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Changing Ground: PM42455512

BILL KNIGHT’S EVOLUTION AS AN ENTREPRENEUR



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Supporting the visions of entrepreneurs one story at a time. Volume 5 | Number 9

REGULAR COLUMNS

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 Is Canada’s LNG dream really dead? By Brock Harrison

10 33

CONTENTS 37 COVER FEATURE

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 hanging Ground: C Bill Knight’s Evolution as an Entrepreneur The founding partner of Three Knights Investments Inc. goes from demolishing buildings to building empires. By Nerissa McNaughton

ON OUR COVER: ABOVE: BILL KNIGHT, FOUNDING PARTNER OF THREE KNIGHTS INVESTMENTS INC. PHOTO SOURCE: EPIC PHOTOGRAPHY INC.

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 Taxpayers Need Plans, Not Platitudes By Paige MacPherson

 Edmonton Chamber of Commerce


LIFTBOSS ORANGE IS GOING GREEN!!

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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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Supporting the visions of entrepreneurs one story at a time. Volume 5 | Number 9

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THIS MONTH’S FEATURES

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Innovative Wellness Tools to Empower Your Team Employers get a competitive edge by using these out-ofthe-box wellness solutions By Laura Bohnert

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B OMA Edmonton News - Fall 2017 “Challenging”: Industry Insiders Discuss the Present, and Future, of Edmonton’s Oil & Gas Sector With the Pacific Northwest Pipeline cancelled, Edmonton’s oil and gas sector faces more challenges, but solutions are out there, and growth can continue. By Zachary Edwards

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Get Ready to Boost Your Brand with Small Business Week A look at the biggest event for small businesses By Ramona Korpan

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

In last month’s Head Office feature we incorrectly displayed the PCL Constructors Limited CEO as Paul Douglas. PCL’s current CEO is Dave Filipchuk (pictured right).


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IS CANADA’S LNG DREAM REALLY DEAD? // ECONOMIC FACTORS

Is Canada’s LNG dream really dead? BY BROCK HARRISON

F

our years ago, B.C. Premier Christy Clark declared liquefied natural gas (LNG) was “the economic opportunity of a lifetime.”

At the time, Clark led a deeply unpopular, decade-old Liberal government up against a resurgent NDP, aggressively branding the incumbents as corporate sellouts that were out of touch with the working class. Clark limped into the campaign facing certain defeat, but managed to reframe the NDP’s anti-development platform as an existential threat to the very workers it claimed to champion. It worked. Clark’s Liberals won a shocking majority government by convincing British Columbians that only she could deliver jobs and a prosperous economy; and to do that, she leaned on LNG. Throughout the campaign, Clark pitched LNG as an economic panacea. She claimed it would create 100,000 new jobs, establish a $100 billion prosperity fund, and eliminate the province’s $60-billion debt. She even hinted that LNG revenues could eventually replace the reviled Provincial Sales Tax. It was, in her words, “the economic opportunity of a lifetime.” Fast-forward to 2017. Of the two dozen LNG projects proposed, zero have been built. Clark’s Liberals are gone, replaced by an NDP-Green Party partnership willing to zap virtually all forms of nonrenewable resource development in the province. Recently, the largest approved LNG project was cancelled when Petronas pulled the plug on their $36-billion Pacific NorthWest LNG facility. How did LNG go from Clark’s cure-all to an economic albatross in less than half a decade?

It’s important to note how dramatically the natural gas market has changed in recent years. As late as 10 years ago, Canada was considering proposals for coastal natural gas import facilities. Now, with our newfound glut of domestic supply and gas replacing coal in developing countries in Asia, Canada is attempting to shift on the fly. Such agile economic maneuvering might be feasible in a different political climate. But Canada’s debate around resource development has grown increasingly more intransigent, with lawful but lengthy regulatory approvals hijacked and trumped by foreign influence, special interests, and partisan politics. This instability, coupled with Canada’s bungling shift from natural gas importer to exporter, has allowed the United States to meet the world’s growing demand for natural gas. There are currently seven LNG export facilities under construction in the U.S. and another four are ready to go. This is happening after the very first LNG cargo ship left American soil only 18 months ago. Not surprisingly, Pacific NorthWest’s demise has become political fodder for partisans on both sides of the issue. LNG supporters say it’s ironclad proof that B.C.’s new government will drive all innovation and investment out of the province, while LNG critics say the market has rendered its verdict on the resource as uneconomical regardless of who is in power. Adverse market conditions for natural gas have been accumulating for years without Petronas indicating cancellation, but just days after a hostile government is installed they pull the plug. To suggest the change in government was not a factor certainly pushes the bounds of reason and logic.

BROCK HARRISON IS THE DIRECTOR OF COMMUNICATIONS AND POLICY WITH THE ALBERTA ENTERPRISE GROUP.

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

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TAXPAYERS NEED PLANS, NOT PLATITUDES // PAIGE MACPHERSON

Taxpayers Need Plans, Not Platitudes BY PAIGE MACPHERSON

W

hen asked how he’s going to balance the budget, Alberta Finance Minister Joe Ceci speaks in platitudes. His government is “bending the cost curve,” he insists. Over time, the government says they’re slowing the growth of their spending, which will – like magic! – mean the deficit will disappear soon enough. Currently, the minister says they’ll balance the budget six years from now (conveniently not during the government’s current mandate). But time and again, these promised dates have shifted like prairie winds. Despite a chorus of journalists pushing Ceci for specifics during the government’s press conference explaining the details of their annual report – an important fiscal update – alas, no details yet. When the minister was asked when a balanced budget plan might materialize, he said his government is “on track with their deficit” and is “doing a great job.” As our finance minister knows, the budget isn’t a yoga exercise. We can’t simply “bend” it to achieve balance. At its core, the budget is very basic, as everyone with a household or business balance sheet knows. When you’re bringing in less, you must spend less. That doesn’t mean “slowing the growth” of your spending. You can’t begin a fancy new backyard renovation but simply nix the koi pond. You must spend less than you’re spending today. The problem is that even as Minister Ceci shifted the blame of the deficit away from his government and onto oil prices, in his next breath he rolled out a laundry list of new spending items. In fact, last year the government found $1 billion in new revenue, and yet the deficit remained unchanged. The government found an extra $1 billion – and spent it. While the minister says his government isn’t “overly reliant” on oil prices to balance the budget, the reality is

that his government is almost entirely reliant on oil prices rebounding. In the meantime, the only plan is to cross their fingers and spend, spend, spend. Of course, the government is also raising taxes. But it’s not quite panning out as they’d hoped. Despite higher general business taxes and income taxes, revenues from both are hundreds of millions of dollars below the government’s budget projections. The fiscal mess means more bad news from credit rating agencies: in July, DBRS downgraded the province’s long-term outlook to negative. In May, when S&P Global downgraded Alberta’s credit by two notches, they predicted a $94-billion debt by 2020. It’s a mess. But here’s the good news. When the going gets tough, the tough get going … and they get creative. In Edmonton, the birth of a new provincial political party brings the opportunity for hitting the refresh button on the policy debate, inviting ideas for how government opponents would achieve budget balance, but also pushing government to do the same. Sometimes all it takes is a little added pressure to achieve some accountability. As David Staples wrote in the Edmonton Journal, the introduction of Fahad Mughal into the mayoral race may not pose any serious challenge to Don Iveson’s candidacy, but Mughal’s proposals for more direct democracy in government decision-making will push Iveson in the right direction. With continued pressure, taxpayers can keep the heat on politicians vying for their votes provincially and at the city level. If Edmontonians can duck the inevitable political bombast, they can push for some serious answers from their government. Enough with the platitudes. Minister Ceci, show us a plan.

PAIGE MACPHERSON IS ALBERTA DIRECTOR OF THE CANADIAN TAXPAYERS FEDERATION.

