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 Ottawa’s NEB Gambit Smacks of Political Maneuvering By Josh Bilyk

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 Rising Gas Taxes Dinging Drivers and Businesses in Edmonton By Paige MacPherson

 Edmonton Chamber of Commerce

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LIFTBOSS ORANGE IS GOING GREEN!!

S

ince opening its doors in 2006, Liftboss Materials Handling has gone about what they do best, in a much different way than their competitors. Service has always been the focus right from the beginning, with regards to the forklift industry, growing a very strong customer base in 11 years. In 2012, they added further services becoming the Doosan® heavy equipment dealer for central and southern Alberta. More recently, Liftboss was excited to have an opportunity to quote, demo and sell a new DL350-5 Doosan loader to the Foothills Regional Landfill & Resource Recovery Centre (LRRC) to replace their old loader. The LRRC strives to do things differently, and has been working to reduce the amount of garbage that actually makes it into the landfill! For over 20 years, the site has been recycling, diverting and working with the Foothills Salvage & Recycling Society (FSRS) - and up to 30% of the material coming to the site is either recycled or reused instead of being placed in the landfill. Patrons are being greeted by an employee at the landfill bins, who will try to check each load before it’s emptied, looking for usable goods. Anything in good condition is redirected to the centre where it is sold in a thrift store-style operation. In some cases there are next-to-new building supplies that are recovered and resold to end users. An ongoing partnership between the region’s landfill and the FSRS has become a waste-reduction template for municipalities across Alberta, and many landfills are looking at how they can do the same thing. Getting their first unit on location was a huge opportunity for Liftboss, and the LRRC is very impressed with the power, comfort and design of this unit – the first Doosan machine added to their fleet. As this project is just in the early stages it will be a great opportunity to showcase how Liftboss can provide the support needed to help the LRRC grow their success in this project for years to come! Liftboss is the authorized Doosan dealer for sales, service, parts and rental for central and southern Alberta, servicing all makes and models of material handling and construction equipment. The LRRC is owned and operated by the Foothills Regional Services Commission (FRSC), which services and accepts waste from the commmunites of MD of Foothills No. 31, Town of High River, Town of Okotoks, Town Of Black Diamond, Town of Nanton, and the Town of Turner Valley.

Branches in Edmonton and Calgary Toll Free (877) 474-1470 www.liftboss.ca

Foothills Regional Landfill and Resource Rexcovery Centre www.foothillslrrc.com Doosan® and the Doosan logo are trademarks of Doosan Corp.

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CONTENTS COMPANY PROFILE

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R  BK Millwork

Celebrates 35 Years

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THIS MONTH’S FEATURES

15 19

Finding the Way Alberta’s economy is making a comeback, but many challenges remain By Nerissa McNaughton

K-Days: Looking Forward, Staying Grounded How (and why) K-Days looks different today than it did 138 years ago By Zachary Edwards

76 80

Premium Treatment Edmonton’s latest mall is aimed at savvy shoppers and tourists By Nerissa McNaughton

What’s Next for Edmonton’s Skilled Workforce? By Laura Bohnert

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OTTAWA’S NEB GAMBIT SMACKS OF POLITICAL MANEUVERING // ECONOMIC FACTORS

Ottawa’s NEB Gambit Smacks of Political Maneuvering BY JOSH BILYK

O

n the surface, it might be difficult to conjure up any significant level of concern over the latest news on the National Energy Board (NEB) – as most people are actually unaware of what the NEB really does.

It’s right there in the report. They want a “stronger connection to the seat of the federal government.” This seems more a pendulum swing than finding some middle ground.

Last year, Prime Minister Justin Trudeau appointed an expert panel and tasked them with reforming the Energy Regulator. Their report came out May 15, and among its more than two dozen recommendations is one to dismantle the NEB into two separate agencies and relocate them from Calgary to Ottawa.

The federal government has already rejected the Northern Gateway pipelines, they’re in the process of implementing a national cap and trade and carbon tax plan, and just last month they formalized the oil tanker ban off the British Columbia northwest coastline.

Sure, it’s irritating for Alberta – who is the country’s expert in this field – though not at all unexpected that Ottawa appears to be clawing back power and influence from Alberta during a time that Alberta is trying to recover. The report’s stated reasoning for the move is that the NEB’s objectivity has been somehow compromised because it shares an area code with the major energy companies. You need to get to page 72 of the 100-page document to find the reasoning. The report declares, “We do agree entirely that Canada’s energy transmission infrastructure regulator needs a stronger connection to the seat of the federal government.” According to the report, the NEB has, over time, become captive to industry interests because of its close proximity to the sparkling glass towers in downtown Calgary. Using that logic, let’s delve a little deeper. Wouldn’t that also mean – by untangling the NEB from the supposedly meandering tentacles of Calgary’s energy executives and plopping it in the political epicenter of the federal government – the regulator would simply go from being compromised by industry to being influenced by politics?

If we’re going to accept that proximity dictates influence, one could certainly make a compelling argument that the government’s pipeline and energy agenda could improperly sway a supposedly independent regulator. The reality is, Alberta remains the logical place for Canada’s energy transmission regulator. We are recognized as global leaders in this area – amongst many. It’s where the vast majority of Canada’s oil and gas production takes place and where the greatest number of industry stakeholders live and do business. Nisku, for example, is home to the largest oil field service sector on the planet. Any of the NEB’s shortcomings – from namely, the skepticism from environmental groups around the regulatory process – can be addressed without uprooting the organization and moving it out east. If allowed to proceed, it could be interpreted as a major snub to western Canada and the possible erosion of the stature we have worked so hard to achieve on the national stage.

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

BUSINESSINEDMONTON.COM // BUSINESS IN EDMONTON // JULY 2017

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RISING GAS TAXES DINGING DRIVERS AND BUSINESSES IN EDMONTON // PAIGE MACPHERSON

Rising Gas Taxes Dinging Drivers and Businesses in Edmonton BY PAIGE MACPHERSON

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as taxes are going up in the province. In fact, almost 31 per cent of the pump price in Alberta is tax, according to the Canadian Taxpayers Federation’s 2017 Gas Tax Honesty Day Report. Thanks to the Alberta government’s carbon tax, gas taxes will continue to rise year after year. That’s a challenge for both businesses and consumers – and a reason to keep an eye on Edmonton’s municipal government to ensure the province doesn’t give them the ability to create a city gas tax. Rising gas prices (thanks to tax hikes) not only increase costs for businesses large to small, they also impact consumers’ ability to spend. Consumers may choose less dining at Edmonton restaurants and more dinners at home. Brickand-mortar stores could see less traffic. Across Alberta, job-creators and workers have reason to celebrate when oil prices are high. But when it comes to the price at the pumps, there’s no reason to artificially inflate the cost with unnecessary – and often hidden – taxes. Many Canadians may be surprised to know they pay a “temporary federal deficit elimination gas tax” every time they fill up. That so-called temporary tax was introduced by the federal government in 1995, as a measure to tackle Ottawa’s debt and deficit problem. But two years later that government eliminated its deficit (bravo!) – but they kept the tax. That not-so-temporary tax will have cost Canadian drivers $13.3 billion by the end of the year, and $638 million this year alone. As American economist Milton Friedman said, “There is nothing so permanent as a temporary government program.”

Another sneaky addition to the pump price is the federal government’s tax-on-tax. The government applies the sales tax on top of federal and provincial excise taxes (as well as carbon taxes) on gas, meaning you’re truly paying tax on a tax. This is on top of the sales tax paid on the before-tax gas price. In total, the tax-on-tax will cost Canadians an incredible $1.8 billion this year alone. This time last year, Albertans enjoyed the lowest gas prices in the country. Thanks to the provincial government’s carbon tax, Manitoba and Saskatchewan now both boast lower gas prices than Alberta. The carbon tax will cost the average driver $80 this year, rising to $200 by 2022. Fortunately for Edmonton taxpayers, the city does not have a hidden transit tax like some Canadian cities. For example, Vancouver drivers pay the highest gas prices in the country: at $1.39 per litre, 49 cents of that is tax. Victoria drivers pay the third highest pump prices – and in both cities, it’s thanks to their added transit taxes. City charter agreements, including potential new tax powers for Edmonton and Calgary, are set to be announced by the province this summer. In the past, the City of Calgary has discussed the potential of several new “revenue tools” that could hit drivers, including gas taxes, road tolls and vehicle registration fees. If either Calgary or Edmonton wanted to impose a gas tax, it would require provincial approval – something a city charter could grant. Provincial gas taxes have already increased by 94.3 per cent between PC and NDP hikes in the last two years. At the very least, there’s reason for Edmonton drivers to keep an eye on their local government.

PAIGE MACPHERSON IS ALBERTA DIRECTOR OF THE CANADIAN TAXPAYERS FEDERATION.

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OFF

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Alberta Softwood Lumber Trade Council Opposes US Tariffs Earlier this year, the United States Department of Commerce (USDC) implemented tariffs of 19 per cent - 24 per cent on lumber from Alberta that is imported into the States. In April of this year, the USDC published a preliminary countervailing duty determination, allowing U.S. Customs and Border Protection to collect cash deposits equivalent to the applicable preliminary countervailing duty rate for softwood lumber products, as determined in the preliminary ruling.

Various legal panels, including NAFTA, WTO and others, have upheld Canadian arguments in the past.” The Government of Alberta backs ASLTC.

In response to the dispute, Paul Whittaker, co-chair of the Alberta Softwood Lumber Trade Council (ASLTC), released the following statement:

“We stand shoulder to shoulder with Alberta’s forest workers, their families and communities that rely on a strong forest industry,” Minister of Agriculture and Forestry Oneil Carlier said in a public media statement. “Our government is working closely with the federal government and our forest industry to defend Alberta jobs and fair market access. Together with affected provinces and Ottawa, we are developing plans to help support Albertans in addressing the possible impacts of a prolonged trade dispute.

“We are disappointed that the United States has chosen this course of action. Their accusations are baseless and unfounded. Alberta’s timber pricing practices have repeatedly been found to be fair and competitive by international tribunals. We plan to work closely with the Government of Canada and the Government of Alberta to vigorously challenge these tariffs and fight for Alberta jobs that depend on a healthy, sustainable forest sector. All options, including litigation, are on the table. We expect to be fully vindicated.”

“This is the fifth time since 1982 that the U.S. has investigated alleged Canadian lumber subsidies. In each case, international tribunals have ruled in Canada’s favour. We are confident we will prevail again. We know that Alberta’s forest industry relies significantly on exports. That is why we are actively pursuing new markets outside the U.S. to ensure our products are sold around the world so we can continue diversifying our economy, creating jobs and making life better for Alberta’s forest communities.

The ASLTC statement also noted that:

“We believe that a new and lasting deal is needed and we want to ensure that any deal supports our forest industry and the workers who support their families in this important industry.”

America is Alberta’s largest softwood lumber market; naturally, this decision is not sitting well with Alberta companies involved in the trade. In Alberta, forestry is a mainstay for 70 communities, creates thousands of jobs and is valued at approximately $5 billion.

“Arguments that U.S. producers make in regard to Alberta’s timber pricing system have consistently been found to be erroneous. They argue that producers in Alberta and other parts of Canada do not pay market rates for timber. This does not take into account many costs, including reforestation, land management, road building, environmental monitoring and site reclamation, that Canadian producers must pay. U.S. producers typically do not do these things or pay for them.

To monitor this situation as it continues to unfold, visit www.international.gc.ca/controls-controles/softwoodbois_oeuvr.

