to the surprise of mostly no-one. Can anyone see the world’s most powerful economic nations agreeing to something that could make them competitively deficient to the U.S.? Not in this lifetime. It was believed that Biden’s request would allow him to raise the U.S. corporate tax rate to 28 per cent, after former President Donald Trump dropped it from 35 to 21 per cent. It probably won’t stop the Democrats from raising

the tax bar, but they’ll have to do it all on their own. Taxes are the bane of business’ existence. Despite politicians cries for having corporations “pay their fair share”, owners and shareholders are acutely aware of how much tax they already pay to various levels of government, payroll deductions and employee benefits. It seems like a never-ending stream, stemmed only by sharp managers, pencil-sharpening accountants and on-the-ball lawyers. Which, altogether, makes the opportunity for making investments – and profits – in other, less taxed jurisdictions, even more attractive. That’s why multinational corporations seek other landing spots for their corporate head offices. We need not look elsewhere than our own backyard to witness the benefits of lowerthan-usual taxation. Does anyone think that British Columbia’s film industry would exist to any extent without significant tax credits, and an attractive, lower Canadian dollar against their U.S. counterpart? The combination of those two factors have been THE reason that this province is home to a large number of film production companies that call BC “home”. That works in the U.S. as well. The Longmire series, for example, which the script says is located in Wyoming, was actually filmed in New Mexico, where it’s tax rate was 10 per cent less than the northern state.

July 2021

OPINION Casting one’s eyes to the sporting world, it is becoming painfully evident that a stronger American dollar and nonexistent state taxes are making National Hockey League teams in Nevada, Texas and Florida increasingly attractive destinations for players. Including Canadian born skaters, choosing warmer and friendlier tax climes as great alternatives to much higher tax rates in BC, Ontario and Quebec. Not to mention the ability to enjoy life outside the rink due to less concentrated, and invasively rabid fan bases. Tax advantages are just that, significant reasons for other cities, regions, provinces, states and countries to attract investment they otherwise wouldn’t get. Ireland is a great case, as it’s low corporate tax rate was a major reason why corporations decided to set up shop there, the most specific cause of what is called “Ireland’s Economic Miracle”. It’s why towns like Langford enjoy continual investment, despite recessionary times. Mayor Stew Young announced a significant tax reduction for developers prior to the most recent recession, and Langford was able to sail through rough economic waters with positive growth. It’s also an opportunity that investment-welcoming First Nations can take advantage of, since their smaller bureaucracies can offer lower start-up costs and streamlined regulations to developers, providing an option to locating in multi-level government layers in other cities and towns. Taxes aren’t the only reason, but they are


major factors in attracting, and repelling investment. Even if politicians are loathe to support corporations, eyeing them with suspicion as they report profits, they are forced to recognize that those businesses create jobs, which means voters. Thankfully there are competitive alternatives for corporations to weigh before making decisions about where to invest and build. Even if they choose not to locate in other countries, at least the threat of doing so restrains governments from raising taxes out of sight to keep some of these companies at home. Mark MacDonald is President of Communication Ink Media & Public Relations Ltd. and can be reached at​

25 Dig deep with the frontline leaders of our economy


From the Trenches British Columbia business stories and commentary


Staff at Osprey Electric’s office in Campbell River


OSPREY ELECTRIC POWERED BY COMMITMENT TO TEAMWORK COMPANY SERVES VANCOUVER ISLAND FROM CAMPBELL RIVER, PARKSVILLE OFFICES PARKSVILLE – When Tyler Cody and Wayne Rutherford started Osprey Electric, they were committed to finding the right people for their team, trusting they would produce remarkable results. They haven’t been disappointed, as the company, started in 2012, now employs on average over 100 employees depending on construction levels in its Parksville and Campbell River offices, from which it serves customers throughout Vancouver Island. Cody, the General Manager, and Rutherford, the President, are joined by Curtis Berry and

Brenda Hopper in the senior leadership team, guiding their team of talented staff. “We try to identify each staff members’ unique strengths, that we leverage to provide more as a team than as an individual,” says Cody. Osprey provides commercial, industrial, and residential electrical contracting services for not just Vancouver Island, but also western and northern Canada. “Osprey Electric started with the idea that having the right people will produce remarkable results,” notes Rutherford. “This team July 2021


Parksville staff pose for photo at the Osprey Electric office in Parksville

has enabled us to grow and become preferred electricians for general contractors, developers and homeowners. Our goal is to win the customer, not just the project. What we offer is a collection of people who love what they do and are very good at it.” Osprey’s exponential growth included the acquisition of Apple Electric on October 1, 2020, and they’re currently completing projects in the Yukon and Northwest Territories. They have a new office and warehouse in Parksville, along with their newly renovated Campbell River office, with an eye towards expanding into the Victoria market for select customers and projects.