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


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PCL Construction, who headquarters in Edmonton and is the largest contracting company in Canada, is pleased to announce that it has been awarded a $1.1 billion designbuild contract for the new Calgary Cancer Centre. “PCL is honored to be leading the team that will bring this world-class facility to Calgary, knowing that we can help make a very real difference in our community to cancer patients and their families,” said Dave Filipchuk, president and CEO. “Our company takes pride in all of the projects we build, and the Calgary Cancer Centre will be another exceptional facility where our health-care building expertise shines through.” PCL will complete this project with the Province, DIALOG and Stantec. Construction will commence late this year and will be complete in 2022. By dollar value, this is PCL’s largest design-build project to date. Another milestone sees the Centre as becoming one of most energy efficient hospitals in North America. The Calgary Cancer Centre’s two million+ square feet will include a 1,650 stall underground parking garage, along with 160 beds, more than 100 exam rooms, more than 100 chemotherapy chairs, radiation vaults, a clinical trial unit, research labs, outpatient clinics and a 984-foot elevated pedway. The Centre aims to provide leading and comprehensive cancer care that works with both patients and their families to provide education, screening and research. “The design is an inspired vision that will make life better for generations of patients with a full range of cancer treatment services and a hub for cutting-edge cancer research. Most importantly, it is designed around supporting patients and their families,” noted Minister of Health Sarah Hoffman in a media statement.

Premier Notley said, “Our government is working to make life better for Albertans; that’s why we are investing in new schools, hospitals, personal care homes, and this longoverdue cancer centre for patients and families in Calgary and Southern Alberta. I’m so proud to see this badly needed new Cancer Centre take its next step. The choice of the successful design and builder means shovels will be in the ground later this year. Congratulations to everyone involved.” On the day of the Centre’s announcement, Verna Yiu, president and CEO, Alberta Health Services proclaimed, “This is an exciting day for all Albertans, AHS staff, patients and families. This design will enable our providers to advance excellence in research, treatment standards and cancer care, empowering and supporting patients and families throughout the care journey.” Those most impacted by the new Cancer Centre will be the brave men, women and children fighting the disease. Susan Cardinal, who is a cancer survivor and member of the Patient and Family Advisory Network, was also on hand for the announcement and said, on behalf of fighters and survivors in Alberta, “For anybody facing cancer and the long journey that goes with it, the new cancer centre is our home away from home, and what a home! World-class medical treatment and a home filled with light and life. The centre radiates hope, and hope is a powerful force.”

ABOVE: DAVE FILIPCHUK, PRESIDENT AND CEO OF PCL. PHOTO SOURCE: PCL

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Collaborative Development Around EIA

With Edmonton International Airport’s (EIA) $2 billion+ impact in the region, use and development of the land around the airport is an important issue. As of this summer, the City of Edmonton, Leduc County, the City of Leduc and EIA have signed an Inter-Jurisdiction Cooperation Accord. “This partnership provides an unprecedented collaborative opportunity to innovate and advance the region and EIA as a competitive global investment destination. We can achieve more together than would otherwise be possible,” said Edmonton Mayor Don Iveson. The Inter-Jurisdiction Cooperation Accord makes the EIA and the area around it a priority as an economical location. Development of the region will be carried in ways that support the role of the airport, and that will attract more flights to EIA. The Accord also recognizes how the benefits of a successful airport can be shared among the partners, and how development will continue to support the long-term success of EIA.

THE INTER-JURISDICTION COOPERATION ACCORD MAKES THE EIA AND THE AREA AROUND IT A PRIORITY AS AN ECONOMICAL LOCATION. Leduc County Mayor John Whaley said in a media statement, “We are proud of the collaborative spirit we’ve fostered both through the annexation process and the signing of this Accord. Regional collaboration is our greatest

strength and is critical for the success of regional assets such as EIA. This partnership seeks to build on EIA’s position within the region’s economic and social fabric.” Leduc Mayor Greg Krischke noted, “As EIA expands, it’s clear that its growth and prosperity are interconnected with growth and prosperity in the Edmonton metropolitan region. This partnership adopts the true spirit of regional collaboration and is a crucial component of our overall competitiveness, whether at home or abroad – it’s about attracting jobs and investment to the entire region.” Tom Ruth, the president and CEO of EIA, is also excited about the Accord.

ABOVE: TOM RUTH, THE PRESIDENT AND CEO OF EIA. PHOTO SOURCE: EIA

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“EIA is an integral part of the region’s economy,” he said. “We benefit from an excellent long-term relationship with all surrounding municipalities, something that has helped support an impressive track record of sustained passenger growth over the long-term, seven consecutive years of cargo growth and more than $750 million in commercial investment by EIA and our private industry partners. As a not-for-profit entity that is mandated to drive economic growth for our region, we are committed to creating jobs, generating economic development and building relationships that will benefit all parties for many years to come. It is essential for us to work with partners who recognize and appreciate what EIA needs in order to achieve this regional mandate and provide the best travel experience for our passengers.” EIA is, when measured by land mass, the largest major, and the fifth busiest, airport in Canada. Its network of runways can accommodate aircraft of any size; the world’s largest cargo carrier, the Antonov 225, has landed at EIA on several occasions. Last year, construction began on the Simon and Ivanhoé Cambridge Premium Outlet Collection – Edmonton International Airport development, which will have more than 580,000 square feet of lease space.

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CHANGING GROUND: BILL KNIGHT’S EVOLUTION AS AN ENTREPRENEUR // COVER

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CHANGING GROUND: BILL KNIGHT’S EVOLUTION AS AN ENTREPRENEUR // COVER

Changing Ground: BILL KNIGHT’S EVOLUTION AS AN ENTREPRENEUR

THE FOUNDING PARTNER OF THREE KNIGHTS INVESTMENTS INC. GOES FROM DEMOLISHING BUILDINGS TO BUILDING EMPIRES.

BY NERISSA MCNAUGHTON

B

ill Knight. You probably know that name. He made a name for himself by creating one of the largest demolition companies in Western Canada. Now he’s given up that company to help entrepreneurs realize their dreams. Taking the “been there, done that” perspective, Knight understands entrepreneurs because he is one. He knows the struggle, the hustle, and the fact that even great success and realizing your dream never negates the volume of hard work it takes to keep a company afloat. Knight is also passionate about philanthropy, knowing that the more you give, the more you get out of life. These days, Knight is no longer tearing things down for a living. He’s spending all of his time building things up. “In the fall of 1989, I took a job as a labourer for a demolition company here in Edmonton for the sole purpose of making

enough money to buy a plane ticket back to Ontario,” Knight reminisces. “It was a very seasonal company, and as a result, I had to take other odd jobs as well. I sold pagers, vacuum cleaners door-to-door, and even did some framing work. Something, however, always took me back into the demolition industry.” He never did get that plane ticket back to Ontario. “In 1999, I opened B&B Demolition. I recognized an opportunity for a specialized interior demolition contractor and I seized it. Through the years, I have had other opportunities to own and invest in a garbage company, a trucking company, a construction company, and even a few nightclubs. I’ve also owned some multifamily properties in Alberta and Saskatchewan. Because of my varied experience, I have a unique understanding of entrepreneurs and the challenges they face.

LEFT: BILL KNIGHT, FOUNDING PARTNER OF THREE KNIGHTS INVESTMENTS INC. PHOTO SOURCE: EPIC PHOTOGRAPHY INC.

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

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CHANGING GROUND: BILL KNIGHT’S EVOLUTION AS AN ENTREPRENEUR // COVER

“Nobody talks about the downside of being an entrepreneur in a busy Alberta economy. Labour shortages, finding qualified people, having so much work it’s hard to complete on time to the standard of excellence you are known for, and the stresses that are put on the team members and families. “Three Knights Investments seemed like the next natural progression for me, as it allows me to leverage my skills and work with passionate individuals that I can help on their journey to success.” Three Knights Investments Inc. is a company that invests in and mentors entrepreneurs. Founded by Bill Knight and co-run by his wife Grace and his son Steven, the trio focus first on the growth and development of the people they help, and secondly on their financial investors. The company recognizes value where value is commonly overlooked and places a strong emphasis on businesses that are run by strong, passionate, educated entrepreneurs with viable dreams and realistic outlooks. “As the leader of the B&B Demolition team, I felt constant pressure to do better for them and for my own family,” Knight explains of his time as an entrepreneur in the Capital City. “The workday never ended for me; it was always a 24/7 pressure that eventually took all the fuel I had left in the tank. I was in the worst health, mentally and physically, that I’d ever been in. I had no life/work balance and I knew something significant had to change. My passion was, and has always been, to help people, and unfortunately, I was just too burnt out to do that at B&B.