LEFT: HONOURABLE ONEIL CARLIER (ND), MINISTER OF AGRICULTURE AND FORESTRY, DEPUTY GOVERNMENT HOUSE LEADER. RIGHT: PAUL WHITTAKER, PRESIDENT & CEO AT ALBERTA FOREST PRODUCTS ASSOCIATION, AND CO-CHAIR OF THE ALBERTA SOFTWOOD LUMBER TRADE COUNCIL

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Enerkem Sets Record for Low Carbon Intensity Enerkem is an innovative company that creates biofuels and renewable chemicals from waste products by converting nonrecyclable municipal solid waste into methanol, ethanol and other widely used chemicals. The company is headquartered in Montreal and has a full-scale commercial facility in Edmonton. The Edmonton facility started production in 2015 and has the capacity to produce 38 million litres (10 million gallons) of methanol and ethanol per year. Enerkem’s Edmonton plant is a collaboration among the company, the City of Edmonton and Alberta Innovates – Energy and Environment Solutions, making it the world’s first major collaboration between a city and a biofuel producer. Both sides hope this collaborative model will become one other communities adopt so that more sustainable ways of waste management will take place across the globe. “We are proud that municipalities around the world are looking at the City of Edmonton and the Enerkem facility to see how they, too, can divert waste from landfills while producing clean fuels and chemicals through this innovative technology,” Mayor Don Iveson noted of the collaboration. Earlier this year, Enerkem received the lowest carbon intensity value ever issued by the British Columbia Ministry of Energy and Mines for its ethanol product under the Renewable and Low Carbon Fuel Requirements Regulation. Enerkem’s waste-based ethanol is -55 gCO2e/MJ while regular gasoline has an intensity of +88 gCO2e/MJ. The recognition by the British Columbia ministry provides a strong opening for entry into that province. Carbon intensity measures GHG emissions emitted when producing and consuming a transportation fuel. The intensity is measured in grams of carbon dioxide equivalent per megajoule of energy (gCO2e/MJ) and includes all aspects of extracting, producing, transporting, and consuming a unit of energy of transportation fuel. Basically, the measure accounts for the full life cycle of the product.

“We are thrilled to be recognized for having the lowest carbon transportation fuel solution ever approved by British Columbia under its Low Carbon Fuel Regulation,” says Vincent Chornet, president and chief executive officer of Enerkem. “This clearly demonstrates that Enerkem’s clean technology and advanced biofuels provide significant greenhouse gas emission reductions. With the worldwide adoption of Renewable and Low Carbon Fuel Standards and the move toward a low carbon global economy, we look forward to working with other jurisdictions in helping them meet their greenhouse gas targets.” According to the British Columbia Renewable and Low Carbon Fuel Requirements Regulation, fuel suppliers must decrease their average 2010 carbon intensity levels by 10 per cent by 2020. Enerkem’s technology not only reduces GHG emission, it also saves non-recyclable, non-compostable household waste from winding up in landfills, and the company doesn’t plan to limit their eco-activities to Canada. The company has submitted preliminary plans to Inver Grove Heights (Dakota County, Minnesota) and, if approved, will build the first garbage-to-ethanol plant in America. The American facility, if successful, could handle all of Dakota’s 242,000 annual tons of un-recycled garbage. To learn more about Enerkem, visit www.enerkem.com. ABOVE: ENERKEM’S FULL-SCALE WASTE-TO-BIOFUELS FACILITY IN EDMONTON, ALBERTA. PHOTO SOURCE: CURTIS TRENT

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FINDING THE WAY // OIL SANDS

Finding

THE WAY ALBERTA’S ECONOMY IS MAKING A COMEBACK, BUT MANY CHALLENGES REMAIN.

BY NERISSA MCNAUGHTON

T

he Alberta Government Treasury Board and Finance report, Alberta Economy – Indicators at a Glance (May 2017) notes that the province’s GDP tumbled by 3.8 per cent in 2016; however, the Alberta Activity Index rose 2.2 per cent in February, which strongly suggests a return to economic growth. Gains were seen in employment (8 per cent year-over year), the employment rate dropped to 6.5 per cent, the amount of active drilling rigs tripled since last year and retail sales grew 7.2 per cent (y/y). One place where economic recovery is clearly evident is in Alberta’s Industrial Heartland. Created in 1998 by the municipalities that have land within the Heartland, Alberta’s Industrial Heartland Association (AIHA) promotes responsible development within the region. “The region (Heartland) experienced a slow and steady pace of growth during the economic downturn in a variety of sectors and projects,” says Ed Gibbons, chair, AIHA. “Projects

already under construction continued as planned: the $8.5 billion Sturgeon Refinery, Pembina’s Canadian Diluent Hub, Pembina’s fractionation expansion projects (RFS 2 and RFS 3), Keyera’s fractionation expansion project (KFS 2) as well as the addition of a deethanizer and Plains Midstream’s fractionation expansion.” Gibbons continues, “Two major propane processing projects continued to move forward (facilities by Inter Pipeline Ltd. and Pembina Pipeline Corporation). The combined value of these projects is approximately $6 billion. These companies will capitalize on the abundant, cost advantaged propane that’s available in the region. “Inter Pipeline made a major acquisition with the purchase of Williams Energy Canada’s assets, citing the great growth opportunity in Alberta/Canada. There are investments in transportation, logistics and storage facilities, such as the Pembina rail expansion, the Alberta Midland Rail Terminal and the ATCO Energy Solutions salt cavern storage expansion.

BUSINESSINEDMONTON.COM // BUSINESS IN EDMONTON // JULY 2017

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FINDING THE WAY // OIL SANDS

“THE ASSOCIATION CONDUCTS DETAILED STUDIES ON THE COMPETITIVENESS OF ALBERTA’S INDUSTRIAL HEARTLAND RELATIVE TO OTHER JURISDICTIONS, WHICH CAN SUPPORT POLICY DEVELOPMENT BY GOVERNMENTS AS WELL AS INVESTMENT DECISIONS BY THE PRIVATE SECTOR.” ~ ED GIBBONS

“It is important to note that the slowdown of Alberta’s economy has helped slow construction cost escalations. This helps boost the overall competitiveness of the region, and it will ultimately help make a stronger case for future investment,” says Gibbons. “Alberta’s Industrial Heartland Association is very active year-round in encouraging sustainable investment in the region. The Association conducts detailed studies on the competitiveness of Alberta’s Industrial Heartland relative to other jurisdictions, which can support policy development by governments as well as investment decisions by the private sector,” Gibbons concludes. Things may be thriving in the big picture, and in the Capital City, many companies that pared down to make operations as lean as possible during the downturn are gearing up for a comeback; but several challenges still remain – especially for small-to-medium business owners in Alberta. Universe Machine Corporation has provided services and products for a variety of industries, but primarily for the oilfield sector, since 1965. Ron Feigel, business development, has a bird’s eye, and starkly realistic, view of

what the tail end of the recession looks like for small-tomedium enterprises. “Oil prices are not improving as analysts predicted, investment in Alberta has declined dramatically and moved elsewhere and few, if any, new resource projects are moving forward. Many small manufacturing and service businesses in Alberta are still struggling to adjust and cope with our new Provincial and Federal Governments. Until oil prices show sustained improvement and our governments become more pro-business, it’s unlikely investment dollars will flow back into Alberta to create jobs and boost our economy,” says Feigel. “Our Alberta economy especially – and really, most of Canada’s economy – has been built on natural resources and is still reliant on them to provide our wealth and future, whether we like it or not. The reality is that we are fortunate to live in a country that is rich in numerous natural resources. To not take advantage of our resource base and to help secure the future for our next generations by utilizing these riches wisely would be utterly foolish.

ABOVE: ED GIBBONS, CHAIR, ALBERTA’S INDUSTRIAL HEARTLAND ASSOCIATION.

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JULY 2017 // BUSINESS IN EDMONTON // BUSINESSINEDMONTON.COM


FINDING THE WAY // OIL SANDS

BURKE INTERIOR SYSTEMS LTD.

THANK YOU WE APPRECIATE YOUR GENEROUS SUPPORT

“All of our governments need to support Canadian resource industries. This will encourage investment, strengthen businesses and keep and grow jobs – which is positive for all of Canada. The wealth generated can be put to work diversifying businesses and would set in motion a prudent strategy for developing cleaner energy alternatives on parallel platforms. “Universe Machine Corporation and our affiliated businesses are all still operating well below capacity. As we get closer to capacity, Universe will again invest in capital expenditures. Generally, we have a more positive attitude that the future still looks bright, and confidence is certainly returning. “A common saying is that the best cure for low oil prices is low oil prices! We feel supply and demand for oil and other natural resources will balance out again in several years, and governments will change or adjust for the better, but in the meantime, we have to continue running, remaining lean and efficient while keeping our expectations realistic.” Universe Machine’s view is one built on decades of experience. The key to surviving a downturn, Feigel notes, is to be aware and prepared. “Industry downturns are not unexpected, and fairly major ones seem to occur every 7-10 years,” Feigel points out. “Universe Machine has been in business 52 years and has likely experienced half a dozen significant downturns. This economic downturn was not difficult to anticipate, although it’s not really

10809 182 St NW Edmonton, AB, T5S 1J5 Tel: 780-483-1454 • Fax: 780 484-9515

www.burkeinterior.ca ABOVE: RON FEIGEL, BUSINESS DEVELOPMENT, UNIVERSE MACHINE CORPORATION.

BUSINESSINEDMONTON.COM // BUSINESS IN EDMONTON // JULY 2017

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FINDING THE WAY // OIL SANDS

“A COMMON SAYING IS THAT THE BEST CURE FOR LOW OIL PRICES IS LOW OIL PRICES! WE FEEL SUPPLY AND DEMAND FOR OIL AND OTHER NATURAL RESOURCES WILL BALANCE OUT AGAIN IN SEVERAL YEARS, AND GOVERNMENTS WILL CHANGE OR ADJUST FOR THE BETTER, BUT IN THE MEANTIME, WE HAVE TO CONTINUE RUNNING, REMAINING LEAN AND EFFICIENT WHILE KEEPING OUR EXPECTATIONS REALISTIC.” ~ RON FEIGEL possible to know how deep it would be or how long it might drag on. Oil prices started dropping in 2014, and because they had been high for about five years, this was an early warning sign that the chances of further decline was high. “By 2014, Universe Machine was already preparing to run leaner by not replacing staff who left the organization or retired. Inventories were pared down and capital expenditures were cancelled or deferred. We also looked at the history of other jurisdictions where governments changed. With new governments both federally and provincially in 2015, we predicted the changes would also bring a high likelihood of economic difficulties and further turmoil for our industries and businesses. Many changes in governments worried us even more, so we stepped up our efforts in 2015 to downsize more rapidly and reduce costs wherever possible. “Universe Machine Corporation has always operated prudently and grown conservatively, but steadily, to meet our customers’ needs, but without taking on excessive risk or debt. Our company also recognizes the value of our highly

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skilled and loyal employees; without them, we certainly could not be this successful. “This downturn, regretfully, forced us to reduce staff by more than one-third, but we have not only managed to keep our long-term employees working, but wages and benefits for existing staff were also not reduced. “During this downturn, we have shifted resources into research and development and into developing new offerings, adding or improving services and creating efficiencies that will help benefit both Universe and our customers. “These are all factors that have contributed to our longterm success, and we’ve never had a losing year since being founded in 1965 by Kurt Feigel Sr.” Each recession changes Alberta and the people that create businesses within the province. While the slow climb upwards has begun, obstacles still remain; but the passion and dedication of Alberta’s entrepreneurs, and those that choose to invest in our province, remains as optimistic as ever, and that’s how and why Alberta keeps finding a way, even when the way is difficult.


K-DAYS: LOOKING FORWARD, STAYING GROUNDED // K-DAYS

K-DAYS: BY ZACHARY EDWARDS

LOOKING FORWARD, STAYING GROUNDED

HOW (AND WHY) K-DAYS LOOKS DIFFERENT TODAY THAN IT DID 138 YEARS AGO

F

aced with a post-Oilers Northlands, this year’s K-Days is a testament to the festival’s longevity and ability to change with the times.