Their energy services division has also continued to grow. “Our off-grid, and grid-tied solar business continues to expand,” Cody observes. “Utilizing our construction background has enabled us to provide a full service shop for our energy customers.” Recent growth in sales has birthed a new Generator Division that nicely complements their energy services, which provides maintenance and installation for residential generators. “We have seen continued improvements in our systems leveraging continuous improvement methodologies and software integration throughout the company that enables us to be CANADA'S LARGEST, INDEPENDENTLY-OWNED DISTRIBUTOR OF WIRE AND CABLE SOLUTIONS


CONGRATULATIONS to Osprey Electric on your expansion into Campbell River!


1-866-WESCOCA (937-2622)

250.361.9199 |

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Madrona Marketplace, another Osprey Electric project

91 Chapel in Nanaimo is one of Osprey Electric’s projects

geographically isolated throughout Canada, yet unified in our collaboration,” Cody adds. He points out it’s important that on every job they aim to be laser focused on the customer, no matter how big or small. “We hope to make construction easier for our customers, eliminate the risk and frustration, and focus on quick collaborative completion of projects,” he says. “We have noticed many general contractors are moving towards a model that puts together the best team for the project that ensures an on-budget, on-time delivery”. Osprey’s involvement in the design process has helped set up many projects for success, working towards less changes and better timelines. Specific project managers, coordinators and electricians specialize in various types of construction from design-build, commercial,

multi-family, marine, industrial, single family homes and the day to day needs through our two service departments. “Each style of construction requires a unique construction process, from estimating to completion, and we have created work flows for each type,” Cody states. “This enables us to streamline our processes to better meet the unique needs of each customer. We just think construction can be done better” Rutherford points out that Osprey Electric also makes significant contributions to the communities it serves. “Osprey has always been committed to community involvement and has donated labour, materials and/or monetary donations to numerous non-profit organizations since we started our business,” he notes. CONGRATULATIONS TO EVERYONE AT OSPREY ELECTRIC!

Congratulations to Tyler at Osprey Electric! 250.758.8383

T: 250-248-9679 F: 250-248-9693 Unit A -1002 Herring Gull Way Parksville, BC V9P 2N1

July 2021



TIM BRUESSLER What a year this has been! Whatever business model you had in the past has likely been through the ringer as you adjusted to ever changing conditions – and you are to be commended for your efforts and successes! With the easing of restrictions you are likely hopeful of a fresh restart, a restructuring to your business model, or perhaps just getting back to “normal.” The last 18 months have been a real test for most business models, so this is a good time to look for lessons learned. Ask yourself: What would have been helpful to know in advance of the challenges of the pandemic? As you contemplate how to move forward, you’ll want to involve your Insurance Advisor. Not only has your business world changed, so has the insurance world your agent is navigating. Insurance companies may be more risk averse than before COVID-19 hit. That means that if you enjoy a trusting relationship with your agent, your best option may be to stay where you are right now rather than shop around. WWW.BUSINESSEX AMINER.CA

Your Insurance Advisor knows you and your business, so they can explore any planned changes with you to ensure they make sense. For example, a restaurant owner who is considering adjusting their business model to delivery-based will want to discuss whether this change makes sense costwise. Involving your agent at the planning stage will help you make the best choices for your business. Think of insurance as a living document that can be made to adjust to your ever-changing needs—because if there’s one thing we can all be certain of, the only constant in life is change. The key to a good relationship with your Insurance Advisor is trust. If you feel there is a gap in that area, the first step is to try and work it out with good communication. If that doesn’t work, it may be a good idea to look for a different agent. Now more than ever, a trusted Insurance Advisor is your best advocate. If you have any questions, we’re here to help you adapt and thrive as we all move forward to brighter times! Tim Bruessler is a Commercial Insurance Advisor with Coastal Community Insurance Services (2007) Ltd. For more information on business insurance services, call 1-877-811-3644 or book a call back appointment at



574 Cumberland Road


RELATIONSHIPS, KEY PROJECTS THE FOCUS FOR SIMBA INVESTMENTS COMOX VALLEY FIRM BUILDING SINGLE FAMILY HOMES, DEVELOPMENTS AND COMMERCIAL PROJECTS COMOX VALLEY - Simba Investments is building relationships from the ground up, outside and within the company. Arguably the fastest growing construction firm in the Comox Valley, Simba has over 600

residential units either being built, in the planning stages, or awaiting approval. Any business doesn’t get to that level of activity without strong relationships with clients, but also on the team created by well-known local Congratulations

Simba Investments

Congratulations to

Simba Investments on your success!

Proud supporter of Simba Investments!