SEEMED LIKE THE NEXT NATURAL PROGRESSION FOR ME, AS IT ALLOWS ME TO LEVERAGE MY SKILLS AND WORK WITH PASSIONATE INDIVIDUALS THAT I CAN HELP ON THEIR JOURNEY TO SUCCESS.” ~ BILL KNIGHT it, I was here in this place. I never looked this far; I looked directly in front of me, but never ahead. I’ve been so blessed with such good fortune.” Knight reflects on the mission and values of his new company, and on why it’s so important for Edmonton. “Three Knights Investments Inc. is a growth capital firm that is focused on assisting entrepreneurs through mentorship, financing, and strategic planning,” he says. “We are a team of individuals that leverages each other’s strengths and experiences to develop entrepreneurs and their businesses through their next stages of growth. Our goal is to assist entrepreneurs in realizing their dreams.

Looking back, Knight didn’t realize this was where he would wind up after he launched his own demolition company. Like so many business owners, his primary goal was to sustain himself and his family.

“I believe we have challenging economic times in Edmonton right now, and entrepreneurs need more help than ever. There is a lot of talk, but very little action in directly supporting curious and innovative people. I am lucky enough to have the experience of running businesses through the 2008 recession, along with other downturns in the economy, and I was able to successfully guide multiple companies through those times while adding both growth and profit. By sharing my experiences and knowledge with others, the entrepreneurs we work with will be able to grow and succeed, adding an economic benefit to local families. Strong communities build strong countries.

“I started B&B Demolition to pay off my $100,000.00 mortgage on my $110,000.00 house. I’ve always been a hard worker, but I just took one step at a time. Before I knew

“I believe, everywhere else in the world, there is six degrees of separation among people, but in Edmonton there are only two. It is always easy to connect with people because of that.

“I founded Three Knights Investments because I wanted to focus on my passion again. I want to share my experience and knowledge to help others avoid the burnout that I’ve experienced. I want entrepreneurs to succeed in realizing their dreams before they become as exhausted as I was.”

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“THREE KNIGHTS INVESTMENTS

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


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It’s business. And it’s personal. PRIVATE ENTERPRISE SERVICES Contact Steve Ritz, CA at 780.453.5363 or steve.ritz@mnp.ca


CHANGING GROUND: BILL KNIGHT’S EVOLUTION AS AN ENTREPRENEUR // COVER

Edmonton has always been a community of success, and the city has a very generous attitude towards entrepreneurs and those who want to support the community philanthropically. People in Edmonton are giving and supportive. We always rise to the challenge to help others in need. No matter where I am in the world, I am proud to say that I am from Edmonton.” Going from a field-based career to an office-based one, however, is not without its challenges. Knight explains, “There is a big transition moving from a company the size of B&B Demolition to the size of Three Knights Investments. The most challenging thing for me is taking a step back and realizing that it’s a start-up at times. The most important piece is to celebrate the small victories.” Setting up any type of company is hard work, but there are many things about Three Knights Investments that Knight treasures. “Working with my son Steven, and helping companies grow,” he cites as two reasons, in addition to, “knowing that we are providing a stable employment base for team members to provide for their families, and mentoring entrepreneurs who are chasing their dreams.” “It’s fulfilling,” he continues. “I’ve learnt more from my failures than I have from my successes. If I can prevent that one mistake from happening to someone else, it’s a great feeling.” As a long-term and successful entrepreneur, Knight has valuable information, based on his own experiences, for those thinking about starting their own companies, and for those questioning how to lead and develop their existing teams. “Leadership is more about providing a vision and motivation than it is about being right all the time,” he counsels. “It’s okay to not have all the answers, but leaders must develop excellent teams, and empower them to reach their full potential. By rolling up our sleeves up and jumping in the trenches, leaders can find solutions to the most complex challenges in collaboration with their teams.” “I’ve always believed in the power of a team. Whether it’s midnight and we’ve just hit a sprinkler head in West Edmonton Mall and it’s all hands on deck, or it’s doing charity work like being a team delivering toys for Santa’s Anonymous, the power of a great team can make anything

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possible. It’s very rewarding to be part of one, and to help one grow.” He warns that entrepreneurship is never easy. The most consistent complaint across business owners with companies of all sizes is the very elusive balance between satisfying the needs of yourself, your family, and your company. “Unfortunately, I was late to the game on this one,” Knight admits in trying to find his own work/life balance. “In the last five years, I’ve had no work/life balance. I was always at work, even when I should have been focused on my family. I have learnt it is necessary to find that balance early in your career. It’s important to set the phone down, turn off the emails, and be present. Find things outside of work that get you just as engaged, and make time for them early.” These days, Knight keeps things in balance by making sure he’s as engaged in the things he loves, as much as he’s engaged in running Three Knights Investments. He loves to fill up a backpack and go hiking in the desert or mountains, unplugged and far away from the bustle of the city and its distractions. He loves to travel and explore new places. However, you won’t find him skydiving or zip lining! “I am extremely afraid of heights,” he admits a little sheepishly. In every iteration of his life, Knight has focused on giving back. “Edmonton has so many great charities, and it’s hard to choose just one, but I’d have to say The Edmonton Singing Christmas Tree Foundation really stands out the most for me. It is a grassroots organization that we’ve had the privilege of supporting since John Cameron Entertainment resurrected it. To date, Cameron and his team have given back $700,000 in donations to Edmonton charities.” Each year, The Edmonton Singing Christmas Tree Foundation features a 35-foot choir tree that sings as ballerinas delight, acrobats tumble, a live orchestra plays, and soloists thrill. The breathtaking performance is a great kickoff to the holiday season, and all of the net proceeds from the show are donated to local charities, organizations and children in need through gifts, food, and music education. This is just one of the types of non-profit organizations that Knight is pleased to support.


CHANGING GROUND: BILL KNIGHT’S EVOLUTION AS AN ENTREPRENEUR // COVER

Knight is also quick to recognize the support he has received from others, knowing that behind every great entrepreneur stands those that help them along their journey.

what comes next for this Edmonton businessman and philanthropist? As it turns out, there are many more exciting things in his future.

“There are so many people to acknowledge because I believe everyone I meet is in my life for a specific purpose,” Knight says humbly. “The ones that stand out the most are: my son Steven. I love to work with him. He is wise beyond his years. My wife Grace. She has the ability to make me look at situations differently (I tend to have tunnel vision). Jeff Sheckter, for showing me there are 100 ways to make a deal. Carmelo and Stella Rago, for showing me the importance of philanthropy; and the Entrepreneurs’ Organization Edmonton, for mentorship and friendship.”

“For Three Knights Investments, we would like to continue to have 2-4 new partnerships per year,” smiles Knight. “For me personally, I am running in Ward 6 this October, and plan to help make Edmonton the best city in the country to live, raise a family, and do business.”

Knight is enjoying the evolution of his career and his ability to help emerging entrepreneurs realize their dreams. So

Some people are content to dream about what they want to do with their lives, but for people like Bill Knight, they realize their dreams, then help others make their dreams come true as well, all while supporting the community that launched their career. As Knight can attest, it makes for a truly happy, satisfying, and rewarding way of life.

ABOVE: BILL KNIGHT, FOUNDING PARTNER OF THREE KNIGHTS INVESTMENTS INC. PHOTO SOURCE: EPIC PHOTOGRAPHY INC.

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

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INNOVATIVE WELLNESS // CORPORATE HEALTH, WELLNESS & REJUVENTATION

INNOVATIVE WELLNESS TOOLS TO EMPOWER YOUR TEAM EMPLOYERS GET A COMPETITIVE EDGE BY USING THESE OUT-OF-THE-BOX WELLNESS SOLUTIONS

BY NERISSA MCNAUGHTON

W

hen a company sponsors health and wellness benefits for their employees, they benefit from a healthier, happier and more productive team. However, as an employer, are you overlooking these unique wellness tools that are taking corporate healthcare to a new level? Take a look at what an HSA, private clinic and personal gym can do for you and your team.