When K-Days closed its doors on July 31 last year, there was a possibility that it wasn’t just for the final time that year, but the final time – period. With Rogers Place set to open in a month, Northlands was facing mounting pressure to transform. The way forward seemed desperate. Edmonton Sun columnist Graham Hicks called for Northlands to reduce its “operations down to its EXPO Convention Centre and K-Days, then shut down/sell off everything else,” a selfproclaimed “cruel” option. Northlands CEO Tim Reid saw an even more drastic future, one where, without the help of the City to ease the non-profit’s mounting debts and dwindling

income opportunities, the 2016 K-Days festival “may very well be our last.” Today, it’s hard to remember that K-Days was one step away from ending its nearly 140-year legacy, especially as the gates are set to open once again later this month, but the threat was very real; and not simply because of Rogers Place. While K-Days’ own attendance numbers are rising steadily, from 785,290 in 2015 to 803,087 last year, summer festivals around the province are seeing fewer people through the gates. The Calgary Stampede, for example, hit a 22-year low last year, a seven per cent drop from 2015. Edmonton’s own Servus Heritage Festival has also seen a steady decrease in numbers, dropping from an estimated 410,000 in 2013 to around 300,000 last year. With a very different, Oilers-free

ABOVE: THE MIDWAY AT K-DAYS 2016. PHOTO SOURCE: NORTHLANDS

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K-DAYS: LOOKING FORWARD, STAYING GROUNDED // K-DAYS

Northlands this year, K-Days 2017 is a litmus test for a new way forward. A New Kind of K-Days With Rogers Place and Ice District moving Northlands’ major income downtown, Tim Reid and his team at Northlands are striking a balance between what’s worked in the past and what can entice newcomers to try out K-Days. “What we have done is listen to what our guests tell us. We evaluate what works, what doesn’t and try to bring new elements all the while showing value for dollar,” Caiti Farquharson, Northlands public relations specialist, says. “We strive to bring in some unique new pieces every year while retaining the traditional fair qualities that our guests know and love.” This year, that means giving attendees more bang for their buck and bringing in new events that celebrate the many facets of Edmonton and its surrounding area. “A ABOVE: BUYING RIDE PASSES IN ADVANCE IS A GREAT WAY TO SAVE DURING THIS YEAR’S K-DAYS. INSET: CAITI FARQUHARSON, NORTHLANDS PUBLIC RELATIONS SPECIALIST. PHOTO SOURCE: NORTHLANDS

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JULY 2017 // BUSINESS IN EDMONTON // BUSINESSINEDMONTON.COM


K-DAYS: LOOKING FORWARD, STAYING GROUNDED // K-DAYS

“THE ACTION IS INCLUDED IN YOUR GATE ADMISSION [BUT] K-DAYS RODEO SEAT AVAILABILITY WILL FILL UP QUICKLY, SO IT’S IMPORTANT TO OPT-IN FOR RODEO EARLY – THE BEST WAY TO DO THIS IS BY PURCHASING AN ADVANCE K-DAYS GATE ADMISSION TO GUARANTEE YOURSELF A SEAT.” ~ CAITI FARQUHARSON large portion of our programming is included in gate admission,” Farquharson says. “Once you are in the gates you have access to the full lineup of concerts, as well as entertainment on the midway and in venues such as the Edmonton EXPO Centre and Northlands Coliseum. K-Days is the ultimate staycation destination.” While attendees can expect all the Klondike Day classics (green onion cakes, anyone?), people can expect brand new

experiences this year, including the new K-Days rodeo, hosted in conjunction with the Canadian Professional Rodeo Association (CPRA). “The K-Days Rodeo is the richest CPRA sanctioned one-header rodeo in North America, with a total purse of more than $400,000,” Farquharson says. “The action is included in your gate admission [but] K-Days Rodeo seat availability will fill up quickly, so it’s important to opt-in for rodeo early – the best way to do this is by purchasing an advance K-Days gate admission to guarantee yourself a seat.”

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K-DAYS: LOOKING FORWARD, STAYING GROUNDED // K-DAYS

The rodeo is part of an effort to expand and cross-promote. As the CRPA’s operations manager Kyle Rock explains, “Faced with some uncertainty as to the future of Northlands Coliseum and the possibility of the Canadian Finals Rodeo moving to another venue, the CPRA and Northlands wanted to add another facet to their partnership. [We] decided that producing the richest one-head rodeo in North America would be a perfect way to do just that.” The event is also a chance to introduce new people to rodeos. “Rodeo celebrates our western heritage and lifestyle. A good portion of K-Days patrons are probably not what we would call ‘typical’ rodeo fans,” Rock says. “This gives us an opportunity to bring our great sport to a whole new demographic and hopefully make some lifelong rodeo fans. We hope that the rodeo will entertain as well as educate some of the newer fans, many of whom may be first-time rodeo spectators.” A Celebration of Edmonton’s Diversity and History The chance to reach new people is a similar sentiment in the other activities coming to this year’s K-Days, in particular the competitive Pow Wow and activities celebrating Edmonton’s LGBTQ+ community. Working directly with Edmonton’s Pride Festival Society, K-Days will be hosting Pride-friendly events this year, including additional musical acts and “additional programming that reflects the spirit and diversity of our LGBTQ+ community,” according to Farquharson. In addition to specialty programming and spaces dedicated to Edmonton’s LGBTQ+ community, K-Days will also help raise money for community members in Alberta, through the power of socks. “We will have a special program where people can purchase special socks and, when you wear those socks to K-Days, you get access to the grounds,” Angela Bennett, executive director of the Edmonton Pride Festival Society, explains. “All the proceeds from the socks will go to supporting LGBTQ+ youth in rural Alberta.” The partnership between Pride and Northlands began two years ago, when Pride and Tim Reid began discussing Vision 2020, Northlands’s vision for the future.

“Northlands is doing a lot to reach out to the community and collaborate, with us and the local Indigenous community,” she says. “We’ve been working with Tim Reid for the past couple of years and our involvement came from there. We’ll continue to forge these new partnerships and see how we can collaborate.” Another partnership that attendees will be able to experience is the Pow Wow. Now in its second year, the Pow Wow is hosted in partnership with Alexis Nakota Sioux Nation. This year’s Pow Wow will be competitive, a shift Farquharson hopes will “elevate the stakes and will bring exceptional talent to our grounds.” “We are honoured to be working with our partners from Treaty Six Nations and Alexis Nakota Sioux Nation,” says Farquharson. “This is a cultural experience, and we are committed to establishing an experience that is authentic and approved by our indigenous partners.” This year’s K-Days could be one of the biggest summer events of the year and has the potential to be the largest K-Days in history, but it will also be a test for Northlands’ new, Oilers-free, status quo. The new Northlands has truly struck out on its own and, if this year’s plans are any indication, the new way forward is paved with plenty of potential and a lot of success. ABOVE: FIREWORKS LIGHT UP AN EVENING AT LAST YEAR’S K-DAYS. INSET: KYLE ROCK, OPERATIONS MANAGER FOR THE CANADIAN PROFESSIONAL RODEO ASSOCIATION. PHOTO SOURCE: NORTHLANDS

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JULY 2017 // BUSINESS IN EDMONTON // BUSINESSINEDMONTON.COM


2017 Platinum Partner

Gold Partners

Official Airline Partner


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Honouring Edmonton’s Visionary Business Leaders BY NERISSA MCNAUGHTON

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usiness in Edmonton is pleased to celebrate five years of honouring Edmonton’s top Leaders. These are the men and woman that have created successful companies while showing integrity and initiative in everything they do, giving back to the community and grooming the next generation of entrepreneurs. The judges for the 2017 Leaders competition are: Dustin Sundby, managing partner – Edmonton region, MNP; Dale Beaudry, managing director, high growth market – North, business and agriculture, ATB; and Elsie Elford, dean, School of Business, MacEwan University.

The Judges

Beaudry concurs that “Edmonton is an outstanding market. It gives the people the ability to fulfill their dreams and grow their business beyond their expectations.”

DUSTIN SUNDBY

“A great business leader is one who has passion, curiosity, focuses on what is essential, recruits/ trains/empowers and surrounds themselves with a great team,” says Sundby. Beaudry agrees, “A great business leader brings out the very best in others, assisting their team(s) in achieving outstanding results. The individual is a strong connector, translator and collaborator, and is agile. Great leaders are able to set a vivid and compelling vision, and to set clear expectations. They lead continuous learning to accelerate growth and agility. They notice others and celebrate successes with their teams.” “From my experience,” adds Elford, “the really great business leaders are those that make a positive impact in the community. They understand that there is a higher mission than the profit motive. They are committed to ethical business practices and to making the community a better place. I reference the words of Dr. J.W. Grant MacEwan – ‘leaving the vineyard better than they found it’.”

“Operating a business is not easy,” smiles Sundby. “Thank you for taking the risks associated with that. Your success has created a better community and provided opportunities for so many people living in the Capital Region.” ELSIE ELFORD

DALE BEAUDRY

“Edmonton is positioned very favourably,” notes Sundby. “It is one of the largest cities in Canada, which provides the Gold Partners

“A young and vibrant population and an incredible spirit of innovation” is what Elford is pleased to see in Edmonton. “Post-secondary institutions are part of this entrepreneurial spirit through the recent development of innovation/entrepreneurship hubs on campuses throughout the city.” The three judges thank all the Leaders for making Edmonton a better business community.

The judges agree that the Capital City is a great place for business.

Platinum Partner

required infrastructure for entrepreneurs. It is also the gateway to the North, which presents a unique opportunity.”

“I was honoured to have the privilege of reviewing and learning more about the business leaders within the Edmonton market place,” notes Beaudry. “I was in awe of how these leaders not only give back to their industries, but to the community as well through sponsorship, donation of time and manpower. It is also interesting to see their determination and pure grit to succeed at what they set out to accomplish. Edmonton’s business community is in great hands.” “Congratulations on contributing to the triple bottom line in our community,” praises Elford. “It never ceases to amaze me to discover the talent and entrepreneurial spirit in this city. From new business leaders just making their mark in our community to well-established companies that are testing the boundaries of international growth and innovation, you are building an exciting future for the Capital Region!” Official Airline Partner


Kirby Anderson Company: Alberta Sound Group of Companies

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lberta Sound Group of Companies is a one-stop shop for general construction needs in Edmonton and area. With a keen interest in multiplex job sites, Kirby Anderson started his company by targeting this market and has grown Alberta Sound into one of the largest exterior finishing companies, working on multiplex sites in Edmonton. The company is also driving towards becoming a leader in renovating condo sites. “At Alberta Sound Group of Companies, our success is thanks to a wonderful team of people, and the loyal customers that support us.� ~ Kirby Anderson, Owner

Company snapshot

12 Years in Business

115 employees

Real Estate Industry Sector Photo by EPIC Photography Inc.

Platinum Partner

Gold Partners

Official Airline Partner


Congratulations to the recipients of the 2017 Leaders Awards. Thank you to all our staff and clients who help make this all possible. • Alberta Sound Exteriors Ltd. • Alberta Sound Framing Ltd. • Alberta Sound Construction and Management Ltd. • Alberta Sound Properties Ltd.

6235 Wagner Road, Edmonton, AB T6E 4N4 tel: (780) 430-9353 • fax: 780-430-9392 absoundexteriors.com


Marie Soprovich Company: Aquarian Renovations

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start up with an arts-based focus, Aquarian marketed its work across Canada and the U.S., even having products in the Adventureland Store in Disneyland. A few construction projects were on the side, but in 1998, the company went into home renovation in a serious way. Now the customer-centric inventive design-built home renovator with a boutique style of construction is an award winner with an outstanding reputation. “Success is a journey, not a destination. Success for me is about finding my courage and moving forward when situations in life and business are deeply challenging, holding a vision that I believe in, and working with an amazing team of people who also believe in and actualize that vision. Success is about knowing when to ask for help and surrounding myself with others who also work to make the world a better place. Be present, show up, live fully – that is success.” ~ Marie Soprovich, President & CEO

Company snapshot

26 Years in Business

20

employees

Custom Home Renovations Industry Sector Photo by EPIC Photography Inc.

Platinum Partner

Gold Partners

Official Airline Partner


THIS IS YOUR BOTTOM LINE. AND HELPING YOU GROW IT IS WHAT WE DO.

ZGM.CA


George Cantalini Company: Beaverbrook Group of Companies

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he Beaverbrook Group of Companies is a fully integrated residential real estate company with three entities: Beaverbrook Communities, Dolce Vita Homes and InHouse by Beaverbrook. An award-winning land developer and home builder operating in the Edmonton Capital Region and Fort McMurray, the company’s business model is to be innovative and cutting edge, with projects and homes that inspire and incorporate unique elements. “My greatest inspiration is my mentor and former business partner, the late Tony Cairo. He was a lawyer and a man of great character, wit, intelligence and integrity, and I aspired to earn the same respect of others. He looked at risk very differently than I did; but this continues to inspire me to analyze the tough decisions before me in the way that he taught me. I respect him greatly and always ask myself whether my actions would make him proud.” ~ George Cantalini, CEO

Company snapshot

21 Years in Business

90

employees

Real Estate Industry Sector Photo by EPIC Photography Inc.

Platinum Partner

Gold Partners

Official Airline Partner


THANK YOU TO OUR AMAZING TEAM, CLIENTS AND VENDORS FOR ENABLING US TO BECOME LEADERS IN THE REAL ESTATE INDUSTRY.

