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PaTrICk laFOrgE ON THE arENa, THE FuTurE aNd THE BIggEST lITTlE HOCkEy gamE IN HISTOry LaForge candidly discusses past, present and future events, in which he’s been a spectator, motivator, and catalyst.


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COMPLETIONS: The Oil & Gas Industry Has a Triple Whammy


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11/28/2013 10:56:33 AM


January 2014 | Vol. 03 #01

View our elect ronic issue of this mon th’s mag azin e onlin e at www .busi nessi nedm onto



Each and every month

Business in Edmonton rings in the New Year with advice on health, wealth and inspirational stories of success. We wish you all the best in 2014.



economic factors By Jason Brisbois

The Essence of Edmonton



Patrick LaForge on the Arena, the Future and the Biggest Little Hockey Game in History By mark kandborg

Fresh News Across all Sectors.

LaForge candidly discusses past, present and future events, in which he’s been a spectator, motivator, and catalyst.

53 Edmonton economic development corporation


Company Profiles 37 B & B Demolition LTD.

By Nerissa McNaughton

Bigger & Better: B & B Demolition Smashes the Competition


abel contracting corp. By mark kandborg

Art and Jane Bell and Their ‘Top Gun’ Son Fabricate a Dream



12 The Oil & Gas Industry Has a Triple Whammy By JOHN Hardy


January 2014 | Business In Edmonton Magazine |

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Business in Edmonton rings in the New Year with advice on health, wealth and inspirational stories of success. We wish you all the best in 2014.

EDITOR Mark Kandborg



“It’s a false assumption that people who have great wealth are sophisticated investors.”

COPY EDITORS Nerissa McNaughton Nikki Mullett






THIS ISSUE’S CONTRIBUTORS Mark Kandborg John Hardy Duane Plantinga

Nerissa McNaughton James Cumming

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COOL IS UN-COOL FOR ALBERTA LIVESTOCK PRODUCERS By Jason Brisbois and Guest Columnist Dr. Joe Rosario


OOL stands for ‘country of origin labeling.’ It is the result of a clever lobby effort by American cattle and hog producers – whose national association is known as the Ranchers-Cattlemen Action Legal Fund or R-CALF – to have congress pass an act requiring package labels to show where various ground and muscle cuts of beef, pork and lamb originated. It is bad for Canada and especially bad for Alberta cattle producers. In 2002, the U.S. Farm Bill introduced COOL as the result of an ongoing dispute between groups like R-CALF and the major beef processing companies over cattle pricing practices. COOL was R-CALF’s solution to the pricing stranglehold held by major meat packing companies. This was good for American livestock producers but bad for any country exporting livestock to the U.S. Of course Canadian and Mexican beef and pork producers, their governments, and the World Trade Organization (WTO) disputed COOL, pointing out it was unfair and against free trade policy. After several years of complaints and panels, in 2009 the World Trade Organization appellate body upheld the Canadian and Mexican challenge and required corrective measures to be taken by 2012. In response, the U.S. Department of Agriculture supposedly modified COOL labeling requirements to comply with WTO findings. The rule now requires that beef and pork package labels show where each production step occurs: including where the animal was born, raised and slaughtered. It even prohibits comingling meat from different origins. By doing this, the U.S. Department of Ag-


COOL was ostensibly aimed as a consumer information measure to assist American consumers to make informed choices. riculture essentially thumbed its nose at the WTO ruling. An attempt through the judiciary system to block the implementation of COOL (now referred as MCOOL due its mandatory requirements) by American meat packers and Canadian and Mexican livestock producers failed. Meanwhile Canadian and Mexican cattle and hog farmers continue to bear the adverse consequences of MCOOL. COOL was ostensibly aimed as a consumer information measure to assist American consumers to make informed choices. As Steve Kay, the respected editor and publisher of the Cattle Buyers Weekly put it, “Under COOL, a label would have twice the number of words of the current labels… it would also be a challenge to put that many words on a label large enough for consumers to be able to read… it is ironic that the battle over COOL continues when many consumers couldn’t care less about the labeling. At this time of record-high retail prices, consumers’ main concern is if they can afford to buy beef.” MCOOL has had immediate adverse affects on the livestock industry on both sides of the border. Canadian cattle and hog prices became discounted relative to U.S. prices as packers faced increased costs due to segregation, warehousing, and labeling requirements. The Canadian Cattlemen’s Association estimates that the Canadian cattle industry loses an average of $640 million annually due to MCOOL regulations; the pork

January 2014 | Business In Edmonton Magazine |

industry, $500 million. Alberta and Manitoba, which are predominant in the production of cattle, beef and hogs respectively are the provinces most adversely affected by MCOOL. Tyson Foods, the third largest importer of slaughter cattle, recently stopped importing Canadian animals because of MCOOL rules. In the U.S., the Department of Agriculture has estimated the costs of implementing the new labeling requirements at over $33 million while the cost of no longer being able to comingle meat is estimated at between $53 and $192 million. In addition to causing great economic losses on both sides of the border, MCOOL is disrupting the integrated nature of the livestock industry built over two decades through the Canada-U.S. Free Trade Agreement and the North American Free Trade Agreement. Supply and demand balances for feeder and slaughter animals, availability and market prices of feed grains, varying regional land resources and processing capacity along with dictated flows of animals and products within North America have all been affected. COOL is a non-tariff trade barrier and is not consistent with international trade rules. Currently, Congress is considering over 90 separate amendments to the Farm Bill. Eliminating COOL is an essential one for Canada and Alberta. BIE Jason Brisbois is an economist and the managing director of the University of Alberta Water Initiative. Dr. Joe Rosario is the former policy director of the Alberta Department of Agriculture.


NEWS from the month


Wavefront Technology Solutions Announces an Agreement with Weatherford Colombia Ltd.

Wavefront Technology Solutions Inc. is a world leader in fluid injection technology for the improvement and enhancement of oil recovery and groundwater restoration. Wavefront is pleased to announce its agreement with Weatherford Colombia Ltd. to provide Powerwave technology for an initial 48 well stimulations. “We are very pleased to be working with Weatherford, who have demonstrated in Mexico and Colombia the exceptional performance Powerwave achieves in placing chemicals in difficult well conditions,” says Wavefront president and CEO Brett Davidson. “Wavefront’s focused strategy to grow the well stimulation segment of its product line is yielding positive results and the corporation will continue to open new markets and opportunities through reputable services providers such as Weatherford.” Davidson explains the process, “A single well stimulation, or work-over, is a remedial operation performed on a producing well to restore or enhance productivity. In many instances, a chemical is pumped into the well to stimulate a producing interval. During this operation the importance of placing the chemical efficiently is critical to success. Powerwave enables this targeted placement and has repeatedly generated significant results in well stimulations in Canada, the U.S., South America and the Middle East. A single well stimulation using Powerwave can generally be completed in one day. Powerwave’s growing track record of success in optimizing waterfloods, miscible CO2 floods, or chemicallyaided floods in all types of reservoirs has demonstrated the potential for this pressure-pulse technology to add billions of barrels of oil to the world’s recoverable reserves.”

Wavefront President and CEO Brett Davidson

Weatherford’s agreement with Wavefront allows for the provision of Powerwave tools to be used in conjunction with Weatherford’s Wec-Flow process. The Wec-Flow process is a stimulation technique used to treat wells that are in decline. “The key to effective well stimulation is removing near wellbore ‘damage’ to increase permeability,” says Davidson. “This is a major challenge for virtually all production and injection wells, as they all periodically require some form of stimulation to enhance production or injection. It’s also where Wavefront’s pressure-pulse technology really delivers results.” In addition to the collaboration project with Weatherford, Wavefront is pleased to announce a professional milestone. During September

and October 2013, the Corporation conducted 166 Powerwave well stimulations – the largest number of stimulations over a two-month period in Wavefront’s history. Davidson attributes this milestone to the success rate of Powerwave technology. With safe, reliable and sustainable oil production as the focus of the energy industry, Wavefront is making outstanding strides in the oil production sector. The minimally-invasive technique continues to grow in popularity as the success of Powerwave gains more and more attention around the world. Wavefront publicly trades on the TSX Venture Exchange under the symbol WEE and on the OTCQX under the symbol WFTSF. The Company’s website is BIE | Business In Edmonton Magazine | January 2014






What comes to mind when you think about NorQuest College? They are known for their flexible course schedules that allow for students to obtain post-secondary education while working, but did you also know NorQuest provides corporate training? “NorQuest is a leader in intercultural, foundational, health, business and process improvement training,” says a statement on their website. “We are unique in our offerings because we can customize any program we have to suit your corporate training needs. Our offerings include on-site, in-class and online instruction.” One such corporate program is Lean Sigma Six and Process Improvement. NorQuest College’s Landmark Group Centre for Value Improvement has partnered with NorQuest College Business Development to provide this training that promises to improve productivity, efficiency and cost effectiveness. NorQuest’s lean corporate training is designed to bring your organization into operational excellence by “eliminating waste, streamlining the process flow, enhancing process performance, and improving the quality of process outputs.”1 In the past year, NorQuest applied Lean Sigma Six and Process Improvement principles to their operations and saw significant results and financial savings. This program is offered under a variety of delivery systems: • Two-day sessions for learners that require training in statistical analysis, testing, measurement, and the design of experiments. • Facilitated services, where NorQuest uses in-house along with experts from Six Sigma Canada Inc. to deliver training. Facilitated services are recommended for rapid improvement projects that have a three – five month time frame.

• Full service delivery encompasses training, facilitation and delivery by VIP process improvement consultant(s) or employees that have achieved Lean Six Sigma Black Belt certification.2 Full service is recommended for innovation design projects spanning 12+ months or cross functional projects between five-12 months. • The self-service option allows the student(s) to choose among courses such as: Introduction to Lean Introduction to Process Mapping Lean Six Sigma Executive Training Lean Six Sigma Champion Training According an article published on August 15, 2013, in The Globe and Mail, Lean Sigma Six and Process Improvement are in great demand. “On any given day, there are hundreds of postings on Canadian online job sites for people with formal certification in techniques known as Lean and Six Sigma, as well as the strong managerial skills needed to lead organizational change. The two techniques are methodical, detailed approaches to analyzing and solving problems and improving efficiency and quality. The techniques began

in manufacturing (Lean at Toyota, Six Sigma at General Electric), and trained specialists are now in hot demand across all sectors.” A leading company to recently embrace these principals is Sun Life Financial, who is introducing a management system based on lean principals. They advertised for positions such as process director to “manage a portfolio of transformation and improvement efforts, and senior business process consultants to assess the performance and capability of processes and operational groups, identify opportunities and champion proposals for improvement.” “These are very important roles … and it sounds like a cliché, but it’s about taking us to the next level,” Andre Gonthier, senior recruiting consultant at Sun Life was quoted as saying in the Globe and Mail article. If you are interested in Lean Sigma Six and Process Improvement for your corporation, call NorQuest College at 780.644.6480 or email BIE




January 2014 | Business In Edmonton Magazine |

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OIl & gaS



Last year was the first time in North America that more wells were horizontal than vertical


n Edmonton, throughout Alberta and other areas of Canadian oil and gas activity, there’s good news, bad news and encouraging news. The facts, figures (trends) and stats don’t lie. For most of 2013, oil and gas completion services have been hanging tough while dealing with a triple whammy of oil and gas issues. While some media, industry critics and opportunistic crusaders and protestors insatiably kept trying to turn temporary negatives into gloom and doom, the oil and gas industry and completions services stay focused, tackle the problems and keep moving forward toward ultimate solutions – the new trend and reality of existing and new wells, readying for the reversal and recovery of the natural gas price slump of and the start of a promising “new” natural gas industry. “The industry goes up and down. It always has,” says upbeat Keith Schaefer, editor and publisher of the respected Oil and Gas Investments Bulletin. “Now it happens to be a down cycle. Last summer (before Aminex acquired Canyon Oil and Gas Ltd) Canyon’s revenues per job were down 18 per cent and the company let 40 per cent of their fleet idle instead of bidding on jobs which would lose money. “The oil sector’s good news,” he says with enthusiasm, “is that oil sands production is increasing steadily and last November’s announcement that western production will increase 200,000 barrels a day. “All in all, Q3 numbers show that most of the bad news is behind us and hopefully 2014 will be a good year for


January 2014 | Business In Edmonton Magazine |

completions, particularly weighted toward the back end of the year.” The province’s summer 2013 edition of the Alberta Oil & Gas Quarterly Update credited contemporary completion sciences and echoed the positivity. “Technology is setting the stage for another boom in Alberta’s non–oil sands oil andnatural gas industry. Until the last few years oil production had declined froma peak of 1.43 million barrels a day in 1973 to a low of around 460,000 barrels per day in 2010,” according to the government publication. “But things are changing for the better, as increased implementation of long horizontal wells and multistage fracturing in tight oil plays across the province – not to mention new provincial royalty incentives to encourage drilling – has crude oil drilling activity and production on the upswing.” Thane Russell, the knowledgeable and dynamic VP of business development and technology of the Edmontonbased Absolute Completions Technologies Ltd. (ACT) is walking the walk of completion services and also optimistic about the industry dealing with its issues and the likelihood of a healthy, good year ahead. He explains that Edmonton is Absolute’s centre for product development and manufacturing, with a second manufacturing facility in Indonesia. In a decade, the Edmonton-based and industry-leading manufacturing company has patented or has patents pending for three game changing completion technologies that are integrated into 24 new ‘Made in Edmonton’ products.