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HSA: The Health Spending Account “A health spending account (HSA) is a group benefit that provides reimbursement for a broad range of health-related expenses and complements a conventional benefits plan by offering more value and flexibility for employees,” says Jesse Monck, director of the group division with Alberta Blue Cross, Alberta’s largest benefits provider. “The list of eligible


INNOVATIVE WELLNESS // CORPORATE HEALTH, WELLNESS & REJUVENTATION

expenses tends to be much more comprehensive than those benefits provided under the base plan, and benefit maximums often associated with traditional benefit offerings are replaced with an overall maximum, as determined by the employer contribution into the employee’s HSA.” “HSAs are administered in accordance with Canada Revenue Agency guidelines, and as such, contributions made by the employer to the employee are not deemed as taxable income,” adds Monck. “For the employer, contributions offer a measure of cost containment and predictability in the fact that contributions can be set and budgeted for each year. As well, the flexibility of an HSA is appealing to most employees and helps to attract and retain top talent.” Monck continues, “HSA plans are very popular in Canada today, and many employer-sponsored benefit programs include an HSA as part of their package. The flexibility and tax advantage provided by an HSA makes them appealing to both employer and employee.”

to cover the expenses. A good benefit plan can be designed to fit an employer’s budget through coverage maximums, co-insurance, deductibles and per-visit maximums—with a health spending account as a value-added option.” The value of HSAs for employers is cost control, says Monck. “With a greater focus on business costs in Canada today, the ability to help control plan costs and provide greater predictability in future costs is more needed than ever. HSAs help to achieve this by offering a very flexible addition to a company’s employee benefit plan.”

Private Health Care Clinics Les Jickling is the senior director, marketing & communications, at Copeman Healthcare Centre, where primary care is delivered through a team of specialized healthcare professionals. The Centre’s collaborative and whole-body approach

One thing Monck notes, however, is that HSAs are best as a complement to conventional employee benefit plans—not a replacement. “While offering great flexibility, they do not offer the protection or amount of coverage available through benefit plans. HSAs operate like a bank account. A pre-determined allotment is assigned to an employee, and he/ she cannot exceed that allotment. Any employer contributions revert back to the employer if not used by the employee after two years. HSAs on their own offer no assistance for unexpected or catastrophic incidents, such as a family member suddenly needing a high-cost drug or requiring disability coverage. Also, if an employee’s health care costs are quite high, he/she may not have enough money in the HSA

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

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Empire Dental Associates

E

mpire Dental Associates was established in the Empire Building, in downtown Edmonton, in 1993. Numerous practitioners have worked and contributed to Empire Dental over the years. Most notably, Dr. Mel Taskey, who specialized in prosthodontics, and was well known for his clinical work and contributions, including, being the Edmonton Oilers’ dentist in the ’80s. As a clinician, Dr. Taskey surrounded himself with the means to provide the highest level of care that he could. This included personnel and material support. In a move to the Oliver neighborhood, Empire Dental opened in a larger office space dedicated to Dr. Taskey’s vision. Several years ago, Empire Dental was at a transition point with Dr. Taskey’s pressing retirement. Through numerous discussions and with significant planning, Dr. James Yacyshyn, an associate with Empire, purchased the practice and the building. Dr. Yacyshyn completed his BSc and DDS degrees with distinction at the University of Alberta. He continued with advanced training at the University of Toronto, in the Centre for Management of Technology and Entrepreneurship, earning his Masters Applied Science Engineering (MASc), with a focus on health technology. He was immediately returned to a faculty position at the University of Alberta, in the Faculty of Medicine and Dentistry, with a cross appointment to the Alberta Research Council. He has been the director of continuing dental education for the last 14 years. His background has provided him with a focus on clinical care and patient outcomes, while optimizing the technologies and techniques available. Dr. Yacyshyn has demonstrated an ongoing interest in the pursuit of knowledge as it applies to clinical best practice and integration of emerging technology and techniques. By balancing a role at the University with practice ownership, Dr. Yacyshyn has numerous responsibilities and roles

where institutional or practice challenges require leadership of both smaller and large groups. His management background in people and projects has served him well in both Dr. James Yacyshyn environments. He was able to build the business model for Empire by utilizing his intimate knowledge of the practice he associated in over many years, in combination with the network, knowledge and awareness he has of other practitioners that could help build on an incredible established practice. A contributing success factor for this established business model is that the practice has a group of individuals with strengths in a number of areas. The patient base is demographically quite varied and comes from many different parts of the city of Edmonton and the province. This diverse base creates a stable core business, that, in combination with Dr. Yacyshyn’s interests in emerging technologies and techniques, has allowed for investment in infrastructure that helps practitioners in the delivery of optimized care.


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INNOVATIVE WELLNESS // CORPORATE HEALTH, WELLNESS & REJUVENTATION

about risk mitigation,” he adds. “For example, imagine you are in a law firm and there are 40 partners. Every partner shares in the bonus fund. Suddenly, one guy is off for a year and a half because of a cardiac event. He’s not going to be very popular!” to wellness includes nutrition counselling, exercise medicine and personal training, physiotherapy, mental and cognitive wellness and more. Copeman has clinics in Edmonton, Calgary and Vancouver. “Healthy, happy employees drive superior results. That’s been proven time and time again!” says Jickling with his signature enthusiasm. “Providing health benefits is also

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He notes that providing health benefits is also valuable to the company itself. “You hear companies talk about how employees are their greatest asset. Any asset is appreciating or depreciating. If your employees are healthy, they are appreciating. If they are getting unhealthier, they are a depreciating asset – and you will carry those assets either way. In an ideal scenario, all your assets are appreciating.”


INNOVATIVE WELLNESS // CORPORATE HEALTH, WELLNESS & REJUVENTATION

Jickling is pleased to see many executives and their teams take advantage of Copeman’s private facilities, and points out how this is serving companies well. “The number one commodity executives don’t have is time. When it comes to things like going to the doctor, physiotherapist, or booking travel vaccinations, you’ve got two choices: book time during the work day, or schedule it before or after work. Those appointments cut into your life when you only have one or two free hours a day and have to spend that time going to a doctor. That’s why Copeman strictly adheres to a firm booking schedule. When you arrive at our clinic, you are seen within 7-15 minutes. Ninety-five per cent of our clients are seen within 10 minutes or less, according to our monitored metrics. “A dedicated team of clinicians are assigned to each client, and by limiting the amount of patients they see, each patients has ample time to speak with their medical care team at every visit. “We also use technology to coordinate everything. There is nothing more annoying than going to the doctor, having him or her write a notation, having that notation go into the file, and getting the distinct impression that nobody looked at the notes by your next visit. To avoid that, the founder of this company said, ‘We need collaboration among all our caregivers.’ Our on-site caregivers work together so they can provide a different perspective on each case. Also, patients can log in at any time to see their lab results and other health markers.” Speaking of lab results, patients of this private clinic don’t have to wait very long for their results because the lab is in the Copeman facility; yet another detail taken by the clinic ensure the best in private health care. A whole-body approach to wellness that is delivered in a state-of-the-art facility where your entire medical team is on site is a key driver in the success of any busy executive, and those that take advantage of this high level of care for themselves and their team learn to build resilience physically, cognitively and psychologically.

Private Gyms Jessica Zapata is the co-owner of Infinite Fitness, a private gym in Edmonton. Stress reduction, she says, is one of the

JESSICA ZAPATA IS THE COOWNER OF INFINITE FITNESS, A PRIVATE GYM IN EDMONTON. STRESS REDUCTION, SHE SAYS, IS ONE OF THE BEST REASONS FOR EXECUTIVES TO HEAD TO A PRIVATE GYM. best reasons for executives to head to a private gym. “Studies have shown how physical activity helps mental health. These days, we are too connected and always bombarded with information. Thanks to our phones, our emails are with us all the time. A mental break is very important for stress relief.” While exercise of any sort in any facility is important for wellbeing, she knows that private gyms give executives something more. “You get attention that is more focused on you,” Zapata notes. “Private gyms are usually adult-only facilities, and you are surrounded by likeminded peers. I’ve seen networking take place here because the clients get to know each other and their businesses. In most private facilities, the atmosphere is tailored to what an executive will appreciate more.” Infinite Fitness has two popular corporate programs that are changing the way company owners look at subsidizing gym memberships. “Employers can purchase personal training sessions and give them to employees as a perk,” she notes. “We have something similar for our group fitness memberships. The employer purchases sessions and the employees come in as a group. In this economy, it’s a great way to help employees with their fitness goals without increasing overall wage costs.” Taking advantage of the innovations in what, where and how corporate wellness solutions are offered to executives and their teams makes for a healthier and more engaged work force across Alberta. Take the time to empower yourself and your employees with the gift of health. It’s the gift that never stops giving.