WE ARE A FULLY INTERGRATED REAL ESTATE COMPANY

ARE YOU INTERESTED IN:

A LOT

A NEW HOME

A CONDO

BEAVERBROOK.CA

DOLCEVITAHOMES.CA

INHOUSEYEG.CA


Dr. Jianhua Zhu Company: BioNeutra Global Corporation

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ioNeutra Global Corporation is an award winning life sciences company with a patented process and 30-country approval of its lead product, VitaFiber™ IMO (low calorie, natural sweetener, prebiotic dietary fibre used by B2B makers of health bars, beverages and ice cream). This year, BioNeutra plans a retail roll-out of its product. To meet phenomenal growth, a production plant housing a suite of three labs, a quality control centre, training and corporate headquarters, is being built in Edmonton. “I owe my university professors a great debt. They inspired me to become a scientist to investigate how science can help improve public health. I began a 20-year journey to develop a patented process to turn cereal grains into a low calorie sweetener, prebiotic, dietary fibre with some health benefits called VitaFiber.” ~ Dr. Jianhua Zhu, Founder, President & CEO

Company snapshot

14 Years in Business

34

employees

Biotechnology Industry Sector Photo by EPIC Photography Inc.

Platinum Partner

Gold Partners

Official Airline Partner


Congratulations to the recipients of the 2017 Leaders Awards!

AMVIC Licensed


Jayson Barclay Company: Carlson Construction Ltd

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arlson Construction is an Edmonton-based service oriented construction company, founded in 1927. The company operates as construction manager, general contractor and design builder, providing commercial, industrial, light industrial, tenant improvement, public/ institutional, renovations/additions and self-performed concrete work. This year marks Carlson’s 90th anniversary, and the entire company is looking forward to celebrating the history that established Carlson as a leader in the Alberta construction industry. “Once I realized that being a successful business owner or entrepreneur didn’t mean I had to do it all on my own, my work no longer felt like work. It is through the incredible support and guidance of my peers and colleagues that I’ve been able to shape my career into what it is today.” ~ Jayson Barclay, Vice President, Project Development

Company snapshot

90 Years in Business

100 employees

Construction Industry Sector Photo by EPIC Photography Inc.

Platinum Partner

Gold Partners

Official Airline Partner


CHOOSE FROM THREE CLASSES OF COMFORT ON INTERNATIONAL FLIGHTS.* With Economy, Premium Economy and International Business Class categories, there’s a perfect comfort level for every traveller.

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Tim Latimer Company: Cashco Financial

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im Latimer seized the opportunity to create a new business model when impending regulatory measures threatened to destroy the alternative lending industry, and with it, the opportunity to serve the underbanked. In early 2017, Cashco made an historic agreement with ATB to provide meaningful savings and chequing accounts created especially for Alberta clients. Banking services and the pivot to providing longer-term lower interest installment loans over payday loans is driving Cashco to become a world-class alternative financial service provider in both its brick-and-mortar and online locations. “I realized early in my career that my success and personal happiness would arise from what I could give to others rather than what I could get from them. I’ve learned that leadership means to listen before I speak, to be empathetic and genuine and to try to connect on a deeper, emotional level.� ~ Tim Latimer, CEO

Company snapshot

8

Years in Business

220 employees

Alternative Financial Services

Industry Sector Photo by EPIC Photography Inc.

Platinum Partner

Gold Partners

Official Airline Partner


Ryan Vestby Company: CompuVision

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ompuVision changes the way businesses use technology. By inheriting the risk of technology, they have created predictable results for businesses to flourish. CompuVision was built around the focus of service delivery. With a 14-year evolution from tech to company CEO, Ryan Vestby and his team now carry the goal to “Reduce the Chaos in 500 Companies by 2025.” CompuVision is well on its way, with its recipe to create a predictable result for their clients. “I’ve had a unique journey from employee to employer in my 20 years with CompuVision. When I started my career as the third employee hired, I never dreamed that one day I would become the CEO and be responsible for over 140 employees across North America.” ~ Ryan Vestby, CEO

Company snapshot

25 Years in Business

140 employees

Technology Industry Sector Photo by EPIC Photography Inc.

Platinum Partner

Gold Partners

Official Airline Partner


SHARING YOUR VISION. BUILDING SUCCESS.

We are more than builders. We are solution providers who work with our partners to understand their goals, overcome challenges, and deliver an outstanding experience. PCL is proud to be part of Edmonton’s business community, and proud to continue working with the leaders in our city.

Watch us build at PCL.com


Dan Duckering Company: Duckering’s Transport Ltd

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ounded in 1971 by Clarence Duckering, Duckering’s Transport started as a carrier between Red Deer and Edmonton. Now in its third generation as a family business, with branches in Edmonton, Red Deer, Calgary, Medicine Hat, Brooks, Lethbridge, Camrose and Fort McMurray, Duckering’s provides daily overnight service to all points, with an aim to have complete provincial coverage with overnight service from border to border. “My defining moment came when I was in a dark place and a mentor of mine was challenging my mindset. He said, ‘It doesn’t matter where you are coming from; it matters where you are going!’ I posted that on the wall in my office and it serves as an encouragement to me and to the people I work with. Amongst the best laid plans, life happens; how we choose to deal with that, pull ourselves up and move on is what really will defines our future.” ~ Dan Duckering, President & CEO

Company snapshot

46 Years in Business

100 employees

Transportation Industry Sector Photo by EPIC Photography Inc.

Platinum Partner

Gold Partners

Official Airline Partner


On behalf Of the entire Scandi family, we wOuld like tO cOngratulate all Of the hard-wOrking

leaderS in edmOntOn! ruSSell hay, PreSident

terry hay, ceO

CELEBRATING 60 YEARS OF CLEANING EXCELLENCE


Kevin Kuly Company: ENGAGE Construction Management & Consulting Inc

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construction management firm offering select owners’ groups construction management services on an ‘agent’ basis, ENGAGE’s model places the control of projects back in the hands of owners, deviating from the EPC/EPCM model. With extensive experience providing construction and project management services for industrial facility maintenance and the heavy industrial construction industry, ENGAGE ensures projects/ turnarounds are executed safely, within budget and on schedule. “The defining moment for me was seeing what started as an idea turn into a culture within ENGAGE. Our employees possess a very strong pride of ownership that resonates in long-term relations with our valued clients, how we interact with each other and the multiple charities we support.” ~ Kevin Kuly, President

Company snapshot

5

Years in Business

24

employees

Asset Management & Oil and Gas Industry Sector Photo by EPIC Photography Inc.

Platinum Partner

Gold Partners

Official Airline Partner


Ryan McGovern, General Manager. Photo by Smiley Eyes Photography.

WINDSHIP MAKES YOUR ADVERTISING SOAR

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ow do companies in North America rise above the competition? With Windship® Advertising’s innovative displays, banners and large-scale printing for signs, building wraps, flags, tents and inflatables. “We are pleased to be celebrating more than 35 years of excellence in advertising,” says Ryan McGovern, General Manager. “Our high-quality displays effectively drive traffic to our client’s businesses and ultimately boosts sales. It’s impossible not to notice our eye-catching work! We couldn’t be prouder of our displays in Edmonton and around the world.” McGovern is a third-generation entrepreneur, stepping into a leadership role at Windship on short notice, when the previous general manager retired overnight due to a cancer diagnosis. Building on the work of his predecessors, McGovern has largely contributed to the company’s success. Like their products, the company is strong, durable and resilient. “In addition to our unmatched level of creativity in building truly effective advertising products for our clients, Windship has also invested heavily in research and development, which has led to the proprietary Windcoat V® vinyl and ultraviolet protectants we use in all of our outdoor displays. Not only does each client get their own account manager, customized campaign and high-quality products, those products are also guaranteed to have a long and vibrant life.”

This business model of superior products combined with personalized service, all backed by the most creative minds in the industry finding new ways to promote established brands, has enabled Windship to design advertising for the best-known corporations in the world, such as: Ford, adidas®, Budweiser, Lay’s, ROGERS™, Tim Hortons®, Sony Corporation, Android, McDonalds and many more. “Our philosophy includes continuous learning,” McGovern points out. “In order to provide the best service while improving industry standards, gaining feedback and staying on top of the latest technologies, Windship works with several organizations. We offer special pricing to non-profit organizations, and we are members of the Advertising Club of Edmonton, Edmonton Chamber of Commerce, the Speciality Graphic Imaging Association, and the Inflatable Advertising Dealers Association. We are proud of the community we live and work in, and like to help out whenever possible.” In a world where companies of all sizes have to stand out to get noticed, Windship is leading the way. A solid foundation spanning decades proves that they understand the evershifting advertising market, and the constant innovation means a high ROI on investment for each product and service. Don’t let your competition get above you. Let Windship Advertising elevate your business to where it belongs.

18119 107 Ave, Edmonton, AB T5S 1K4 Phone: (780) 438-0111 Visit www.windship.com to see their impressive portfolio of advertising displays and print products.


Mike Rogiani Company: The Ice Cream Depot

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ce cream! A dynamic product that needs to adapt to trends in the marketplace – this is how Mike Rogiani has approached his business as he’s grown his company over the last 36 years. A distributor of ice cream products to convenience and grocery stores in Western Canada and the Territories, The Ice Cream Depot, with its responsive, consumer-driven supply chain and continual offering of new confections, enjoys sweet success. Now available is a new product: Mike’s Ice Cream! “My career can be compared to my favourite flavour of ice cream: rocky road. That’s dark chocolate with a ribbon of marshmallow and walnuts running through it. Dark moments, but a continuous stream of sweetness and light, with a few stumbling blocks thrown in along the path. If there is one thing being the ice cream king has taught me, it’s never quit; never give up…and eat a scoop of ice cream every day!” ~ Mike Rogiani, Owner & President

Company snapshot

36 Years in Business

65

employees

Consumer Products Industry Sector Photo by EPIC Photography Inc.

Platinum Partner

Gold Partners

Official Airline Partner


GREAT

CANADIAN

#CANADABIG


Doug Laird Company: McLean & Shaw Insurance Brokers

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cLean & Shaw Insurance Brokers is an independent general insurance brokerage specializing in commercial, home and auto insurance. In business for over 60 years, this brokerage firm has been built on a strong referral platform: word-of-mouth endorsement is a privilege Doug Laird will never take for granted. Delivering premium insurance products at highly competitive pricing with superior coverage and the foundation of unforgettable service keeps McLean & Shaw in the forefront of the industry! “My son opened a card from my father and a quote inside read ‘Positive thinking will let you use the ability which you have, and that is AWESOME.’ I thought of the times my dad provided me with the same kinds of messages and realized he had been doing this for my entire life; always encouraging, never criticizing. Those moments and messages built my foundation for leadership. My father is the person who influenced and inspired me, and has had the greatest impact on my life.”~ Doug Laird, President

Company snapshot

61 Years in Business

26

employees

Insurance Industry Sector Photo by EPIC Photography Inc.

Platinum Partner

Gold Partners

Official Airline Partner


We know what it takes to be a leader. We work with a whole network of them every day.

At Intact Insurance we work with a strong network of brokers across the country to provide property and casualty insurance to close to 4 million customers. Brokers like McLean & Shaw Insurance, who are leaders in our community and experts at what they do. As the largest insurance company in Canada, we’re proud that together with them, we’re able to provide the responsive service, comfort and continuity you deserve. Because at Intact Insurance, we believe that insurance is not about things; insurance is about people.

www.intactinsurance.com

HOME • CAR • BUSINESS

The BIP logo is a registered trademark of the Insurance Brokers Association of Canada (IBAC). All other trade-marks are property of Intact Financial Corporation used under license. © 2017, Intact Insurance Company.


Paul Burgess Company: Mud, Sweat and Gears

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ud, Sweat and Gears offers all of the top performing brands in the cycling, ski and snowboard industries. After 15 years of operating his home-based bike business, Paul Burgess opened his first retail location. Recognizing the need to become a year-round operation, he plunged right into the winter snow sports industry as well. Mud, Sweat and Gears now operates in three locations: Sherwood Park, Spruce Grove and Red Deer. “With any business venture, there are many “defining moments.” Without question, these have been the times of greatest difficulty that require immense struggle and perseverance. Overcoming these challenges has been the motivating factor to push the business to the next level. Sharing the journey with so many key people has only added to the satisfaction these achievements bring.” ~ Paul Burgess, President

Company snapshot

11 Years in Business

36

employees

Consumer Products Industry Sector Photo by EPIC Photography Inc.