SERVING Campbell River | Comox Valley | North Island Gold River | Discovery Islands P: 250.203.7143 | E 710 Salal Street, Campbell River



Travelers Insurance Company of Canada, The Dominion of Canada General Insurance Company and St. Paul Fire and Marine Insurance Company (Canada Branch) are the Canadian licensed insurers known as Travelers Canada. © 2021 Travelers Canada. All rights reserved. Travelers and the Travelers Umbrella logo are registered trademarks of The Travelers Indemnity Company in Canada, the U.S. and other countries. TC-1112 New 06-21

July 2021

businessman and former junior hockey star Shawn Vincent. Prior to sta rti ng as a homebuilder, Vincent owned the Courtenay Nissan car dealership. “Sean has a long history in the Valley, and he’s demonstratCEO Shawn Vincent ed how important it is to treat the people that work here and build the company around in terms of the culture we have here, and how that can really create a different and dynamic work atmosphere,” says Senior Project Manager Patrick Davis. “I have 450-plus units on my desk right now,” he states, adding that when he joined the company two years ago there were 8 employees. Today there are 27. “We’ve gone from being a small to medium-sized company to the point where we could be the biggest builder in town by the end of this year, and I’m expecting that we’ll double again in size in the next two years.” Simba Investments builds custom residential homes, multi-family and commercial units, and also offers road access and planning services. The company has a Single Family Home division run by Project Manager Brice Purden. “We have projects managers for the two different groups within the company,” Davis notes. Congratulations to the entire Simba Investments team!

“Dealing with contracts and tenders and consultants, and how to get things out of the ground and permits is what I do. Bryce works with all of the projects being built, and he’s extremely good that that.” Davis notes that Simba’s current “to do” list includes England Oaks, a high-end townhouse development with personal elevators in the finishing phases in downtown Courtenay. Other projects include a 12 unit apartment complex, 24 unit mixed-use development, a 6-storey, 30 unit complex, another that includes 200 apartments, a 12 unit rental building, an 11 duplex development, and 3 single family home developments as well as other complex high-end duplexes around the Valley. “We’re covering all the bases in the market,” says Davis. “Some of our projects are rentals, some condos, some single family homes and some townhouse developments,” he states. One of Simba’s upcoming projects includes 65 units, including micro-units. “ We’re m a rke ti ng to f i rst-t i me homeowners as best we can,” he notes. “We feel the problem i n the Va l ley for some people is that the jump from rental to ownership Senior Project Manager has become almost Patrick Davis


to Simba Investments on all your success!

Fro our tea t your ,


t Simb Investment ! NORTHERN ROPES & INDUSTRIAL SUPLY LTD 259 Puntledge Road Courtenay, BC 250.334.3707 2860 North Island Highway Campbell River, BC 250.286.1027





The England Oaks project under construction by Simba Investments


unattainable. So we’re trying to go after that market and supply housing that these people can get mortgages for.” Davis enjoys the opportunity and mentorship that Vincent is providing him within the company. “When Sean took me on he saw my potential, and he finds people that have potential and brings that out of them,” he observes. “He helps works on things that are holding them back in their own lives. For me, I was always a hardworking guy, and he caught onto that and realized I’d probably work myself to death. Sean recognized that and kept that in mind, and built a team of people that could be a lot like me, where, if unchecked they wouldn’t reach their true potential. “I probably have more work than I’ve ever had, but my boss knows when he needs to check in ELCOR HOLDINGS LTD GRAVEL SALES • ROLL OFF BIN SERVICE

Congratulations to Homes by Crown Isle on all your success!

Congratulations to Simba Investments on all your success!

Your Overhead Door Specialist Simba Investments on

5475 Duncan Bay Main Rd Courtenay

Serving the Comox Valley P: 250.338.9678 E:

250 898 0373

Congratulations to Serving the Comox Valley

P: 250.338.9678 allE: your success!

Your Overhead Door Specialist

and take whatever he can off my desk,” he adds. “Because of that, we get people to join our team that are able to do what they’re good at, at the best level they can. It makes for a healthy work environment, where we never feel like you’re out on an island alone, or that the whole world is weighing on you.” That environment has been key to attracting and retaining talent. “As a team, there is a general consensus that we all have each other’s backs and instead of just pointing out mistakes, we try to fix them for each other. That is probably the best thing about the attitude we have here. We don’t care about personal gain, but how do we make this company work? And out of this, somehow we can produce more projects and success than a company five times our size can do.” Simba Investments also makes significant contributions to the community. One of the main beneficiaries is a non-profit organization run by Davis’ mother, Charlene Davis, that assists homeless people. “On the weekends my mother and I and quite a few other people run a project that is 100% by donations, and we build tiny homes for homeless people,” he notes. “We build these homes out of shipping containers, and they’re built at the Simba yard. We’ve built five of them already and we’re working on six, seven and eight as we speak.” Davis lauds the generosity of the entire community, particularly the local Rotary clubs and businesses like 40 Knots Winery and Relay Event Rentals in helping it come together. They’re currently working on a community of container homes at a local campground that cost $20,000 each. “We’ve seen some pretty major successes,” he states. “For example, one woman unfortunately passed away, but within five days and putting in $1,100 in materials, we had another person living there. Some people have moved from living in these units to getting apartments and getting jobs. “It’s all about building a better Comox Valley, which is what we do at Simba Investments,” Davis states. July 2021