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

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HOW POCKETS OF REVITALIZATION ARE HELPING TO SCULPT A NEW EDMONTON // REAL ESTATE

HOW POCKETS OF REVITALIZATION ARE HELPING TO SCULPT A NEW EDMONTON BY LAURA BOHNERT

I

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CE District isn’t the only development happening in Edmonton. With multiple revitalization projects on the go, Edmonton is getting the facelift it needs to remain relevant to residents, retailers, and investors alike. However, as Peter Ohm, chief planner, City of Edmonton, explains, a lot goes into making that happen.

connection to the region, but we also plan portions of the city: neighbourhoods, parts of neighbourhoods, etc. Within that continuum, a great deal of work in our department is performed on behalf of private industry; they are the ones who come into the city looking to invest and must get planning approval.

“Within our department, there are two branches that work at a variety of scales around city planning: one end looks at the prospect of city-wide land use and development in

“On the other side, a great deal of work in the department is also done on behalf of council through a combination of operating council programs. Council is cognisant of making

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


HOW POCKETS OF REVITALIZATION ARE HELPING TO SCULPT A NEW EDMONTON // REAL ESTATE

PART OF THE CHALLENGE FOR CITY PLANNERS, OHM DESCRIBES, INVOLVES RE-ATTRACTING INVESTORS TO AREAS THAT HAVE BEEN LEFT BEHIND AS COMMERCIAL TRENDS SHIFT OVER THE YEARS. THAT, HOWEVER, IS WHERE REVITALIZATION PLAYS AN IMPORTANT ROLE.

sure all parts of the city are vital; they want to make sure we have all that is necessary for those areas to thrive.”

revitalize the business district, and using grant programs and operating grants, 118th Avenue was transformed.”

Part of the challenge for city planners, Ohm describes, involves re-attracting investors to areas that have been left behind as commercial trends shift over the years. That, however, is where revitalization plays an important role.

“Interestingly enough,” adds Ohm, “an arts district has sprung up there, taking advantage of the market theme. The market price is attractive, but the arts community also likes the built form, the economics, and the connectivity to other kinds of arts.”

“We have 13 business improvement areas that are based on old high streets, some of which followed the street car line from years ago,” Ohm explains. Following the growth of the population and the method of commercialization (the shift from shopping streets to shopping centres and now big box stores), these areas have lost their initial relevance— “commercial transforms content,” Ohm adds,“but we have these high-streets-patterned areas with a scale of building heritage value that is worth maintaining; the old high streets form the backbones of our residential neighbourhoods.”

“The city is working on a number of programs and efforts to draw people and investments back to mature areas of the city,” Ohm continues. These include things like Edmonton’s new transit strategy, parking standards, reallocating a portion of the city’s public investments from the suburbs to the core to create new opportunities that support private redevelopment, and making investments in asset conditions.

Ohm points out that “118th Avenue, for quite a few years, was a bit of a blighted area, but deliberate investments of capital dollars helped to improve the streets there. Private property owners were able to work with the City of Edmonton to

“Revitalization ensures various segments of the population find the city attractive so the city can represent enough diversity to appeal to the broad spectrum of the population. The downtown is one of the most important neighbourhoods,” Ohm emphasizes. “Without a strong and vital downtown, you are not going to have a competitive city, and a competitive city attracts people to move to it and invest in it.”

ABOVE: PETER OHM, CHIEF PLANNER, CITY OF EDMONTON.

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

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HOW POCKETS OF REVITALIZATION ARE HELPING TO SCULPT A NEW EDMONTON // REAL ESTATE

“REVITALIZATION IS GOOD FOR THE CITY, AND IT IS GOING TO CONTINUE TO GROW,” CONCLUDES CANTALINI, WHO PREDICTS A HIGHER PERCENTAGE OF URBANIZATION IN EDMONTON’S NEAR FUTURE.

George Cantalini, CEO of Beaverbrook Group of Companies, agrees that revitalization is the key to strengthening any city. “Any kind of revitalization is always good; to see things reused and take advantage of what’s there, like recycling, creates something new and making the best of what already exists. It’s important to have a strong core, then move centrifugally out from there. We are starting to get back to a good central core within Edmonton, and that will help to strengthen the whole city. Revitalization attracts people to the city for lifestyle, not just for work. When people want to move to Edmonton to live, not just because of jobs, it helps the economy. That’s what keeps the population growing.” He continues, “We’re not just building towers—not everyone wants to live in a tower. You have to have different kinds of housing to attract everyone down into the core. Our company is going after that different demographic. We are close enough to the downtown to be in the action, but far enough for people not to be in it every day all day long; it fulfills a different market, but is complimentary to what is happening in ICE district.”

“We are revitalizing the corner of 142nd Street and Stony Plain Road with our Westblock project outside the core, but still within the downtown of the city of Edmonton,” Cantalini describes of the Glenora site project, which will “eventually provide 500-550 units, 100,000 square feet of commercial development, mixed together around an urban square. “We also have a 110th Street project, called CX, about to launch between Jasper and 100th Avenue,” Cantalini adds. “This project includes a mid-rise building, six stories high, featuring townhouses and apartments.” “Revitalization is good for the city, and it is going to continue to grow,” concludes Cantalini, who predicts a higher percentage of urbanization in Edmonton’s near future. Mark Barron Wilbert, partner at Coldwell Banker Venture Realty, agrees. “I have definitely seen a spread of revitalization initiatives. ICE District is permanently changing the Edmonton skyline; The Quarters, East of downtown, will mold along the edge of the river valley; The Brewery District, West of downtown, has become a destination for urban eats and living; Blatchford Fields (the ABOVE: GEORGE CANTALINI, CEO OF BEAVERBROOK GROUP OF COMPANIES. PHOTO SOURCE: EPIC PHOTOGRAPHY INC.

RIGHT: MARK BARRON WILBERT, PARTNER AT COLDWELL BANKER VENTURE REALTY.

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HOW POCKETS OF REVITALIZATION ARE HELPING TO SCULPT A NEW EDMONTON // REAL ESTATE

“I HAVE DEFINITELY SEEN A SPREAD OF REVITALIZATION INITIATIVES. ICE DISTRICT IS PERMANENTLY CHANGING THE EDMONTON SKYLINE.” ~ MARK BARRON

old municipal airport site), north of downtown, just started construction on roads and sewers, but will become one of the world’s largest sustainable communities.

“There is also the Valley Line LRT and the impact on the communities it touches, as well as the Premium Outlet Collection at the Edmonton International Airport. All of these developments are currently underway and don’t even include all the new shopping complexes and communities being built through urban sprawl.