Platinum Partner

Gold Partners

Official Airline Partner


Set your course for Opportunities North 2017

Empowering economic, social and cultural exchange between businesses in Edmonton and the North, Opportunities North attracts hundreds of private and public sector guests interested in creating and expanding economic partnerships and opportunities between the regions. This dynamic conference unites the interests of visionary business, government and community leaders to chart a bold new course for Economic Exploration and Exchange. An annual joint initiative of the Yukon Chamber of Commerce, Northwest Territories Chamber of Commerce and Edmonton Chamber of Commerce, the Opportunities North business conference features: industry renowned speakers, a dynamic tradeshow, and integrated tours affording numerous networking opportunities for local and traveling attendees.

Set your compass today for:

Save $50 when you register before July 31st See site for details.

Edmonton, AB

Register today at OpportunitiesNorth.com


Scott Voisey Company: Nurse Next Door® Home Care Services

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urse Next Door® provides personalized care for clients of all ages where they live. Scott Voisey bought his first Nurse Next Door franchise in 2009, and with his dedication to high hiring standards and the desire to provide Happier Aging® and quality health care, this company is now looked at as a premium home care service in Edmonton and area, serving over 130 clients on a monthly basis. “As I began this journey into home health care, I never realized the positive impact we could have on people’s lives. Whether our client is a young child or senior wanting to stay home, we have been able to make their lives better. Everyone that works for this organization is very passionate about making a difference, and this shows in the success we have experienced.” ~ Scott Voisey, Owner

Company snapshot

8

Years in Business

187 employees

Health Care Industry Sector Photo by EPIC Photography Inc.

Platinum Partner

Gold Partners

Official Airline Partner


We do senior home care differently

Thank you to all of our clients and their families for trusting us to help make their lives better everyday... Also, to our wonderful caregivers who make this possible. Congratulations to all of 2017 Business in Edmonton Leaders Awards Winners.

1.877.588.8609 • www.nursenextdoor.com


Kevin McKee Company: Pangman Development Corporation

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evin McKee’s vision for Pangman is two-fold: to offer a specific niche where clients can grow their real estate investments, and to build a portfolio of assets through acquisitions and greenfield development. With a reputation for quality, reliability, transparency and integrity, Pangman conducts business with its valued partners and ensures a talent pool of best-in-class professionals that support creativity, and innovation. The new Enbridge Centre is a testament to Pangman’s dedication to excellence. “I would have to say that the defining moment in my journey was the opportunity to build Enbridge Centre. This tower was the first new downtown financial district tower in 25 years. It’s a state-of-the-art building boasting environmental advancements, yet it still preserves its historical heritage. It is very humbling to stand on the street, look up and say ‘I helped build that’.” ~ Kevin McKee, CEO

Company snapshot

21 Years in Business

12

employees

real Estate Industry Sector Photo by EPIC Photography Inc.

Platinum Partner

Gold Partners

Official Airline Partner


History inspires our future. G R E AT L E A D E R S — A N D G R E AT B U I L D I N G S — H AV E S H A P E D E D M O N T O N F R O M T H E V E R Y S TA R T. T H E Y ’ R E W H AT I N S P I R E U S T O C R E AT E I M A G I N AT I V E D E V E L O P M E N T S T H AT W I L L E N R I C H O U R C I T Y F O R D E C A D E S T O C O M E .

Our recent flagship project, ENBRIDGE CENTRE, combines innovative modern design with meticulous historic restoration. A U G U S TA N A , o u r n e w r e s i d e n t i a l t o w e r, begins construction in mid 2017.

P A N G M A N D E V. C O M

780.424.1330

A U G U S TA N A


Craig Wilson & Raj Dhillon Company: Pivotal Physiotherapy With high standards of practice and a determination to make a difference in the area of physiotherapy, Craig Wilson and Raj Dhillon are business owners and active practitioners who have an aim to help people perform to their highest levels. They strive to be at the forefront of a movement that challenges the perception that physical rehabilitation is simply pain management, and to that end, the Pivotal Physiotherapy’s three clinics focus on delivering a full rehabilitation spectrum. “It is hard to define a singular moment that is responsible for success. Other than the natural milestones of student, professional, husband and father, what has come unexpectedly is the need to become a leader. The ongoing effort to develop the skills to lead our team has been both challenging and incredibly rewarding. ~ Craig Wilson, CEO “I am inspired to live my greatest life by enjoying the small moments of every day and challenging myself and those around me to consistently improve and reflect. I have been inspired by clinical and entrepreneurial mentors along the way, one of whom I am lucky enough to say is my business partner and friend, Craig.” ~ Raj Dhillon, CEO

Company snapshot

36 Years in Business

60

employees

health Care Industry Sector Photo by EPIC Photography Inc.

Platinum Partner

Gold Partners

Official Airline Partner


Catherine Vu Company: Pro-Active IT Management Inc.

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he heart of Pro-Active IT Management Inc. is in helping businesses make sense of their computer systems. Catherine Vu has built her company on a foundation of best-in-class practices, honour and integrity, providing customer-centric computer solutions for clients. The ability to help clients with unique needs comes from a contractor base that holds deep talent and benefits from the administrative hub and tools made available to them. This business model is highly sustainable – a bonus during economic swings. “My focus in life is identifying the gem in every person or situation. I relentlessly seek the best moment, idea, value, expression, contribution or lesson in all that I do and in everyone that I interact with.� ~ Catherine Vu, President & Chief Uptime Officer

Company snapshot

13 Years in Business

1+8

1 employee 8 Subcontractors

Technology Industry Sector Photo by EPIC Photography Inc.

Platinum Partner

Gold Partners

Official Airline Partner


Craig Harder Company: Raptor

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privately-held design and manufacturing firm headquartered in Edmonton, with CISCs (Continuous Improvement Service Centers) located in Ontario, Florida, Utah, the Netherlands, Peru and Australia, Raptor designs high-quality industrial parts with a heavy focus on incorporating new technologies for use in mining, dredging, power generation and construction applications. Craig Harder works closely with Raptor’s employees and customers to increase the performance of their operations through developing and implementing new technologies and increasing efficiencies within products currently offered. “Innovation, creativity, entrepreneurship and execution are the principles that define the dynamic GSD culture at Raptor. My goal is to be the chief communicator of those principles, which in turn helps me create the direction and vision at Raptor. Communicating with, listening to and being challenged by my team motivates me to continually push forward with the GSD culture. GSD: Goal Setting Discussion or Getting S#!t Done - you decide.” ~ Craig Harder, CEO & Founder

Company snapshot

13 Years in Business

75

employees

Mining and Metals & Technology Industry Sector Photo by EPIC Photography Inc.

Platinum Partner

Gold Partners

Official Airline Partner


Joe Ammar Company: River City Events and Big Top Tent Rentals

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iver City Events is a full-service event planning and rental company, providing clients with a broad spectrum of services, including event logistics, strategic event consultancy, creative event production and rentals to fully support any event. President and CEO Joe Ammar founded the company in 2007, driven by a desire to create unique and memorable event experiences that build brands and relationships while celebrating special milestones. “I’ve met some incredibly smart and inspiring entrepreneurs in my life, but I have to say that some of the best business lessons I’ve learned were from working with my father in the grocery store he owned for nearly two decades. He taught me about the importance of relationships in business, and that patience, hard work and resilience are one of the key ingredients to success.” ~ Joe Ammar, President & CEO

Company snapshot

10 Years in Business

50

employees

Events Rentals Industry Sector Photo by EPIC Photography Inc.

Platinum Partner

Gold Partners

Official Airline Partner


Brett Desroches Company: Unicon Concrete Specialties Ltd

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nicon is a distributor of construction materials with an emphasis on concrete-related accessories. Since 1989, Unicon has been a supplier to industrial, commercial and residential companies. With specialty concrete finishing tools, machinery and power tools, concrete repair, forming, cutting and coring and decorative concrete products all available in his large showroom, Brett Desroches has built his company to serve contractors in as timely and complete a manner as possible. “The most defining moment in my career was in December of 2011, when I purchased the remaining shares of Unicon and became its sole owner. For the first time ever, Unicon had one leader and one clear vision. I immediately formed a management team with responsible and skilled people, and then gave them the power to manage their teams. Together, we have made Unicon a much better company to work for and to deal with. The results can be seen at our flagship location on the corner of 118 Avenue and 156 Street. What Unicon is today has become my greatest inspiration; it is a company I could not be more proud of.� ~ Brett Desroches, CEO

Company snapshot

28 Years in Business

40

employees

Distribution Industry Sector Photo by EPIC Photography Inc.

Platinum Partner

Gold Partners

Official Airline Partner


CONGRATULATIONS TO ALL OF THE 2017 BUSINESS IN EDMONTON LEADERS AWARD WINNERS!

Thank you to our customers, suppliers and staff for helping us become a leader in concrete and construction supplies.

Alberta Owned and Operated since 1989

Edmonton 11740 - 156 Street NW 1-800-588-1191 Calgary 1311 25 Ave NE 1-888-221-2251

unicon.ca


Alyson Hodson Company: zag creative

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ag creative provides expert marketing resources to develop solid marketing strategies backed by graphic design, creativity, digital presence and communication for clients across Canada, the United States and the UAE. Alyson Hodson and her partners have created a company that leads through a business approach to marketing and advertising, is very client centric and places an emphasis on obtaining tangible results for clients. “My greatest inspiration is the drive to always be growing and learning from those around me. Edmonton is such an amazing community filled with brilliant people. We are all lucky to be a part of this city.� ~ Alyson Hodson, President & CEO

Company snapshot

8

Years in Business

18

employees

Marketing & Advertising Industry Sector Photo by EPIC Photography Inc.

Platinum Partner

Gold Partners

Official Airline Partner


Dale Wishewan - Booster Juice | 2016 Leaders Alumni

Booster Juice — Then and Now

Photo by EPIC Photography Inc.

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ast year, Booster Juice was featured as a Leader. One year, several store openings, and a variety of new flavours later, the company is being featured again—but new flavour combinations aren’t all Dale Wishewan, president and CEO of Booster Juice, has been up to. Booster Juice is an international quick-service restaurant chain with a leading-edge product line: premium real fruit smoothies that combine natural ingredients with new products to create menu items that are as nutritious as they are delicious. The Edmonton-based franchisor didn’t have an easy start. With no restaurant experience, and the original Alberta based location placing it thousands of kilometers away from the retail power centre of Toronto, things easily could have gone in an entirely different direction. However, Wishewan had discovered a void in the Canadian fast-food market: the need for a product for those with fast-paced, active lifestyles who were looking for a nutritious alternative to the traditional fast-food options. Wishewan launched Booster Juice in 1999, and the company hasn’t stopped growing since. Within a year of opening his first location in Sherwood Park, Alberta, Wishewan had opened 15 more locations. By the end of year two, 50 Booster Juice locations had opened across Canada. Now it isn’t just Booster Juice; it’s Booster Nation. Seventeen years later, Wishewan has more than 350 locations spread across Canada—as well as in the U.S., Mexico, and the Middle East. By 2016, Booster Juice was already considered the number one smoothie and juice bar in Canada. Wishewan was named EY’s Entrepreneur of the Year in 2013 and was inducted into the Global Hall of Fame. He was also the 27th recipient of the Dr. Charles Allard Chair in Business honorary teaching position at MacEwan University School of Business in 2014—and that’s just naming a few of Booster Juice’s achievements. Of course, Wishewan’s drive hasn’t stopped there. Since last year’s Leader award, Wishewan, a pioneer of the superfood movement, has continued to bring new innovations to

Booster Juice. Beyond adding new flavours like the Pea(not) Butter 2.0, a long-awaited peanut-butter-flavoured smoothie, made with WOWBUTTER, the company has also invaded the digital world with its new Booster Juice stickers and interactive games, located at the Pearson International Airport in their Fit & Fun Zone. In addition, Booster Juice has most recently partnered with top young Canadian golfer on the PGA tour, Mackenzie Hughes. The brand is continually giving back to the community. Two of Booster Juice’s charities of choice are the JDRF and Easter Seals Foundation. Booster Juice also held a fundraiser for the Mike Weir Foundation that generated $160,000 for kids and supported those affected by the Fort McMurray forest fires in 2016. It’s been a busy year for a company that continues to expand its product offerings and meet customer demand, and it isn’t showing signs of stopping. With new flavours to innovate and new products to add to the menu, Booster Juice continues to work towards its goal of becoming the number one smoothie and juice bar in Canada and the world.

boosterjuice.com


Jacqueline Jacek - JACEK Chocolate Couture | 2015 Leaders Alumni


Greg Christenson - Christenson Group of Companies | 2014 Leaders Alumni

GREG CHRISTENSON CHRISTENSON GROUP OF COMPANIES

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reg Christenson is the president and owner of Christenson Developments, a company that was originally founded in the early 1970s by Greg’s father, Lloyd.