COASTAL COMMUNITY CREDIT UNION EARNS WORKPLACE HONOUR SECOND STRAIGHT YEAR ON BEST WORKPLACES IN BRITISH COLUMBIA VICTORIA – Coastal Community Credit Union is at the top of the heap for the second year in a row. The largest credit union on Vancouver Island has again been honoured for its workplace culture, earning a spot on the 2021 List of Best Workplaces in British Columbia. The distinction was bestowed following a thorough and independent analysis conducted by Great Place to Work Institute Canada. “This is a meaningful achievement in an ongoing pandemic,” notes Bruno Dragani, Chief People and Administration Officer for Coastal Community Credit Union (CCCU). “Our employees have always been at the heart of our business, and I thank them for continuing to build a collaborative, safe and supportive work culture throughout the organization as they dealt with workload and staffing challenges due to the massive changes we all encountered over the last year.” Adrian Legin is the Chief Executive Officer of CCCU. The workplace list is based on direct feedback from employees of the hundreds of organizations that were surveyed by Great Place to Work. Kristie Schulz, Assistant Manager, Member Services, Coastal Community Credit Union, is proud the organization received the nod, adding “Pulling together through the challenges of last year took hard work, expertise, teamwork, and tremendous empathy. I appreciate working for an organization that rallies to bring those values


CCCU CEO Adrian Legin Bruno Dragani

into action.” To be eligible for this list, organizations must be Great Place to Work Certified in the past year and be headquartered in British Columbia. Great Place to Work determined the best based on the overall Trust Index score from these employees. “Trust is an essential quality in today’s rapidly evolving workplace,” Dragani states. “We build trust by investing in our employees, whether it’s offering learning and development opportunities or wellness resources. “Creating a culture of leadership, innovation and collaboration is critical, especially under the stresses we face today. Our employees are making a meaningful difference in improving people’s financial health.” CCCU provides advice and a full range of products, solutions and digital innovations to over 120,000 Vancouver Islanders, and each year, gives back over a half million dollars to support local initiatives and causes.



SignAge does all types of sings for customers


SIGNAGE PERFORMS WRAPPING FOR CUSTOMERS NANAIMO-BASED SIGN COMPANY SPECIALIZING IN WRAPPING VEHICLES WITH GRAPHICS NANAIMO – SignAge is making a name for itself as top-notch wrappers. That’s music to the ears of owner Roger McKinnon, who has watched his company move forward significantly due to their designation as 3-M Certified Installers, meaning they can and do wrap everything from cars and trucks to boats and barges with colourful graphics. “When some of our customers buy a vehicle, they want it to be covered with graphics, and we do that for them,” says McKinnon. “They can buy a vehicle of any colour, and then have it wrapped in the specific colour and sign layout

they want. “We are wrapping six to eight vehicles per week, and there are only a few preferred wrappers on Vancouver Island.” That’s not all that SignAge does, as they offer home signage, dimensional signs, sign installation, commercial signage and large format printing to clients across Vancouver Island. Their team of five works out of their 103-2046 Boxwood Road location, led by 3-M Installer Blair Howell, who has been managing SignAge for 12 years, and Office Manager Karla Halloran, who has been with the company since 2002.

July 2021

OFF THE COVER “We print everything from the smallest vinyl letters to 20-foot illuminated signs,” McKinnon adds. “We design and fabricate large sign projects for commercial locations where high visibility is important to the business, and we have three large-format printers that allow us to print Mazzei Electric’s car with wrapped messaging by SignAge onto almost anything.” McKinnon is well known throughout VancouMcKinnon says the key to the company’s success ver Island, and has been a leader in the Nanaimo has been its focus on the customer. business community for over 40 years, owning “Our clients come first,” he notes. “We listen and operating several companies. A successful to them, and they make suggestions to us somerealtor and developer, he founded Leaf Realty, times and we do that, too. Our products are very the forerunner of the Nanaimo franchise of RE/ high quality, and we get them out on time, and MAX, and is a former owner of the Old House save them money.” Hotel & Spa in Courtenay. He also co-founded McKinnon Hammond Real Estate, a large project marketing company at its time. McKinnon focuses on central Island builders and developers, a sector in which SignAge holds the lion’s share. “We basically handle all the signage for the bigger developments in the area, which is perfect,” McKinnon notes. “We closed our Comox Valley location, since Nanaimo is doing so well, WE’RE READY WHEN YOU ARE and we run up the Valley whenever our customSAFE, FAST, RELIABLE FLIGHTS ers need us. NANAIMO | VANCOUVER | VICTORIA “Moving to Boxwood Road (from their former McCullough Road location) was the best move we made, with all of the companies located on the street now.” | 1.800.665.4354 SignAge also does a lot of work for Regional helijet Districts, cities and municipalities on the Island.






