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AUGUST 2016 | $3.50 BUSINESSINEDMONTON.COM

Big LITTLE POTATOES,

IMPACT

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ANGELA SANTIAGO IS THE CEO OF A THRIVING COMPANY THAT GRACES ALL OF NORTH AMERICA WITH ONE OF THE PLANET’S MOST FAVOURITE AND DELICIOUS FOODS. AND, IT’S GOOD FOR YOU, TOO.



FOLLOWING FORT MCMURRAY: PART 1

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STORY TITLE // SECTION

Supporting the visions of entrepreneurs one story at a time. Volume 5 | Number 8

REGULAR COLUMNS

7

 Freer Trade in Canada Would be an Economic Gift to Albertans By Josh Bilyk

21

 The Edmonton Chamber of Commerce

GUEST COLUMNS

CONTENTS

9

The Human Cost of Endless Tax Hikes

By Paige MacPherson

COVER FEATURE

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Little Potatoes, Big Impact Angela Santiago is the CEO of a thriving company that graces all of North America with one of the planet’s most favourite and delicious foods. And, it’s good for you, too. By Nerissa McNaughton

ON OUR COVER: ABOVE: ANGELA SANTIAGO, CEO, THE LITTLE POTATO COMPANY PHOTO SOURCE: EPIC PHOTOGRAPHY INC.

FIND US ONLINE! B US I N E SS I N E DMONTON.COM BUSINESS IN EDMONTON

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STORY TITLE // SECTION

Supporting the visions of entrepreneurs one story at a time. Volume 5 | Number 8

67 45 THIS MONTH’S FEATURES

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CONTENTS COMPANY PROFILES

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Following Fort McMurray: Part 1 Getting Ready for Restoration By John Hardy & Nerissa McNaughton

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Art, Culture, and Productivity – It’s all Related By Fay Fletcher

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Highlights from Business in Edmonton’s 2016 Leaders Awards

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Edmonton’s Head Offices


FREER TRADE IN CANADA WOULD BE AN ECONOMIC GIFT TO ALBERTANS // ECONOMIC FACTORS

Freer Trade in Canada Would be an Economic Gift to Albertans BY JOSH BILYK

E

ach year the Canadian economy leaves billions on the table due to a litany of internal trade barriers, and the time for that to change is long overdue.

A recent study by University of Calgary researchers Trevor Tombe and Lukas Albrecht estimates that unfree trade costs Canadian families $7,500 per year. Tombe and Albrecht figure $165 billion worth of goods and nearly $200 billion of services are traded within Canada. Every rule, stipulation, mandate and regulation imposes an expensive cost on that trade. Different regulatory standards, certifications, inspections and the thousands of other little rules governments like to impose (and seemingly never get around to eliminating) makes trade within Canada more expensive than it needs to be. The obvious example is shipping rules. If you want to ship a container from Edmonton to Halifax, you will have to comply with a variety of different standards along the way. Requirements for businesses to register separately in each province make it more difficult for companies to operate nation-wide. Provincial licensing standards make it difficult for professionals to work in different provinces. A recent report by the Organization for Economic Cooperation and Development (OECD) blew the whistle on the high cost of trade in Canada. “High barriers to competition in network sectors … impede innovation and productivity growth,” the report outlines. “Improving regulatory conditions, efficiency and/or cost competitiveness could yield more productive outcomes in these sectors, as well as in downstream industries.” The OECD report also said Canada should remove barriers to interprovincial trade and labour mobility, “which act to fragment Canada’s already small domestic market.”

We’re talking about significant dollars here. Tombe and Albrecht estimate that if trade costs within Canada were reduced by 10 per cent, Alberta’s GDP would grow nearly 1 per cent faster than it otherwise would. That calculates to nearly 3.8 billion new dollars in the Alberta economy each year. For years Alberta has been a leader in reducing interprovincial trade barriers. Our province was a driving force behind the New West Partnership that reduced trade friction between the provinces of British Columbia, Alberta, Saskatchewan, and with the election of a new government in Manitoba, that province has announced their interest in joining the partnership. Now Alberta’s leadership in this area is in question. Provinces are currently working to revamp the Agreement on Internal Trade (AIT). Recent media reports suggest the Alberta government is holding up a new deal due to a proposed Alberta exemption that would ensure at least 20 per cent of public procurement contracts go to local companies. This kind of protectionism is unnecessary and unwanted. Alberta companies can match competition from anywhere in the world. What they really need, especially in this economy, is access to other markets. The Alberta government should drop any demands for special treatment under the new deal, and instead seek greater access to markets across Canada for local companies. And one final thought…what kind of message does it send for Alberta – a province desperately in need of pipelines in every direction – to be selectively blocking freer trade within Canada? Not very neighbourly of us. Yeah, I thought so too.

ALBERTA ENTERPRISE GROUP IS A MEMBER-BASED, NON-PROFIT BUSINESS ADVOCACY ORGANIZATION. AEG MEMBERS EMPLOY MORE THAN 150,000 CANADIANS IN ALL SECTORS OF THE ECONOMY.

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Professional Development IT PAYS TO KNOW

Mark your calendar for payroll education! Teresa S., PCP - Member Prairie Region

PUBLISHER

Business in Edmonton Inc.

ASSOCIATE PUBLISHER

Brent Trimming brent@businessinedmonton.com

EDITOR

Nerissa McNaughton

COPY EDITOR

With more than 200 federal and provincial regulations and changes each year, staying payroll compliant is one of the biggest challenges employers face. Ensure compliance and reduce the risk of audits and penalties with help from Professional Development seminars from Canadian Payroll Association (CPA). CPA offers seminars for all levels from beginner to advanced. On a variety of topics covering Learning Payroll, Taxable Benefits, Employment Standards, Pensions and more. Learn more at payroll.ca. Become a CPA member and get preferred rates on seminars.

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THIS ISSUE’S CONTRIBUTORS Nerissa McNaughton Paige MacPherson Fay Fletcher

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THE HUMAN COST OF ENDLESS TAX HIKES // GUEST COLUMNIST

The Human Cost of Endless Tax Hikes BY PAIGE MACPHERSON

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t’s no secret that small business owners across Alberta have been hit hard this year. Rising property taxes are one of the factors at play, with many business owners facing property tax hikes in the double-digits – some even in the tripledigits. The 2016 Edmonton business property tax rose 2.1 per cent on top of increased assessments. Business owners across Alberta are grappling with an increasing minimum wage and increasing Canada Pension Plan payroll taxes. Restaurants are dealing with increased liquor taxes. Everyone is facing declining sales as unemployment is spiking. Dramatic effects are being felt in nearby Calgary. Darren Hamelin was the owner of Escoba Bistro in downtown Calgary, a wine bar that had been open for 20 years. Last spring, Hamelin’s property taxes were hiked by 97 per cent. Between declining sales and a bike lane slapped in front of his storefront that severely limited parking, the property tax hike was a hit. Hamelin wasn’t going to let his small business be swallowed by tax hikes without a fight. He hung a giant “For Sale $4.7 million” sign on the front of his restaurant, based on the city’s assessed value. Hamelin spent $14,000 fighting the increase. The city was demanding $67,000. He ended up paying $34,000. He won. Hamelin could stop wasting time fighting the city and get back to focusing on his business. Unfortunately, the story doesn’t end there. This year, the city was demanding $55,000 in property taxes. It came at an even worse time than last year. A slumping

Canadian dollar, a worsening downturn, a barrage of other taxes coming his way … and now this. The property tax hike was the last straw. On June 1, he told his staff that he would be closing the doors to Escoba Bistro for good after 20 years in Calgary. His 25 employees are now out of work. The incoming provincial carbon tax will make matters worse, increasing the cost of inputs, heating, electricity and driving up property taxes further. Despite a one per cent cut to the small business tax, Restaurants Canada says a carbon tax is the absolute last thing Alberta restaurants need right now. The owners of Calgary-based Atlantic Trap and Gill faced a 37 per cent property tax increase this year, which they fear will force them to close their doors. Co-owner Tracy Johnson penned an open letter to her MLA: “Our business has been here for 18 years through hard work and perseverance. If there is no way to decrease this increase in taxes we will be closing our doors. I do not understand your government, as you will now be collecting $0 per year in taxes. And you will be throwing 28 people into the unemployment line.” Nobody wakes up in the morning thrilled to pay taxes. But no one is calling on Mayor Nenshi to cut property taxes or Premier Notley to halt her carbon tax just for the sake of it. It’s because endless tax hikes have a human cost. In Calgary, Edmonton and across Alberta, we are witnessing that cost first-hand. Governments would be wise to open their eyes.

PAIGE MACPHERSON IS ALBERTA DIRECTOR OF THE CANADIAN TAXPAYERS FEDERATION, A NON-PROFIT, NON-PARTISAN CITIZENS ADVOCACY GROUP DEDICATED TO LOWER TAXES, LESS WASTE AND GOVERNMENT ACCOUNTABILITY. FOR MORE INFORMATION, VISIT TAXPAYER.COM.

BUSINESSINEDMONTON.COM // BUSINESS IN EDMONTON // AUGUST 2016

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2016 LEADERS AWARDS // LEADERS

Highlights

FROM BUSINESS IN EDMONTON’S 2016 LEADERS AWARDS

JAMES GILLESPIE, MNP; LEADER LUKE WILLIAMSON, ACCURATE NETWORK SERVICES INC.; MARK LUNNIN, SERVPRO EDMONTON; TERESA CLOUSTON, ATB

DENISE FLEMIG, AIR CANADA; BILL GREENHALGH, HRPA; LEADER WARREN NELSON, NELSON ENVIRONMENTAL REMEDIATION LTD.; LEADER DARRYL NELSON, NELSON ENVIRONMENTAL REMEDIATION LTD.; BILL BLAIS, EDMONTON CHAMBER

3RD FROM LEFT: LEADER JEREMY LEONARD, CANADA PUMP AND POWER CORPORATION

3RD FROM LEFT: LEADER BRYAN SMITH, BLUETRAIN INC.

3RD FROM LEFT: LEADER KEVIN BIRKHOLZ, BIRKHOLZ HOMES

3RD FROM LEFT: LEADER QUINN HOLTBY, KATCH KAN LTD.

Platinum Partner

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Gold Partners

AUGUST 2016 // BUSINESS IN EDMONTON // BUSINESSINEDMONTON.COM

Official Airline Partner


2016 LEADERS AWARDS // LEADERS

3RD FROM LEFT: LEADER CLAIRE THEAKER-BROWN, FLATTER: ME BELTS

2ND AND 3RD FROM LEFT: LEADER ROB REEVES, CASTROL RACEWAY LEADER KIMBERLY REEVES, CASTROL RACEWAY

3RD FROM LEFT: LEADER GRANT FEDORUK, LEADING EDGE PHYSIOTHERAPY

LEADER JEREMY LEONARD, CANADA PUMP AND POWER, RICK TIEDEMANN, COPEMAN HEALTH AND LEADER JASON PINCOCK, DYNALIFEDX

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2016 LEADERS AWARDS // LEADERS

3RD FROM LEFT: LEADER DALE WISHEWAN, BOOSTER JUICE

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3RD FROM LEFT: LEADER RADHE GUPTA, ROHIT GROUP OF COMPANIES

2ND AND 4TH FROM LEFT: LEADER KENDALL BARBER, POPPY BARLEY; LEADER JUSTINE BARBER, POPPY BARLEY

2ND AND 3RD FROM LEFT: LEADER TERRY HAY, SCANDINAVIAN BUILDING SERVICES; LEADER RUSSELL HAY, SCANDINAVIAN BUILDING SERVICES

3RD FROM LEFT: LEADER RON BROWN, SHIPPERS SUPPLY INC.