Thane Russell, VP of business development and technology of the Edmonton-based Absolute Completions Technologies says “Edmonton has exceptional engineering and manufacturing skills and is a world class location for anything to do with the oil field industry.”



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OIl & gaS


Although Canada continues to be the third-largest natural gas producer in the world – with about 80 per cent of the country’s gas being produced in Alberta – Schaeffer cautions that Canada’s overwhelmingly biggest natural gas customer, the U.S., may cause even further problems for the future of Alberta-produced natural gas.

By the end of 2013, ACT solutions were successfully deployed in wells in more than 40 countries. “Most of 2013 was a slow year with a noticeably lower level of capital spending,” he looks back. “The oil side actually breaks out into two businesses: light type oil technologies, which have lots of activity and continue in very good shape, and heavy oil, which is slower with more uncertainty about price and where it can go.” He admits that only seven to eight per cent of Absolute’s market is Canada. “We are much more impacted by foreign oil work like South Africa, Indonesia, the U.S. and Russia. They are all much bigger markets than Canada. “But, overall, we are projecting a 30 per cent growth for 2014,” Russell forecasts, “with an increased 10 to 12 per cent of our business coming from Canada.” There is broad industry and completion technology agreement that, subtle or significant, new technologies and the new ‘science of completions’ is re-defining the oil industry. “The big difference is that wells are getting a lot longer,” Schaeffer explains the most significant change. “It has and is dramatically changing the industry. The actual number of wells is no longer as important as the number of meters drilled. It’s almost a new standard. Everyone is going to two kilometres horizontal. That works out to not nearly as many wells are needed.” Absolute is globally renown for being on the cutting edge of the new ways of doing things in oil patches in Canada and throughout the world. “We’re focused on injection and flow technology because there will be more and more emphasis on how do you live with these wells, optimize their production, make them more productive and efficient. But some things never change,” he smiles. “The more efficient you can make a well bore, the better the return on capital and you need fewer wells.” Although Russell cites the various business reasons why a majority of their completions projects are international,


January 2014 | Business In Edmonton Magazine |

but with professional and personal sincerity, he underscores that there’s no place like home. “Edmonton is vitally important for us. There’s no better place in the world to develop technology. The people in Edmonton have exceptional engineering and manufacturing skills and expertise. It’s really a world class location for anything to do with the oil field industry,” he says with much industry savvy and a lot of Canadian pride. He also highlights the revealing industry-changing indicator that last year was the first time in North America that more wells were horizontal than vertical. Since North America usually leads the industry, it’s likely that horizontal drilling is becoming routine. In Alberta, the new technology is being used in an increasing number of oil plays. Among the most advanced plays are the Cardium in west-central Alberta, the Beaverhill Lake Carbonates near Swan Hills, the Viking in east-central Alberta and at Red Water north of Edmonton, in the Pemiscot at Princess in southern Alberta, and at Judy Creek in northwestern Alberta. Also emerging plays include the Alberta Bakken in the southern reaches of the province, and in oil windows in the Duvernay and Montney shale. According to provincial and industry projections, high drilling activity in these areas will likely offset the steep decline in Alberta conventional production that would otherwise be expected. The present as well as the immediate future of the Canada’s (and Alberta’s) natural gas situation is a bit more challenging and mostly beyond control. For completions, the encouraging positivity about oil doesn’t offset the lingering industry concerns about gas. Russell is a ferociously knowledgeable and internationally respected completions expert. He doesn’t mince words. “The Canadian natural gas business is basically dead! There seems to be some hope. The 2014 projections are for a very slowly firming natural gas price, from $3.5 per MCF




(measure of 1,000 cubic feet) to perhaps $4 or $4.5 per MCF.” Although Canada continues to be the third-largest natural gas producer in the world – with about 80 per cent of the country’s gas being produced in Alberta – Schaeffer cautions that Canada’s overwhelmingly biggest natural gas customer, the U.S., may cause even further problems for the future of Alberta-produced natural gas. “We are still their #1 source for imports,” Schaeffer says, “but the high end of the U.S. north east used to be the most lucrative market in North America. Things have changed drastically. The U.S. is getting closer to self-sufficiency, especially in the north east and even starting to displace Canadian gas imports in the large North West market.” According to provincial stats, at the end of 2012, remaining established reserves of conventional natural gas stood at 33 trillion cubic feet, while remaining established coalbed methane (CBM) gas reserves stood at 2.4 trillion cubic feet. The province estimates the remaining ultimate potential of marketable conventional natural gas at 74 trillion cubic feet. Although low natural gas prices have reduced drilling activity in Alberta---when it comes to the current and projected numbers of new

natural gas well connections and the number of horizontal gas wells drilled and connected – when prices rebound, the province will be well positioned to rebound and capitalize. Regardless, conventional natural gas remains a very important part of Alberta’s natural gas supply and horizontal drilling and multistage fracturing now allow for development of natural gas from a new source of unconventional natural gas resources. Aside from CBM, Alberta’s unconventional natural gas resources include tight gas (natural gas trapped in low-permeability sedimentary rocks, such as sandstone or limestone) and shale gas (trapped in shale rock). The completions industry, Russell, Schaeffer, the new technology as well as British Columbia’s recently formed, aggressive new natural gas development super ministry (mandated to do whatever it takes to build liquefied natural gas (LNG) projects

on the northern coast of BC in the second half of 2014) underscore the industry guesswork and momentum that Canada’s natural gas future will rely heavily on LNG. “Right now the market is depending on LNG to kick start the industry,” Schaeffer predicts. “My hunch is that, while it may still be somewhat premature, drillers and frackers are geared up and getting ready for LNG. But there’s not much doubt that until we see LNG activity, the gas market is going to stay challenging.” Considering the good – as well as the temporary not so good – oil and gas situation, the completions services industry stays determined and focused. All things considered, modern completion technology – like horizontal and directional drilling, multilateral drilling, synthetic drilling muds, Measurement-WhileDrilling (MWD) technology and others – offers more efficiency in the search and drilling for oil and gas. BIE

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PaTrICk LaforgE oN ThE arENa, ThE fUTUrE aND ThE BIggEST LITTLE hoCkEy gaME IN hISTory

PaTrICk laFOrgE ON THE arENa, THE FuTurE aNd THE BIggEST lITTlE HOCkEy gamE IN HISTOry By mark kaNdBOrg

LaForge candidly discusses past, present and future events, in which he’s been a spectator, motivator, and catalyst.


atrick LaForge just may be one of the smartest people I’ve ever met. That’s what was going through my mind within the first few minutes of sitting across from him. It’s not a showy intelligence. It’s quiet, and he exudes a powerful sense of calm at all times while seeming to be almost preternaturally aware of everything around him. When someone picks up their phone to respond to a text

or silence an incoming call, it can be irritating. But when LaForge does it, and he does it frequently, it doesn’t bother me at all. Regardless of what distractions threaten to intrude, I can see that he’s right with me. He barely breaks eye contact. This is a master tasker at work. All of these traits make LaForge the kind of guy you want beside you in battle - any battle - guiding you, or more likely pulling you, toward greatness. | Business In Edmonton Magazine | January 2014



Patrick LaForge on the Arena, the Future anD the Biggest Little Hockey Game in History

As president and chief operating officer of Rexall Sports Corp, which includes one of the most commercially successful sports franchises in North America, LaForge knows a thing or two about greatness, and he’s not entirely unfamiliar with the fighting of battles.

As president and chief operating officer of Rexall Sports Corp, which includes one of the most commercially successful sports franchises in North America, LaForge knows a thing or two about greatness, and he’s not entirely unfamiliar with the fighting of battles. Born on a farm and raised on blue collar ethics, LaForge has shown that working hard and dreaming big is a potent formula for success, allowing him to survive two NHL lockouts in eight years, a change of ownership and working with a 38-member owners’ board, challenges which might have lead other, less tenacious and capable leaders to consider early retirement. That same formula has yielded a number of notable accomplishments including the launch of the Edmonton Oilers Foundation, which has raised and gifted $25 million to local charities; launching “Octane”, the first cheer team for a NHL club in Canada; the selling of naming rights to the new downtown arena three years before facility completion; and leading the Oilers to 300 consecutive sell outs, into the top 10 in NHL sponsorship sales and as an organization, on to the “Great Places to Work” list in the Globe and Mail for three years in a row. All that with a team that hasn’t been in the playoffs for seven consecutive seasons. An impressive to-do list, done. But perhaps LaForge’s most personal accomplishment, the one that he is most proud of, is the invention and hosting of the first ever NHL outdoor game. LaForge describes his creation of that event, the Heritage Classic, as the defining point of his career. “It’s a game I invented and I lead the group that took it to market, start to finish,” he says. “It has my fingerprints all over it. My life’s blood runs through it.” The game was an unmitigated success, of course. Fans still talk about where they were that day. Whether huddled together in frigid stands or part of the huge crowd stomping feet and clapping hands against the cold to watch the action on giant screens, everyone who was there knew they were watching some-


January 2014 | Business In Edmonton Magazine |

thing special. But, as LaForge explains, that outcome was never certain. It all started on a flight back home from Los Angeles in 2001. LaForge and his colleagues were thinking about ways to celebrate the Oilers 25th anniversary coming in 2004. They were dissecting the NHL All Star game they’d just seen as a possible 25th year event. “They played a game, but it wasn’t real hockey,” he says. “There wasn’t enough sizzle for Edmonton. We started asking ourselves how we’d do it differently and I brought up some Molson research that said hockey fans had a prevailing fantasy about NHL players playing a shinny game on a pond with toques on.” Doesn’t get more hockey than that. Suddenly the question hung before them. Could it be done? There was literally only one way to find out. It couldn’t be an official NHL sanctioned game, of course. Maybe, LaForge thought, it could be something greater. “We were looking forward to the 25th year of the Oilers,” he says. “Five Cups in seven years, maybe the greatest collection of players in history during that time. How do

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Patrick LaForge on the Arena, the Future anD the Biggest Little Hockey Game in History

you celebrate that?” By having Wayne Gretzky and the 1985 Oilers play Guy LaFleur and the Montreal Canadians. Outdoors. Only one problem. How to get everyone on board with what must have seemed, at the time, to be an absolutely crazy dream. Patrick LaForge, that’s how. “I met with Wayne at the Hotel Mac,” he says. Five words. Team Gretzky versus Team LaFleur. Gretzky was stunned. “He said, ‘really’? Then I might’ve made this next part up. I told him, ‘LaFleur says he’s going to put together a better team than you and beat the pants off you.’ To which Wayne said two things. Number one was, ‘I’m in’. Number two was, ‘Guy never said that’.” But number one was the key. LaForge had half a game. “So I phoned Guy. I told him ‘Wayne’s putting together a team. He says he’ll kill you’. Guy said, ‘I’m in’.” Genius seems like such a small word sometimes. After convincing NHL Commissioner Gary Bettman, Bob Gainey of the Montreal Canadiens, CBC’s Hockey Night in Canada and a raft of others that this thing was really happening, the biggest hockey game in history was officially a go. LaForge had 12 months to make his dream a reality. “Everybody was pumped. You couldn’t stop it,” LaForge says. Unless, that is, you were the most unpredictable ingredient in this whole crazy recipe. Funny thing about hockey. You need ice. “We had 10 days to go and it was eight degrees and raining. The NHL said, you cannot embarrass us. If you can’t make ice in the next few days, we may have to pull the plug.” LaForge