NANAIMO – A Central Vancouver Island company is at the leading edge of rapid COVID-19 testing prior to passengers boarding flights. CVM Medical Ltd., based in Nanaimo and led by CEO Graham Williamson, is the first company approved for Michelle Stillwell Rapid Antigen Testing in BC. CVM Medical Ltd. was approved by the College of Physicians and Surgeons of British Columbia, Diagnostic Accreditation Program (DAP) for Rapid Antigen Testing in the spring. The firm uses the BD Veritor Rapid Antigen Test to perform on-the-spot, point-of-care testing to detect the presence of COVID-19, with results available to customers within 15 minutes. CVM has testing clinics in Nanaimo, Vancouver and Calgary, and they also perform other testing for clients. COVID testing clinics are located in Vancouver, Calgary and Nanaimo. Michelle Stilwell, MLA for the provincial Parksville-Qualicum riding from 2013-2020, is the Director of Rapid Testing for CVM. A six-time Paralympic gold medalist, she is a former Minister of Social Development and Social Innovation and Government Caucus Chair. Following their DAP approval for rapid antigen testing, CVM signed an agreement with Vancouver International Airport and KLM

Airlines to begin rapid testing all KLM passengers departing for Amsterdam. The CVM Medical rapid testing solution is currently being employed by mining companies and private aviation interests for crew rotations to remote worksites, as well as for essential travellers on flights bound for the USA. CEO Graham Williamson also founded the Lifesupport Group of Companies in 2005 that includes air medical and emergency services. The firm has four fully dedicated air ambulance aircraft, including long-range Challenger and Falcon jets, and they have medical staff bases in Nanaimo, Vancouver, Calgary, Toronto, Fort Lauderdale in Florida, and Frankfurt, Germany. In Canada, travel agencies are reporting soaring international bookings, but quarantine for returning travellers is the top factor holding back people from taking trips. In terms of airline seat capacity, Canada has fallen seven spots in the world rankings, with capacity down roughly 80 per cent. The Canadian Airports Council has advised that Canada’s aviation sector would benefit from deploying a recovery agenda compatible with that already initiated by the U.S., where 60 per cent of those who have travelled overseas hope to go abroad again in 2021. Industry experts also agree that the longer the recovery, the more difficult it will be for Canada’s airlines to compete in international aviation markets. July 2021


ACTIVITY AT SOMASS SAWMILL IN JULY PORT ALBERNI – There was some activity at the Western Forest Products 43-acre waterfront Somass Sawmill in July. Workers were on-site removing equipment from the site, which hasn’t witnessed production since 2017. The activity in July came less than three weeks after the City of Port Alberni handed out a notice of expropriation to Western Forest Products for the site. Meanwhile, the San Group, which purchased Coulson Forest Products in 2016 and now has over 400 employees at its operations, including its base in Langley, recently announced a further $100 million investment in Port Alberni, and is now looking at expansion in northwest B.C. Terrace could be the next market target, as President Suki Sanghera and Vice President of Sales Operations John Langstroth visited Terrace in June to explore opportunities, and is considering building a sawmill to process wood that it already buys in the region and currently ships out for processing elsewhere. One of the site prospects is the Skeena Industrial Development Park south of the Northwest Regional Airport. Part of its investment in Port Alberni includes shipping product from the Vancouver Island deep sea port, and the San Group recognizes similar opportunities with the ports of Kitimat and Prince Rupert. Should the plan proceed, it could produce 50 to 60 million board feet of lumber per year, and to do so, 40-50 acres would be needed for the operation, which could cost $60 million to build. The San Group already does business with Kitwanga Forest Products. San Group exports its wood products to over 27 countries throughout the world. WWW.BUSINESSEX AMINER.CA

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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:


NORTH ISLAND Quatsino First Nation recently completed an agreement with Western Forest Products to purchase a parcel of private land on the North Island’s coast. The 172-hectare property will be used for community housing and the building of a Big House for Quatsino youth. Hyde Creek Flower Farm, east of Port McNeill is a four-acre property offering an à la carte selection of garden, and will happily order custom flowers from United Floral in Burnaby to provide specific varieties and colours for customers.  CAMPBELL RIVER The City of Campbell River’s economic development department and the Campbell River Area Angel Group awarded a total of more than $2 million to the winners of NexStream Tech Competition. List of Winners: AazeintTx, Gordon Anderson (Calgary), Health and Emergency Preparedness categor y; AVA Technologies Inc., Valerie Song (Vancouver), Food Security

category; MintGreen, Jenn Zee and Colin Sullivan (Burnaby), Sustainable Resource Innovation category; Open Ocean Robotics and Julie Angus (Victoria,), Wildcard category; Rootd, Ania Wysocka (Vancouver Island), Community Service award. The Strathcona Regional District (SRD) announced that they were granted $394,000 to fund wildfire risk mitigation and to assist communities affected by the COVID-19 pandemic. The grant was released through The Union of BC Municipalities Firesmart Economic Recovery. The Garden Education Center at 228 South Dogwood Street is open for visitors this season. The City of Campbell River’s Waterfront Project in the is expected to be completed by August. Cermaq Canada took legal action in court against the DFO’s denial of Brent Island and Venture Point license extensions and transfer of applications.

July 2021


CYCLE CPA is now open, designed to service licensed professionals and small business owners.


The Campbell River Salmon Foundation will host a 50/50 raffle to benefit the preservation, restoration, and augmentation efforts of local salmon in the city

Free summer concerts will be returning to Spirit Square every Wednesday night from July 28 to August 18, featuring local musicians. For additional details, visit

Riptide Marine Pub at 1340 Island Highway in the Discovery Harbour Shopping Centre is open for patio and indoor dining. Check out their menu here.  Beach Fire Brewing has partnered with Greenways Land Trust for the four th year in a row to produce Baikie Island Spruce Tip Ale, utilizing spruce tips harvested from the Baikie Island estuary. From every pint of Baikie Island Spruce Tip Ale sold, Beach Fire donates 25 cents to Greenways.  Wildflowers & Co., an Indigenous-owned and operated store, recently held the grand opening for their new location at 975 Shoppers Row Unit C in Tyee Plaza. Barry Glickman, Emergency Radio Communications Volunteer Leader, received the 2021 Emergency Radio Communications (ERC) Public Safety Lifeline Volunteer of the Year Award.

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COMOX VALLEY Uniglobe Carefree Travel in Courtenay is moving to a new location. Their new address is Unit 112 - 795 Ryan Road Courtenay BC V9N 3R6. The LUSH Valley Food Action Society has launched a capital fundraising campaign to secure a permanent location for the organization. Maurita Prato, executive director of Lush Valley, said that their target is to raise half a million dollars in three years. The Comox Museum located at 1729 Comox WWW.BUSINESSEX AMINER.CA

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MOVERS AND SHAKERS Avenue was reopened to the public on July 8. Free admission applies. Trail Bicycles, owned by Jeff Beston has been recognized for supporting the Comox Valley Wheelchair Sports Society with free equipment repairs. North Island College (NIC), School of Business’ classes will begin in September. For further details, visit Coast Range Cannabis is offering same-day cannabis delivery in Comox Valley and surrounding areas beginning July 15. The Comox Valley Regional District and Denman Works have partnered for a bus service project in Denman Island. The Denman Island Bus Service has five designated stops - Denman West Terminal, downtown, The Guesthouse, Farmer’s Market and Gravelly Bay Ferry Terminal.


Kary Zimmerman is Brian McLean Chevrolet Buick GMC’s Top Salesperson for the month of for June, announced by Rod McLean, the company’s general manager. The Comox Valley Chamber is hosting their inaugural 2021 Golf Classic on July 23 at the Crown Isle Golf Resort. Uniglobe Carefree Travel is moving to a new location at Unit #112 - 795 Ryan Road, Courtenay. Golden Life Management, a family-owned business in British Columbia, founded by Endre Lillejord celebrates the upcoming launch of its newest location at the Ocean Front Village in Courtenay. Finkelsteins Lawyers & Notaries at 519E 5th St in Courtenay is open for your legal needs.