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qualicocommercial.com BUSINESSINEDMONTON.COM // BUSINESS IN EDMONTON // SEPTEMBER 2017

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HOW POCKETS OF REVITALIZATION ARE HELPING TO SCULPT A NEW EDMONTON // REAL ESTATE

“YEARS FROM NOW, I THINK WE ARE GOING TO NOTICE DRASTIC BEAUTIFICATION IN THE AREAS IN AND AROUND 107TH AVENUE (PRIMARILY BETWEEN 101ST STREET AND 109TH STREET). CURRENTLY, SOME BUILDINGS HAVE CHANGED HANDS, AND SOME OF THE NEW OWNERS HAVE SIMPLE YET IMPACTFUL REDEVELOPMENT PLANS. ~ DEL HANAFI

“The majority of attention has been about the shiny and new, but many older areas will be impacted or have already felt the changes of revitalization. Grants are in place to assist older buildings in getting a facelift, and this trend of ‘street scaping’ is taking place in several locations around Edmonton.” Wilbert adds, “The areas, in most cases, become safer; they attract more people (who in turn spend money) and, as a result, increase the value of the area. These pockets may be seen as the hearts and souls of a city. They bring likeminded people together that make amazing things happen. Many of these local groups and initiatives are what keep our city’s talent from leaving.” “Aside from ICE district, which has been getting a lot attention and notoriety, we are seeing many examples of revitalization taking place in Edmonton,” adds Adel Hanafi, Commercial Real Estate Associate, Investment Sales & Leasing, Cushman & Wakefield Edmonton.

some of the new owners have simple yet impactful redevelopment plans. “My investor clientele is always looking for unique value-add purchase opportunities, and many are acquiring stagnant and vacant buildings in Edmonton to give them a muchneeded facelift, to reposition these assets. This creative approach also helps to revitalize ageing areas of the city, and in turn, promotes more local business.” Hanafi concludes, “Redevelopments help to revitalize communities and set a precedent for a future wave of revitalization in the vicinity. When a commercial building is leased to a variety of tenants, jobs are supported and created in the construction, leasing, and operation of these new businesses and spaces for lease; this has a very profound impact on the surrounding community.”

“Years from now, I think we are going to notice drastic beautification in the areas in and around 107th Avenue (primarily between 101st Street and 109th Street). Currently, some buildings have changed hands, and

ABOVE: DEL HANAFI, COMMERCIAL REAL ESTATE ASSOCIATE, INVESTMENT SALES & LEASING, CUSHMAN & WAKEFIELD EDMONTON.

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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.

Health City Initiative moves forward with 10-year plan By Sheila Keenan, Communications and Outreach Coordinator In this first of a series of articles on innovation and market diversification in Edmonton, we spoke to Karen Wichuk, Executive Lead of the Health City Initiative. We wanted to learn more about the initiative and the role it will play in developing Edmonton as a leader in the development, commercialization, and distribution of health innovations. Upcoming articles will feature business leaders who are commercializing innovations in the health sector, as well as features on artificial intelligence, robotics, and advanced manufacturing.

A

fter Mayor Don Iveson announced the launch of the Health City Initiative at the Edmonton Chamber of Commerce 2016 State of the City address, a steering committee led by Chair, Jodi Abbott, was established. Since then, over 70 business, academic, government, and community leaders, including the Edmonton Chamber, have been working together to develop a strategy that will position Edmonton as a nationally and internationally recognized leader in health innovation. The Health City Strategy was released in June 2017, identifying a 10-year plan to move forward with the initiative, and to assist the health sector in creating a strong health innovation ecosystem by attracting and retaining top talent, funding, partnerships and investors.

We want people to know that Edmonton is open for business in the area of health innovation and across the health industry,” says Karen Wichuk, Executive Lead for Health City.

Liza Wold Partner, Miller Thomson LLP

Chamber Executive

While Edmonton has all the necessary components—world class health institutions and researchers, and innovative health and bio-sciences companies—what was missing was a voice to tie all those components together.

Max Frank Vice President, Membership & Operations Edmonton Chamber of Commerce

“The Health City Initiative is an opportunity for us to set a vision and a course for moving forward, diversifying our economy and supporting those people who are doing all this great work,” said Wichuk.

Janet Riopel President & CEO 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 Health City Strategy identified five goals along with key strategies for achieving the goals, and articulated performance measures. The goals are: 1. Foster a health innovation ecosystem that provides an unparalleled environment for success for health innovation and industry participants. 2. Become a destination of choice for health innovators, leaders, entrepreneurs and researchers. Continued on the next page... BUSINESSINEDMONTON.COM // BUSINESS IN EDMONTON // SEPTEMBER 2017

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3. Create a policy environment that accelerates the development and growth of the health innovation continuum, from discovery to commercialization and application. 4. Accelerate access to finance, capital and institutional investment while removing financial barriers to growth. 5. Solidify Edmonton’s reputation as a leading health innovation ecosystem. As the Health City initiative moves ahead, a key next step is to develop an organizational structure and to transition from the steering committee to a board structure to lead Health City. Over the last year, those involved have looked around the world to see what other cities are doing. According to Wichuk, the two most similar organizations are Montreal InVivo and MedCity in London. “Those organizations that we’ve looked at are very generous with their time and their experiences,” said Wichuk, explaining that the CEO of Montreal InVivo visited Edmonton to speak to the steering committee. “What we were told, loud and clear, was you need an organizational structure that will stand the test of time. This might be a 10-year strategy, but ultimately this is about building out a sector and an industry over the long term.” While these organizations might be considered competitors, it makes sense for them to work together. “Canada’s such a small country, the more we can create a critical mass of organizations that are doing well, the more we start to draw the attention of global talent and investors.” The Health City initiative is meant to support, advance and coordinate, not duplicate, efforts of other organizations like BioAlberta, which represents and promotes the province’s life sciences industry, and TEC Edmonton. The role of the Health City initiative is to “accelerate the great work that’s already being done and identify gaps that Health City can fill,” said Wichuk. “There seems to be an alignment and almost a perfect storm of leadership across the health sector right now, where there is common thinking, there is trust, there is goodwill and

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there’s an understanding of the opportunities that we have here in health,” said Wichuk. “And that makes all the difference in the world.” Once the Health City organization and board are set up, the next three years will focus on making sure everyone knows exactly what Edmonton has to offer, said Wichuk. A key challenge will be answering the question, why Edmonton? “We have to be ready to talk about what’s unique,” said Wichuk. “We have to have a united message.”

Edmonton is a gem when it comes to health research, health innovation, health care delivery, and really being on the leading edge. Innovators outside Edmonton are noticing what the region has to offer. Wichuk took note of the message the President of Janssen Canada shared when he was announcing the opening of JLABS Pod, a secure videoconferencing system that will link University of Alberta researchers with mentors in commercializing products. “One of the things that he said at that announcement was, you have everything here in Edmonton. You have the infrastructure, you have the talent, you have the vision, and you need to shout from the rooftops about what you’re doing here. People need to know about it.” Wichuk is ready to shout from the rooftops. “What I want everyone to know is that the hard work is not over, it’s just begun.” “It is all of our responsibility, across the health sector, to carry that momentum forward, to stay engaged and to really now build out the vision.” For more information on Health City, visit www.edmontonhealthcity.ca.


AMVIC Licensed


Opportunities North business conference connects companies and cultures

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ith a network spanning from Edmonton to the Artic, and across North America and around the world, logistics company BBE Expediting Ltd. is a prime example of a highly successful company that has built a solid foundation for long-term success through partnerships in the Canadian North. Built and perfected on experience developed over four decades operating in the Canadian Artic, BBE Expediting Ltd. recognizes the vast human and natural resources offered by our neighbors to the north. So, how do you build your company’s connections to the north to follow a similar path to success?

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through this empowering event. Hosted by the Edmonton, Northwest Territories, and Yukon, Chambers of Commerce, the event is tailored specifically to the needs of business, government and community leaders that are sincere in their desire to explore and enhance business opportunities to the mutual benefit of both regions.

A good first step would be registering to attend the Opportunities North business conference in Edmonton from September 12-14, 2017.

Keynote Speakers Headlining this year’s conference are a quartet of dynamic business and organizational leaders who are leading the charge in some of Canada’s fastest growing industries (ecommerce, health services, cannabis production, and professional advocacy):

An annual event and initiative of the Edmonton Northern Partnership, comprised of the City of Edmonton, Edmonton Economic Development Corporation, the Edmonton Chamber of Commerce, the University of Alberta, and EIA (Edmonton International Airport), Opportunities North consistently attracts those business leaders across Western Canada and the Arctic that are keen to build productive and profitable partnerships.