January 2014 | Business In Edmonton Magazine |

had already sold 57,000 seats. Needless to say, it got cold. Really, really cold. “There was so much snow, we actually arranged for a Medicine man from the Cree Nation to come to the stadium and settle the weather spirits down.” It stopped snowing. Like all great stories, this one was down to the wire, with everything on the line for the man who kept the dream alive and turned it into hockey history, the great Canadian game at its most pure, frozen in time. LaForge seems to specialize in bucking the odds, in leaning into the wind and moving forward. Another case in point is his participation in this city’s new downtown arena project through a rather spectacularly tenacious tug of war, a war which has finally, some might say miraculously, been settled. LaForge, like any great warrior, seems never to have seriously considered a less positive outcome. “I’m a very logical guy, maybe too logical some days, but the way I saw it is, here are the Oilers, a wonderful asset, maybe the largest recognized brand in all of Western Canada. Its followers are incredibly loyal and have been forever, and the brand continues to grow dramatically,” he says. “And here you have this northern prairie city that deserves a better identity, working very hard to build a city out of a large community. Well, part of that new identity could be a city centre that’s active and vibrant and represents the northern prairie like no other city on the planet. The greatest northern city ever. And one of the key ingredients should be Oilers hockey. So, what a great opportunity to use the power of the Oilers brand to initiate a rejuvena-


Patrick LaForge on the Arena, the Future anD the Biggest Little Hockey Game in History

LaForge sees clearly the ever vibrant and livable Edmonton of the not-too-distant future, and he credits the city’s new leaders in both business and politics for bringing that future about. tion and re-gentrification of Edmonton’s city centre.” Stripped to the bone like that, and from the perspective of many now that the deal is done, opposition to the arena seems difficult to explain. “There were forces that were against it,” LaForge says, “but as I say it’s a very logical deal. Mr. Katz is contributing over $200 million to the project, on top of the $200MM he paid for the Team. To my knowledge that’s the largest percentage contribution that any single owner of a sports team has made to a publicly owned facility. With a locked down, thirty-five year lease for the Oilers and the Oil Kings, I think as an Edmontonian that’s admirable. It’s a good deal, and as citizens and tax payers we were right to do that deal and put those valuable assets in our city centre. Most people, including the city, the planners and the local developers, know that this thing is magnetic. All predictions forecast are for an economic impact like Edmonton hasn’t seen since the war. We know there are already people lined up to build restaurants and towers, announcements of new things in the city centre. Edmonton Economic Development and the Downtown Business Association claim there’s $5 billion worth of projects lined up as a result of the arena announcement.” What LaForge finds surprising isn’t that there’s so much forward momentum emerging from the deal. It’s that it took so long. “I don’t know why that energy, that motivation didn’t come forward sooner in the process.” He does, however, have a theory. “It says to me that as a community, Edmonton wasn’t ready for that kind of project. Edmonton wasn’t expecting or planning for it. It wasn’t the usual activity. We didn’t have the tools or the attitude ready to make it happen. That delayed the process. Something that big and valuable just had not been contemplated.” While LaForge clearly holds strong opinions and has the conviction to speak his mind about them, it would be a mistake to take from this rather pointed situational assessment a lack of appreciation for Edmonton’s considerable strengths. In truth, he’s a fiercely devoted fan of this city, one of the most passionate I’ve come across, in fact, but it’s that very devotion that drives his not-so-secret desire to see the city he loves achieve its full potential. LaForge sees Edmonton as having tremendous growth advantage over other Canadian municipalities. “Cities like Calgary and Vancouver are chockablock full of office towers and may not have the opportunity to create residential space in their core. Now they have to keep it in their beltlines,” he says. “It’s a different model here. I think our model gives us the greatest opportunity. We have more

than 100 acres in the Edmonton core that’s vacant. We have a wealth of space in our inner city for tremendous commercial and residential growth. To be populated with people, and places where people want to be.” LaForge believes in the maxim that people want to live where they play. For him, it’s undeniable that the coming 22-acre arena and entertainment district, with its plaza and enclosing ring of retail space, nightclubs, restaurants, health club and cinemas with apartment, condo and office towers above and on the corners, will exemplify that. He has no doubt that it will be a powerful catalyst for positive change, resulting in what he describes as a whole new world. LaForge sees clearly the ever vibrant and livable Edmonton of the not-too-distant future, and he credits the city’s new leaders in both business and politics for bringing that future about. “There’s a voice for business like never before in Edmonton. The Chamber of Commerce, the Downtown Business Association and City Hall support the arts whole heartedly and they demand stronger safety nets for those in need of jobs or a hand up. And, more so lately, they also understand their role of being business advocates and facilitators. More so today than ever, I think we clearly understand that as a city you’ve got to be business friendly. With open arms, welcoming and supporting business in our city. And,” LaForge points out, “it doesn’t hurt. Nobody’s going to die from it.” Before he leaves the subject of the arena, LaForge takes a moment to set the record straight on the person most closely associated with this epic project, his boss, Daryl Katz. “He’s a business guy and a city builder and he deserves more,” LaForge says. “I know we’ve got an Edmonton type of culture where people like to hug their heroes, see them around, out shovelling their sidewalks. But Daryl grew up here and Edmonton can be proud of him. That might be difficult for some, but he is good for our city. He’s a character, but he’s a very proud Edmontonian.” While I suggest, in the city’s defence perhaps, that it’s hard to hug a guy you can’t find, LaForge has nonetheless made his point, illustrating yet again that he is indeed the kind of guy you want beside you in battle. And now that the dust has (mostly) settled on this city’s most heated battle yet, he looks forward to walking confidently alongside his fellow Edmontonians toward a hard-earned, well-deserved, and eagerly anticipated world-class city centre with a new, iconic home for the Edmonton Oilers. “You’re going to get all of your Christmas gifts,” LaForge says, “and all your wishes will come true. It’s under way.” BIE | Business In Edmonton Magazine | January 2014


banking, financing & rrsp Exempt Markets: Getting Serious


Markets: Gettin g S e r io u s “It’s a false assumption that people who have great wealth are sophisticated investors.” by John Hardy


dmonton has turned out to be a hot spot for one of Canada’s misunderstood, somewhat controversial, feisty but increasingly popular sources of capital: exempt markets (EM). Exempt markets 101 would define the funding option as: a segment of the capital markets for which certain exemptions are provided under provincial securities legislation from the full requirements of prospectus disclosure and certain retail client sales requirements. Exempt market dealers (EMDs) are registered dealers who engage in the business of trading in exempt securities, or any securities to qualified exempt market clients. EMDs deal in certain market sectors (oil and gas, real estate, minerals, technology, etc.) and EMD clients may be companies, institutional investors, or high net worth individuals who are eligible to trade securities in the exempt market, or eligible investors who are qualified to purchase exempt securities spelled out in an offering memorandum. While EMD registration is a must in all provinces, actual specific rules, regulations and enforcement varies, sometimes drastically, from province to province.


Frank Lonardelli

Craig Skauge

January 2014 | Business In Edmonton Magazine |

Nationally, there is begrudging business acceptance and even fragile agreement that exempt market options are popular and do serve a purpose. Especially in Edmonton, EMDs provide many valuable services to Alberta’s small, medium and large businesses, investment funds, financiers, entrepreneurs, and individual investors, through their ability to participate in the promotion and the buying and selling of securities. Despite some skeptical controversy, EMDs are subject to full dealer registration and compliance requirements, directly regulated by the Alberta Securities Commission (ASC) and must also meet various dealer obligations, including insurance, audited financial statements, capital and solvency expertise, compliance, record keeping, client statements, etc. “In its rawest form, the exempt market is back to basics investing,” says the dynamic Craig Skauge, president and chair of the Alberta-based, National Exempt Market Association (NEMA). “It’s investing in a product because one believes in the underlying idea and people behind the idea, not because they anticipate that a tweet from a TV personality or announce-


Even though EM is a fast-growing corner of Canada’s capital markets, some recent EM failures (with hundreds of millions of dollars of investor money having vanished) appears to have prompted Canada’s securities watchdogs to step up scrutiny of EM business practices. ment from the federal government will move the market and make them a few bucks. “While many look at this as a new way of investing, it is really one of the oldest forms. Some people find it hard to imagine a time before the stock markets existed. How did people invest before they could find and check stock performances in the newspaper?” he asks, quizzically. “Quite simply, people invested in their community, with people they knew and in brick and mortar ideas they could see happen. “That’s very much where we find ourselves today in the exempt market, people raising money locally for local deals. We started off with 10 members. Now we have 300 very, very good, active and involved EMD members. Maybe it is the entrepreneurial spirit of Albertans, but this

While others may have seen nothing, you see

At AFSC, every idea has a place to

province has the most exempt market dealers in the country and Edmonton has, by far, the most head offices. “When 2008 hit, credit tightened up drastically at the banking level, particularly for small and medium-sized businesses. It’s almost as though those who don’t want money could get it relatively easily while those who needed money had to fend for themselves,” he remembers. Even though EM is a fast-growing corner of Canada’s capital markets, some recent EM failures (with hundreds of millions of dollars of investor money having vanished) appears to have prompted Canada’s securities watchdogs to step up scrutiny of EM business practices. As biased EM industry insiders, economists, consumer analysts and even the “big lender” competition and critics agree, even though Alberta may need the exempt market

potential .


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AFSC Agri-Business and Commercial Loans Offer: • Loans up to $5 million (per connected borrower) • Personalized service and acceptance • No early payment penalty • Competitive interest rates

AFSC - Edmonton (780) 427-2140

1-877-899-AFSC (2372) | Business In Edmonton Magazine | January 2014


banking, financing & rrsp Exempt Markets: Getting Serious

Last year, following sweeps and investigations by Canadian regulators, particularly in Ontario by the Ontario Securities Commission (OSC) – where the situation is much different than in Alberta – a warning was sent to the lightly regulated Canadian exempt market that certain behaviours revealed by recent industry investigations would not be tolerated. more than ever, and it can be a viable alternative to conventional capital market sources, the industry does requires more regulation, accountability, more effective training and education. Even the most committed and enthusiastic industry-boosters, like Skauge concede, EMs still have some lingering image and perception issues. In late 2009, the Canadian Securities Administrators (CSA) – the umbrella group for provincial securities regulators – proclaimed National Instrument 31-103 in force as an attempt to better regulate the various exempt markets across the country and to create some measure of accountability for the people who operated within it; but for many Albertans who were already invested in the exempt market, 31-103 proved to be too little, too late. By the time it was passed into law, it was clear that they would never see the money that they invested with real estate firms such as Bridgecreek, Concrete Equities and the Harvest Group of Companies, among others, either because of deliberate fraud or massive incompetence on the part of the people running them. At the time, Frank Lonardelli was the new Harvest Group CEO, and he quickly discovered that the situation was much worse than it looked when he took the ugly job of town hall meetings with thousands of devastated investors. “It was extremely difficult, taking responsibility and explaining to halls full of private investors that their life savings were gone,” Lonardelli says with haunting emotion. Today he is president and CEO of Arlington Street Investments and admits to having learned many, many painful EM lessons the hard way. “The exempt market has to be the most nuanced space in the capital markets, with the most complicated and diverse set of products. Yet, it has representatives selling the product that have the lowest level of proficiency.” Lonardelli makes no excuses for some of the EM sector’s past failures, but looks back (with much sincere regret) that some of the key aspects of the crushing problem were lack of industry regulation and education. He is now reasonably satisfied that his industry is on the right track with changes. “Exempt markets need a strong regulatory regime that protects investors without choking-