Nelson Roofing & Sheet Metal Ltd has partnered with GAF Canada and Union Local 276 to donate 30 roof systems to Habitat for Humanity Vancouver Island North, aiding local families in need.  40 Knots Winery recently presented the We Can Shelter project with a $5,000 cheque, the first installment on what will eventually purchase an entire We Can Shelter unit. Each We Can Shelter Unit costs between $20,000 and $25,000. Artur Ciastkowski is the new publisher of the Comox Valley Record.  Braidwood Dental Centre has added more exam rooms, the latest technology and more accessible hours. They are located at 2-204 Island Highway in Courtenay Cumberland native Vice-Admiral Bob Auchterlonie has assumed leadership of the Canadian Joint Operations Command (CJOC) from Acting Commander Major-General Bill Seymour. He spent the last three years as the Commander Maritime Forces Pacific / Joint Task Force Pacific in Esquimalt.  Church St. Taphouse  a n d   Ace Brewing Company have collaborated to release Home Buoy Honey Ale, a brew with local ingredients, locally canned and even with a local art design. They’ve arranged to get the ale into Cascadia Liquor and Leeward Liquor Store. It is also available at Boonies Pizza Company. Uniglobe Carefree Travel in Courtenay is moving to the Superstore Plaza, Unit #112 – 795 on Ryan Road. PORT ALBERNI

The Crown Isle Resort & Golf Community patio is now open for dine-in customers.

Chris Fenton, Esther Fenton and Maureen Mackenzie were each awarded the Royal LePage Diamond Award, which recognizes the top three percent of Royal LePage realtors in the country.

RBC granted $80,000 to support the education of North Island College’s Indigenous students.

SteamPunk Cafe & Coffee House at 3025 3rd Avenue has earned a five-star award from Yelp for July 2021

MOVERS AND SHAKERS the fifth year in a row, a rare achievement. TOFINO – UCLUELET Tiickin Ebike Rentals opened on July 1 at TofinoUcluelet Junction. People can rent ebikes for $99 a day at either of the two locations: Khan West Kitchen & Campground or at West Coast Shapes Ukee. The Tofino Saltwater Classic returned to West Coast waters after being cancelled last year due to COVID 19 pandemic. Founder Brendan Morrison reportedly raised over $75,000 for community initiatives.

Program so the Tla-o-qui-aht First Nation can continue the restoration and guardianship of their lands. PORT ALBERNI Kate Smith Lakhman has been announced as the Port Alberni Port Authority’s new Administrative Operations Manager. Her main role will be to manage The Dock+ food hub. Chris Le Fevre, a developer from Victoria recently purchased an empty parking lot in South Port Alberni. Le Fevre intends to build 40 or 50 affordable housing units.

The District of Tofino will implement beach pay parking to resolve long-standing traffic and parking concerns at Tofino›s beach locations. The pay parking will take effect in August this year.

Deanna Wheeler joined the Chapel of Memories team in the Alberni Valley as a funeral director. Chapel of Memories is located at 4005-6th Avenue, Port Alberni.

The Tofino Housing Corporation and Catalyst Community Developments have received $3.8 million from the provincial government toward building 72 affordable rental units split between two apartment buildings, and three duplex townhouses at 351 Arnet Road. In December of 2020, the project received $3.7 million from the Building BC: Community Housing Fund for the first apartment building. The new influx of cash comes from the same Community Housing Fund and will go towards the second apartment building.

The City of Port Alberni is collaborating with the Alberni Valley Disc Golf Club to develop an 18-hole disc golf course along Dry Creek, which was previously used as a combination of an off-leash dog area and a walking trail.

Daniel Law, Mayor of Tofino and professional multimedia artist, has been selected to receive the Distinguished Alumni Award for 2021 from Camosun College.  The team at Hotel Zed Tofino and Roar Restaurant recently held a ceremony for hereditary C h ief s   Alexander Frank ( Hiisquisinupshilth), Simon Tom (Naak kwii multhni), Iris Frank (for Bruce Frank – Muuchinink) and Moses Martin (Nuu-Piit-Tah-Chilth) as thanks for allowing them to be on their land. Hotel Zed Tofino opened its doors in August of 2020. A Tribal Parks Ally, the hotel asks guests to contribute one per cent of their bill to the Tribal Parks Allies


Island West Coast Developments (IWCD) is building a five-storey housing project with 48 affordable rental units for seniors in Port Alberni. T he  Westcoast Native Healthcare Society’s Tsawaayuus-Rainbow Gardens is getting five-storeys of seniors’ independent living suites. The new building is a John Jessup and Associates project.  PARKSVILLE - QUALICUM BEACH Ron Limer and the Property Management Group at RE/MAX First Realty have 12 new semi-detached rental units available for rent at 633 Beach Road, Qualicum Beach, ready for occupancy on August 1st. T he   Erring ton Volu nteer Fire Depa rtment received a $13,785 cheque donation from Mid-Island Co-op. It will be used to buy new computer-aided dispatch tablets for two