3RD FROM LEFT: LEADER LORNE WIGHT, ALLWEST COMMERCIAL FURNISHINGS

3RD FROM LEFT: LEADER PETER DAWSON, DAWSON WALLACE CONSTRUCTION LTD.

2ND FROM LEFT: LEADER JASON PINCOCK, DYNALIFEDX

AUGUST 2016 // BUSINESS IN EDMONTON // BUSINESSINEDMONTON.COM


THIRTY YEARS OF DISTINCTION

PRESCHOOL KINDERGARTEN ELEMENTARY JR. HIGH

LEFT: LEADER JARED SMITH, INCITE

Ranked in the top 5% of all schools in Alberta for measures from performance to citizenship, quality and parental involvement

“Outstanding students, outstanding results.” proacad.ca

LEADER DREW SCHAMEHORN, ELITE SPORTSWEAR & AWARDS

AGRICULTURAL BENEFITS OF SECOND NATURE COMPOST: • Sustainable, Slow Release Nutrients • Healthy Soil

LEFT: LEADER PETER AMERONGEN, HABITAT STUDIO

• 2 Year Financing • Smart Investment Distributed By:

InglisEnvironmental.com

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LITTLE POTATOES, BIG IMPACT // COVER

Big LITTLE POTATOES,

IMPACT ANGELA SANTIAGO IS THE CEO OF A THRIVING COMPANY THAT GRACES ALL OF NORTH AMERICA WITH ONE OF THE PLANET’S MOST FAVOURITE AND DELICIOUS FOODS. AND, IT’S GOOD FOR YOU, TOO.

BY NERISSA MCNAUGHTON

ABOVE: ANGELA SANTIAGO, CEO, THE LITTLE POTATO COMPANY PHOTO SOURCE: EPIC PHOTOGRAPHY INC.

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AUGUST 2016 // BUSINESS IN EDMONTON // BUSINESSINEDMONTON.COM


LITTLE POTATOES, BIG IMPACT // COVER

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LITTLE POTATOES, BIG IMPACT // COVER

J

acob van der Schaaf is a serial entrepreneur, so his daughter, Angela Santiago, is no stranger to new business ventures. As a Dutch immigrant happily living in Edmonton with his family, van der Schaaf missed the small Creamer potatoes he enjoyed in Holland, so in 1996 he turned to his daughter and asked, “why not see how Creamer potatoes would do out here?” Santiago, at that time, was 24 and just coming out of the University of Alberta. She had a business degree but had not yet settled on a job or career, so she decided to help her father out. “Twenty years later, I’m still here! I fell in love with potatoes and I fell in love with food, but I fell in love with the purpose of the company, and that was to feed the world, better,” she laughs. Before The Little Potato Company came along, North America considered the small potatoes left on the roots of a fully matured plant to be the cull. They simply got left behind or were considered off-grade. With a few simple tweaks, van der Schaaf and Santiago turned this cull into an affordable, nutritious product that is helping to economically put real food on thousands of plates. “What we do differently is tie genetics to an end product. Our potatoes are meant to be small. We harvest them when they are ready, mature and their skin is set. The genetics and intention of the crop are our big difference. The potatoes are harvested at their best,” Santiago explains. It is important to note that Little Potatoes are not genetically modified, even when the company creates a new varietal like the red Blushing Belle or the purple and yellow Chilean Splash. “We do the crossing instead of a bee,” Santiago points out. “That’s typically how potato breeding has been done in the past; cross pollination for the size of the tuber, shape, colour, etc.” Delicious spuds aside, the company means so much more to Angela than selling potatoes. “Our purpose is to save the potato and feed the world, better. That’s what drives most of us getting out of bed in the morning and coming here to work. It’s amazing to sell something that is so guilt-free. We are selling something people need, is really good for them and is making their life

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AUGUST 2016 // BUSINESS IN EDMONTON // BUSINESSINEDMONTON.COM

“OUR PURPOSE IS TO SAVE THE POTATO AND FEED THE WORLD, BETTER. THAT’S WHAT DRIVES MOST OF US GETTING OUT OF BED IN THE MORNING AND COMING HERE TO WORK. IT’S AMAZING TO SELL SOMETHING THAT IS SO GUILT-FREE. WE ARE SELLING SOMETHING PEOPLE NEED, IS REALLY GOOD FOR THEM AND IS MAKING THEIR LIFE BETTER.” ~ ANGELA SANITAGO

better. You leave the office every day saying ‘I did something good for someone else’.” Save the potato? “In North America and developed countries, the potato is on the decline,” says Santiago. Yes, here’s looking at you low carb and/or paleo enthusiasts…. Potatoes have been getting the side-eye in recent years as nutritional fads swing towards carbohydrates being our enemy. As with all fads – and most nutritional “facts” – however, simply declaring a potato to be an evil carb does not tell the full story. A mountain of evidence points to plantbased food diets where meat and dairy complements the plate (rather than being the star of the plate) being the way to eat yourself into optimal health. A potato, eaten with its fibreladen skin on, is a very affordable way to include fresh produce in your meals. It’s worth noting that Creamer potatoes are thin-skinned, which make people much more likely to eat the skin, and the nutritional benefits. Since Little Potatoes come washed and ready to simply boil, grill or roast, they are quick, affordable and a great way to increase the produce on your plate without worrying about refined (the kind that don’t exist naturally and therefore are processed) carbs.


YOUR OPPORTUNITIES ARE EXPANDING,

So Is Our Team Welcome Rob Strilchuk

You’re always looking for new opportunities to strengthen your organization. That’s why MNP continues to add the best within the industry to meet all your business needs. Please join us in welcoming Rob Strilchuk. An active farmer with three decades of tax and succession experience, Rob shares MNP’s commitment to helping clients succeed. By bringing together our combined expertise serving agriculture, public and private enterprises as well as high net worth individuals, we build the best team possible to ensure you stay efficient and effective. To find out more about what MNP can do for you contact Rob Strilchuk, CPA, CMA, TEP, at 780.429.5875 or rob.strilchuk@mnp.ca


LITTLE POTATOES, BIG IMPACT // COVER

“We are about saving the potato because we believe it should be on everyone’s plates,” says Santiago passionately. “It’s so good for you. It’s packed with nutrition. It’s good for growing in this environment. It’s a humble little potato that doesn’t brag about itself, so we have to do it for it! It’s about providing what people need.” Potatoes aren’t the only thing the company is growing. Year over year the staff and operating facilities have expanded as well. “We are celebrating our 20th anniversary this year. Obviously with any startup that has grown, there are a lot of

ups and downs, challenges and ‘near death experiences’, and it continues to be a journey of growth – literally in growing the potatoes, but also in my personal growth. As for the employees; to be part of a company growing this fast and is purpose-led, it is a once in a lifetime experience. You don’t often get the opportunity to work in a company that grows from nothing to being this big. “We have over 30 nationalities represented in this company. It’s like a little United Nations. Why I like that so much is that I can identify. My parents were immigrants to Canada. I’m a first-generation Canadian. ABOVE: ANGELA SANTIAGO, CEO, THE LITTLE POTATO COMPANY PHOTO SOURCE: EPIC PHOTOGRAPHY INC.

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LITTLE POTATOES, BIG IMPACT // COVER

LITTLE POTATO FACTS “To the staff I say the biggest ‘thank you’. That people choose every day to use their hands, hearts and minds here makes this an incredible company to be working for. It’s the passion of people that I’m so thankful for. Thanks for bringing yourself and your skills every day. To me and the company, that is quite a compliment.” The Little Potato Company sells potatoes in every province, territory and American state, and has recently announced a new $20 million office and processing facility that will open in Wisconsin in 2017. However, Santiago couldn’t be prouder to live and headquarter the company in Edmonton. “Edmonton has been very beneficial to us. Western Canada still has a little of that Wild West to it and there is an attitude of foraging, creating and digging for new ideas. That has benefited our company. There was never a sense of ‘you can’t do that’. In Western Canada you have to do things differently and you have to do them better.” One has to wonder...how does she do it? Santiago has four children and she is the CEO of a rapidly expanding company. In an era when most women and men find balancing the demands of work and parenthood challenging, how does she make it all work? When asked about how she achieves work/life balance, Santiago laughs – and laughs…and laughs… “It doesn’t happen on a daily, weekly or monthly basis. Many times it doesn’t happen for an extended period of time! Work/life balance comes with a plan and intention. You have to work at it. I understand what the pillars are in my life and I make sure they are okay. I have a vision board with four buckets representing my life. I check in to see how those are. Are they full? Half full? On empty? I’ve learned that when those buckets are empty, something not good is going to happen. I walk by my vision board every day and ask myself which bucket needs filling.” Over the years, she’s learned many valuable lessons. “The Little Potato Company started with just two employees – me and my dad. We worked full time. We had a construction company on the side, at first, and that paid the bills. Any time off was used to plant potatoes by hand. We washed the first crops in a bathtub. Now we have 175 employees.

• Jacob van der Schaaf now runs Tuberosum Technologies, a potato research and breeding company that creates The Little Potato Company’s varieties. • Chilean Splash, a bi-colour purple and yellow spud that doesn’t fade when cooked, is the latest varietal, introduced in January 2016. It takes between 7 and 10 years from thinking up a good genetic cross to it being commercially available for sale. • The Little Potato Company currently sells eight different kinds of bagged potatoes, three microwave-ready packs and three oven/grillready packs. However, the most popular product continues to be the fresh Little Potatoes in the one-pound bag. They are washed and ready to go. That convenience just can’t be beat!

“Dealing with growth is the biggest challenge on every front, from variety development, to people joining the company, to more growers and the expansion. Growing is an unbelievable amount of hard work, but life has taught me that this is just an awesome journey and whatever is sent my way, whether it is something good or something bad, they are all lessons that shape me and are investments into me and into everyone that chooses to work here. “As we grow there are lessons littered along the way. There is opportunity to pick up the lessons as we go. When I’m in an unfortunate situation, I look for the lessons and I decide how I can get through it; and a good cry and a good bath! Those help too! I have a good support system. I surround myself with people that pick me up and say I can keep going. I learned early on that I can’t do this alone. “Living in a company that has a very clear purpose and seeing the power of that purpose when you have 175 people believing in that purpose is amazing. The power to move something forward is quite incredible. This is a growing opportunity for me but watching other people grow, get better and learn – I love seeing that!

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LITTLE POTATOES, BIG IMPACT // COVER

If you value your business, insure it with professionals. “If you told me 20 years ago that in Edmonton, in an oil and gas industry, a woman and her dad are going to start a potato company that would expand across Canada and into every state, I’d say that sounds like the most asinine idea ever! But it’s about vulnerability, especially in an entrepreneur-led company, and at the age I started with no experience in business or agriculture. Being vulnerable and allowing people to help continues to be one of my biggest lessons. Because of that, there is a level of empowerment you want to give others. “It’s unbelievably hard work. It has also taught me to never give up. Where there is a will, there is a way. It might not be the way you thought it or planned it, but you will get from Plan A to Plan B at some point. “One of the things I figured out quite early is that any charitable activities you do as a company should be in line with your purpose. Ours is ‘save the potato, feed the world, better’. Therefore, working with the food bank to donate our time and potatoes completely aligns with our purpose. Everyone in the company volunteers for a shift.” But it’s not all work and no play. “I love hanging out with my kids; playing board games, watching them play their sports. I love going for walks. It’s my form of meditation. We love camping and road trips. We do a lot of those.”