• Terry Booth Founder and CEO, Aurora Cannabis Inc. • Dr. Richard Heinzel Founder, Doctors without Borders Canada • Brennan Loh Director of Business Development and Strategic Partnerships, Shopify • Gabrielle Scrimshaw Co-Founder of the Aboriginal Professional Association of Canada

The theme for this year’s Opportunities North conference is ‘Economic Exploration and Exchange’ which perfectly describes the unique mix of region specific business insights and informal cultural connections facilitated

But Opportunities North is much, much more than simply informative and entertaining keynote speakers. Equal parts business conference, trade networking, and cultural exchange, this

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


immersive 3 day event features a diverse range of panel discussions, moderated roundtable chats, and breakout sessions. Focused on crucial topics integral to building your business through northern partnerships, and representing a broad cross-section of industry sectors and skill specializations, Opportunities North gives delegates the ability to tailor the event to meet your own specific needs for business intelligence, information gathering, and personal networking. This year’s Opportunities North events focuses on five topic of critical and impactful importance to both Edmonton and the North: Agriculture: Featuring Terry Booth, CEO Aurora Cannabis Inc. Business Growth: Featuring the Mayor’s Roundtable with Mayor Don Iveson (Edmonton), Mayor Mark Heyck (Yellowknife), Mayor Dan Curtis (Whitehorse), Mayor Madeleine Redfern (Iqaluit) Health: Featuring Dr. Richard Heinzel, Founder, Doctors without Borders Canada Innovation: Featuring Brennan Loh, Director of Business Development and Strategic Partnerships, Shopify Reconciliation: Gabrielle Scrimshaw, Co-Founder of the Aboriginal Professional Association of Canada In addition to timely and thought provoking content, Opportunities North features: • • • • • •

Gala reception and dinner Informal business mixer and trade show Topic specific group tours Complimentary shuttle service Preferred hospitality rates And more!

Equal parts: business conference, trade networking, and cultural exchange, this is truly a business event unlike any other. For more information on our program and speakers, visit OpportunitiesNorth.com. Turning action into opportunity Considering the potential growth that can be realized by your business or organization

through effective partnerships between the regions, it’s easy to see the value you and your colleagues will realize through your attendance and participation in this crucial conference. To secure your delegate passes, be sure to purchase your tickets today. • Take advantage of our special student offer and save 80% on a delegate pass for Opportunities North 2017. • Better still, if you’re keen to encourage other business leaders and partner companies to attend, you’re welcome to take part as a ‘Promotional Partner’ affording you the opportunity to get one of your delegate passes for FREE (a $650 saving!) Companies like BBE Expediting Ltd. have proven that the opportunities in the north are real. Opportunities North 2017 is your chance to make those opportunities a reality. BUSINESSINEDMONTON.COM // BUSINESS IN EDMONTON // SEPTEMBER 2017

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Business Development Bank of Canada Member profile Business Development Bank of Canada

Todd Tougas, Vice President, Alberta North

www.bdc.ca The Business Development Bank of Canada (BDC) has been working with business owners close to 75 years, and as a valued member of the Edmonton Chamber of Commerce, we wanted to take a moment to learn more about their journey, and their passion and commitment to supporting the growth and success of Canadian entrepreneurs. What’s your story? The (BDC) was founded in 1944 under the name ‘Industrial Development Bank’ (IDB). It was established by the federal government to help the Canadian economy transition from war time to peace time. The early days were focused on manufacturing and aviation (pioneering Canadian aviator Max Ward got his start with the help of the IDB). We became the Federal Business Development Bank (FBDB) in 1974 with a broader scope of helping businesses in all industries that oftentimes could not get financing elsewhere. In 1995 we were renamed BDC (Business Development Bank of Canada). Since that time we are no longer the Bank of “last resort” but rather a Bank that provides both financing and advisory service to emerging and growing businesses whose needs may be outside what is traditionally provided by the chartered banks. What are three things people are surprised to learn about your business? 1. We have a team of advisors who help businesses with the many challenges of running a business beyond just financing. 2. Our services are over and above those you may already receive from your bank. We don’t take deposits or provide lines of credit. We provide long term, nondemand loans, often in conjunction with your bank, credit union or ATB. 3. Despite being a Crown Corporation, we do not rely on government appropriations or provide grants. The money we lend we

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

Todd Tougas, Vice President, Alberta North

borrow from the market. We are profitable, we pay dividends to the federal government, and we reinvest our remaining profits back in our capital base so we can lend more. What has surprised you in the last 12 months? The resilience of the business community when times are tough economically. It is also somewhat surprising to see how many companies continue their strong support of charitable endeavors despite the fact their bottom lines are not what they were. I think it speaks to the kind of community Edmonton is. What has been your biggest challenge in the last 12 months? Assessing risk has been particularly challenging. Many companies have seen decreased revenue


and profitability over the last couple of years, so we have to bank even more on future prospects than on past history. What do you think is the biggest issue impacting Edmonton’s small businesses at this time? The elephant in the room for Edmonton is the price of oil (and gas). The oilfield permeates all types of business in the community, and when the patch is down it has a ripple effect on many sectors of the economy. Of course tax revenues are impacted so governments have less to work with too. What’s your secret to keeping your employees engaged? I believe our principal driver of engagement is our mandate. Our Edmonton team is very motivated by our singular purpose of helping entrepreneurs to be successful. Do you have a personal mantra? The old fashioned Golden Rule: ‘Do unto others as you would have them do unto you’. What do you enjoy most about being a chamber member? The opportunity to meet and engage with businesses of all sizes in a myriad of industries 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? I’d like to see Edmonton business look further afield to new markets abroad. We have a lot of ingenuity in Edmonton in many sectors whether it is oilfield related, cold weather technologies, nanotechnology and on and on. What is your favorite thing to do in Edmonton? Spending a summer’s evening at Commonwealth Stadium watching the Eskimos.

Apple or android? Apple Your most favorite place in the world? Paris Coffee or tea? Coffee in the morning, tea in the evening

Members in this Issue Alberta Blue Cross Plan and Copeman Healthcare Centre in Innovative Wellness Tools to Empower Your Team on page 22 City of Edmonton and Cushman & Wakefield Edmonton in How Pockets of Revitalization Are Helping to Sculpt a New Edmonton on page 28 City of Edmonton and Universe Machine Corp in “Challenging”: Industry Insiders Discuss the Present, and Future, of Edmonton’s Oil & Gas Sector on page 46 BUSINESSINEDMONTON.COM // BUSINESS IN EDMONTON // SEPTEMBER 2017

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The sky’s the limit at Opportunities North.

Business Conference | Trade Networking | Cultural Exchange Tickets on sale at OpportunitiesNorth.com #oppsnorth

Opportunities North 2017 unites the interests of visionary business, government and community leaders to chart a bold new course for Economic Exploration and Exchange. Connecting companies, cultures and corridors, this dynamic business conference and networking event brings together attendees seeking information and connections in the areas of trade and transport, education and reconciliation, exploration and investment. Featuring:

Terry Booth

CEO & Founder Aurora

Dr. Richard Heinzl

Founder Doctors Without Borders Canada

Brennan Loh

Founder & Director Business Development and Strategic Partnerships, Shopify

Special student offer:

Save 80% on a delegate pass*

Gabrielle Scrimshaw Co-Founder Aboriginal Professional Association of Canada

Sponsors:

Make Opportunities North 2017 a priority in your calendar and secure your tickets today at OpportunitiesNorth.com Hosted by: Presented by: *See www.edmontonchamber.com for details.


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A NEW GENERATION OF ALBERTANS IS ABOUT TO REIGNITE DEMAND FOR APARTMENTS

nvestors love to own multifamily rental buildings because over the long term, apartments tend to be stable, reliable investments that act as a hedge against inflation. In 2016, apartment vacancy rates in Edmonton hit a two-decade high of 7.1 per cent, versus 1.4 per cent in 2013. However, if you think that is causing widespread distress for those owning rental apartment buildings, think again. Compared with 2013, average rents are 7.3 per cent higher, capitalization rates are virtually unchanged, and the average rental apartment sold in the city went for more than $170,000, versus $131,000 only three years earlier. Quality, new properties such as the 125-unit Aurora at Summerside, which sold for more than $221,000 per unit last year, provide investors with long-lived, rent paying assets without the perceived capital risk of debt or equity investments. So paradoxically, even though vacant apartments are plentiful, there is a scarcity of owners of apartment buildings who are looking to sell right now. Savvy investors have learned to use soft patches in the cycle to buy rather than sell their inventory. For example, Edmonton-focused Boardwalk REIT purchased 750 new units in Edmonton and Calgary in 2016. Like many other landlords, Boardwalk has offered incentives to attract tenants, and by the first half of 2017, its properties were again experiencing more move-ins than move-outs. With most of Edmonton’s rental apartments more over 40 years old, there is an opportunity to bring new premium rentals into the market. ProCura, which developed the new Mayfair apartment buildings in downtown Edmonton, has returned its focus to Century Park. It has land for a decade’s worth of growth in a revised, higher-density version of transit-oriented development on the south side. The first project will be Central Tower at Century Park, 176 suites in a 19-storey glass tower. Construction began in March 2017 on Pangman development Corp.’s Augustana, a 216-unit rental apartment building in the government district. Pangman recently finished a 13-storey rental building on Jasper Avenue in Oliver, and is weighing its options for several other residential infill sites downtown. With oil prices and Alberta’s economy stabilizing, and with a turnaround gaining momentum, investors in Edmonton’s apartment sector have reason to be optimistic again. That’s because there are 787,000 Albertans aged 14 or younger who will start looking for places to live in just a few years. Better not throw away the “No Vacancy” signs just yet.