January 2014 | Business In Edmonton Magazine |

off business and anyone who works in the industry must be properly trained and must understand the business.” Skauge and his 300 attentive NEMA members are actively focused on the education, qualifications, accountability and compliance of the exempt market industry as well as the marketing and desired perception strategy as the increasingly popular sector moves forward. “There is lots of work to be done,” he points out. “I’d like to see barriers to entry be tightened a bit and raise the bar of our education standards. The current standard is better than it used to be, but could be improved.” Last year, following sweeps and investigations by Canadian regulators, particularly in Ontario by the Ontario Securities Commission (OSC) – where the situation is much different than in Alberta – a warning was sent to the lightly regulated Canadian exempt market that certain behaviours revealed by recent industry investigations would not be tolerated. The Canadian Securities Administrators (CSA) issued new guidance to all provinces about the mandatory disclosure of key information, primarily the risks of borrowing money to purchase securities and the obligation of dealers to assess suitability before executing a transaction. “Canadian regulators are dealing with a number of exempt market issues at play,” explains Marian Passmore, associate director at the Foundation for the Advancement of Investor Rights (FAIR), the independent, national nonprofit agency for securities regulation and enhancing the rights of Canadian shareholders and individual investors. “Given the widespread non-compliance with the rules, a multi-faceted approach, including reforming the regulatory framework for exempt market dealers and portfolio managers, has to be in place to protect investors. There is a dangerous fallacy when it comes to investors in exempt markets,” Passmore warns. “It’s the false and risky assumption that people who have great wealth are sophisticated investors. It’s been proven that it’s simply not the case!” In the meantime, Edmonton’s much-in-demand exempt market dealers continue growing, training new industry professionals, satisfying skeptics, pitching investors... and earning a bigger piece of the capital market’s pie. BIE

Private Schools

Alberta independent schools

Alberta Independent Schools: Serving Students, Parents and Communities By Duane Plantinga, Executive Director of AISCA


arents are naturally interested and concerned about how well their children do at school and about the total life experience each child encounters. The typical 13 years of schooling is a highly formative experience and convincing parents of the value of a specific school may prove to be challenging in a highly mobile society with urban sprawl, increased social challenges and greater demands for the next generation to be educated in more complex ways than the last. Some may seek options other than the range of public school programs. This article provides perspectives on independent schools as an option.

Board Structures The most distinctive feature of independent schools is that they are generally single site operations under the supervision of a small board that gives focused attention to that school and all of its programs. Each board is a society with a specific vision and mission that may vary according to the type of education programming. Boards may be elected or appointed. Different governance models are practiced and all function under the Society’s Act of Alberta. All community-based ECS (kindergarten) operators and all independent schools operate as not-for-profit agencies and report accordingly to Alberta Education, to the Alberta government and to CRA. As single sites, independent schools do not have large centralized support offices but acquire additional services as required by contracting and collaborating with other local agencies. They hire all employees directly. There may be various support committees to assist in managing all the services and facilities but decisions are generally made quite rapidly and in a responsive manner.

Teacher Qualifications and Volunteer Expectations Teachers in independent schools hold the same professional certificates as in public schools. They are accountable to the Professional Standards Branch and evaluated externally for permanent certificates. Their teaching practice is governed by provincial legislation governing certification and professional development. Contract obligations are managed locally.

Volunteers may also play a significant role assisting on field trips, serving on committees or serving on the board itself. When boards, parents and teachers work together for a common cause, schools work better for students as well.

Independent School Enrolments In a 2012/13 provincial system of 615,000 students, approximately 18,500 (3%) attended independent (private) schools. Another 4,700 (1%) attended community-based private ECS sites (kindergartens). Some international, First Nations and non-resident students are also educated in independent schools, bringing the estimated total to approximately five per cent of the system. Most of the schools enroll under 200 students with a handful reaching over 700 students.

Accountability of Independent Schools Publicly accredited independent schools must meet standards established by the government. The standards are same as that required of public schools if the school receives any government funding. The requirements for establishing a school, the accountability requirements and audited financial statement obligations may be viewed on the AISCA website at

Independent School Economics Considerations Education is never “free.” Alberta’s investment – all cost drivers considered – is likely approaching $14,000 to $15,000 per public student as dated Statistics Canada figures from 2009 reported the public investment at $13,500 per public student. Money is always required for buildings, buses, playing fields, gymnasiums, labs, libraries, computers, special support services, janitors, maintenance personnel, teaching resources and teachers. The largest cost – likely 80 per cent or more – is typically needed for salaries and benefits for the employees. What about independent schools? How are they funded? All Alberta independent schools operate on a not-forprofit basis. They receive one part of a core grant, called basic instruction – not of all instructional costs. Qualifying schools at the Level II accountability (almost all | Business In Edmonton Magazine | January 2014


Private Schools

Alberta independent schools

Is the practical way schooling is expressed in the daily life and organization of learning activities for their children enabling or not? Each day of the 13 years counts.

independent schools) are granted about $4,600 per student. The grant is less for Level I schools and a handful of registered schools do not receive any funding. Qualifying special needs students may qualify for additional grants as a fundamental entitlement. Designated Special Education Private Schools may only admit students requiring specialized supports but are not funded for other operating and capital expenses. Tuitions are required in independent schools to pay for the rest of the costs of operating the school and will vary considerably depending on the kind of capital investments for buildings, teacher/student ratios, extracurricular program activities and other enhancements to the programs offered. They are different for each school. For comparison, public schools charge international students between $11,000 to $15,000 per student and additional fees for extras. For the typical student, the province benefits from an educated student at about 35 to 40 cents on the dollar. From AISCA’s perspective, and a fair public policy perspective, the primary function of a school is to deliver education and since that is not a “private” function but a public good it is justified to provide partial funding to any student being schooled under the required conditions established.

Current Politicized Environment Over the past year in Alberta, more politicized voices are championing the cause that choice in education is not good. Or, at minimum, it should be limited to one unitary system: all for one and one for all. For more than 100 years a pluralistic system of education has served Alberta well but some ideologues stress that systems are competing and that is not good so they should be amalgamated to rescue us from too much diversity and social fragmentation. The key argument is that independent schools do not allow everyone to attend. While public schools select students by geography, specific program types and at times gender, every student cannot enrol in every school. A universal education system that is genuinely inclusive includes an education system inclusive enough to permit parental choice for the sake of their child’s education. As an aggregated system independent schools are as inclusive as the public schools.


January 2014 | Business In Edmonton Magazine |

Arguments opposing independent (private) schools are nothing new but appear to be more ideologically driven and based on misleading information this past year. Opponents fail to consider the significant contributions independent schools make to society and ignore that the primary beneficiaries are children. At the end of the day students are provided with education that is not a private matter; it is a public function provided in not-for-profit institutions approved by the government and held accountable by the government. Often a very narrow definition of the “public good” is used to make the false claim that only services delivered through government agencies qualify as meeting the common good. While governments play an essential role in education and have obligations for oversight, surely parents and the public are not naive to the point of believing that non-government and not-for-profit agencies and institutions in democratic societies are unworthy of public support. They provide numerous benefits and meet the public and common good. Providing education through schools not directly operated by government but which meet the required operating conditions is not contrary to meeting a public and common good. In the midst of the politicized noise surfacing in the media, independent (private) schools have once more become a public whipping post. It is alleged they are the source of scarce resources in public schools and may in fact be the cause of social ills, real and imagined. What are parents to make of it all? From the perspective of parents, their primary concern is with how schooling is working out for each of their children in a particular school, often with a specific teacher and group of students. Parents desire a clear idea of what a school is about and what it is trying to do not in some abstract international PISA score. Is the practical way schooling is expressed in the daily life and organization of learning activities for their children enabling or not? Each day of the 13 years counts. To find out more about independent schools in your area, schools that are members of the Association of Independent Schools and Colleges (AISCA) are listed at www. AISCA represents approximately 85 per cent of Alberta’s publicly accredited independent schools. BIE


Aurora Learning Foundation

Edmonton Islamic Academy

Headway School Society of Alberta

Grades 1- 6, Grades 7- 9, Grades 10 - 12 unit 1, 6104-82 avenue Edmonton, aB T6B 0E7 Phone: (780) 464-4010 Fax: (780) 464-4070 Email:

ECS, Grades 1- 6, Grades 7- 9, Grades 10 - 12 14525 - 127 Street Edmonton, aB T6V 0B3 Phone: (780) 454-4573 Fax: (780) 454-3498 Email:

ECS, Grades 1- 6, Grades 7- 9, Grades 10 - 12 10435-76 Street nW Edmonton, aB T6a 3B1 Phone: (780) 461-7683 Fax: (780) 485-0507 Email:

Columbus Academy

Edmonton Khalsa School

Hillcrest Christian School

Grades 7- 9, Grades 10 - 12 6770 129 avenue Edmonton, aB T5C 1V7 Phone: (780) 440-0708 Fax: (780) 440-0760 Email:

ECS, Grades 1- 6, Grades 7- 9 4504 Millwoods road South Edmonton, aB T6l 6y8 Phone: (780) 450-8753 Fax: (780) 461-6927 Email:

ECS, Grades 1- 6, Grades 7- 9, Grades 10 - 12 10306 - 102 Street Grande Prairie, aB T8V 2W3 Phone: (780) 539-9161 Fax: (780) 532-6932 Email:

Coralwood Adventist Academy

Edmonton Menorah Academy

Inner City High School

ECS, Grades 1- 6, Grades 7- 9 12218-135 St nw Edmonton, aB T5l 1X1 Phone: (780) 454-2173 Fax: (780) 455-6946 Email:

ECS, Grades 1- 6, Grades 7- 9, Grades 10 - 12 10735 McQueen road Edmonton, aB T5n 3l1 Phone: (780) 451-1848 Fax: (780) 451-2254 Email:

Grades 10 - 12 P.o. Box 11506 Edmonton, aB T5J 3K7 Phone: (780) 424-9425 Fax: (780) 426-3386 Email:

Covenant Canadian Reformed School

Edmonton Vietnamese Language School Centre

Ivan Franko Ukrainian School

ECS, Grades 1- 6, Grades 7- 9, Grades 10 - 12 P.o. Box 67 neerlandia, aB T0G 1r0 Phone: (780) 674-4774 Fax: (780) 401-3295 Email:

Dante Alighieri Italian School Grades 10 - 12 c/o archbishop o’leary High 8760 - 132 avenue Edmonton, aB T5E 0X8 Phone: (780) 474-1787 Email:

Devon Christian School ECS, Grades 1- 6, Grades 7- 9 P.o. Box 5390 Devon, aB T9G 1y1 Phone: (780) 987-4157 Fax: (780) 987-3323 Email:

Grades 10 - 12 10427-32 avenue Edmonton, aB T6J 4J1 Phone: (780) 444-2398 Email:

Kneehill Christian School

Elves Child Development Centre

Grades 1- 6, Grades 7- 9 P.o. Box 370 linden, aB T0M 1J0 Phone: (403) 546-3781 Fax: (403) 546-3181

ECS, Grades 1- 6, Grades 7- 9, Grades 10 - 12 Elves Special needs Society 10825 - 142 Street Edmonton, aB T5n 3y7 Phone: (780) 454-5310 Fax: (780) 454-5889 Email:

Lakeland Christian Academy

Gabriela Mistral Latin American School Grades 10 - 12 9359 - 67a Street Edmonton, aB T6B 1r7 Email:

Edmonton Academy

German Language School Society of Edmonton

Grades 1- 6, Grades 7- 9, Grades 10 - 12 10231 - 120 Street Edmonton, aB T5K 2a4 Phone: (780) 482-5449 Fax: (780) 482-0902 Email: Website:

Harvest Baptist Academy

Edmonton Bible Heritage Christian School Grades 1- 6, Grades 7- 9 35-55517 rge. rd 240 n.W. Sturgeon County, aB T0a 0K5 Phone: (780) 454-3672 Fax: (780) 488-3672

Grades 10 - 12 c/o rio Terrace School 7608-154 Street Edmonton, aB T5r 1r7 Phone: (780) 435-7540

Grades 1- 6, Grades 7- 9, Grades 10 - 12 26404 Highway 16, West Spruce Grove, aB T7X 3H5 Phone: (780) 960-0235 Fax: (780) 960-9235 Email:

Grades 7- 9, Grades 10 - 12 17711-89 Street Edmonton, aB T5Z 0a7 Phone: (780) 476-7529 Email:

Grades 1- 6, Grades 7- 9, Grades 10 - 12 P.o. Box 8397 Cold lake, aB T9M 1n2 Phone: (780) 639-2077 Fax: (780) 639-4151 Email:

Living Truth Christian School ECS, Grades 1- 6, Grades 7- 9 Box 89 Mirror, aB T0B 3C0 Phone: (403) 788-2444 Fax: (403) 788-2445 Email:

Living Waters Christian Academy ECS, Grades 1- 6, Grades 7- 9, Grades 10 - 12 5 Grove Drive W. Spruce Grove, aB T7X 3X8 Phone: (780) 962-3331 Fax: (780) 962-3958 Email: | Business In Edmonton Magazine | January 2014





elping our children gain competence with the tools they need in the information age provides them with the confidence to share their natural talents and become valued members of our communities. Literacy is the spark. With literacy and technology, there are no limits to learning. With literacy, expression can flow, collaboration radiates, and the future is bright. Our early literacy program is one of the hallmarks of Progressive Academy. In a warm, rich environment, students as young as three learn that reading is key to their everything.