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Santiago is a very busy woman and also a very happy one. With the new plant opening in the United States and seeing her products in stores, whether she is in a rural grocery store in Idaho or a boutique grocery store in Upper Manhattan, she says it’s all the steps and little things in the journey that add up to bring her such joy. “A lot of love and care was put into this potato, from start to finish, from the breeder who is thinking about them when he or she does the crossings to the grower that puts it in the ground with care, to the packing company to the people that sell it – it’s done with a lot of passion and care.” As for the future of the company, “We are doing a lot of new product development so you’ll see a lot more products that are healthy and convenient. But it will all still be about little potatoes! We are true to our name.” Santiago extends heartfelt thanks to the members of her advisory board, her personal life coach, Young Presidents’ Organization, Entrepreneurs’ Organization, her husband and her parents, all of who have been instrumental in challenging and guiding her, and picking her up and saying “get back out there” when she feels overwhelmed. She is also excited to receive the 2016 Alberta Women Entrepreneurs’ Celebration of Achievement award, which honours her lifetime of achievements. As a new day dawns over the crops of the latest Little Potatoes, Santiago can proudly look over the fields, the head office, the construction of the new facility, her multicultural team and her influence in the community and smile with pride. By taking a risk, being vulnerable, working hard and being open to challenges and change, Santiago is helping to feed and nourish the world.

Be assured.

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2016 Board of Directors

Regional Planning Benefits Us All

Executive

Chair: Bill Blais Vice President, Land Development, MacLab Enterprises Vice Chair: James Merkosky Partner, Tax Services, Pricewaterhouse Coopers LLP Treasurer: Len Rhodes President & CEO, Edmonton Eskimo Football Club Past Chair: Jerri Cairns Partner, Parlee McLaws LLP

Directors

Bryan DeNeve Senior Vice President Finance & CFO, Capital Power Dr. Glenn Feltham President & CEO, Northern Alberta Institute of Technology Crystal Graham Partner & Licensed Interior Designer, Kasian Architecture Interior Design & Planning Ltd. Dawn Harsch Owner, Exquisicare Inc. Alyson Hodson President & CEO, zag creative Elan MacDonald President, Impact Consulting Scott McEachern Vice President, Engineering & Projects, Enbridge Pipelines Inc. Craig Thorkelsson Manager of Corporate Taxation, PCL Constructors Inc.

Chamber Executive

Janet Riopel President & CEO Edmonton Chamber of Commerce Max Frank Vice President, Membership & Operations Edmonton Chamber of Commerce Ian Morris Vice President, Finance Edmonton Chamber of Commerce

Contact

Edmonton Chamber of Commerce #600 – 9990 Jasper Avenue Edmonton, AB T5J 1P7 T: 780.426.4620 F: 780.424.7946

By Janet M. Riopel, President & CEO

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rue cooperation between Edmonton-area municipalities is long overdue. The Edmonton Chamber has long been an engaged advocate of better regional governance and cooperation. We need to stop competing within the region and start competing AS a region. If we don’t work together, global markets will simply pass us by. The Advisory Panel on Metro Edmonton’s Future released its report, Be Ready, Or Be Left Behind, in June. The 12-member Panel gave candid advice on how to improve the Edmonton region’s competitive position. The Panel’s report delivered on priorities the Edmonton Chamber enthusiastically supports and encourages—marketing the region internationally as a single brand, integrated land use and infrastructure planning and development, and creating a singular organization for economic development. This call to action is not new. There have been numerous reports over the past two decades highlighting the need to focus on bringing our region together to work jointly on regional governance and economic development initiatives. The difference now is that there is critical and aligned leadership support. The nine mayors of the Metro Mayors Alliance, which commissioned the report, represent communities that account for 95 per cent of the region’s population—Edmonton, Strathcona County, St. Albert, Sturgeon County, Fort Saskatchewan, Leduc, Leduc County, Spruce Grove and Parkland County. The Mayors of these communities are committed to finding a way to move forward together as a region that, in the Panel’s words, “has better overall cooperation, coordination and potential collaborative delivery models across areas necessary to improve regional competitiveness.” The Panel’s Report speaks to the need for a new mindset that embraces three central concepts: • the first is a shift from asking what’s best for any individual municipality to what’s best for the region as a whole, • the second is recognition that municipalities have responsibilities to the broader region because the region’s success affects the success of each individual municipality, and • the third is the philosophy of “shared investment, shared benefit.” The Panel acknowledges that this third concept may be the most difficult shift in thinking, but the most critical for future success. The Edmonton Chamber of Commerce could not agree more. A cooperative and collaborative region will foster an environment within which businesses can grow and thrive. We know the cost of not taking action—we struggle on a continual basis with the challenges of regional dysfunction. We have the support, we have the momentum, now we need leadership. We urge the Mayors and their respective Councils to take action as soon as possible and with a sense of great urgency.

BUSINESSINEDMONTON.COM // BUSINESS IN EDMONTON // AUGUST 2016

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The North’s Untapped Resources By Matthew Berry, Edmonton Northern Partnership Manager

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trengthening Edmonton’s northern relationships is a strategic priority for the Edmonton Chamber of Commerce. Although all three territories face challenging economic conditions in 2016, exciting opportunities are being created by public infrastructure investment, and according to the Conference Board of Canada’s 2016 Territorial Outlook, resource development is expected to drive growth in the medium and long term. The Chamber has been working to educate and connect members with northern opportunities, both through its own initiatives and through its membership in the Edmonton Northern Partnership. We recently hosted a sold-out lunch-andlearn session with Inuvialuit leaders from the Northwest Territories titled Indigenous Business Success and the North’s Untapped Resources. Since signing the Northwest Territories’ first comprehensive land claim agreement in 1984, the Inuvialuit have grown their community’s assets to more than $750 million. Their holdings include several companies either based in Edmonton or with significant operations in the city, including Canadian North, BBE, Northern Transportation Company Ltd., Northern Industrial Sales, and Weldco-Beales Manufacturing. Chamber of Commerce members also have the chance to connect with northern businesses at the annual Opportunities North Conference. Focused on the western Canadian Arctic, this event is a joint initiative of the Edmonton, Yukon and the Northwest Territories Chambers of Commerce.

Since signing the Northwest Territories’ first comprehensive land claim agreement in 1984, the Inuvialuit have grown their community’s assets to more than $750 million. 22

AUGUST 2016 // BUSINESS IN EDMONTON // BUSINESSINEDMONTON.COM

Traci Bednard, Vice-President, Passenger Market Demand, Edmonton International Airport; Tony Caterina, Edmonton city councillor; and Janet Riopel, President & CEO , Edmonton Chamber of Commerce at the NWT Chamber of Commerce conference in Yellowknife in April.

This year, it takes place from September 7 to 9 in Yellowknife. To learn more about the conference, visit opportunitiesnorth.com and watch for the launch of the 2016 program and registration in the Edmonton Chamber of Commerce E-Newsletter. The Edmonton Northern Partnership is making great strides. In addition to the Chamber, current members include the Edmonton Economic Development Corporation, the University of Alberta, the City of Edmonton, and Edmonton International Airport. These organizations are pooling resources and sharing contacts to better identify networks and opportunities for stronger relationships between Edmonton and the territories. In recent months the Partnership has participated in business events and conducted outreach across Yukon and the Northwest Territories. If your business is active in the North or if you would like to learn more about opportunities in the region, contact the Partnership’s Manager, and the Chamber’s Manager of Northern Initiatives, Matthew Berry, at mberry@edmontonchamber.com.


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ttention to detail. That is what Smartypantz team have put into creating their immersive ‘Escape Room’ experiences, and attention to detail is what you will need if you want to solve the puzzles and escape with your life! ‘Escape with your life’ may sound like an overstatement, but this is exactly what the SmartyPantz creative team, talented group of set designers, and puzzle magicians aimed for when designing and creating the SmartyPantz ‘Escape Room’ experiences. The idea of an ‘escape room’ is to transport you to a themed room where you are provided a back story and given a time limit to solve a series of physical puzzles to ‘escape’ the room or accomplish some other relevant objective. SmartyPantz proved to be a winning business model for founders Chris Ricard and Dan Civiero and their team of creative professionals, with the team opening their first escape room in Vancouver in February 2015,

SmartyPantz Edmonton Branch Manager Cody Civiero observing the paranormal activity in one of the Escape Rooms that is themed as an old, abandoned house.

The amazing set design transports you right into the story.

This desk has seen some crimes solved in it’s time… Can you solve the next mystery?

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AUGUST 2016 // BUSINESS IN EDMONTON // BUSINESSINEDMONTON.COM

followed by the Edmonton location in October. SmartyPantz Edmonton currently has four elaborately themed rooms and a further three in development. They can cater for groups of 3 to 16 people per room and specialize in corporate team building for groups of up to 40 people spread across the 4 rooms at their current capacity.


“Our rooms are set up with a varying range of difficulty as we want everyone to have a decent shot at solving the puzzles on their first round,” says Cody Civiero, SmartyPantz Edmonton Branch Manager. “Our beginner room scores around 50% success rate, with our moderate room scoring around 35% and our difficult room coming in around 20%.” “What is unique about us, is we are able to provide corporate teams with a corporate scoring system, so we can entertain large groups of up to 40 people across 4 different rooms, each with a different level of difficulty, and assess how well each team did relative to one another.” But they don’t just cater to corporate team building events, SmartyPantz escape rooms are also a fun activity to do with a group of friends or family. The puzzles are designed for adults but can also be a great experience for families. “We recently had a couple and their two kids book an adventure with us and

I steered them to our easiest room. The funny thing was the parents didn’t really contribute too much but the kids flew through the puzzles super fast. It turned out the kids played a lot of video games! I guess it’s a matter of acquainting yourself with the right kind of logic.” Centrally located in the downtown Ice District, SmartyPantz is a relatively new business on the Edmonton scene, but is making a big impact in the community. As a member of the Chamber of Commerce, SmartyPantz recently took the opportunity to host a trade stand at our Spring Business Mixer and Trade Show at the Oasis Centre. “We had a really positive experience at the Mixer and it was encouraging to receive a high level of interest for our business,” Cody said. For more information or to book an adventure, please call SmartyPantz on 780-951-9293 or check out their website at edmonton.smartypantz.ca.

Advertise your business in a cost effective, unique way with custom label bottled water. This form of mobile awareness and business promotion. Looking for a way to give back? Join our Partnership Program and donate a portion of each bottle purchase to one of our many participating charities. Making a difference, one bottle at a time. Proud to partner with Business in Edmonton and Business in Calgary sending water in relief of the Fort McMurray Fires. #albertastrong

BUSINESSINEDMONTON.COM // BUSINESS IN EDMONTON // AUGUST 2016

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Connecting Business 2016 Spring Mixer & Trade Show

Enjoying the chance meet new people and make connections.

Taking the opportunity to engage with our trade exhibitors and discover some of Edmonton’s innovative business community.

The mixer provided the perfect environment for connecting and discovering new business opportunities.

Guests enjoying the delights from three different caters including Sawmill Banquet & Catering, Elizabethan Catering Services, and Stir Catering & Event Management.

Connecting Business

Improve Your Operational Productivity Workshop

Taking a break to share stories and chat about how to apply newly learned principles of Lean Six Sigma to improve efficiency in workshop activity to build a LEGO drill press.