Christenson Developments is an Edmonton-based company with over 45 years of building experience. The company has created more than 5,000 multi-family homes in Edmonton and the surrounding areas, specializing in building communities that offer a variety of adult and seniors’ homes within an urban village concept. · Greg is a 1979 graduate of University of Alberta’s civil engineering program. · Greg is the past president of the Canadian Home Builders Association. · Greg serves on the municipal affairs committee of the Edmonton Chamber of Commerce and has participated on the housing committee of the Capital Region Growth Plan. Greg is a past chair of the Canadian, Alberta and Edmonton Home Builders Association, and Greater Edmonton Chambers of Commerce. · Greg has recently co-chaired the Social Housing Revitalization Advisory Group (SHRAG) for Mayor Don Iveson. · Southwoods Village was recently named a pilot project by the Capital Region Board for modest market affordable housing. · Christenson Communities currently owns and operates over 1,500 luxury senior and rental units in Edmonton, Sherwood Park, St. Albert and Red Deer.

The Name in Active Adult Living Builders of award winning Villa Bungalows and Estate Condos Enhance your quality of life in our innovative Urban Villages. Choose from a variety of lifestyle options: Active Adult - Adult Communities for the young at heart. Retirement Living - Add social amenities, optional dining, and care. Quality Rentals - For greater freedom and flexibility.

5410 97 St NW, Edmonton, AB T6E 5C1 (780) 436-2980 • www.cdlhomes.com


Aleksa Mrdjenovich - Nova Hotels | 2014 Leaders Alumni

“Edmonton’s Largest Conference Hotel”

THE EDMONTON INN MAKES ITS RE TURN Previously the Ramada Kingsway, this hotel is returning to its roots and is once again the iconic Edmonton Inn. Feel the changes happen around you with the new updates, all the while remembering and reliving the moments. 428 guest rooms and suites, Graze Restaurant, Arbour Lounge, 6000 sq. ft. of newly renovated conference space and over 20 meeting rooms makes the Edmonton Inn a great place for business or leisure!

MAKE NEW MEMORIES

INTRODUCTORY RATE starting at

$109

/night

*subject to availability, blackout dates may apply

W W W. E D M O N T O N I N N . C A 11834 KINGSWAY AVENUE NW, EDMONTON, AB | 780.454.5454 owned and operated by

1.866.401.6682 WWW.NOVAHOTELS.CA


Amplify : Courage

Dave Cree is reinventing social enterprise at CMNGD. See his story at atb.com/cmngd


YOUR VISION GOT YOU THIS FAR.

Where do you go from here? The mark of a true leader is the ability to embrace today’s challenges head on while uncovering opportunities to shape a successful tomorrow. The mark of a visionary is defined by a leader’s ability to capitalize on those opportunities while effectively using their available resources to do so. Our national scope and local focus positions leading organizations – and the visionaries behind them – for success, no matter where business takes you. MNP proudly congratulates the Business in Edmonton 2017 Leaders. We celebrate your achievements and anticipate the positive impact you’ll have on our business community. Contact Dustin Sundby at 780.453.5382 or dustin.sundby@mnp.ca


2017 Board of Directors Executive

Chair: James Merkosky Partner, Tax Services, Pricewaterhouse Coopers LLP Vice Chair: Len Rhodes President & CEO, Edmonton Eskimo Football Club Treasurer: Bryan DeNeve Senior Vice President Finance & CFO, Capital Power Past Chair: Bill Blais President and CEO Maclab Development Group

Directors

Dr. Glenn Feltham President & CEO, Northern Alberta Institute of Technology Crystal Graham Partner & Licensed Interior Designer, Kasian Architecture Interior Design & Planning Ltd. Dawn Harsch President & CEO, Exquisicare Inc. Alyson Hodson President & CEO, zag creative Elan MacDonald President, Impact Consulting Scott McEachern Vice President, Engineering & Projects, Enbridge Pipelines Inc. Dennis Schmidt Partner, Dentons Canada LLP Craig Thorkelsson Manager, Corporate Taxation PCL Constructors Inc. Liza Wold Partner, Miller Thomson LLP

Chamber Executive

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

Contact

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

The Simple Truth About Social Media By Lee Ferris, Marketing and Digital Communications Manager

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ocial media may be the most aptly named phenomena in human history. Not only do humans love using social media, we love to talk about it!

In fact, if you’re a person who regularly attends business conferences and seminars as I do, you can’t help but notice how the topic of social media has become a prominent and seemingly permanent fixture on the agenda for the vast majority of business events – regardless of the program, specific industry vertical or audience composition. It’s a clear signal that social media has truly become one of those zeitgeist topics that dominates our hearts and minds, so much so that when I recently heard a panel speaker state, ‘your business absolutely has to be on social media,’ I was neither surprised to hear that bold claim or to see the audience nodding in enthusiastic agreement. After all, it was the third consecutive event in which I’d heard this very statement. ‘Your business has to be on social media!’ Strong, declarative statements like this are often perceived as ‘simple truths’ and the appeal of such truths, is they offer us order and comfort in an often chaotic world. This is especially true in the business world where simple truths like ‘the customer is always right,’ ‘failure is not an option’ and ‘grow or die’ were widely embraced, first as simple truths, and then finally as unassailable wisdom. But is it true? Does your business have to be on social media to succeed? The answer is ‘it depends’ and while that answer, shaded as it is in shades of grey, may not carry the comfort of a ‘simple truth,’ exploring it further may in fact serve your business well. First, it’s important for us to always remember that almost all technology, when first widely embraced by the mass market, seems ubiquitous and seemingly permanent. Just a mere decade ago, it seemed unthinkable to ponder a world without landline telephones or broadcast cable connections into our homes, but that has rapidly become the new normal. Thus, unfathomable as it may seem today to conceive of a world in which Facebook, Twitter, Youtube and others do not dominate human interaction online, the reality is all technology is transitory. This is crucial to remember when considering business strategies dependent on social media platforms – the medium itself is not the message, and quite likely the medium as we perceive it today will have drastically evolved in just a few short technology cycles. The goal then is not to make the communication channel itself the core focus, but rather the brand equity and customer goodwill you build via the channel. This is the core challenge that faces Twitter’s most followed users for instance. How will they transition those followers in the future when the next paradigm shift evolves the media landscape beneath them? Will their millions of followers migrate with Continued on the next page... BUSINESSINEDMONTON.COM // BUSINESS IN EDMONTON // JULY 2017

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them to the next big thing or will the new mode of communication elevate new ‘thought leaders’ to the forefront? As you can plainly see, the medium will always evolve. So, the question becomes, what are your business’s primary mission objectives and are those objectives best served by a concerted investment and involvement in social media? Firstly, where do you sit on the profitability scale? 1. Is your business a going concern already with profits growing at an acceptable rate? 2. Are you currently treading water looking to break through that plateau to sustainable growth? 3. Maybe you’re just getting starting and getting to breakeven quickly is the first order of business? If you’re profitable and growing, you should thoroughly examine your company’s DNA to identify what specific attributes lead you to this point, and most importantly, will keep you on this path. One of the ways in which businesses fail long-term is the inability to fully recognize what led them to initial success. In identifying the attributes that led to your success, you’ll identify where your true competitive advantage originates. And once you’ve done so, you’ll be able to appraise whether your investment in social media will augment or distract from that internal mission and advantage. ‘Cost’ free doesn’t mean ‘time’ free Social media advocates often point to the ‘free’ aspect of these tools as a primary consideration for business usage of social media, but this overlooks the value of time as a commodity. If current sustainable revenue growth affords you additional investment in social media, then you’re one step closer to a solid business case for organizational adoption. If however, you’ll need to pull resources from other areas of the business, particularly those areas currently driving

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competitive advantage, the business case looks more tenuous. Let’s be clear: Devising a strategy to cut through this clutter can most certainly augment an already growing company or establish a nascent business looking to reach its target customer base, most critically those early adopters and key influencers so critical to establishing your early success. In this next part of these series, we’ll discuss these opportunities in greater length, as well as their applicability to your particular business model. In the meantime, we have made some progress in our consideration of the simple truth, ‘Your business has to be on social media!’ Now, there are some reasonable qualifiers to include: • ‘Your business has to be on social media, but only if it does not distract or siphon from the resources driving your competitive advantage.’ • “Your business has to be on social media, but only if you’re at the point in your business lifecycle where doing so aligns with your critical business plan and marketing strategy priorities.” Granted, these phrases don’t roll as readily off the tip of the tongue, but they can be effective in moving you away from ‘magic bullet’ scenarios into more nuanced and realistic consideration of the opportunities that social media affords your business.


AMVIC Licensed


Speedpro Signs Member profile Speedpro Signs Jennifer Ferris, Owner/General Manager speedprosign.com What’s your story? Speedpro Signs is a print and imaging provider specializing in cost effective solutions for all corporate branding needs: from interior and exterior signage, to trade show solutions and vehicle graphics. We are a proud member of the Edmonton business community and recently celebrated our 10th year providing ‘speedy’ and ‘professional’ solutions to our valued customers. What are three things people are surprised to learn about your business/or don’t know about your business? 1 - Most people are surprised to learn that we are a franchise business. In fact, Speedpro is the largest imaging franchise in Canada and that powerful buyer network enables us to consistently offer our customers extremely competitive prices. Our larger corporate clients also appreciate the fact that they can easily rollout a branding campaign across Canada thanks to our national network of Speedpro franchises. 2 - Something that always surprises our new customers is our turnaround times. We guarantee that you will receive an estimate within 24 hours of your request, and for the vast majority of projects, we can provide you the finished product within 72 hours from signoff of proof. Often less! 3 - We are family owned and operated, and born and raised in Edmonton. What has surprised you in the last 12 months? Since the downturn in oil prices, we’ve been both surprised and gratified to see the resilience of the Edmonton business community. Our customers have remained loyal and forward thinking through these challenging times and we’re so proud to experience that firsthand. It’s not a cliché. The Edmonton business community truly does stick together What has been your biggest challenge in the last 12 months? Like many Alberta business, adjusting to the impact of the carbon tax initiative has presented

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Jennifer Ferris, Owner/General Manager

some challenges. All Speedpro franchises operate within the guidelines of the ‘Three R’ model (Reduce, Reuse, Recycle), so we’re proud to support an initiative to reduce carbon emissions but it has certainly had a major impact on overhead costs for many of our customers. What do you think is the biggest issue impacting Edmonton’s small businesses at this time? I would say the biggest issue is definitely escalating costs. Even the larger companies are looking to find ways to streamline to maintain margins as infrastructure costs like taxes, fuel, permits, and raw materials spiral ever higher. What’s your secret to keeping your employees engaged? The key for us is making sure we play to the strengths of each person as that not only brings out the best work in someone, it gives them a great foundation to grow. Ours is such a collaborative business that it’s crucial that everyone on our team feels as if their role fits them like a glove. Do you have a personal mantra? We definitely believe in the value of ‘underpromising and over-delivering.’ In all honesty, we probably couldn’t ‘hard sell’ someone if we


tried. It’s just not who we are. We much prefer collaborating with our customers in a fun but efficient way, and then ‘wowing’ them with the final reveal. Whether we’re installing on-site or they’re dropping by the shop to pick up the final product, seeing their happy reaction is definitely the favourite part of the process for us. What do you enjoy most about being a chamber member? It’s great to be part of an organization with such a long and valued history in our city. It helps to keep us plugged into the Edmonton business community as a whole, and it’s inspiring to hear what our fellow Chamber members are up to, both in their businesses and within the community. Our Chamber mandate is to create the best environment for business in Edmonton. If you could make one substantial improvement to Edmonton’s business environment, what would it be? We always appreciate the opportunity to meet and network with other Edmonton businesses, but some of the larger events can feel somewhat impersonal. It would be great to see more personalized types of networking opportunities on a smaller scale. What is your favorite thing to do in Edmonton? I love spending time on the river valley trails with my dog, Buddy. That is my happy place! Apple or android? Android. Your most favorite place in the world? I was fortunate enough to live in the south of Spain for a spell, so that part of the world will always carry a special place in my heart. Coffee or tea? I can’t have both?