For a child who can read well, the world is open. At Progressive Academy, education is not restrained by time, but accelerated by students’ demonstrations of competence. Building on their own successes, our students take on increasing responsibility for their own learning: by Grade 4 we often see competencies far exceeding strict grade level; by Junior High, students are expected to also demonstrate their skills through internship experiences, which help them cultivate their interests and gain a better understanding of the real world awaiting them. In ultimately marrying their interests in learning with what they need to be learning, the students’ own hunger for answers puts them in gear, and propels them—their intentions and ambitions fuel their progress. Students at Progressive Academy learn to recognize and leap barriers in their pursuit of knowledge, and eagerly tackle the most difficult problems to find the answers they need. Creativity and innovation abound, producing competence, not just in passing tests, but in researching topics and presenting results, in collaboration and in leadership. That competence is the key to learning for the future.

Education is not restrained by time, but accelerated by students’ demonstrations of competence. Our students dive wholeheartedly into learning the sounds of the English language through songs and games, then abruptly, voraciously take up reading everything around them. On the way home from school, street signs suddenly mean something, parents can no longer spell secrets and just like that, young learners are empowered to start their own searches using computers.

Preschool, Full Day Kindergarten, Elementary, Junior High.




MAC Islamic School Accredited

Polish Sienkiewicz School

St. Matthew Lutheran School

unit 109 6104-172 Street Edmonton, aB T6M 1G9

Grades 10 - 12 P.o.Box78076 rPo Callingwood Edmonton, aB T5t 6a1 Phone: (780) 439-5916 Fax: (780) 439-5916 Email:

ECS, Grades 1- 6, Grades 7- 9 5014 - 53 avenue Stony Plain, aB T7Z 1r8 Phone: (780) 963-2715 Fax: (780) 963-7324 Email:

Progressive Academy

Grades 7- 9, Grades 10 - 12 P.o. Box 1688 rocky Mountain House, aB T4a 1a8 Phone: (403) 872-0587 Email: Website:

Maskwachees Cultural School Grades 10 - 12 P.o. Box 960 Hobbema, aB T0C 1n0 Phone: (780) 585-3925 Fax: (780) 585-2080 Email:

Meadows Baptist Academy ECS, Grades 1- 6, Grades 7- 9, Grades 10 - 12 2215 - 17 Street Edmonton, aB T6T 1J1 Phone: (780) 440-1195 Fax: (780) 490-4410 Email:

Morinville Christian School Grades 1- 6, Grades 7- 9, Grades 10 - 12 10515 100 avenue Morinville, aB T8r 1a2 Phone: (780) 939-2987 Fax: (780) 939-6646 Email:

Norwood Chinese School Grades 10 - 12 11124-130 St C/o Westmount School Edmonton, aB T5M 0J2 Phone: (780) 908-6406 Email:

Parkland Immanuel Christian School ECS, Grades 1- 6, Grades 7- 9, Grades 10 - 12 21304 - 35 avenue n.W. Edmonton, aB T6M 2P6 Phone: (780) 444-6443 Fax: (780) 444-6448

Peace Hills Adventist School ECS, Grades 1- 6, Grades 7- 9 r.r. 3 Wetaskiwin, aB T9a 1X1 Phone: (780) 352-8555 Fax: (780) 352-5270 Email:

Phoenix Academy Grades 1- 6, Grades 7- 9, Grades 10 - 12 6770 129 avenue Edmonton, aB T5C 1V7 Phone: (780) 440-0708 Fax: (780) 440-0760 Email:


Grades 1- 6, Grades 7- 9, Grades 10 - 12 13212 - 106 avenue Edmonton, aB T5n 1a3 Phone: (780) 455-8344 Fax: (780) 455-1425 Email:

Rimbey Christian School ECS, Grades 1- 6, Grades 7- 9 P.o. Box 90 rimbey, aB T0C 2J0 Phone: (403) 843-4790 Fax: (403) 843-3904 Email:

Russian Education Centre Grades 10 - 12 7119-12 avenue Edmonton, aB T6K 3H6 Email:

Saddle Lake Full Gospel School Grades 1- 6, Grades 7- 9 P.o. Box 69 Saddle lake, aB T0a 3T0 Phone: (780) 636-3736 Fax: (780) 636-3994 Email:

Slave Lake Koinonia Christian Grades 1- 6, Grades 7- 9, Grades 10 - 12 P.o. Box 1548 Slave lake, aB T0G 2a0 Phone: (780) 849-5400 Fax: (780) 849-5460 Email:

Solomon College Grades 10 - 12 Suite 228, 10621 - 100 avenue Edmonton, aB T5J 0B3 Phone: (780) 431-1515 Fax: (780) 431-1644 Email:

St. John’s Institute Ukrainian Immersion School Grades 10 - 12 11024 - 82 avenue Edmonton, aB T6G 0T2 Phone: (780) 439-2320 Fax: (780) 439-0989 Email:

January 2014 | Business In Edmonton Magazine |

Sunchild E-Learning Community

Tempo School ECS, Grades 1- 6, Grades 7- 9, Grades 10 - 12 5603 - 148 Street Edmonton, aB T6H 4T7 Phone: (780) 434-1190 Fax: (780) 430-6209 Email: Website:

The Chinese Cultural Promotion Society Grades 7- 9, Grades 10 - 12 P.o.Box 32 Main Post office Edmonton, aB T5G 2G9 Phone: (780) 485-9718 Email:

Thomas More Academy Grades 7- 9, Grades 10 - 12 6770 129 avenue Edmonton, aB T5C 1V7 Phone: (780) 430-6969 Fax: (780) 431-9627 Email:

Victory Christian School ECS, Grades 1- 6, Grades 7- 9, Grades 10 - 12 Po Box 4647 STn South Edmonton, aB T6E 5G5 Phone: (780) 988-5433 Fax: (780) 988-5280 Email:

Waldorf Independent School of Edmonton ECS, Grades 1- 6 #68052, 162 Bonnie Doon Shopping Ctr Edmonton, aB T6C 4n6 Email:

alTErnaTIVE SCHoolInG The Banff Hockey Academy Grades 7 – 12, College bound hockey athletes Box 2242, Banff, alberta T1l 1B9 Phone: 1-888-423-6369 Fax: (403) 760-0868 Email:


BEyoND SkIN DEEP: arE yoUr LookS affECTINg yoUr CarEEr?

BEyONd SkIN dEEP: arE yOur lOOkS aFFECTINg yOur CarEEr?

The length of your hair, the colour of your lipstick, the amount of grey in your goatee, your choice of clothing – do these things really matter as you march up the corporate ladder? By NErISSa mCNaugHTON


hink of media fodder Rob Ford, whose crazy rants and behaviour earned him the scorn and derision of thousands. Overweight, blotchy skin, thinning white hair – one has to wonder, if Ford did not sport these hallmarks of “unattractiveness,” would the backlash against him been as great? “Of course!” I hear you say. What man can make sexist comments, admit to drug and alcohol abuse and spout off to the media without causing an outrage? I kindly point you in the direction of Charlie Sheen’s 2011 breakdown in which he made inappropriate comments, admitted to drug use, and spouted off at the media. Sheen did so while being handsome, sporting a full head of luxurious locks, and cladding his fit body in designer clothing.

While Ford got (some well-deserved) ridicule and Sheen did not completely escape scorn, the overarching response was, “Aw shucks. Loveable old Charlie. Hope he turns out okay.” I have yet to hear, “Aw shucks. Loveable old Ford. Hope he continues to lead as mayor.” But beauty is only skin deep… right? How you look should have no bearing on your career... right? Several experts weigh in on the subject. Jillian Kaliel is the owner of Studio J Urban Spa in downtown Edmonton. Studio J offers hand and foot care, nail treatments, body treatments, massage, skincare treatments, hair removal, and makeup. Seventy per cent of her clients are professionals. | Business In Edmonton Magazine | January 2014



BEyoND SkIN DEEP: arE yoUr LookS affECTINg yoUr CarEEr?

“The women and men that come to me are very confident people. The older women have more experience in realizing that taking time for themselves is important. Spa treatments are also becoming better known for health reasons.”





~Jillian Kaiel



Robin Power is the co-owner, manager and advance injector at Power’s Medical Aesthetics Inc., an independent business offering medical aesthetics inside the full service spa/salon of Dynamic Beauty in Spruce Grove, Alberta. Power is a health care professional qualified to administer BOTOX® and JUVEDERM®. Barry Lycka, MD is a cosmetic dermatologist and one of North America’s foremost authorities on cosmetic, skin cancer, reconstructive and skin surgeries. Shirley Borrelli is an image and style expert who authors regular newsletters, articles and booklets on image, personal development and communication skills while coaching professionals on their personal style. When asked if having clear skin, a fit body, and beautiful nails gave an employee an advantage over a similarly skilled co-worker, Kaliel answered, “Absolutely,” but went on to point out it is not the looks, but how that person feels about themselves. Think about a bad hair day, or a day you have a prominent pimple. How do you feel? Those things affect your confidence. “How we feel reflects on how effective we are at work,” she says. This is something she has seen among her own employees. When they look good, they feel good. When they feel good, they are less stressed. When they are less stressed, they are more effective. “The women and men that come to me are very confident people,” Kaliel says, including the 20 per cent of her clients that are male. “The older women have more experience in realizing that taking time for themselves is important. Spa treatments are also becoming better known for health reasons.” As the benefits of spa treatments are becoming more and more recognized for their health properties (increase in circulation, stress management, confidence boosting), em-


January 2014 | Business In Edmonton Magazine |







ployers are gifting spa days to their staff as part of their health and wellness programs. So it appears that confidence has a direct bearing on workplace success, and confidence can be increased by the many benefits of general spa treatments. Does Power, whose treatments are more invasive, agree? I asked Power if there is any truth to the thought that older clients get the treatments to compete with their younger co-workers. “I hear this occasionally,” she replies. “However, what I hear most often in this anti-aging industry is that most people want to look great for their age.” Well then, is there any truth that women get treatments to compete with their male co-workers at higher corporate levels? Again, not the case. “I have heard this, but certainly not frequently. In my experience, these women choose these treatments for themselves first, and if it benefits them otherwise then that’s a bonus.” Power’s clientele are 70 per cent professionals and she sees an increase in the amount of men seeking injectable treatments. Like spa treatments, BOTOX® and JUVEDERM® have practical – not just aesthetic – applications. Power says, “There are medical reasons for the botulinum toxin injectables, such as treating excessive sweating and chronic migraines, for example.” But she did go on to say,




















Health Assessment – Make it Your Strategic Advantage! Benjamin Franklin said, “An ounce of prevention is worth a

We provide the following preventative health screening services,

pound of cure”. In terms of your health this old adage has never

which may be performed alone or in any combination:

been more relevant. Health assessment can be essential for the early detection of diseases and conditions that cause disability and death. Lifestyle, stresses of business and family history can have an adverse impact on our health

Coronary CT Angiography (In people with chest pain or other symptoms, can be used to find or exclude coronary artery disease that may not be detected by other tests)

and predisposes us to silent killers such as heart disease, diabetes, hypertension and cancers – all leading causes of death and disability in Canada. Health screening can be invaluable as it detects diseases which may not produce early warning signs. Why wait until symptoms are present; when it is more difficult to get the condition under control? Identifying issues early with health assessments allows you and your doctor to develop appropriate treatment plans before the symptoms are present or become serious. Detecting illness or disease early can save time, money and your life. Less time lost at work, fewer tests when symptoms present and the greater risks of advanced stages of disease are all important factors in

Cardiac Calcium Scoring (Used to detect calcific plaque and help determine risk of coronary artery disease) Lung Cancer Screening

“CT Scanning reduced mortality from lung cancer in high-risk individuals by 20%” – National Lung Cancer Study, Medical News Today, May 7, 2013

business continuity and succession planning. This is the basic philosophy behind MIC’s preventative screening

Virtual Colonoscopy (Used to detect cancerous and precancerous growths in the colon or rectum)

services. Personalized attention from our dedicated team can enhance your well-being and help you better understand your state of health.