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AUGUST 2016 // BUSINESS IN EDMONTON // BUSINESSINEDMONTON.COM

Working together to maximize efficiency and productivity and meet ‘customer’ orders!


Connecting Business

47th Annual Edmonton Chamber Golf Tournament

Having fun James Bond style while preparing to shoot for a hole-in-one to drive away in a brand new Mercedes C300!

Teams on the green enjoying the beautiful day and chance to connect.

Principle sponsor Gateway Casinos entertaining guests with on-the-green casino games!

Connecting Business Minister Hoffman Luncheon

Edmonton Chamber of Commerce President & CEO Janet Riopel, Minister of Health the Honourable Sarah Hoffman, and Edmonton Chamber of Commerce Chair Bill Blais.

Edmonton Chamber Members stream into the ballroom at the Sutton Place Hotel to hear Health Minister Sarah Hoffman talk about Alberta’s health care plans.

Members in this Issue The Canadian Home Builder’s Association - Alberta & AbleIT in Following Fort McMurray: Part 1 - Getting Ready for Restoration on page 29 The University of Alberta in The Canada-Alberta Job Grant: Building a Better Nation – Part I on page 56 BUSINESSINEDMONTON.COM // BUSINESS IN EDMONTON // AUGUST 2016

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A Night at the ZOO Mixer & Trade Show Presented by

Wednesday, September 7, 2016 5:00 p.m. – 7:00 p.m. Join us for a night of engaging business connections and wild animal encounters at the Edmonton Chamber of Commerce ‘Night at the Zoo’ Mixer & Trade Show hosted by the beautiful Edmonton Valley Zoo. • Connect with the Edmonton business community and our large, engaged membership base • Explore a range of innovative Edmonton trade exhibitors and make connections to grow your business • Build your brand, share your story and foster new connections that lead to new opportunities!

Tickets & Exhibitor Tables Member Tickets: $15.00 • Non-Member Tickets: $25.00 Member Exhibitor Table: SOLD-OUT • Non-Member Exhibitor Table: SOLD-OUT Buy your tickets today! EdmontonChamber.com/events

The Edmonton Valley Zoo - EdVenture Building 13315 Buena Vista Road

EdmontonChamber.com


Following Fort McMurray:

PART 1 - GETTING READY FOR RESTORATION

BY JOHN HARDY & NERISSA MCNAUGHTON Special supplement published by Business in Edmonton.


When fire or water damage puts the things that matter most on the line, you need the very best help on the line, as well. That’s why knowing the easiest ways to contact SERVPRO® is so important. Just go to servpro.com on your mobile phone or call 1-800-SERVPRO to get the team that’s faster to any-sized disaster. We’re a leader in giving control back to homeowners, property managers and even entire communities after the ravaging effects of water or fire. So whether you’re responsible for 1,000 square feet or 100,000 – be ready for the worst, with the very best. Your trusted, local SERVPRO® professional. SERVicES in canada PROVidEd bY indEPEndEnTlY OWnEd & OPERaTEd fRanchiSES Of SERVPRO inTERnaTiOnal, llc.


FOLLOWING FORT MCMURRAY: PART 1 - GETTING READY FOR RESTORATION

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n April 29, 2016, the Regional Municipality of Wood Buffalo put out a media release cheerfully advising the area’s residents to engage in emergency preparedness week. The release noted that flooding, forest fires, and dangerous goods were the area’s biggest risks. Events were to include a mocked-up reception centre and a look at potential services that could be offered to evacuees during a large-scale emergency. One day later, shifting winds brought The Beast and a state of emergency to Fort McMurray, and the evacuation began. It would take until June 13, 2016, before the blaze would be classified as being “held”. At that point well over 500,000 hectares of land had burned, destroying over 2,400 structures and nearly 10 per cent of the city. Over 80,000 residents had fled, and those that returned faced a mountain of problems, including scavenging bears, fridges full of rotting food, and the worst case scenario – a charred lot where the family home once stood. Alberta rallied behind the evacuees. Donations and assistance poured in from around the world. Tales of hope and survival abounded in the news; but when the ash settled and The Beast died down, the Regional Municipality of Wood Buffalo faced a monumental task. Likes on Facebook for inspirational posts about rescued

pets, cheers for airlines for flying out evacuees for free, and many other tales of heroism and survival during the height of The Beast kept the media hopping, but now the real work begins. It’s time for the city to sift through the ashes and rebuild – and it won’t be easy. On the heels of the recession, is Alberta up to the task? Premier Rachel Notley thinks so. Upon request, she kindly provided Business in Edmonton readers – and those affected by the disaster – with this special message of hope. “Here in Alberta, in tough times, Albertans pull together. We address the challenges before us and emerge stronger as a whole. As residents return to Fort McMurray and begin to rebuild, they will have to call on the strength they have shown so abundantly throughout this disaster – tremendous courage under the most difficult of circumstances. The road ahead is a long one. There is still a lot of work to recover and rebuild Wood Buffalo. And it is work we will do together. Our government will be with you as you face challenges along the way. I encourage you to continue to support each other and work together as a community in the spirit that you have demonstrated over the last difficult weeks. Together, all of us will make this city strong, and whole, and even better once again.”

“Here in Alberta, in tough times, Albertans pull together. We address the challenges before us and emerge stronger as a whole. As residents return to Fort McMurray and begin to rebuild, they will have to call on the strength they have shown so abundantly throughout this disaster – tremendous courage under the most difficult of circumstances.” ~Premier Rachel Notley

FOLLOWING FORT MCMURRAY | PAGE 3


PHOTO COURTESY OF REGIONAL MUNICIPALITY OF WOOD BUFFALO.

According to Pedro Antunes, deputy chief economist with the Conference Board of Canada, “The true cost of this tragedy is the effect on people’s lives and livelihoods, the loss of homes and personal items. There is absolutely no way to suggest that Albertans will be better off, but despite the specifics of any situation, economists focus, track and calculate the economy and measure GDP based on facts and forecasts,” he explains, “and when you measure the economy as income, the massive rebuild will actually stimulate the economy. Next year, Alberta’s economy is expected to slowly climb out of a two-year recession and the Fort McMurray rebuild will actually boost the real GDP by nearly half a percentage point.” Antunes continues, “There’s no doubt about it, lost assets will be rebuilt, generating much economic activity for the area and for Alberta as a whole. The business downside, but a practical business reality of the rebuild, is that the spending will be mostly debt-financed. The funds for rebuilding and replacing lost capital will leave the provincial and federal governments with more debt, and the insurance industry absorbing what will likely be the most expensive natural disaster in Alberta, and maybe even Canadian history.”

Antunes also underscores the ironic timing of the Fort McMurray devastation, when it comes to the sheer facts and figures of the economy. He points out that before the massive fire, Fort McMurray, like Calgary and other Alberta areas, was already dealing with various broadsides of the downturn and oil price slump. For the past two years, Fort McMurray unemployment was a painful jolt. The Canadian Home Builders’ Association (CHBA), local real estate, and other statistics showed that the Fort McMurray market was suffering significant declines. In 2015, as some Fort McMurray workers left to find other careers and jobs and others stayed, hoping for the recovery, Fort McMurray new home construction starts dropped to 193 units, their lowest level in more than 20 years. MLS sales fell 43.5 per cent to 974 from 2014. This year, before the fire, there were only 13 new home starts in the first four months of 2016. According to Canada Mortgage and Housing Corporation, by year-end 2015, the once near-zero Fort McMurray vacancy rate in rental apartments had skyrocketed to 30 per cent.

FOLLOWING FORT MCMURRAY | PAGE 4


FOLLOWING FORT MCMURRAY: PART 1 - GETTING READY FOR RESTORATION

THANK YOU. More than 1can million Canadians showed care and compassion Canadians be proud of the compassion and care they have through a donation to the Red Cross Alberta Fires response. Thanks to the generosity of individuals, groups, businesses,

From coast-to-coast, will continue to work together and the governments ofwe Canada and Alberta, the Red Cross to improve the lives of those in need. throughout their recovery.

redcross.ca/AlbertaImpact

To learn more about the Red Cross response, or if you have redcross.ca/AlbertaFiresInfo

SHARING YOUR VISION. BUILDING SUCCESS. We are more than builders. We are friends and neighbours who care about the communities in which we work and live in. Just like our commitment to quality construction, so too is PCL’s commitment in helping Fort McMurray continue its important role in building Alberta’s future. Watch us build at PCL.com

FOLLOWING FORT MCMURRAY | PAGE 5


THE MODERATE RESOLUTION IMAGING SPECTRORADIOMETER (MODIS) ON NASA’S TERRA SATELLITE CAPTURED THE GROUND TEMPERATURE ANOMALIES DURING THE FIRE. THIS MAP SHOWS HOW LAND-SURFACE TEMPERATURES DURING APRIL 26 - MAY 3, 2016, COMPARED TO THE 2000-2010 AVERAGE FOR THE SAME ONEWEEK PERIOD. RED DOTS SHOW HOTTER-THAN-AVERAGE TEMPERATURES, BLUE DOTS ARE BELOW AVERAGE AND WHITE AREAS ARE NORMAL. PHOTO COURTESY OF NASA.

FOLLOWING FORT MCMURRAY | PAGE 6


FOLLOWING FORT MCMURRAY: PART 1 - GETTING READY FOR RESTORATION

THIS PHOTO WAS TAKEN BY NASA’S AQUA SATELLITE ON MAY 24, 2016. THE RED OUTLINES ARE HOT SPOTS (FIRES) AND THE WHITE, DESPITE LOOKING LIKE SNOW CAPS, ARE BILLOWS OF SMOKE. AT THIS POINT THE FIRE HAD CONSUMED APPROXIMATELY 2019 SQUARE MILES. PHOTO COURTESY OF NASA.

FOLLOWING FORT MCMURRAY | PAGE 7


PHOTO COURTESY OF REGIONAL MUNICIPALITY OF WOOD BUFFALO.

However, a silver lining is the availability of Fort McMurray workers.

knows the protocol and process of the insurance claim paper trail.

Just three or four years ago, during $100-per-barrel oil era and when business was booming, every trade, supplier, and contractor in the Fort McMurray area was working. Builders were scrambling to find workers. The timing of Alberta’s economic slowdown will now make it easier to find the staff and equipment needed to achieve the rebuild.

“It’s going to be a bit complex,” Rivait points out. “If you are in an area where 100 houses need to be rebuilt, it’s hard to have 80 builders in there.

There is an expectation that the enormous rebuild project will take at least two years or longer, depending on many factors: from insurance companies processing, approving and resolving claims (it’s a naive assumption that they will simply ‘cut a cheque’), the Regional Municipality of Wood Buffalo’s willingness to fast track the review and approval of permits, the planning and coordination of developers with northern Alberta weather, construction scheduling and completions. “You can’t just start building 2,000 houses all at the same time; it won’t happen,” says Jim Rivait, CEO of the Alberta branch of the Canadian Home Builders’ Association, who previously served as the vice president of the Insurance Bureau of Canada. As a result, he

“It sounds a bit odd, but on a duplex where you have two owners and two different insurance companies and the owners can determine their builder, there are some things that will have to be considered from a practical standpoint.” What this means is, if you have one builder that decides to use the opportunity to upgrade and create a stunning duplex inside and out, but the other builder chooses an economical approach and has to wait for a contractor to become available, property values – not to mention neighbourhood relations – will be affected. While the one homeowner wants to come home to a nice, restored property each day, the other may resent the sudden inequality in the look and value of the complex. Both homeowners should work together to come to a mutual consensuses, much like the way homeowners have to cooperate when it comes time to build a fence on bordering backyards, or to deal with overgrown trees that branch out over boundary lines.