MOVERS AND SHAKERS frontline engines. The cheque was handed to the fire department by Ian Anderson, CEO of Mid-Island Co-op and Lisa Howe, local gas bar manager. Gina Adams, one of the winners of the Oceanside Benchmark Project, is donating her $500 winning prize to the Alberni SPCA Veterinary fund. The Regional District of Nanaimo (RDN) is proceeding with the next phase of the design and planning for the Ravensong Aquatic Centre (RAC) expansion project. More people are moving to the area every year and there is insufficient space to meet the growing demand for recreational services.​ The addition of a second pool and other amenity improvements at RAC will provide residents with greater access to aquatic, fitness and wellness programming. This next phase of the project will determine which expansion option best meets community needs while also considering cost implications.​


The Regional District of Nanaimo board has granted a development permit for a proposed 60-unit phased building strata in French Creek. The first phase of the 60-unit development is for 10 dwellings fronting Lee Road near the French Creek Marina. The whole development will feature a variety of housing sizes and types that include single detached units and duplex units. An agreement between the Regional District of Nanaimo and the Town of Qualicum Beach will see Sandpiper residents receive clean water from Qualicum Beach to the Sandpiper reservoir. The RDN has allocated $970,000 from the Electoral Area G Community Works Funds to cover the capital costs of bringing water to the reservoir, plus infrastructure improvements and reinforcement of the emergency water supply for the Chartwell and Eaglecrest communities. NANAIMO Alpha Gold & Silver at 32-1708 Bowen Road, Nanaimo is celebrating its 2nd anniversary.

Expedia Cruises located at 106 - 6750 Island Hwy N. Nanaimo is now open. Mercedes Lane is celebrating the grand opening of its new store at Woodgrove Center near The Bay. Nanaimo City Council has issued a development permits for new permanent supportive housing units at 285 Prideaux St., currently home to the 7-10 Club. The city expects the community services building to be empty by the end of the summer. The Nanaimo & District Hospital Foundation has added three new board Directors: Anu Mayer of Bastion Management, Cody Dreger of Layzell Dreger & Associates, and David Linblad of RBC Dominion Securities. A proposed mixed-use development at Boxwood and Northfield Road is under review by City of Nanaimo council. Island Westcoast Developments (IWCD) has made the application. The Driftwood Great Chinese Buffet will be opening soon at the Nanaimo North Town Centre. The former South Wellington Elementary School site will be renovated into a new community centre, in a partnership between the Regional District of Nanaimo and School District 68. Beefeater’s Chophouse and Grill is under new ownership. Flight Cannabis Co. opened a new location in Nanaimo after launching in Langford last year. They are members of the Vancouver Island Green Business Collective, dedicated to offering local craft products and creating a sustainable footprint. LADYSMITH - CHEMAINUS Ladysmith council has moved a proposed shopping plaza development proposal to a public hearing, if approved, it would be located at 1130

July 2021

MOVERS & SHAKERS Rocky Creek Road. Kathleen Hepburn was re-elected as President of the Chemainus Health Care Foundation. COWICHAN VALLEY Hillside Stone Garden located at 2381 Staghorn Road in Duncan is now open to the general public. The Royal Canadian Legion Branch #53 in the Cowichan Valley has donated nearly $10,000 to local charities and other organizations. The money was raised during the Legion’s annual poppy campaign, which took place last November. Jacquie Gordon’s Bed & Breakfast has re-opened following reductions in pandemic restrictions. Paper Excellence, owner of Crofton’s pulp and paper mill, has been named as one of Canada’s 2021 Best 50 corporate citizens by Corporate Knights.

Kahuna Burger is now open at 102 - 177 Kenneth Street in downtown Duncan. Port Hardy-based Hardy Buoys Smoked Fish Inc. has landed a deal with Mad Dog Crabs Seafood Market in Duncan to sell its Candied Salmon Jerky, and other mouthwatering smoked salmon treats. The City of Duncan is Canada’s newest Bee City, the first on Vancouver Island. The designation, via Bee City Canada, is a long-term commitment to protect pollinators, like bees. Duncan joins Kamloops and Clearwater.  Duncan’s Blue Grouse Estate Winery has added  Wolf & Grouse to their portfolio, a light apéritif mixed with Italian aromatics. A collaboration between Blue Grouse proprietor Paul Brunner and designer and entrepreneur Alex Gallé, the duo put together the light drink for those who want to enjoy it with friends without feeling the effects of the alcohol.


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2021-02-24 1:31:49 PM

Profile for Business Examiner News Group

Business Examiner Vancouver Island - July 2021  

Featuring the latest business news and information for the Cowichan Valley, Chemainus, Ladysmith, Nanaimo, Parksville, Qualicum Beach, Port...

Business Examiner Vancouver Island - July 2021  

Featuring the latest business news and information for the Cowichan Valley, Chemainus, Ladysmith, Nanaimo, Parksville, Qualicum Beach, Port...

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