Empower Yourself! Ask your physician how together you can

CT Health assessments are performed at MIC using state of the art low

proactively manage your health.

dose technology. This ensures the highest quality of exams while minimizing radiation dose to the patient.

For MRI/CT Appointments Call: 780-433-1120 or toll free 1-888-880-1121. Visit us online at

MIC is Canada’s largest physician owned radiology partnership providing services in 11 community clinics and 5 hospitals in the Alberta Capital region including the University of Alberta Hospital and the Mazankowski Alberta Heart Institute. MIC radiologists provide general and highly specialized expertise in diagnostic imaging exams and research.




ennifer came to Borrelli in April 2013 to be taken more seriously at work. She is a busy mother of four with a husband who works out of town. She needed a quick and easy style to look her best with her busy lifestyle. Within 30 days of her makeover (minimal makeup, easy-to-style hair, and updated clothing) Jennifer was promoted to regional manager. She was later promoted to national manager in October 2013. Two big promotions within six months for looking her best, to become her best. “I’ve always had a good work ethic. I just look more like I can handle the job,” said Jennifer.

“In my practice the majority of reasons for people to receive these treatments, are cosmetic related: to smoothen frown lines, crow’s feet, and forehead lines, for example.” So do these injectables contribute to a person’s overall well-being? Power says, yes. “Coming from a professional background of health and wellness, this is a strong value of mine. After a treatment, my clients often feel just a little bit better about themselves, and therefore put that out to the world.” Dr. Lycka sees a fair number of professionals, but interestingly enough, he sees a fair number of truck drivers too. While cosmetic surgery used to be thought of as a “woman’s thing,” one in 10 of his patients are now men and he predicts this will be one in five within the next 10 years. If cosmetic surgery is something done to gain corporate status, why is he seeing so many trade professionals and so many men? Because it it’s not about corporate success at all. It’s about feeling good. Lycka explains. “I have a lot of people that are professionals, but this is Alberta where there is a lot of money that is held by other people as well. A truck driver in Fort Mac makes $150K a year, which is not common for truck drivers elsewhere. A person like that with disposable income can certainly spend it where they want to. People don’t have to look their age if they don’t want to and they don’t have to ‘spend the farm’ on cosmetic surgery if they don’t want to. It’s a lifestyle choice decision.” In his opinion, is there a correlation between success and the way a person looks? “Men are more concerned as they get older about competition from the younger guys, especially in the work place. Men are more defined


January 2014 | Business In Edmonton Magazine |



by their jobs. Women, on the other hand, are doing it for themselves. What cosmetic surgery does is makes a person look and feel better. When a person looks better, their confidence level goes up. As your confidence goes up, you function better in the workplace.” Each expert has said basically the same thing. Corporate success is dependent on confidence and confidence is dependent on how you perceive yourself. The question then becomes, how far does one need to go to have that coveted confidence? According to Borrelli, you need to go as far as you need to in order to project your brand. “People in business and in leadership positions need to look like the fee they are charging,” says the image and style expert. “So, it shows a level of quality and expertise when they are well-groomed and they look like people expect them to look for the business or product they are marketing.” Professionals will spend a great deal of money on corporate branding. Their logo, company colours, social media, business cards – thousands of dollars are invested in this external advertising. According to Borrelli, you are the face of your brand and deserve – demand – equal attention. That is not to say you have to get BOTOX® or a cosmetic enhancement. It all depends on what image you are representing; what you are selling. She uses president and co-founder of Sleep Country, Christine Magee, as an example. Magee is recognizable as the “face” of Sleep Country. Therefore, she cannot appear in public or in her ads as exhausted or run down. A fresh and rested face may require a weekly facial – or a face lift.

Executive health programs top list of benefits for star performers


xecutive healthcare is fast becoming an important part of the benefits that companies provide to their top talent. For well over 20 years, organizations have recognized that protecting their leaders and star performers offers a substantial long-term return on investment. An executive health assessment typically provides a head-to-toe examination as well as a battery of advanced tests that range from important biomarkers to observing the heart under the stress of exercise. Most companies offering executive health services follow the same basic evidence-based prevention guidelines, but the overall landscape is changing fast. First, companies have begun to realize that the early detection of disease is only a small part of prevention. The real goal of prevention is to help the executive build resilience to fend off disease or disorders. Early detection of cancer or cardiovascular disease is

CALGARY 4th Floor, 628 12 Ave SW Calgary, AB, T2R 0H6 Cristle Jasken 403-270-2273

good, but never detecting anything is better. As a result, many companies are upping their game by enrolling their leaders in comprehensive programs of health and prevention. These programs offer a multidisciplinary team approach to prevention, but also give the executive advanced medical care when they need it. “Organizations now recognize that it is worth a little extra investment to help their executives overcome lifestyle challenges that are increasing their health risks, and provide fast, expert care when a medical problem surfaces�, says Don Copeman, the founder and chairman of Copeman Healthcare Centres in Vancouver, Calgary and Edmonton. According to Copeman, many companies now offer the same services to the spouse and family of the employee, which is highly valued as a benefit. The cost of such comprehensive services range from about $2,000 to $5,000 per year.

EDMONTON Suite 700, 10216 124 St. Edmonton, AB, T5N 4A3 Treena Popowich 780-392-0716

Established in 2005, Copeman Healthcare serves the healthcare needs of thousands of discerning individuals and their organizations from clinics in Vancouver, Calgary and Edmonton. Through trusted healthcare partners they are able to service most areas of the country. The organization is growing fast, in step with the demand for better returns on executive health investments through more comprehensive programs.



“What we do psychologically prepares us to put our game face on. For some it’s teeth whitening. For some it’s BOTOX®. For some it’s liposuction. But the answer is not the same for everybody,” Borrelli explained. Of course these measures are not necessary. Anyone can go about without a stich of makeup, uncut nails, greasy hair and ill-fitting clothing. They can still be brilliant and successful and even think very highly of themselves, but as Borrelli points out, “Why make us work so hard to get past that first impression? Personal grooming – everybody can do that regardless of how much money they have. They can all have white teeth that are fresh and flossed. Studies have proven that a woman wearing even just a slight amount of makeup earn 20 per cent more. Why? It’s about paying attention to detail. It’s about being refined and polished. It’s going that extra mile and not looking tired and worn out like they are overburdened and exhausted. Even if they are, their co-workers and clients don’t need to know that. We don’t want to know that. Whether we are going to buy a new mattress or tint our lashes, we want that person to be a solution.” Contrast again, Ford and Sheen. Their behaviour was similar, but we despise Ford because that is not what we expect from a mayor. A movie star, on the other hand, we want to be handsome, charming and able to live out our wicked fan-


January 2014 | Business In Edmonton Magazine |

tasies. We root for Sheen because he’s always been the “bad boy.” For better or worse, he represents his “brand.” To finalize my research, I did a self-experiment. I resolved that whenever I left the house for a full week, I would make sure I had nice hair, wore makeup and wellfitting clothing. Some days this amounted to a quick hair brushing, lip gloss, and jeans that didn’t sag or pull and other days this meant a full face of makeup and high-end clothing. During this week, no matter what I wore or how much makeup I had on, the result was the same. When I took the time to look good, I truly did feel good – and yes, people treated me differently. They treated me differently because I treated myself differently. I looked people in the eye, had a smile on my face and a spring in my step. I was more effective in my work was even more outgoing in my social life. How you look does have a direct impact on your career success. However, it is confidence, not traditional standards of beauty that dictate how you look. For some, confidence is just a red lipstick away. For others it is liposuction and a facelift. For all, it starts with taking care of your health, being presentable, and representing your brand. Success isn’t measured by your hip to waist ratio. It’s measured by the face we put forward – a face defined by what makes us confident. BIE

Bigger & Better: B & B Demolition Smashes the Competition

Bill Knight at the Canadian Tire in Leduc AB job site.

What began as a desire to provide a superior service become a company that improves the community in many different ways. By Nerissa McNaughton


t’s a tale of mystery, intrigue and revenge. A rise from the ashes (OK, basement) to untold heights. It’s a story of the underdog that seized an opportunity to become a force to be reckoned with. Actually, it’s the tale of B&B Demolition, but trust me – it’s just as interesting as any Hollywood blockbuster. Scene one takes place on December 14, 1999. The holiday season brings no joy for Bill Knight. His job with an Edmon-

ton demolition company has just been terminated. But Knight knew the Edmonton marketplace needed a reliable demolition contractor capable of providing superior service, and he wasn’t about to let the good people of Edmonton down. One day later, on December 15, 1999, Knight opened B&B Demolition with a vision of outstanding customer service and community involvement. In December 2000, Knight’s former place of employment went out of business – but B&B was going strong.

B & B Demolition Ltd. | 15th Anniversary | 1

“Each demolition project is unique, be it interior or structural, and each needs to be approached as such.” ~ Bill Knight Scene two. The company is on the move. The 83 square foot office in the basement of Knight’s home cannot contain the rapidly growing business. A variety of offices in the west end of Edmonton followed, but growth came so fast they had to keep moving to acquire bigger and better spaces. Equipment, trucks and office staff finally found home at 12800-153 Street NW. From this 21,000 square foot location they focus primarily on Edmonton, but service all of central Alberta and occasionally, parts of Saskatchewan. Just how did B&B Demolition demolish their competition and find overwhelming success in such a short period of time? To learn how, let’s peek behind the scenes. “Each demolition project is unique, be it interior or structural, and each needs to be approached as such,” explained Knight of his careful and thoughtful approach to each job. “Buildings and spaces can be renovated many times before we walk on sites, and accurate drawings are rarely kept, meaning that we have to be very strategic in planning each project.” The company is designed to tear things down, but there are moments on the job that are downright uplifting, as Knight points out. “B&B works closely with a variety of insurance adjusters and disaster recovery specialists to help families and building owners start the rebuild process after a fire or flood. Any kind of insurance project starts with the client calling their insurance company. The insurance company then looks at the job and checks to see if the client is covered, which most of the time they are. At that time, they contact a general contractor or disaster recovery team, and they contact us to take a look at the scope of the demolition. These jobs are typically quite large, and often require us to work extremely carefully as the structure has already been damaged. Because some of the structural integrity is gone, our excavator operators have to work with extreme care to make sure the rest of the building comes down cleanly. For projects in apartment blocks, we often have to carefully demolish each unit and sort out things that look like they may be valuable from the rubble. Tenants are extremely happy when we find anything of value, and we’re happy to take the extra few minutes

Canadian Tire to find something that could mean the world to someone who has just lost their home.” B&B’s work puts them in close contact with some of Edmonton’s most interesting historical structures. “Historical demolition projects require massive amounts of preparation, as these projects typically are in buildings that are very old and have very little information regarding renovations,” says Knight. “As a result, B&B team members have to do a lot of investigation and preparation for all kinds of unexpected challenges. At the end of the day, you can plan all you want, but on historical demo projects you’re going to run into something unexpected, which is why you need to have a strong team with good communication skills and contingency plans.” Historical demolitions that Knight’s strong team has been involved in include, Jasper Block, Telus Phone Exchange Building, and LeMarchand Mansion. Other notable B&B demolitions include West Edmonton Mall (where they average nine projects a month), Sturgeon Hospital, Jasper Place Library, Edmonton International Airport, three Target stores, Telus World of Science, Delta Hotel, Mayfield Hotel and the Clairview Community Rec Centre. Now it’s time to meet the supporting cast. B&B owns and operates a variety of equipment, including seven excavators of various sizes with different buckets and hammers that can be used

B & B Demolition Ltd. | 15th Anniversary | 2

KELLERDENALI construction

Congratulations B & B Demolition Ltd. on 15 years of business. Wishing you continued success. We are very happy to have been your partner during your many years of growth. Edmonton • Calgary 1-866-535-5376 •

Member of the Better Business Bureau

Congratulations B & B Demolition Ltd.!