FOLLOWING FORT MCMURRAY | PAGE 8


FOLLOWING FORT MCMURRAY: PART 1 - GETTING READY FOR RESTORATION

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FOLLOWING FORT MCMURRAY | PAGE 10


PHOTO COURTESY OF REGIONAL MUNICIPALITY OF WOOD BUFFALO.

PHOTO COURTESY OF REGIONAL MUNICIPALITY OF WOOD BUFFALO.

FOLLOWING FORT MCMURRAY | PAGE 11


Rivait gives another probable example showing that this issue can extend far beyond duplexes and triplexes. Consider a 12-unit townhome with different owners and no condo association. With everyone having the right to select their own builder, one unit owner could go with a premium builder and completely upgrade their unit while his or her neighbour could go with his buddy that put up a few houses once and only had time to work the townhome during the weekends. Once again, the entire look of the complex becomes unbalanced. “Ultimately, who they select is up to them, but if delays happen and costs increase, you have to do something different,” he says, noting that practicality, communication, and a coordinated response are key as the city rebuilds. Rivait provides some things for homeowners to think about when it comes time to select a company to rebuild or repair their damaged homes. “In Slave Lake, for example, builders said they could do the job in three to four months. There was no chance of that. Speak to your insurer so they can vet the builders. If you are in a car crash, you can go to your brother-in-law to fix your car and be on your way, but if you speak to your insurance agent, they have a list of preferred suppliers that have experience and guarantee their work. Insurance companies have preferred suppliers in the restoration industry too. It’s always the client’s choice, ultimately, but insurers know the real costs involved and what is required. I think recommendations from insurers would provide some security in the mind of the claimants. It would differentiate inexperienced part-time builders from the professionals. Claimants need some level of assurance that whoever is promising to build your place can actually do it. “One of the things that happened before in Slave Lake was builders and others were involved too early in the rebuilding process. Anyone building up there has to

respect that the community has been traumatized and that the community needs some time to make some decisions. Making a decision on a new home is a huge decision. It’s not like buying an iPod. Both the people and the process need to be respected for the time they need.” Rivait cautions, “[The disaster] will increase economic activity. There is no question about it, but there are things outside of housing we have to worry about. It’s businesses, too. Some might not survive.” To use Calgary’s flood, for example, 7,000 companies were affected, 23 per cent of which were SMEs. One per cent failed to reopen. Seeing how quickly SMEs could fail thanks to a natural disaster is nothing new for Madan Murthy, chief sales and marketing officer at AbleIT Inc. “Anyone that did not have an outside backup at another location or a cloud-based backup could be facing complete data loss,” says Murthy. “This may include customer information, financial details, accounting information, and other critical data – it’s potentially devastating. Our hope and prayer is that [Fort McMurray businesses] have an outside backup, which minimizes the loss based on how often they backed up their data. If a business lost their data in the fire, is there anything that can be done? “One of the first steps we would take is to check all the information, from all available drives, that is recoverable,” says Murthy. “The key is seeing if there is any salvageable component from the existing networks. If every existing machine is gone, we then look at the recovery of data that was kept manually and input that information into a database. It’s a painstaking procedure as it is a long process of analyzing what is available to us and using that as a starting point.”

“[The disaster] will increase economic activity. There is no question about it, but there are things outside of housing we have to worry about. It’s businesses, too. Some might not survive.” ~ Jim Rivait

FOLLOWING FORT MCMURRAY | PAGE 12


FOLLOWING FORT MCMURRAY: PART 1 - GETTING READY FOR RESTORATION

SOME NEIGHBOURHOODS WERE COMPLETED DECIMATED, BUT HEROIC FIREFIGHTERS WORKED HARD TO SAVE EVERY SQUARE FOOT THAT THEY COULD – AND SOME AREAS REMAINED, THANKFULLY, UNTOUCHED. HERE WE SEE CHARRED REMAINS OF HOUSES OVERLOOKED BY ONES THAT ARE STILL INTACT. PHOTO COURTESY OF REGIONAL MUNICIPALITY OF WOOD BUFFALO.

Local Solutions for Recovery and Reconstruction in Our Communities We are committed to working together with the families of Fort McMurray, and surrounding communities, to rebuild their lives and strengthen the bond of the community. We are ready to assist with restoration and repairs for damaged properties, as well as turnkey construction services for rebuilding properties to help restore our community.

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Contact Information: Sean Crockett, MBA, ICD.D | Vice President, Clark Builders O 780.395.3446 | C 780.699.0151 | sean.crockett@clarkbuilders.com | clarkbuilders.com FOLLOWING FORT MCMURRAY | PAGE 13


FOLLOWING FORT MCMURRAY: PART 1 - GETTING READY FOR RESTORATION

It’s going to be frustrating at times, rewarding at others; some areas will innovate and be stronger and better than before, others will struggle and may have to revaluate whether or not they still want to live or operate their business in Fort McMurray. There is a long, uncertain future ahead, but one fact is clear: Albertans will work together for the best possible outcome, no matter how long it takes.

He has advice for those looking to avoid such a disaster, and for Fort McMurray businesses to protect the future of their companies.

AbleIT is keeping an eye on the developing rebuild and hopes to put their skills to good use as SMEs start reopening in Fort McMurray.

“This is the key – cloud backup. Organizations need to understand that the cloud is more secure than having your data in-house. The data is encrypted and the security levels for most clouds are better than what you will get at a bank. The main misunderstanding about cloud backups today, and what SMEs need to understand, is that the cloud is so much more secure and nobody can access it but you. Over the years the reliability of cloud backup has become so good, we can guarantee it. In the case of a natural disaster, it’s better, faster and cheaper to recover. You could be up and running within hours. “SMEs avoid developing a backup plan. They think they will not be affected and they take the good times for granted. That’s wrong. You have to have a plan.”

“We are developing a plan and our plan is fluctuating. We have not heard enough about how businesses are currently being affected, besides the oil sands situation. We are in the process right now of analyzing the impact on SMEs, which we will use to guide our plan. That may mean we have to make a trip up there and see what the scope of the damage is and what services we can provide to the companies. This is not a money making scheme for us. Do our costs need to be covered? Yes, but there is a humanity factor. We want to help. As such, we won’t charge market price and will be implementing a Fort McMurray price to ensure speedy and cost effective recovery.”

Supporting the community and our families in the Regional Municipality of Wood Buffalo. Rebuilding with you. Stronger together.

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He urges businesses to take evasive action. “The most important part of any computing system is the data, and any and all measures must be taken to protect the data. In the event of a disaster, a copy of the data must exist in a different location than that of the disaster or the data is gone, forever.” Rebuilding Fort McMurray, which is one of Alberta’s important economic hubs – is going to take time, effort, money, and cooperation among residents, all levels of government, home owners, businesses, contractors, and service providers. It’s going to be frustrating at times, rewarding at others; some areas will innovate and be stronger and better than before, others will struggle and may have to revaluate whether or not they still want to live or operate their business in Fort McMurray. There is a long, uncertain future ahead, but one fact is clear: Albertans will work together for the best possible outcome, no matter how long it takes.

FOLLOWING FORT MCMURRAY | PAGE 14


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Business in Calgary and Business in Edmonton are uniting Albertans as we share the stories of a city’s rebuild.

Supporting the visions of entrepreneurs one story at a time


ART, CULTURE, AND PRODUCTIVITY – IT’S ALL RELATED // ARTS & CULTURE

Art, Culture, and Productivity – IT’S ALL RELATED

BY FAY FLETCHER

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oday’s workplace encourages a fusion of business, art, culture and creativity. There are a few reasons for this. First, employers have long since realized that adding beauty, such as artwork and water features, in the office has a calming effect that stimulates productivity. Second, as our workforce becomes more culturally diverse, employers seek to promote understanding and harmony within the team – and what better way is there to learn about different cultures than through that culture’s artistic expressions? Thus, the workplace itself has become a venue where creativity and access to art and culture are actively promoted with the aim of creating a cohesive, inspired team.

support it, and anecdotally I know that after a night spent at an outstanding concert, meeting and experiencing the music scene in person and capping it off with a drive home singing at the top of my lungs, I can work hard for about two weeks before I need another event. Three or four plays in a row at The Fringe and I’m good for a month,” laughs Dr. Robertson.

Pam Robertson, Ph.D, should know. She’s a professional life coach, author and consultant who helps people to Live Inspired™ (#LiveInspired) and stand out as part of an Inspired Business (#InspiredBusiness).

“I see art and culture as active pursuits. I see a big benefit from people within a workplace offering to share what they know with their colleagues. I’ve had work colleagues offer to hold a lunch-and-learn style workshop so that they could teach a ‘how to’ about Halloween crafts, or preserving family photos, and I’ve also joined in for noon time rehearsals so that a group of us could practice before performing at a local charity event. Naturally, the energy and enthusiasm of those efforts spills over into work as people get energized by what they are doing.

“Can celebrating arts and culture make people more productive at work?” Dr. Robertson asks. “There is research to

“Years ago I was working with a company where they rented these beautiful pieces of art from the art gallery and hung them

ABOVE: ART GALLERY OF ALBERTA PHOTO SOURCE: ART GALLERY OF ALBERTA

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ART, CULTURE, AND PRODUCTIVITY – IT’S ALL RELATED // ARTS & CULTURE

sculpture, as well as embraces the new mediums of digital art, film, light, movement and sound.

around the grey, cubicle-filled office. The pictures were topics of conversation for a while. Their absence [when they were gone] was noted and the loss was felt tangibly around the office.” Dr. Robertson encourages an immersion in art and culture, in and out of the office. “I love to see employers sponsor an activity and encourage staff to volunteer. It takes a lot of work to be part of a play at The Fringe, for example, especially if the troupe wants to take their show on the road. Being a sponsor helps in a very direct and significant way, and there are plenty of ways to do it that help the artists, and reflect well on the company.” Thankfully, in Edmonton there are many different ways to unleash your creative side and learn more about the world around you through the art of our nation, and from other cultures around the world. Here are just a few examples: The Art Gallery of Alberta (AGA) was founded in 1924 and is the oldest cultural institution in the province. Your AGA experience starts when you look at the building. Its rolling wave design was created to mimic the ebb and flow of the North Saskatchewan River and the Aurora Borealis. Once inside, you find 85,000 square feet of inspiration that encompasses the traditional art mediums of paint, pencil and

Upcoming exhibitions include: Damian Moppett + Ron Moppett (Every Story Has Two Sides), a new exhibition project that brings together the work of contemporary Canadian artists Damian Moppett and Ron Moppett; and Master Strokes: Dutch and Flemish Drawings from the Victoria and Albert Museum, presenting masterpieces by Peter Paul Rubens, Anthony van Dyck and Rembrandt van Rijn, together with the work of lesser-known Golden Age artists. Events include talks and films. Those looking to quietly reflect on paintings, glass work and sculpture can repose at the West End Gallery where Canadian artists have been featured since 1975. Here is where you can see the tranquil landscapes of Ronald Parker, the lively florals of Gabor L. Nagy, and the fragile glass and wood musical instruments of Nicola Mainville, among other notable artists and artworks. Employers looking to embrace Canada’s creative artists can speak with a consultant at the West End Gallery and receive guidance on which artworks will best co-exist with the company’s message and branding. “The enrichment of the corporate work environment with original artwork sends a clear, yet subtle message to employees, clients, partners, and prospects about a company’s values,” says general manager, Matthew Hudon. “The West End Gallery has over 40 years of experience assisting corporations and their employees select art for receptions, boardrooms and every other area of the workplace. Our physical location in the heart of the arts district of 124th street in Edmonton offers a clean, quiet, and welcoming setting to view Canadian artwork. To discover the artwork that will inspire your team, visit www.westendgalleryltd.com or call 780-488-4892. The West