From exterior to interior signage, vehicle wraps to trade show products, the imaging experts at Speedpro Signs do it all AND at a cost effective price. BUSINESSINEDMONTON.COM // BUSINESS IN EDMONTON // JULY 2017

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Connecting Business 2017 Mayor’s State of the City Address Luncheon, Presented by Capital Power

LtoR: James Merkosky - Partner in Tax Services, PriceWaterhouse Coopers and Board Chair, Edmonton Chamber of Commerce, Sarah Chan - Co-chair of United Way’s Campaign Cabinet, Hon. Amarjeet Sohi - Minister of Infrastructure and Communities, Carman McNary Managing Partner, Dentons, Mayor Don Iveson - Mayor of the City of Edmonton, Janet Riopel - President & CEO, Edmonton Chamber of Commerce, Martin Kennedy - VP External Relations, Capital Power.

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Making new contacts and building relationships with fellow business leaders.

Chamber members and other Edmonton business leaders took the opportunity to connect prior to the key note address by Mayor Don Iveson.

Mayor Don Iveson shared his plan for our City, and announced his bid for re-election at this event, hosted annually by the Edmonton Chamber of Commerce.

Bruce Kirkland, Principal Dealer at Lexus Edmonton West, Gillian Trimbee, and Matt Miller, General Manager, Lexus Edmonton West enjoy the opportunity to connect at this always popular event.

JULY 2017 // BUSINESS IN EDMONTON // BUSINESSINEDMONTON.COM


Connecting Business

Meet the Makers Brewery Tour and Networking

Alley Kat Co-Owner Neil Herbst and Alberta Beer Festival CEO Mark Kondrat were on hand to welcome guests and provide a tour of the facility.

Sharing a beer and business cards was what it was all about when members and guests arrived at the Alley Kat Brewery.

Showcasing some of the unique brew’s on offer at the event.

Spring After Business Mixer and Trade Show

Our exhibitors, members, and guests were dressed to celebrate business connections as well as the Oilers at the Oasis Centre.

The Oasis Centre was the perfect venue to treat our members and guests to an elegant night of refreshments and quality networking.

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Connecting Business The Hon. Marc Garneau, Minister of Transport, Presented by Driving Force

This event provided a great opportunity for members and guests from across the Edmonton business community to re-connect and share stories.

Jeff Ellis - Chief Legal Officer and Corporate Secretary of Canadian Pacific Railway, James Merkosky - Partner in Tax Services, PriceWaterhouse Coopers and Board Chair, Edmonton Chamber of Commerce, and The Hon. Marc Garneau, Minister of Transport enjoy a conversation prior to the address.

The audience was eager to hear from Minister Garneau as he shared his insight and presented comprehensive changes to Canada’s freight rail network.

Members in this Issue Universe Machine in Finding the Way on page 15 Northlands in K-Days: Looking Forward, Staying Grounded on page 19 University of Alberta in Premium Treatment on page 76

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Edmonton, Alberta This dynamic conference unites the interests of visionary business, government and community leaders to chart a dynamic new course for

Economic Exploration and Exchange

Empowering economic, social and cultural exchange between businesses in Edmonton and the North, Opportunities North 2017 attracts hundreds of delegates interested in creating and expanding economic partnerships and opportunities between the regions.

Make Opportunities in North 2017 a priority ur yo re cu Se your calendar. at ay tickets tod m opportunities north.co

Delegate package includes cultural performances, gala dinner, unique tours of Edmonton, hospitality offers and more.

Creating and expanding economic opportunities and partnerships for northern communities opportunitiesnorth.com

Hosted by

Presented by


PREMIUM TREATMENT // CITY MALLS

Premium Treatment EDMONTON’S LATEST MALL IS AIMED AT SAVVY SHOPPERS AND TOURISTS

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PREMIUM TREATMENT // CITY MALLS

“We are very proud that Ivanhoé Cambridge and Simon Property Group are opening the Premium Outlet Collection at EIA,” says Geoff Herdman, director, real estate, EIA. “When this [400,000+ square foot] collection opens in May of 2018, it will promote the Edmonton metro region as a Canadian and international destination. This collection will provide over 1,000 jobs, and it will generate tourism traffic throughout our region.” John Scott, senior vice president, development, retail, Ivanhoé Cambridge, is also excited about the new mall. “We are delighted to join forces with Simon’s team of seasoned retail professionals on this great project,” he says. “The Premium Outlet Collection – EIA is ideally positioned to take full advantage of the close to 7 million tourists who visit the Edmonton area annually and arrive through one of Canada’s busiest airports.”

BY NERISSA MCNAUGHTON

C

ommuters that travel past the airport on Queen Elizabeth II Highway are not going to see a flat open space of land anymore. Development is underway for a massive retail complex called Premium Outlet Collection – Edmonton International Airport (EIA). The grand opening of Premium Outlet Collection – EIA is set for May 2, 2018, and the mall will offer a curated mix of outlet stores, fashion brands and first-to-market retailers, with a target of fashionable shoppers looking for value in big name brands. The Outlet is timely. Alberta’s overall retail trade value is on the upswing, showing a positive 7.2 per cent rise in March 2017 over March 2016. Clothing and clothing accessory sales grew 2.4 per cent during this timeframe, while jewellery, luggage and leather goods rose 13.6 per cent.

Mark Silvestri, chief operating officer of Simon Premium Outlets, noted in an earlier news release, “We are excited to team up with Ivanhoé Cambridge on what promises to be another great project, and to deliver the very best in outlet shopping to the many tourists and residents of the Edmonton area. This will be Simon’s fourth outlet centre in Canada, joining very successful projects in Montreal, Toronto, and Vancouver. With this development and others scheduled to be complete by fall 2017, Simon will achieve the milestone of 100 outlet centers owned worldwide.” The big question on shoppers’ minds is: ‘Which retailers are going to be in the mall?’ but as Scott points out, “It is still too early to confirm retailers at this stage.” Major brands are, however, expected to be attracted to the space. “The mall will feature 38,600 m2 (415,000 ft2) of retail outlets, offering value shopping from over 100 renowned brands, all housed under one roof. The type of retail mix will be similar to the Outlet Collection at Niagara and Outlet Collection Winnipeg. We will have exciting announcements to make in the near future!” While eager shoppers wait with anticipation for the confirmation of retail brands, Scott can confirm the following good news, “Over 1,500 full- and part-time jobs in retail and construction will be created by Premium Outlet Collection – EIA. The Outlet will become a shopping destination of choice for value-seeking and fashion-conscious Edmontonians,

ABOVE: PREMIUM OUTLET, EDMONTON INTERNATIONAL AIRPORT. PHOTO SOURCE: IVANHOÉ CAMBRIDGE

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PREMIUM TREATMENT // CITY MALLS

tourists and travellers alike. It is ideally located in a spot that sees over 7.5 million passengers flying into or out of Edmonton International Airport. The Premium Outlet Collection will become a key component in the airport’s master plan. We anticipate Premium Outlet Collection – EIA to become very popular right from opening day.” The Outlet is designed to fit into the area’s industrial setting while also providing a convenient destination and an outstanding experience shoppers. “Premium Outlet Collection – EIA will have a ‘warm industrial chic’ design, creating a contemporary shopping experience,” Scott confirms. “The property will also offer an airport shuttle service, which will be in place by the opening of the centre. The shuttle will provide airport travellers with the opportunity to easily move between the terminal and Outlet. During longer layovers, a new parcel storage and

delivery service will be made available to customers who buy on the way through and want to have either pick-up service on the return leg of their travel, or simply to have their items delivered directly to their home.” So far, everything sounds great about the upcoming shopping mall, but Craig Patterson, director of applied research, school of retailing, University of Alberta, weighs in with a different, and a scholarly, viewpoint. “The new Premium Outlet Collection – EIA is an exciting development for the city,” he’s quick to admit. “It’s the first American-styled designer outlet mall in Alberta – CrossIron Mills in Calgary is technically a hybrid-outlet centre, featuring both full- and off-price retail concepts. The Outlet centre could potentially be a draw for those flying in and out of Edmonton International Airport, including those stopping over on the way to other destinations. The mall could also be

ABOVE: PREMIUM OUTLET, EDMONTON INTERNATIONAL AIRPORT. PHOTO SOURCE: IVANHOÉ CAMBRIDGE

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PREMIUM TREATMENT // CITY MALLS

a draw for those living in Edmonton, although we’re not yet sure which retailers will open in the centre.” Patterson continues, “Typically, such an outlet mall is anchored by at least one major off-price retail concept store. In the United States and at several Canadian outlets, Saks OFF 5TH is an anchor. Nordstrom Rack is also a strong anchor at many American outlet malls, and Nordstrom Rack will enter the Canadian market next spring. “Both Saks OFF 5TH and Nordstrom Rack will be tenants at nearby South Edmonton Common. It is, therefore, unlikely that either will anchor the EIA outlet centre. That’s a concern because such an anchor would act as a draw for consumers in the region. If Winners or Marshalls were to act as anchors, for example, neither would provide the same attraction because both are already available with other locations in the area.

“It, therefore, remains to be seen how Edmontonians will react to the new outlet mall, and its tenant mix will be key to its success. I wish them well securing a compelling mix of tenants, although I’m a bit concerned that neither Saks OFF 5TH nor Nordstrom Rack will be possibilities, given their proximity at the nearby South Edmonton Common.” Edmonton has enjoyed a long history of being a premium shopping destination, from housing one of the largest malls in the world to the innovative South Edmonton Common. Now, as the next evolution of retail shopping in the Capital City is poised to unveil in 2018, it will be interesting to see who shows up as a tenant, and how the mix of tourists and locals will play out in this sprawling, ambitious project. One thing, however, is certain – shoppers love a great price on brand name merchandise, so in this case, it looks like, as the saying goes, “if you build it, they will come.”

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WHAT’S NEXT FOR EDMONTON’S SKILLED WORKFORCE? // HUMAN RESOURCES

What’s Next FOR EDMONTON’S SKILLED WORKFORCE?

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WHAT’S NEXT FOR EDMONTON’S SKILLED WORKFORCE? // HUMAN RESOURCES

BY LAURA BOHNERT

E

dmonton’s economy has finally started to stir, and that means businesses and employees alike are breathing a sigh of relief—but did the recession (and its widespread job losses) leave Edmonton’s industries even more vulnerable by driving away its talent? “The recession caused significant layoffs at every level,” says Marcie Kiziak, vice chair of the Human Resources Institute of Alberta (HRIA), and vice president of people and safety for Magnum Energy Services. “Usually you see certain layers that are impacted by recessions, but with the recent recession, we’ve seen impacts on every level— jobs that are there one day and the next not, canceled or delayed work; some of our bigger clients are even on staggered schedules.” The impacts didn’t stop with the oil and gas industry. “We’re seeing restaurants shattered, tons of vacancy rates and to-lease signs, businesses that managed equipment rentals for the oil and gas industry are struggling—supporting businesses to the oil and gas industry have experienced significant impacts,” Kiziak describes. “Things are starting to pick up again,” she notes, “but it’s industry specific. Certain industries, like Magnum, are quite busy, but others are not. Hopefully we will start to see more full-cycle activity. There have been more postings. LinkedIn and Indeed, for instance, show quite a bit of activity for businesses who are looking to hire people back, which should give us all some hope that crews are starting to man up.” Overall, the employment forecast for Edmonton and Alberta is optimistic.

despite the fact that many workers had to move out of Edmonton during the recession to find work. “It depends on the skill,” Kiziak adds. “Those in trades that are flexible moved into different industries, and lots went back to their respective provinces, but those without that nimbleness are still around.” There is still a little worry about finding the right people when the jobs do start to become available, Kiziak says, “What is interesting is that, when we post for skilled laborers, we get a lot of resumes—and from everywhere—but resumes for professional or administration are limited, and we are getting few qualified resumes, which is hugely unexpected.”

“The Alberta Confidence Index shows that, from January to July 2017, 67 per cent of organizations feel confident they can find the right people to fill their employment needs, and 31 per cent expect to hire more employees,” Kiziak explains. “Both categories show a six per cent increase from July to December 2016, which represents a much brighter outlook.”

“It also depends how layoffs were handled by the companies,” Kiziak adds, pointing out that “It’s more important to keep in touch with the former workforce than to find new laborers.” That said, it may be tough to get people back if they took the recession as an opportunity to diversify their industries. “A lot of people are cyclical and are in the field a lot of the time. If they were going to make a change in the industry they are in, this is the time they do it.”