For Service Out of This World! Russ and Pauline Kratky, owners of Planet Trucking Inc., have been in business, serving Edmonton and surrounding areas since 2001.

Dispatch (780) 818-4704 Office (780) 922-3555 Fax (780) 922-3440

Gravel • Sand • Asphalt • Demolition • Snow Removal • Concrete Removal • Contamination Clean-up • Bobcats • Backhoes • Oilfield • Commercial • Residential • Tandems • Tridem End-Dumps • Concrete Breaking • Grading

B & B Demolition Ltd. | 15th Anniversary | 3

Interior Demo at West Edmonton Mall for anything from demolishing a building to cleaning up rubble in an interior space. The company also owns five skid steers with grapples and clean up buckets, as well as hammers that can remove concrete garage pads and driveways. A small skid steer at 32 inches is used for interior and small exterior spaces. A fleet of aerial and scissor lifts allows B&B to strip ceilings, bulkheads and bricks off of walls. B&B has two battery operated

Congrats B & B Demolition on 15 years!

floor scrapers that can be used to strip linoleum, tile, hardwood, and carpet. These machines are quiet enough to work in active hospitals. B&B also has a fleet of five smart cars and five trucks of various sizes that are often seen throughout the city. Using big equipment to take down large buildings sounds like a dream job, but for the ownership and staff of B&B, it’s also an opportunity to give back. B&B aims to return 10 per cent of their annual revenue to the community and they do this by supporting a variety of programs and services. “We have no particular focus or social problem that we want to solve, we simply give where we see the greatest need,” Knight explains. “Some involvements are longer than others. B&B has been a proud supporter of the Edmonton Singing Christmas Tree for the past four years, and has donated 2 per cent of revenue each year to Youth Empowerment & Support Services (YESS) for the past five years. The community gives us the tools we need to succeed; it’s important to pay it back in any way possible.” In addition to B&B giving back to the community, the company is proud of how each individual team member volunteers their time. Walks for causes such as autism and breast cancer, bike-a-thons for children’s cancer, and long-term coaching commitments are common around the B&B office. “B&B supports the community financially, but their investment in the

B & B Demolition Ltd. | 15th Anniversary | 4

We are a proud partner of B&B DemoliƟon. CongratulaƟons on your 15th Anniversary!

Congrats on your 15 Anniversary! th

5404 36 Street NW Edmonton, AB T6B 3P3 Tel: (780) 428-0100 •

Congrats B & B Demolition on your 15th Anniversary!

12800 153 Street Edmonton, Alberta T5V 1A9 Phone: 780-453-2767 • Fax: 780-453-2760 Email: •

CALGARY insurance brokers

We Listen. We Think. We Deliver.


Congratulations on 15 years!! 12634 Stony Plain Rd. Tel: 780-482-1222 • Fax: 780-488-2669

Congratulations to B & B Demolition Ltd. on 15 years of success! We are proud to be a part of your journey.

Congratulations to Bill Knight and his team on 15 years of stellar service. Commercial Interior Specialists providing exceptional contract management in and around Edmonton, AB for over 25 years.

9411 63rd Avenue Phone: 780.486.6006 • Fax: 780.486.2580

15904 – 116 Avenue Edmonton, Alberta Office: 780-452-7072 • Fax: 780-451-6899

B & B Demolition Ltd. | 15th Anniversary | 5

Using big equipment to take down large buildings sounds like a dream job, but for the ownership and staff of B&B, it’s also an opportunity to give back. B&B aims to return 10 per cent of their annual revenue to the community and they do this by supporting a variety of programs and services. people in the organization trickles down into the community and ultimately improves the health of the city as a whole,” said Knight with pride. “It’s very important that B&B not only give back to the community through charitable donations, but also to invest in individuals,” Knight continues. “B&B takes great pride in helping their team members succeed and grow, which is a key reason why so many staff have stayed for more than 10 years.” B&B is locally owned and some of the field employees have been with Knight since the company originated in his basement. For B&B, community accountability includes environmental responsibly. Their efforts to be eco-friendly in the office and field earned them the City of Edmonton Small Business Eco Challenge Award in 2012 and 2013. They protect the environment in every way possible, from shutting off lights, recycling in the lunch room, choosing smart cars for company vehicles, supplying the staff with locally grown fruit, recycling as much demolition material as possible, properly disposing of goods such

as refrigerators and washing machines and partnering with local recycling companies to remove fixtures (doors, windows, lockers, bathtubs, cash registers, clothing racks, millwork, etc.) prior to demolition. They have attained recycle rates as high as 85 per cent on some projects. B&B could have just been a story about a man determined to show his former boss he was wrong to let him go, but the story of B&B is so much more than that. Knight always knew there was a bigger and better way to supply Edmonton’s demolition needs and that’s why being fired didn’t stop him. Instead, it inspired him. Once he got started, he never looked back. “The reason that B&B operates each and every day is to make Edmonton a better place, concludes Knight. “Demolition is used as a tool to help people, but ultimately demolition allows B&B to give people meaningful employment, and allows those people to then invest in their communities.” The city, the employees, and the environment have benefited under the vision of a man that was determined to do demolition

B & B Demolition Ltd. | 15th Anniversary | 6

Your Demolition: What You Should Know • Contact a B&B team member to come to the site and see what can be recycled. • You need a valid demolition permit from the City of Edmonton. • Have an asbestos check completed by a professional inspector. • Prior to your demolition, ensure your gas and electricity are disconnected. • During a B&B project, you may watch the operator in action. You can take photos and videos. Just remain a safe distance away and speak to the operator beforehand. • B&B organizes all the bins and waste disposal required for each job. • B&B leaves each site clean and ready for the next phase of development. • B&B is insured and carries WCB coverage.

“Fleet Management Solutions For Small to Large Business”

Congratulations B & B Demolition on your 15th!

Congratulations B & B Demolition on your 15th Anniversary. We are proud to be a part of your success!

Edmonton 2600 Manulife Place 10180 - 101 Street Edmonton, Alberta T5J 3Y2


Calgary Suite 320 8 West 903 8th Avenue SW Calgary, Alberta T2P 0P7

w w w. b r ya n co. co m


Congratulations B & B Demolition on 15 years of Business! Delivering a wide variety of Tradesman and Skilled Workers:



FAX: 403.455.1238



FAX: 780.761.0701

• Carpentry • Concrete • Demolition • Drywall • Heating/Hoarding

• Equipment Operators • General Labour • Painters • Snow Removal • Warehousing B & B Demolition Ltd. | 15th Anniversary | 7

the right way. Knight set out to build something bigger and better; and he did. That’s why he named the company B&B – bigger and better – Demolition. But wait! It isn’t over yet. There is a sequel. B&B plans to duplicate the business into new locations in Canada. Relying on the core commitment of customer service and community involvement, B&B plans to use their successful business model to enrich new markets. Sounds intriguing. Stay tuned.

B&B Demolition Ltd 12800-153 Street NW, Edmonton AB (780)452-0354 •

Westmount Mall

Congratulations to the team at B & B Demolition! Wishing you many years of continued sucess!

Professional Welding Service Light & Heavy Equipment, Custom Fabrication, Structural and B Pressure Welding 780.919.1273 •



B & B Demolition Ltd. on your 15th anniversary! Printing Impressions and Graphics is proud to be part of your success.

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B & B Demolition Ltd. | 15th Anniversary | 8

Jane, Mark and Art Bell.

Art and Jane Bell and Their ‘Top Gun’ Son Fabricate a Dream No job is too big or too small.


By Mark Kandborg

hen abel contracting corp. co-founder and president Art Bell picked up his first pair of tin snips at the age of 16 and put them to work, he had no idea what that simple act would one day mean for him, or for his future family. It didn’t take him long to realize he was onto a good thing. “My brother-in-law got me into it,” he says, “and pretty soon I was making $1.25 an hour. That’s $50 a week, less taxes.” Doesn’t seem like so much now, but that was darn good money in the early ‘70s. Good enough to allow a hard-working young man to buy his dream car, a 1972 Cougar convertible. He loved that car so much that he only recently upgraded to a 1973 Cougar XR-7 convertible. The man clearly knows what he likes.

He drove that car to business administration classes at the Northern Alberta Institute of Technology (NAIT), and then to work as a field coordinator for a big company where he was responsible for the work of 75 employees. “They were making three mistakes a day, each,” he says, shaking his head. “It got to the point where the phone would ring and he would shake,” Art’s ex-wife, business partner and best friend, Jane, explains. They both knew that the stress-tobenefit ratio of coordinating someone else’s employees just wasn’t working for them. It was time to start working for themselves. So, on a warm August night 23 years ago, abel contracting corp. Corp. was born.

abel contracting corp. | 20th Anniversary | 1

“We started with a half-ton, a pair of snips and four customers,” she says. The couple paid cash for all their supplies, which they stored in the family garage next to Art’s beloved convertible. Living the business and doing exceptional work quickly paid off for Art and Jane. It wasn’t long before the garage was full. It was time to expand. Art and Jane rented a space in Nisku, but it also “got too full too fast,” Jane says. So in the late ‘90s, abel contracting corp. set up shop at their present location in southeast Edmonton at 436082nd Ave. “We started here with one bay. But...” You guessed it. They quickly outgrew that. “We added a big Quonset hut out back,” she says. Four years ago, they added yet another bay. Clearly, Art and Jane are doing something right. “Our work is done to a very high standard,” Jane explains. “It has to look good, and it has to work good. If something’s not right, we go back and make it right. As competitive as this industry is, that’s the only thing that gets you the job.” Art couldn’t agree more. “Whatever it takes. Sometimes it costs you money, but that’s the way we do it.” No ‘three mistakes a day’ here. “It’s nice to drive around town and say, ‘oh, we did that project’,” Jane says with a smile. “There’s a pride.” While extremely high standards, pride in workmanship and a willingness to do whatever it takes to get the job done may be keys to abel contracting corp.’s success, there’s something else as well. A not-so-secret weapon, you could say – their son, Mark. Mark Reinhardt, site supervisor and now co-owner of his parents’ company, has a gift for working with sheet metal. Some might even consider him a kind of prodigy. Jane and Art certainly do. You can see it in their faces when they talk about the level of quality he brings to the table. “Mark does an amazing job with everything he touches,” Jane says. “And I’m not just saying that.” Jane’s pride in her son is well founded. Mark graduated from high school with enough hours to work with sheet metal, and by the age of 20 he had won the Silver Hammer provincial skills

Congratulations to abel contracting corp. on 20 years of Success.

#301, 9452 – 51st Avenue (Ph) 780-436-7880 • (Fx) 780-438-0097 Email:

ATB ductwork

Exposed SS oval duct at ATB’s flagship branch

competition twice (by all accounts he would have managed a three-peat, but the competition is only open to apprentices under 21). The annual competition is invitation only, pitting the best of the very best from NAIT and the Southern Alberta Institute of Technology (SAIT) against each other, ‘top gun’ style. The participants weld, fabricate and assemble to demanding specifications. No tool marks. Spotless. And that’s the level of workmanship customers can count on from this master fabricator and his abel contracting corp. team. “When I started,” Mark says, “it was all about getting through school, getting a paycheque and getting a car.” Sound familiar? “Now there’s a lot of thinking, planning and troubleshooting. I really enjoy being on the tools and on the job site. I love seeing a job through from start to finish.” “I miss that,” Art says, a little wistfully. “Being on the tools.” “I think they like playing with the cranes,” Jane says. She knows her boys.

abel abel contracting contracting corp. corp. || 20 20thth Anniversary Anniversary || 22

Happy Happycrew. crew.Finished Finishedininone oneday. day.