ABOVE: CANADIAN ART ON DISPLAY AT THE WEST END GALLERY. PHOTO SOURCE: WEST END GALLERY

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ART, CULTURE, AND PRODUCTIVITY – IT’S ALL RELATED // ARTS & CULTURE

End Gallery is located at 10337-124 Street and is open Tuesday to Saturday from 10 a.m. to 5 p.m. To celebrate diversity with vibrant works of art from around the world, look to North America’s largest and oldest fair trade organization, Ten Thousand Villages. There is a human being behind every product we buy,” explains Roberta Taylor, manager at the Edmonton location. “At Ten Thousand Villages, we provide a market for beautiful handmade products with a story. People are inspired by our unique products handcrafted by skilled makers, and feel good about purchasing from us because they know that their purchase is making a positive difference in someone’s life.” The bottom line is, a happy, productive person is a person that has access to the things that nurture the soul. While Edmontonians are fortunate to live in a city where educational opportunities abound, we are doubly fortunate to live where we can freely explore our world and the world of our peers in

ABOVE: SOME OF THE ARTISTS IN INDIA THAT CREATE BEAUTIFUL WORKS OF ART FOR TEN THOUSAND VILLAGES. TEN THOUSAND VILLAGES ETHICALLY SOURCES WORKS OF ART, LIKE THIS TEA SET, FROM AROUND THE WORLD.

such interesting and moving ways. Art speaks a common language and brings people together in ways team building conferences cannot, so the next time you are thinking about your or your team’s productivity and how to boost it, consider reaching out to the world of art and culture to bring out the creativity hiding inside.

Lookr ing fo ? s t f i G e t Corpora

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A fair trade retailer since 1946

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10432 82nd Ave. NW 780.439.8349

PHOTO SOURCE: TEN THOUSAND VILLAGES

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CHOOSING EDMONTON, GROWING EDMONTON // HEAD OFFICES

CHOOSING EDMONTON, GROWING EDMONTON EDMONTON IS A HOTSPOT FOR CORPORATE HEADQUARTERS

T

here’s a good reason why corporations love to headquarter in Edmonton. The roots for the city were established in the 1700s because of a strategic business move – to be a major trading post for Hudson’s Bay Company. By the time the late 1800s rolled around, Edmonton’s population was growing year after year, and with the influx of people came skills and new business ventures. The provincial capital city’s geographical location continues to provide ideal road, rail and air transportation for Alberta’s natural resource development, while at the same time a strong economy is sustained with economic diversification and businesses choosing Edmonton as the ideal setting for growth and development. The value of having head offices located in a market is undisputed. They pump cash into the local economy, create

all sorts of spin-off economic activity, especially in support service areas such as law, IT, accounting, finance, logistics, engineering, and more, while their employees boost retail sales of everything from housing and cars to furniture, groceries and clothing. “According to the Sauder School of Business, the United Nations Center for Trade and Development identifies the main determinants of head office location as international accessibility, a skilled workforce, a high quality of life, low corporate and personal taxes, excellent information and communication technology infrastructure, low risk (crime, exchange rates, regulatory and tax changes), and proximity to customers,” explains Robert Borrelli, office managing partner for KPMG’s office in Edmonton.

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CHOOSING EDMONTON, GROWING EDMONTON // HEAD OFFICES

“The standard of living in Edmonton attracts a number of head offices and businesses to the city because it embodies these factors. The quality of our infrastructure, services, and education system, as well as the strong sense of community, make it ideal to start or grow a business and to raise a family. In addition, the entrepreneurial spirit that thrives in Edmonton, along with the resiliency of Edmontonians, makes the city an appealing market to a wide variety of businesses owners.” Large corporations and institutions have prospered because of Edmonton’s warm business climate; the caliber of such corporations and institutions include:

environmental science, landscape architecture, project management, asset management, studies, assessments, design, construction, training and operational assistance. These are just a few of the well-known businesses that call Edmonton home, provide jobs for Edmonton’s work force, improve the city’s economy, and help give our city the national – and international – attention it deserves. The following pages provide a snapshot of the many companies that knew Edmonton was the perfect place to start up, or relocate to and to grow. Read on to discover how, and why, they make our city one of the best communities in Canada.

• ATB Financial: ATB started with one humble treasury branch and has grown into Alberta’s largest Albertanbased financial institution with assets in excess of $46 billion. Last year, the institution provided millions in loans to help Albertans, including many entrepreneurs, achieve their dreams. • PCL Construction: PCL’s North American headquarters is in the Capital City. The first branch office was established in Edmonton in 1922 with the company’s headquarters coming to Edmonton in 1932. By 1975, PCL had grown to include the American market. In 2014, PCL’s Building 1 was added to the local campus to replace the 50 year-old structure, and to accommodate its rapidly growing workforce. • Associated Engineering: This Edmonton-grown engineering firm launched in the city more than 70 years ago, and now has more than 900 staff in offices across Canada that offer planning, engineering,

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CHOOSING EDMONTON, GROWING EDMONTON // HEAD OFFICES

PCL Construction Holdings Ltd.

P

Rank: Engineer Cdn (out of 800)

57

Alberta Gaming and Liquor Commission

A

CL is a group of independent construction companies owned by more than 4,000 employee shareholders across the United States, Canada, Australia and the Caribbean. As a diversified general contractor, PCL celebrates the past and builds for the future.

94

Bill Robinson

8,365,040,000

$

AutoCanada Inc.

A

REVENUE

www.pcl.com Rank: Store Cdn (out of 800)

146

4,463,699,000

$

Stantec Inc.

T

utoCanada is one of Canadaís largest multi-location automobile dealership groups, currently operating 48 franchised dealerships in eight provinces and has over 3,400 employees. In 2014, their dealerships sold approximately 57,000 vehicles and processed approximately 786,000 service and collision repair orders in our 822 service bays during that time. Thomas L. Orysiuk

Robert J. Gomes

REVENUE

2,903,803,000

$

Workers’ Compensation Board - Alberta

T

www.autocan.ca Rank: Service Cdn (out of 800)

192

149

he Stantec community unites more than 15,000 employees working in over 250 locations. They collaborate across disciplines and industries to bring buildings, energy and resource, and infrastructure projects to life. Their workprofessional consulting in planning, engineering, architecture, interior design, landscape architecture, surveying, environmental sciences, project management, and project economics begins at the intersection of community, creativity, and client relationships.

2,877,245,000

$

EPCOR Utilities Inc.

E

www.stantec.com Rank: Utility Cdn (out of 800)

203

PCOR’s story began over 120 years ago, as Edmonton’s power and water utility and Canadaís first municipally owned electric utility. EPCOR Utilities Inc. has been a stand-alone company since 1996. The City of Edmonton is thier sole Shareholder, and they operate as a commercial entity, governed by an independent Board of Directors.

Guy R. Kerr

Stuart Lee

REVENUE

2,116,011,000

Rank: Service Cdn (out of 800)

REVENUE

he Workers Compensation Board is a statutory corporation created by government under the Workers Compensation Act to administer a system of workplace insurance for the workers and employers of the province of Alberta. The organization is employer funded to provide cost-effective disability and liability insurance.

50

(out of 800)

Government of Alberta agency responsible for administering the Gaming and Liquor Act, Regulation and related policy. Ensures the gaming and liquor activities in Alberta are conducted honestly, openly and with integrity, an maximizing the economic benefits of gaming and liquor activities in the province to benefit all Albertans.

Paul G. Douglas REVENUE

$

Cdn Rank:

REVENUE

www.wcb.ab.ca

AUGUST 2016 // BUSINESS IN EDMONTON // BUSINESSINEDMONTON.COM

1,996,000,000

$

www.epcor.ca


Your business is our business KPMG advisers combine our multi-disciplinary approach with deep industry knowledge to develop practical recommendations designed to help your organization work smarter, grow faster and compete stronger.

Contact us To find out more, speak with an adviser today. Robert Borrelli Office Managing Partner, Edmonton T: 780-429-6081 E: rborrelli@kpmg.ca

kpmg.ca

© 2016 KPMG LLP, a Canadian limited liability partnership and a member firm of the KPMG network of independent member firms affiliated with KPMG International Cooperative (“KPMG International”), a Swiss entity. All rights reserved. 13522


CHOOSING EDMONTON, GROWING EDMONTON // HEAD OFFICES

Alberta Treasury Branches

A

Rank: Bank Cdn (out of 800)

209

Capital Power Corp.

C

TB operates in Alberta only, providing financial services to nearly 700,000 Albertans and Alberta-based businesses. ATB has 172 branches and 135 agencies, serving a total of 243 communities in Alberta.

Dave Mowat

Brian T. Vaasjo

REVENUE

1,944,274,000

$

Canadian Western Bank

C

www.atb.com

Rank: Bank Cdn (out of 800)

328

Christopher H. Fowler

1,251,000,000

$

Weatherford Canada Ltd.*

S

Bernard J. Duroc-Danner REVENUE

REVENUE

965,580,000

Liquor Stores N.A. Ltd.

T

Stephen Bebis

www.cwb.com

Rank: Store Cdn (out of 800)

378

746,384,000

52

www.capitalpower.com

Rank: Oil Field Cdn (out of 800)

362

pecializing in innovative formation evaluation techniques, products and services that ensure well integrity and drilling reliability, novel reservoir completion and stimulation technology that optimizes recovery, and the industryĂ­s leading portfolio of artificial lift products and production optimization capabilities, Weatherford develops and applies its specific technology, understanding and expertise to help its customers efficiently develop new resources and maximize recovery from producing reservoirs.

805,140,000

$

Servus Credit Union Ltd.

S

he Company operates over 180 stores in Alberta, over 30 stores in British Columbia, over 20 stores in Alaska and over 10 stores in Kentucky. The Company’s Liquor Stores primarily operate under the brand names Liquor Depot, Liquor Barn, and Wine and Beyond in Alberta; Liquor Depot, Liquor Barn and Wine Cellar in British Columbia; Brown Jug in Alaska, and Liquor Barn, The Ultimate Party Source and Liquor Barn Express in Kentucky.

REVENUE

$

284

apital Power (TSX: CPX) is a growth-oriented North American power producer headquartered in Edmonton, Alberta. The company develops, acquires, operates and optimizes power generation from a variety of energy sources. Capital Power owns more than 3,200 megawatts of power generation capacity at 18 facilities across North America. More than 700 megawatts of owned generation capacity is in advanced development in Alberta and Kansas.

REVENUE

anadian Western Bank offers speciality business banking services for small- and medium-sized companies with a focus on general commercial banking, equipment financing and leasing, commercial real estate financing, real estate construction financing, and energy lending. Full-service personal banking options, including chequing and savings accounts, loans, mortgages and investment products, are also available.

$

Rank: Utility Cdn (out of 800)

www.weatherford.com

Rank: Credit Cdn (out of 800)

427

ervus Credit Union is a member-owned, community-based financial institution with roots dating back to 1938. Based in Edmonton with regional offices in Lloydminster and Red Deer, Servus Credit Union provides a complete line of financial services and solutions.