In other words, employers, for the most part, aren’t concerned about a shortage of skilled laborers—

Ultimately, challenges hiring workers back and an economy that is saturated with employment opportunities may mean

ABOVE: MARCIE KIZIAK, VICE CHAIR OF THE HUMAN RESOURCES INSTITUTE OF ALBERTA (HRIA).

BUSINESSINEDMONTON.COM // BUSINESS IN EDMONTON // JULY 2017

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WHAT’S NEXT FOR EDMONTON’S SKILLED WORKFORCE? // HUMAN RESOURCES

good things for the workplace, Kiziak says, “There is always talk about employers creating good cultural environments, safe working environments, etc. This is going to force employers to sharpen their game, especially in cyclical businesses that want employees to keep coming back. It’s going to force employers to be better and safer, and that’s a really good thing.” That isn’t the only change that could come out of the recovery from this past recession. “Things look different going forward,” observes Kiziak. “We’ve realized that things can change—that they are cyclical—and we have the lessons we’ve learned over the past couple years to inform us that we need to be more mindful going forward so we can ensure sustainable business.” It isn’t a lesson that will be forgotten any time soon. As Ron Feigel, technical sales and business development specialist at Universe Machine Corporation explains, “This recession was among the worst Universe Machine Corporation has faced in over 51 years of business.” “Work slowed significantly,” Feigel continues, adding that the recession forced “cost cuts and other changes that included downsizing staff by about a third. Fortunately, we were able to avoid lowering wages or benefits for existing staff. “The economic slowdown this time around was not just due to low oil prices. Increasing global competition as well as the change of our provincial and federal governments are also contributing factors. Too much change too quickly can be damaging. “Downturns are difficult for businesses and staff, but they can bring some positives. It has been easier to find skilled employees; and staff tend to be more engaged, appreciative, and productive. Having to run leaner and trying to increase cash flow to survive has spurred innovation, consolidation, and collaboration. It’s led to exploring further diversification and automation, increasing capabilities, ramping up research and development, and improving our products and services.” Now those business investments may be getting the chance to prove their benefit.

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JULY 2017 // BUSINESS IN EDMONTON // BUSINESSINEDMONTON.COM

“Industry confidence is slowly returning and, thankfully, there is a more positive tone,” says a relieved Feigel. “Oil prices have nearly doubled from their low in 2015, so we are starting to see some improvement; however, we feel this will be a slow recovery. If I can describe it another way, it’s like we are now finally off life support and out of intensive care, yet not fully out of danger. We are still facing a long, difficult recovery.” For the time being, skilled laborer shortages are low on Feigel’s list of worries, although he does note that, “It’s likely some skilled workers have moved on or retired. Eventually, we could be faced with skills shortages if there is a significant and prolonged increase in work.” “Currently,” Feigel says, “we don’t see another boom happening any time soon. More companies are competing for fewer projects/work, and that squeezes margins, so we need to continue operating with reduced overhead costs and be creative doing more with less staff. “Considering how deep and prolonged this downturn was, it could take many years for the industry to get back to where it was before this recession. Hopefully I’m wrong and it will be quicker!” he laughs, pointing out that there are specific things that can help. “Our government needs to nurture a business-friendly environment that supports all industries, one that does not make quick or drastic changes and one that keeps taxes low. This approach has been proven to create stability, instill confidence, and spur investment, and that creates more jobs and more positive economic growth over the long term. “Industry diversification and being environmentally conscious are both important considerations for Alberta and Canada’s future economy and for the next generations; however, it needs to be implemented carefully to minimize economic difficulty and offer a realistic and profitable long-term outlook that doesn’t rely on government subsidies.” He concludes, “Our natural resource wealth should be utilized on a parallel platform, creating long-term diversification and sustainability without slowing growth or causing economic hardship.”


Custom millwork at Nando’s restaurant is as enticing as the their delicious chicken.

RBK Millwork:

By Nerissa McNaughton

Crafting Customized Success RBK Millwork’s custom creations bring beauty and style to the Capital City

R

BK Millwork Ltd. is one of the largest custom millwork manufacturers in Canada. Blending technology with creativity, the company’s works of art are seen in the city’s most prestigious buildings, including Edmonton International Airport (EIA), Grand Villa Casino, ATB Financial head office, Kenworth Nisku, and Beulah Alliance Church.

Kyle Kuzyk and Randy Kuzyk.

The RBK facility sits on the west side of Edmonton. The building is sprawling, housing an impressive office space and a state-of-the-art shop. Exquisite custom artwork adorns the lobby; oversized slabs of walnut and other features crafted by the cabinet makers on site. The man behind it all is Randy Kuzyk. Today, he runs the company from this beautiful 40,000 square foot location, but wind back the clock 36 years and it was a very different story. “We started out in a single-and-a-half garage,” remembers Randy. “Then we moved to a double-and-a-half, but outgrew that as well. Next came an 1,800 square foot shop and then 10,000 square feet.” RBK’s growth didn’t slow down. The company moved to a 12,000 square foot facility, then scaled up to 26,000 square feet. It wasn’t enough. Their current 40,000 square foot building could be the permanent solution. Will they outgrow this space as well? “That’s up to Kyle,” smiles the company founder.

Kyle Kuzyk, Randy’s son, joined RBK Millwork in 2014 as a labourer. “Having Kyle here was never the plan!” Randy laughs. “Both of my children had other aspirations. Kyle was going to be a dentist and Kristin was going into theatre design. Kyle was also interested in business and pursued a degree in that as well. After he graduated, he had a job lined up, but it fell through at the last minute. During those years, work was hard to find, so he wound up working at odds and ends.” 35 YEARS | RBK Millwork 83


The congregation worships in style thanks to RBK’s collaboration with other trades to create this beautiful sanctuary in Beulah Alliance Church.

didn’t put the pieces together until I returned and saw my son here at work. I told Dale this is not going to last. He’s going to go away and be a dentist.” Life had other plans for the Kuzyks. Edmonton lost out on a possible dentist, but gained an expert millwork project manager, although Kyle freely admits, working for his father’s company wasn’t initially on his radar. “I never really looked at it as a serious option. I wanted to do my own thing and go my own way. Then I started working here and realized how much I loved it. One thing led to another. Positions within the company opened up and I was able to take on roles that were more enticing to me, utilize the skills I learned through many years of post-secondary education and apply those skills to help the company become even better.” Now Kyle is a partner at RBK Millwork, and Randy hopes his daughter, who works in administration in the company, will also continue on with the business. When the Kuzyks say “family business,” however, they don’t just mean their inner circle.

Custom millwork turns this reception space into a work of art.

Randy continues, “I was in Europe when I got an email from Dale, our shop manager saying he had hired a new employee. I thought nothing of it as hiring for the shop was his prerogative. Then I got an email from my son saying he got a job, but I

Congratulations RBK Millwork on 35 years of success! We look forward to working with you for many more years to come.

maker Cabinet

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5125 56 Street • 780.893.2599

“We run our business like a family. Everyone is at the same level. We work together as a team. Nobody is above anybody else,” Randy notes. This is why their business cards do not have titles. Kyle adds, “Everyone is extremely valued and very important to the success of the company. Everyone has to work together to make the company run efficiently.”

Walls Alive would like to congratulate RBK Millwork on their 35th Anniversary! 12125-149 Street Edmonton, Ab, T5l 2J2 P: 780-452-8201 • F: 780-453-3903

www.wallsaliveedmonton.com

From our team to your team, Congrats on 35 years of excellence!

Congrats RBK Millwork on 35 great years! 2 | 35 YEARS | RBK Millwork

Tel: 780.484.0831 | Fax: 780.486.0698 10417 - 174th Street NW, Edmonton, AB T5S 1H1 PFCustomCountertops.com


While RBK also manufactures standard components, it’s their custom millwork that really sets the company apart.

While RBK also manufactures standard components, it’s their custom millwork that really sets the company apart. “Custom millwork is a unique expression of the owner,” says Kyle with pride. “Each piece is handcrafted or machine crafted, and it is usually the only one of its kind. It makes for an eye-catching statement. Even if it’s something simple like a small kitchenette or as grand as a major reception desk, it’s something that says a lot about the company or the person that bought it.” “When we did the EIA project,” Randy adds, “it was our largest project at that time. We worked on it with PCL. It was a very high-profile, fast tracked job, and we all worked together as a team to complete the project within budget and on time.”

“Then there is the Grand Villa Casino downtown!” says Kyle. “That was another large, time constrained project, due to the opening of the arena. There was a lot of pressure on trades to perform well. We did a very large quantity of millwork and did not have much time allotted for installation. Thankfully we are blessed with an awesome group of employees, and were able to produce quality millwork efficiently, install it properly and get our project completed before the proposed deadline.” Another major project for RBK was Beulah Alliance Church, where, in addition to some smaller projects on site, RBK revamped the large sanctuary. Working in conjunction with N53 Architecture and several other trades, RBK transformed the space into a modern contemporary marvel that people still rave about today.

Congratulations RBK Millwork Ltd. on 35 years!!!

9540 62 Ave NW, Edmonton, AB T6E 0E2 Office: (780) 435-2291 • Fax: (780) 989-3871 Email: info@eberhards.ca www.eberhards.ca

REMAX - VENTURE ELITE EQUITIES - OFFICE BLDG. : 8104 - 160 AVENUE, EDMONTON, AB. : PETROCOM CONSTRUCTION LTD.

CONGRATULATIONS TO

ON CELEBRATING YOUR 35TH YEAR OF CONTINUED SUCCESS AND SURPASSING THIS MAJOR MILESTONE

retail and commercial petroleum construction commercial construction construction management services design build services light industrial construction pre-engineered buildings wand/touchless car wash facilites interior improvements 17505 - 109A AVENUE EDMONTON, ALBERTA, T5S 2W4 PH: (780) 481-5181 / FX: (780) 481-5180

email : OFFICE@PETROCOMCONSTRUCTION.COM

www.petrocomconstruction.com

3 | 35 YEARS | RBK Millwork


Nearly four decades have passed since Randy launched RBK Millwork, and now, as his children prepare to take over the reins, he can look back on those years without regrets. With so many high-profile projects successfully completed, and with an impeccable reputation in the industry, it could be a time for the company to coast along and enjoy where their hard work has gotten them; but with Randy eyeing succession to his children and Kyle brimming with new ideas that will take the company into its next evolution, slowing down isn’t in RBK’s mandate. “We have just purchased a few major pieces of new equipment that will arrive this year and be game changing for us in this industry,” Kyle can’t hide his excitement. For father and son, RBK is more than a job. “Seeing a project come together and seeing the finished result is extremely rewarding to me,” says Kyle. “We emphasize training for our employees; I get a lot of satisfaction in seeing what they can do and how they move up in their careers and excel,” adds Randy. Nearly four decades have passed since Randy launched RBK Millwork, and now, as his children prepare to take over the reins, he can look back on those years without regrets.

“Quality has a price tag,” Randy smiles. “You can always find someone to do a job for less. We are not the cheapest, but I know our quality is among the best. I’m very grateful to our suppliers and our subtrades who have worked with us for a very long time. I’m also profoundly grateful to my wife and family for their support, and for my faith, which is a big part of my life.” “I know I couldn’t have done this without dad,” Kyle says warmly. “He’s always there for advice and to bounce ideas off of. That’s invaluable.” The younger Kuzyk concludes, “I plan to build on what has been accomplished so far and improve on our processes whenever and wherever we can. We are taking steps in that direction with our recent material and equipment acquisitions. We’ll continue to nurture the staff and help them excel in their positions. Our company is a beautiful thing because it requires so many people to work together. It’s not an individual effort. It’s a team effort, and that’s what makes it so amazing.”

12110 142 St NW, Edmonton, AB T5L 2G8 (780) 448-9084 rbkmillwork.com

Congratulations to RBK Millwork on 35 years! We are proud to be a part of your success.

12112 67 Street Edmonton, AB T5B 1M7 Phone: 780-466-0906 • cascadecountertops.com

Congratulations

RBK Millwork Ltd. on 35 years! It’s always a pleasure to work with the staff at RBK Millwork! Congratulations on 35 years of success! All the best, Shawn and Natalie Legault and the staff at STTS!

15918-121 A Avenue Edmonton, AB 780-454-4949 4 | 35 YEARS | RBK Millwork

15435 131st Avenue NW • 1-800-361-6000 www.richelieu.com/ca/en


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