Father and son share a sheepish look. “Everyone loves crane day,” Art says. It so happens that Art and Jane were blessed five times. They have four other sons, two of whom have mastered multiple trades and two who now have companies of their own, but they all worked together during abel contracting corp.’s early days. One thing is for certain – this family loves what they do. “If it moves air, it’s part of our trade,” Jane says, “but it’s not something you usually see or think about. People put in showers with all these jets, but then they put in this tiny fan. You don’t think about it until you need it. No one says ‘look at our beautiful furnace’.” “They’ll think about it if it’s not working, though,” Art says. It’s ironic that when Art, Jane, Mark and the rest of the folks at abel contracting corp. have done their jobs, no one will think of them at all. They’re okay with that, because it means they’re continuing to do it right. “Our customers think of us when it’s time to do renovations or build other locations, though,” Jane says. “That’s our affirmation.”

Crane day at SODCL new corporate office

So what does the future hold for this not-so-little little company that just keeps getting bigger? “I think it will keep changing,” Art says. “We’ve been doing small jobs for larger and larger companies, and now we’re doing larger and larger jobs for them. Our ultimate goal is to have our own building.”

Peter Faiazza

Professional Corporation Certified General Accountant

Congratulations on your 20th anniversary. Gemco is proud to be a part of your success, we are looking forward to the next 20 years!

9281-50 Street Edmonton, Alberta Ph: 780-465-9719 • Email:

Congratulations abel contracting corp. on 20 years! Phone: 780.929.8114 • Fax: 780.929.8048 5202 - 50th Avenue Beaumont, Alberta T4X 1E3

abel abel contracting contracting corp. corp. || 20 20thth Anniversary Anniversary || 33

Perhaps no one is as surprised, or as pleased, with how far abel contracting corp. has come as Art himself. “I started this to earn a living for my family,” he says. “Now we’re a part of helping others earn a living for theirs.” So here’s to Art, Jane, Mark and the rest of the abel contracting corp. family who continue to work tirelessly, expertly and flawlessly in the background for the next 20 years, getting the job done right.

Top Gun leading the crew in Red Deer.

“We’re bursting at the seams here,” Mark says, with some amazement. Jane, too, is a little astonished at how much the family business has grown over the past 20 years. “From a truck and snips,” as she puts it, “to specs that run 790 pages.”

Congrats to abel contracting corp. o n y o u r 2 0 th a n n i v e r s a r y !

T: 7 8 0 . 4 6 4 . 9 9 7 4 • F a x : 7 8 0 . 4 6 4 . 7 9 7 4

4360 82 Ave NW, Edmonton, AB T6B 2S4 (780) 490-5861

From Our Family to Yours Beaumont Credit Union is proud to congratulate abel contracting corp. on 20 years of growth and prosperity. We look forward to celebrating your continued success for years to come.

Congratulations to abel contracting corp. on your 20th Anniversary! We are proud to be a part of your success.

20310 - 107 Avenue Edmonton, Alberta T5S 1W9 Phone: (780)447-3400 • Fax: (780)447-4313 •


5007 – 50 Avenue Beaumont, Alberta

abel contracting corp. | 20th Anniversary | 4


WHAT ARE YOU GOING TO DO? Take our course, learn the signs, donate today. Stop child sexual abuse. Help heal it when it occurs.

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12-10-26 1:35 PM



We are taking stock of our impact and seeking to serve members of the business community better than ever. BY JAMES CUMMING, PRESIDENT AND CEO OF THE EDMONTON CHAMBER OF COMMERCE @CUMMINGK



he Edmonton Chamber of Commerce will be celebrating 125 years of serving the Edmonton business community next year. It is a time for celebration and reflection on the many different roles the Edmonton Chamber has played on behalf of the business community. Businesses often take the time to review their strategies, market position and methods of execution. The same process is important to other sectors in the marketplace including the not-for-profit organizations and, most importantly, the Edmonton Chamber. Review and renewal are vital to continued growth and success. Over the past several months we have been engaged in the process of asking many members about their experience with the Edmonton Chamber and what they expect of us. The feedback we have been receiving will help build our platform for how we communicate and engage with our most important asset – our members. The input has been supportive in many areas and critical in others. As is the case with most businesses, we have several channels that we serve and it is abundantly clear that the expectations vary from group to group. While the review is not complete, I can assure you that we will develop strategies that enhance the experiences of our members and provide greater value. While the review has been taking place, the Edmonton Chamber has continued to work hard in all aspects of our business. Many of you have attended the variety of events we have presented over the past several months; we appreciate the support. Key events have included the mayor’s tribute dinner, the premier’s address, TD economic forecast and most recently, Minister Flaherty’s economic update. It is noteworthy that Minister Flaherty chose your Edmonton Chamber to make this key address. Our committees have started work plans on key policy initiatives for 2014, focusing on areas that will have significant impact for the whole business community. We will bring the policies that Edmonton Chamber committees develop to all three levels of government. Advocacy on behalf of our members is a core activity of the Edmonton Chamber. We were active in the municipal


January 2014 | Business In Edmonton Magazine |

Our committees have started work plans on key policy initiatives for 2014, focusing on areas that will have significant impact for the whole business community. We will bring the policies that Edmonton Chamber committees develop to all three levels of government. election, making sure the issues that were important to you were considered by the candidates for mayor. As I write this, we are preparing for a trip to Ottawa with several Edmonton Chamber members and the EEDC to advocate for you on several issues and to raise awareness of the importance of continued growth in our region and the support businesses need to execute. Next year we will have several events that will celebrate our 125 years and our future. The kickoff will be the Chamber Ball where we will be recognizing a great company, family and leadership with the Northern Lights Award to Tim Melton, Melton Family and the Melcor Group of companies. We will also be recognizing the leadership of outgoing chair Lindsay Dodd, president of Savvia, and incoming chair, Simon O’Byrne, vice-president and practice leader at Stantec. You can expect a great night as you will be entertained by the Broadway production of Rain: A Tribute to the Beatles, which sold out the Jubilee Auditorium when it was last in Edmonton. For those of you who are members, thank you for your support. For those who are not, I hope you will consider supporting our efforts to create the best possible business environment. Feel free to reach out to me with your feedback as it is always welcome.

Official Nomination Form

Go Online to Submissions Directions: Please complete the application in its entirety. Send the form via fax to 587.520.5701; or scan and email to Eligibility: All nominees must own, be a partner, CEO, or President of a private or public company, and be

a primary stakeholder responsible for the recent performance of the company. In addition, the nominee’s company must be Edmonton and area based and have been in existence for a minimum of three years.

Judging Panel and Criteria: The independent panel of judges will consist of a selection of successful business leaders from the community. The judges will analyze an extensive list of criteria that will include finances, strategic direction, product or service innovation, company leadership (including personal integrity, values and key employee initiatives), community involvement and philanthropic activities. Nominee’s Name: Title:

Nominee Print or Type Only Please

Company Name: General Company Phone: Business Address: City:


Postal Code:

Company Website: Nature of Business: Nominee’s Phone:

Nominee’s Email:

Assistant’s Name: Assistant’s Phone:

Assistant’s Email:

Has Nominee previously been nominated for Consideration? Yes / No Year(s): For any questions or follow up related to this information; please designate a contact, or confirm nominee or assistant as primary contact.

Platinum Partner

Gold Partners


With A Little Help From Our Friends We’re thanking our friends, supporters and the entire city of Edmonton for 125 wonderful years by presenting the event of the year: RAIN – A TRIBUTE TO THE BEATLES. This live multi-media spectacular takes you on a musical journey through the Ed Sullivan Show and Shea Stadium to Abbey Road.

Three Cool Cats

Gold Sponsor

Silver Sponsor

Thanking: Outgoing Chair Lindsay Dodd CEO, Savvia Inc.

Welcoming: Incoming Chair Simon O’Byrne Vice-President, Practice Leader, Stantec

Honouring: Northern Lights Award Winner – The Melton Family and Melcor Group Represented by Tim Melton

Come Together Bronze Sponsors

In Kind Sponsors

Friday, January 31, 2014 Shaw Conference Centre • 9797 Jasper Ave. Doors: 6 p.m. • Program: 7 p.m. Dress: Black Tie or Business Formal

Ticket to Ride Members: $225.00 per person + GST Non-Members: $300.00 per person + GST Tables of 10: Members: $2,250.00 + GST Non-Members: $3,000.00 + GST

Don’t pass it by - order your tickets today at


January 2014 | Business In Edmonton Magazine |




o meet the labour demand between 2011 and 2015, almost 400,000 new Alberta workers will be required, and with over 11,000 jobs currently under active recruitment in the greater Edmonton area, Edmonton Economic Development (EEDC) is offering the Labour Market Solutions program to assist small to mediumsized businesses looking to secure job candidates. Edmonton consistently faces insufficient labour to satisfy business requirements in many of the trades, hospitality, health care, and other sectors. The price tag on the province’s labour shortage is significant, and has wide-reaching implications: $17,000 per person in foregone taxes, and $83,800 per person over four years in lost household income and corporate profits. Our Labour Market Solutions program provides businesses with a one-on-one consultation that will help us customize the solution to your labour challenges. The program offering can be divided into three major categories: sourcing candidates, attraction to Edmonton and settlement services. The sourcing candidates component includes recommendations on finding interested, quality applicants in a tough local, national and international market. We can advise on search parameters and offer contacts in central and eastern Canada, as well as comprehensive information on Canadian immigration.

Employers tell us attracting talent to Edmonton can be even more difficult than finding the right candidate. EEDC can help you explore the quality of life considerations that are important for individuals and families. These considerations include cost of living, accommodations, transportation, attractions, neighbourhoods and schools. We will show your candidate that Edmonton is an exceptional city to work in, a great place to put down roots, raise a family and call home. We are able to arrange a hosting event for your prospective (or newly hired) candidate as part of the attraction to Edmonton component, which might include meeting at the airport, touring the city’s major attractions, looking at neighbourhoods, exploring the arts community, and visiting sporting venues. Greater or lesser settlement assistance may be required, depending on where your new hires are relocating from. From English language skills to accommodations, the list of potential barriers can be daunting, but we have the resources to set your new hire up for a successful transition. We all know that death and taxes are two certainties in life, but a close runner up might be labour shortages in Alberta in the foreseeable future. Please email if you would like to learn more about EEDC’s Labour Market Solutions program. | Business In Edmonton Magazine | January 2014





he Shaw Conference Centre (SCC) recently unveiled its new sustainability wall on the pedway level, which showcases a vertical garden by local horticulture company, Greenjeans. In addition to the garden, the wall also highlights a number of sustainable initiatives at the SCC and throughout the City of Edmonton. “We are excited to share our commitment to the environment through this showpiece,” said Cliff Higuchi, vice president and general manager of the Shaw Conference Centre. “The Shaw Conference Centre’s location lends us a unique opportunity to use our environment to share Edmonton’s story with visitors. The living wall is really a work of art, and makes a strong statement about who we are and what we value.” The new design feature reflects the Centre’s commitment to environmental stewardship, which is increasingly a priority for Edmontonians and for those who are considering holding their events in the City of Edmonton. As a BOMA BESt (best environmental standards) level 2 certified facility with environmental best practices as part of everyday operations, including water fountains equipped to fill personal water bottles, battery recycling stations and in-house vegetable and herb gardens, SCC offers visitors a unique and environmentally sustainable venue. In addition to the sustainability wall, the Shaw Con-


January 2014 | Business In Edmonton Magazine |

The new design feature reflects the Centre’s commitment to environmental stewardship, which is increasingly a priority for Edmontonians and for those who are considering holding their events in the City of Edmonton. ference Centre will be transforming its outdoor spaces through the implementation of a new permaculture initiative, which recognizes the cultural and ecological significance of its location on the riverbank. The new landscaping will feature traditionally used and medicinal plans found in Edmonton’s natural environment. The Shaw Conference Centre, which is owned by the City of Edmonton and managed by Edmonton Economic Development, is a top contributor to the meetings, conventions and special event business in greater Edmonton, hosting about 700 events and half a million guests each year.

11025–184 Street, Edmonton

780 • 483 • 9559

9503–34 Avenue, Edmonton

780 • 930 • 3667

January 2014 Business in Edmonton  
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