Garth Warner REVENUE

www.liquorstoresna.ca

AUGUST 2016 // BUSINESS IN EDMONTON // BUSINESSINEDMONTON.COM

579,816,000

$

www.servus.ca


CHOOSING EDMONTON, GROWING EDMONTON // HEAD OFFICES

Alberta Investment Management Corp.

A

Rank: Finance Cdn (out of 800)

488

Alberta Capital Finance Authority

T

lberta Investment Management Corporation, AIMCo, is a high performing investment manager that finds the best opportunities from around the world, and delivers results. They are one of Canada’s largest and most diversified institutional investment managers with more than $75 billion of assets under management.

Kevin Uebelein

Troy Holinski

REVENUE

439,942,000

N

www.aimco.alberta.ca

Rank: Oil Field Cdn (out of 800)

590

290,913,000

$

Melcor Developments Ltd.

M

orth American Construction Group (NACG) is the premier provider of heavy construction and mining services in Canada. With over 60 years of experience, NACG can provide a comprehensive and integrated approach to meet our customer’s requirements from consultation to completion; a distinct advantage that few contractors can rival.

Rank: Real Est Cdn (out of 800)

606

Brian D. Baker

281,282,000

$

Edmonton Regional Airports Authority

E

REVENUE

www.nacg.ca

Cdn Rank: (out of 800)

659

265,736,000

$

ZCL Composites Inc.

E

dmonton Regional Airports Authority, was formed in 1990, under the Regional Airports Authorities Act passed by the Legislative Assembly of Alberta in 1989, and is responsible for the management and operation of three airports in the Edmonton area.ß It is a non-profit organisation and, as per the act, has no shareholders and does not pay dividends. Tom Ruth

205,821,000

$

www.acfa.gov.ab.ca

elcor Developments manages the full life cycle of real estate development: from acquiring raw land, to community planning, to construction and development, to managing leasable office, retail and residential sites. They develop and manage mixed-use residential communities, business and industrial parks, office buildings, retail commercial centres and golf courses.

Martin R. Ferron REVENUE

REVENUE

580

he Alberta Capital Finance Authority (“ACFA”) is a provincial authority and acts only as an agent of the Alberta crown. Its business is to provide local entities with financing for capital projects. ACFA is able to borrow in capital markets at interest rates which would not be available to local authorities acting independently. ACFA makes loans to Alberta municipalities, school boards and other local entities at interest rates based on the cost of its borrowings.

REVENUE

$

North American Energy Partners Inc.

Rank: Finance Cdn (out of 800)

www.melcor.ca

Rank: Oil Field Cdn (out of 800)

685

stablished in 1987, ZCL COMPOSITES INC. has grown to become North Americaís leading designer, manufacturer and supplier of cost-effective fibreglass tank systems to the petroleum industry. An unrelenting drive to manufacture superior fibreglass tanks that simply will not corrodehas made ZCL the preferred choice in many industrial and retail sectors. Ronald M. Bachmeier REVENUE

185,675,000

$

www.zcl.com

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CHOOSING EDMONTON, GROWING EDMONTON // HEAD OFFICES

ENTREC Corp.

Cdn Rank: (out of 800)

H

707

Peace Hills General Insurance Co.

P

eadquartered in Alberta’s Capital Region in Acheson, Alberta (AB) just outside of Edmonton, Alberta - ENTREC has been providing specialized crane and integrated service solutions throughout Western Canada for over 18 years.

John Stevens

Gene Paulsen

REVENUE

Rank: Prop Ins Cdn (out of 800)

725

eace Hills Insurance is a licensed, general insurance company, which has been insuring Western Canadians since 1982. They are committed to serving the community and feel this is best met by distributing their product though an independent brokerage system. Peace Hills Insurance has over 200 employees who are committed to serving over 478 independent broker offices across British Columbia, Alberta, Saskatchewan, Manitoba, the Northwest Territories, Nunavut and Yukon Territory.

REVENUE

165,545,000

147,399,000

$

$

K-Bro Linen Inc.

K

Linda J. McCurdy

Rank: Service Cdn (out of 800)

www.peacehillsinsurance.com

730

-Bro was founded in 1954 as Stork Diaper Service and later grew to meet the needs of the healthcare and hospitality industries. To better reflect the company’s evolving role and in honor of its founders the Kinasewich brothers, the name was changed to K-Bro Linen Systems Inc. in 1984. Today, K-Bro is the largest provider of laundry and linen services in Canada meeting the needs of healthcare, hospitality and other commercial sectors.

REVENUE

144,537,000

$

www.k-brolinen.com

FINANCIAL POST 500 RANKINGS PROVIDED BY FINANCIAL POST MAGAZINE, PUBLISHED NINE TIMES A YEAR BY THE NATIONAL POST, AND INFOMART, A FULL-SERVICE CONTENT STRATEGY GROUP PROVIDING MEDIA MONITORING AND ANALYTICS SERVICES, RESEARCH, EXECUTIVE SUMMARIES, CONTENT SOLUTIONS AND CORPORATE DATA TO ORGANIZATIONS ACROSS CANADA.

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THE CANADA-ALBERTA JOB GRANT // TRAINING & EDUCATION

THE

CANADA-ALBERTA JOB GRANT: BUILDING A BETTER NATION -Part I

BY NERISSA MCNAUGHTON

T

he Canada Job Grant brings government and business together to build a better workforce. This employerdriven approach is flexible and scalable for businesses of all sizes, allowing employers to identify key employees interested in advancing their training, and/or skill vacancies. The grant also ensures employees are being trained for Canada’s most in-demand jobs, and it helps to alleviate skilled worker shortages. Alberta joined the grant program in 2014. Under the CanadaAlberta Job Grant (CAJG), employers cover a minimum of one third of the training costs, and receive up to a maximum of $10,000 in government contributions. Part one of this two-part series looks at the program from the government and educational institution perspective.

Education: The Key to Success What can education do for you? It can change your life. Multiple studies have linked post-secondary education to higher average salaries, more consistent employment, more assets in one’s financial portfolio, and greater opportunities to work in safe and comfortable spaces (air conditioning, close to amenities, etc.), not to mention home-life stability. Basically, education improves every facet of your life. The benefits go beyond financial and personal comfort. Those with postsecondary education also have stronger support and social circles, along with higher self-esteem. However, many face barriers to education, such as a lack of funds and an unwillingness to take on a huge debt load in the form of student loans. Others come from socio-economic

ABOVE: UNIVERSITY OF ALBERTA

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COMPETITIVE ADVANTAGE The Alberta economy continues to face challenging times, and with the ever-changing needs of today’s workplaces, organizations will need to remain competitive by ensuring their employees have ongoing professional development opportunities. For over 40 years MacEwan University has met the needs of corporations, employees and lifelong learners by providing relevant, high-quality learning opportunities. As a trusted resource, MacEwan University’s School of Continuing Education (SCE) provides ongoing workplace skill and professional competency development in response to the need of organizations wanting to build and retain a welltrained workforce and for individuals wanting AN EXTENSIVE PROVIDER OF to enhance their career CERTIFICATES AND COURSES opportunities in an DESIGNED TO DEVELOP increasingly competitive PROFESSIONAL AND INDIVIDUAL CAREER GOALS job market. Some of the in-demand certificates offered by MacEwan’s SCE include Project Management, Business Analysis, Global Logistics Management, and Management and Supervision. All courses are practical and hands-on, providing relevant content and training that can be applied immediately. Many courses support industry certifications or can be applied

SCHOOL OF CONTINUING EDUCATION

towards maintaining professional designations. In addition, courses are taught by industry experts and professionals in a supportive, adult learning environment. MacEwan’s SCE also offers corporate training that can be customized to meet specific or unique organizational needs. Through a client-focused approach and a free comprehensive needs assessment, training can be tailored and delivered with definite business goals in mind. Many of MacEwan’s SCE courses meet the eligibility criteria for the Canada-Alberta Job Grant. The grant is a great opportunity that can offer employers reimbursement for twothirds of employee training costs. Investing in employees has never been so cost-effective. This employer-driven program enables businesses to make training decisions that will help their workforce develop the skills and competencies needed for current and future roles. Training and development opportunities help create an engaged workforce, reduce turnover and positively impact the bottom line. For more information about MacEwan SCE’s professional development and corporate training opportunities, visit MacEwan.ca/SCE.

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CONTINUING EDUCATION Professional Development Grow your business acumen and resume with certificates and courses to advance your career. • Business Analysis • Global Logistics Management • Project Management • Management and Supervision

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STORY TITLE // SECTIONJOB GRANT // TRAINING & EDUCATION THE CANADA-ALBERTA

“EDUCATION AND SKILLS TRAINING IS ONE OF THE BEST INVESTMENTS OUR GOVERNMENT CAN MAKE TO ENSURE A RESILIENT AND DIVERSIFIED ECONOMY. ~MINISTER OF LABOUR CHRISTINA GRAY

groups with limited opportunities, making the corporate ladder climb an especially arduous one. Now, there is a way for individuals to get the courses they need to succeed, and there’s a way for the employers they work for to help them. The result is 360 degrees of win – for the company, for the employee, and for our economy.

The Government’s Perspective Minister of Labour Christina Gray explains, “The Canada Job Grant, funded by the Government of Canada, helps employers train new or existing employees for jobs that need to be filled. In 2014, Alberta joined other provinces and territories in formally signing on to the federal program via the CanadaAlberta Job Grant (CAJG). Provinces and territories are responsible for the design and delivery of the grant. “Education and skills training is one of the best investments our government can make to ensure a resilient and diversified economy. The Canada-Alberta Job Grant responds to Alberta’s

labour challenges by supporting employers in building a strong workforce through better trained workers, and helping Albertans gain the skills they need to find good jobs. The grant was designed to be flexible to meet the needs of all business sizes, in all industries and regions of Alberta. “The CAJG is opened to businesses of all sizes, in all industries and regions of Alberta. As of March 2016, the program was widely used by small businesses, which make up approximately 43 per cent of the employers accessing the program. Applications were submitted by employers in all industry sectors, including: scientific and technical services (11.8 per cent), manufacturing (9.8 per cent), and healthcare and social assistance (8.4 per cent).” It’s easy for businesses and prospective students to take part in the program. “Eligible applicants are required to be incorporated by or registered under an act of the Legislature or Parliament of

ABOVE: MINISTER OF LABOUR CHRISTINA GRAY

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THE CANADA-ALBERTA JOB GRANT // TRAINING & EDUCATION

Canada in order to verify that they are an operating business in Alberta,” says Gray. “Currently, the CAJG validates employers based on the Alberta Corporate Access Number (ACAN), which allows the ministry to verify the employer and their business as a separate legal entity.

“Employers are responsible for identifying appropriate training facilities and programs to deliver the training that will meet their needs. For example, some post-secondary institutions are eligible third-party training providers.”

“Training providers must be separate and distinct from the applicant. This means the trainer cannot have an employee relationship with the company. The training provider also cannot employ the individual it is training. For example, a company’s own training program would not qualify for funding.

“We are pleased with the number of employers who have taken advantage of this program, and the number of Albertans who have been able to benefit from a vast range of skills training,” Gray affirms. “In 2015-2016, more than $16 million in funds was committed for training, resulting in over 11,000 courses for Albertans. Examples of some popular types of skills training include project management, risk management, health and safety courses, leadership skills, and driver training.”

“The CAJG is intended to fund training programs in Alberta. However, requests for out-of-province training will be reviewed on a case-by-case basis if the training required is not available in Alberta.

To date, the response has been very positive.

ABOVE: UNIVERSITY OF ALBERTA

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AUGUST 2016 // BUSINESS IN EDMONTON // BUSINESSINEDMONTON.COM


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THE CANADA-ALBERTA JOB GRANT // TRAINING & EDUCATION

An Educational Facility Perspective

engineering, energy service, non-profit, and construction organizations utilize the grant.”

The University of Alberta (UofA) is one of the educational institutions to which Edmonton employers are sending employees that want to upgrade their skills.

Waye and his colleagues have nothing but praise for the grant program.

“Our relationship with the Canada-Alberta Job Grant is simply in helping our clients utilize the opportunity,” informs Tyler Waye, with Executive Education at the UofA’s Alberta School of Business. “Our primary goal is to assist our clients to engage in transformative training; we can further that effort by helping them eliminate barriers. The Canada-Alberta Job Grant has offered a substantial boost for our clients to reduce financial constraints, and we are seeing numerous industries take part in the program. Of late, we have had retail,

“Plenty of research shows the incredible impact training has on the trajectory of people’s careers, the trajectory of organizations and the trajectory of communities. Training and education are major levers to uplift the future. By helping more Albertans access training, the Canada-Alberta Job Grant is creating a direct link between government investing in citizens, the workforce skills of Albertans, and the needs of our current (and future) job market.

“THE RESPONSE TO THE GRANT, BY BUSINESS LEADERS AND BY LEARNERS HAS BEEN OVERWHELMINGLY POSITIVE. LEARNERS RECOGNIZE THE OPPORTUNITY THEY ARE FORTUNATE TO HAVE ACCESS TO. ORGANIZATIONS RECOGNIZE THE INCREDIBLE ADVANTAGE THIS OFFERS TO THEIR WORKERS, AND ULTIMATELY, THEIR HIGHEST LEVEL STRATEGIES.” ~ TYLER WAYE

ABOVE: TYLER WAYE

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THE CANADA-ALBERTA JOB GRANT // TRAINING & EDUCATION

“The positive cycle created by grants and programs like these are incredible shapers of our future. The government invests in the development of people, those people in turn help drive our organizations, those organizations then evolve to better serve market need, which directly impacts the province. These grants and programs offer a clear connection among a number of key drivers within our community. “The response to the grant, by business leaders and by learners has been overwhelmingly positive. Learners recognize the opportunity they are fortunate to have access to. Organizations recognize the incredible advantage this offers to their workers, and ultimately, their highest level strategies.”

More to Come The CAJG is moving Alberta’s work force in a very positive direction and will ultimately impact our economy in farreaching ways. Next month we’ll look at the influence this program is having in the industry and workforce levels by presenting their first-person perspectives. Stay tuned and visit www.albertacanada.com/jobgrant for more information about the CAJG and how you can make it work for you.

TRAINING SOLUTIONS FOR TECHNICAL PROFESSIONALS EPIC courses are designed and taught by leading professionals with extensive experience. Here are some upcoming courses in Edmonton for 2016: In-Plant Cranes, Hoists and Lifting Devices – Types, Components, Inspection, Operation and Safety Sept. 22-23 • CEUs 1.4 // 14 PDHs Avoiding Construction Claims by Improving the Quality of Drawings, Specifications and Bidding Documents Sept. 28-30 • CEUs 2.1 // 21 PDHs Process Equipment and Piping Systems: Application, Design and Operation Oct. 17-20 • CEUs 2.8 // 28 PDHs Electrical Power – Effective Transmission, Distribution and Utilization Engineering Oct. 18-21 • CEUs 2.8 // 28 PDHs Challenges in Air Emission Requirements Nov. 1-3 • CEUs 2.1 // 21 PDHs

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AUGUST 2016 // BUSINESS IN EDMONTON // BUSINESSINEDMONTON.COM

UNIVERSITY OF ALBERTA


BRENT SIERMACHESKY, GENERAL MANAGER

Alberta Custom Metal Fabricators Ltd: THE SOURCE FOR ALL YOUR CUSTOM METAL WORK NEEDS By Nerissa McNaughton

W

ith 17 years in business, this company is a rising star in and around Edmonton.

You see their work all around you. A beautiful feature staircase with a modern railing, setting the tone for a home or business; a respectful monument that makes you pause and silently honour those it represents; a stunning piece of artwork that breathes life into a space. These metal works are forged in creativity, tempered in quality, worked on with passion and presented with pride. Here’s the story behind Alberta Custom Metal Fabricators Ltd (ACMF), and some of Edmonton’s most treasured fabricated metal artworks. When Brent Siermachesky, general manager, started at ACMF in 2000, he was an apprentice working alongside the owner and two other employees. It was a small operation, but one that was growing fast. By the time he was a journeyman in 2005, ACMF had moved to a larger bay and expanded to include nine employees and a handful of contract workers. With a firm belief in the people he works with and the products they sell, Brent took ownership of ACMF earlier this year – and he couldn’t be happier about his team, clients and the shop’s continued growth.

“ACMF started as a stainless steel custom shop. We created kitchen and hospital equipment and hand railings,” reminisces Brent, “but we have evolved to include any and all types of metals, such as mild steel, copper, aluminum, brass, zinc, titanium and more. We also evolved to fabricate a large variety of products – wine racks and custom beer line piping for restaurants, artwork, custom exterior building trim, and monuments. I like to tell customers that if we can draw it, chances are we can fabricate it.” In the past, ACMF has partnered with artist Wei Yew for a couple of projects. The company has also worked with the renowned firm Totino Busby Design, who is known for its stunning graphic illustrations and broadcast animations. “Partnering with artists of this caliber helps us create monuments and art sculptures that will enchant the viewers for years to come,” smiles Brent. “It’s nice to know that we can bring an artist’s vision to life. Because of these projects, we are increasingly known as the custom metal firm in Edmonton that is not afraid to accept a challenge that involves both art and metal fabrication.”

Alberta Custom Metal Fabricators Ltd. | 1 67


Whether ACMF is creating a stunning monument, like the one seen in the Cross Cancer Institute’s Healing Garden, or a powder blue stair rail that provides both beauty and safety, each and every client gets the care, detail, attention and quality they deserve. To ACMF, every project is equally important. “We sit down with the customer to fully understand what is required and expected from us,” says Brent. Not everyone that comes through our doors has a detailed drawing. Sometimes it’s just an idea and a scribbled sketch on a napkin! “One of the best-known products that we fabricate is custom guardrails/handrails for residential applications. We fabricate and install tempered glass too, if it works with the design and the customer wants it.” Some of ACMF’s largest projects to date include the 28-storey, LEED® Gold certified EPCOR Tower where the company created all of the stainless steel work on the main floor, all of the exterior hand railings (including glass) and each balcony that has a stainless

steel handrail; the Edmonton Oilers’ dressing room entrance doors at Rogers Place arena; and the official memorial at the legislature grounds. ACMF is also pleased to have a longstanding (about 16 years so far) relationship with Booster Juice, for whom they create stainless steel sinks, ice bins and sneeze guards posts for locations across Canada. ACMF has also send some custom work to select Booster Juice locations in Dubai. The company is also pleased to fabricate items such as chairs, table dollies and dunk tanks and barbeques for Edmonton’s famous Special Event Rentals company. Brent knows these, and all their other projects, are successful because of ACMF’s outstanding corporate culture. “We are always open to new and exciting challenges while remaining focused on the sustainable practices that keep our base functions going,” confirms Brent. “Our ideal team members are those that take an interest in their job and have a genuine desire to help the company grow; therefore they go the extra mile with their work and our clients to make this happen. That describes the employees we currently have. ACMF would not be the company it is today if it weren’t for these amazing employees.” He goes on to note a challenge brought about by customer perception. “Our biggest challenge is keeping our clients satisfied with a small shop atmosphere. We don’t want any client to become ‘just another job’, and we don’t want our clients to think our shop is too small to handle larger projects. We know everyone we do work for by name and that is what keeps our clients coming back. “Our biggest reward is the satisfaction in going out into the great city of Edmonton and seeing our products and craftsmanship first hand, be it a hand railing downtown, counter guards in a store, artwork or a glass walkthrough door we fabricated.”

AB CUSTOM METAL BEAUTIFUL STAINLESS STEEL HANDRAILS WITH GLASS AT EPCOR TOWER

“OUR BIGGEST REWARD IS THE SATISFACTION IN GOING OUT INTO THE GREAT CITY OF EDMONTON AND SEEING OUR PRODUCTS AND CRAFTSMANSHIP FIRST HAND, BE IT A HAND RAILING DOWNTOWN, WINE RACK IN A RESTAURANT, ARTWORK OR BBQ’S AT LOCAL FESTIVALS.” ‑ BRENT SIERMACHESKY At Alberta Food Equipment, we are committed to fulfilling all your commercial kitchen requirements by matching the most efficient and functional equipment and supplies to your budgetary and space constraints. Serving Edmonton for 30 years!

Congrats Alberta Custom Metal Fabricators!

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Congratulations Alberta Custom Metal Fabricators!

Alberta Custom Metal Fabricators Ltd. | 2


ACMF has already made their mark in Edmonton in ways that make the city safer and more beautiful, but they are not done yet. “We have a great team, shop and process. We’ll always keep fine tuning to make our process even more fluid.” As ACMF enjoys its 17th year in business, Brent looks back to where and how it all began. “Rob Lysons started ACMF in the fall of 1999. He started the company from scratch and built it to the company it is today with the help of the employees. Rob trained me to his high standards and promoted me to be his right-hand man, eventually instilling the confidence I needed to purchase the company. Rob moved to Wainwright with his family and ran ACMF for a few years, travelling back and forth; and when the time was right, he left his legacy, this company, in my hands with the expectation that I would continue to run it to the benefit of the clients, staff and city of Edmonton.” And that’s just what Brent loves, and continues, to do, every day. To learn more, visit www.acmetal.com.

THE MUSICAL TRIO SCULPTURE CREATED IN COLLABORATION WITH TOTINO/BUSBY

CONGRATULATIONS

Alberta Custom Metal Fabricators! We are proud to be a part of your success.

Alltech ad

We provide custom design and manufacturing of metal products for the electrical, electronic telecommunication, construction, oil and gaming industries. 3944 101 Street NW • Ph: 780.485.8886 • Fax: 780.485.8887

alltecmanufacturing.com Alberta Custom Metal Fabricators Ltd. | 3


WE SPECIALIZE IN

CUSTOM FABRICATION PROJECTS

MADE WITH STEEL, ALUMINUM AND COPPER.

AB CUSTOM

Alberta Custom Metal Fabricators Ltd. has fabricated an extensive range of custom projects throughout the province of Alberta since 1999. We take pride in our crafted work for both commercial and private clients.


Andrew Obrecht, Warren Matzelle , Grady Topak | Co-Owners, YYC Cycle Spin Studio Putting a positive spin on entrepreneurship

“I wish I knew it was going to be

this much fun. Yeah, I probably would have started it earlier. Andrew Obrecht, Co-Owner, YYC Cycle Spin Studio

Together, Andrew, Warren and Grady have made it through the ups and downs of starting a business. (And it helped to have the right bank along for the ride.)

Watch these entrepreneurs’ stories and get expert insights at

atb.com / WeGrowAlberta |

#wegrowalberta

Who helps bring your ideas to life? We do. ™ Trademarks of Alberta Treasury Branches.

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