Experience the Difference Providing a full range of valueadded services to real estate owners and occupiers of office, retail, industrial, multi-family and hospitality properties. Avison Young is the world’s fastest-growing commercial real estate services firm, with 80 offices across the U.S., Canada, Mexico and Europe. We’re structured around a collaborative model focused on client performance and satisfaction. The Avison Young difference translates into intelligent solutions that deliver a better client experience – and better results. avisonyoung.com

Partnership. Performance.

www.bomaedmonton.org | BOMA Edmonton Newsletter | September 2017

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SAVE MONEY NOW—AND LATER—WITH ENERGY-EFFICIENT EQUIPMENT UPGRADES ENERGY EFFICIENCY ALBERTA REBATES MAKE HIGH-EFFICIENCY EQUIPMENT MORE AFFORDABLE

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o matter how large or small, every organization needs to make every dollar count. One way to do that is by reducing energy costs. That’s why organizations throughout the province are working with Energy Efficiency Alberta to help them make high-efficiency lighting and heating upgrades to keep a competitive edge. Through its Business, Non-Profit, and Institutional Energy savings program, Energy Efficiency Alberta offers organizations financial incentives to help offset the costs of making energy efficiency upgrades that save energy and reduce their carbon footprint. The program provides rebates to businesses; institutions such as schools, hospitals, colleges, and universities;

non-profit organizations; cooperatives; and common areas within multi-unit residential buildings to replace old, inefficient systems with new energy-efficient technologies. These improvements not only help reduce emissions and energy use, but also lower energy costs, improve comfort and indoor air quality, and can even increase productivity and customer satisfaction.

Savings and Support A wide variety of high-efficiency upgrades are eligible for rebates, and organizations can receive up to $60,000 per facility to help cover equipment costs. Energy-efficient interior and exterior lighting and controls, heating equipment, variable frequency drives for pumps and motors, and water heating equipment are among the improvements that organizations can make to save money through rebates. The Business, Non-Profit, and Institutional Energy Savings Program works with organizations to identify opportunities for savings, find a contractor, and get rebates. There is no qualified contractor list, and work may be performed by any contractor the customer prefers. Any equipment brand may be eligible for rebates, as long as it meets energy efficiency technical eligibility criteria. Program representatives are available Aurora Jet Partners is an innovative private aviation company to answer questions about prodspecializing in custom-tailored, high-quality private air travel. Our services range from hourly jet charters, right up to supplying ucts and the application process. complete turnkey flight departments. With more than four decades in the business, our team of experienced aviators will operate your Benefits Beyond Rebates flights on time and on budget within exacting safety standards. With When it comes to energy Aurora, the sky is not the limit. efficient upgrades, rebates are just the beginning. AIRCRAFT MANAGEMENT | ACQUISITIONS & SALES FRACTIONAL PARTNERSHIPS | CHARTERS

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September 2017 | BOMA Edmonton Newsletter | www.bomaedmonton.org

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• Keep on saving. When you install high-performance equipment in your business or facility, you can also save money on utility bills because of more efficient energy


use. That means you have more money to reinvest in your organization for what matters most to you. • Increase productivity. Energy-efficient equipment can contribute to an improved work environment, which helps employees be more productive. • Boost customer comfort and satisfaction. Make customers and other visitors comfortable with upgrades that improve building performance to stand up to winter’s chill and summer’s heat. • Do good for Alberta. High-efficiency equipment helps reduce your organization’s total energy use and Alberta’s carbon footprint. Find Ways to Save Running a successful organization takes a lot of work. Energy Efficiency Alberta can help you uncover the energy-saving possibilities in your organization. To learn more, visit efficiencyalberta.ca or call an Energy Efficiency Alberta representative at 1.844.357.5604.

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www.bomaedmonton.org | BOMA Edmonton Newsletter | September 2017

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BIKES - THE NEW WHEELS IN DOWNTOWN IF WE BUILD IT WILL THEY COME? ABSOLUTELY!

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ust one year ago, many Edmontonians could barely imagine that in a few short months our downtown core would be home to 7.8 kilometers of high quality protected bike lanes. This project was a true collaboration of City and community support, coming together with one vision of having safe, accessible and all-ages bike infrastructure by summer 2017. Edmonton’s strategic plan, The Way Ahead, outlines a bold vision for the City with important implications for downtown, including supporting more sustainable transportation options. This change is already happening as the cycling community continues to grow each year with many residents choosing to travel by bike. Olga Messinis, Project Manager, Downtown Bike Network, has seen this shift, “Edmonton is one of the youngest and fastest growing municipalities in Canada, with high concentrations of residents, jobs, amenities and destinations within the downtown.” Given this trend, Messinis advocates a need for change, “With the Downtown Bike Network, we are addressing the existing and growing demand for safe, accessible, all ages and abilities cycling infrastructure. We want our city to maintain its competitive edge by keeping and attracting talent and business for those choosing downtown Edmonton to work and call home.” April 5, six months after being unanimously approved by City Council, construction of the Downtown Bike Network began! Implementation was in full swing with the installation of the curbs, flex posts, signage and new bright and shiny signals. By June 23, the majority of the Downtown Bike Network was open and ready for use. The design took learnings from other municipalities, including Calgary, Vancouver, Toronto and Ottawa, where protected bike lanes were helping cyclists and drivers alike feel more comfortable on the roads. Excitement was in the air, with cyclists of all ages trying out the new protected bike lanes. “I just started working downtown and am riding my bike since it’s much faster than taking a bus home.” says new cyclist Linda Chernichen. “I was worried because I’m not a ‘downtown kinda girl’ but I came across the bike lanes by accident and the signage makes it easy to use. So far, so good.” Bike lanes are making the commute into downtown easier for cyclists, prompting

4 September 2017 |

BOMA Edmonton Newsletter | www.bomaedmonton.org

Book a tour for your office with the Bike Education Street Team. some to try leaving their cars at home. “I now commute downtown to work by bike,” says Liam Devereaux. “The change has not increased my travel time as I had initially thought it might, and in fact, may actually save me time more often than not.” Biking is also a great for mental and physical wellbeing. Studies have shown that 30 minutes of moderate cycling per week, can reduce your risk of heart disease by 30 per cent. Experienced cyclist Jennifer Vos says the new lanes have helped her to be more active, “I usually bike to work 3-4 times a week now, which gives me almost an hour of exercise a day.”


The Downtown Bike Network is one of many projects that is helping to transform our core. From Rogers Place and Capital Boulevard, to Experience Jasper Avenue and the Downtown Bike Network, the City understands these are all big changes for everyone. For the bike lanes especially, it means new changes to all road users - drivers, cyclists and pedestrians. The City is taking education on the new bike network seriously. Committed to Vision Zero’s goal of zero traffic fatalities and serious injuries, the City saw the need for a robust bike education program early on. The foundation of the program is the Bike Education Street Team, a team of educators who circulate along the Downtown Bike Network helping all road users become confident, comfortable and informed about all the new features of the Network. The Bike Education Street Team can be found at various intersections on the Network during peak hours on weekdays and during special events and at the farmer’s market on weekends. The team is also available for presentations or take your teams on tours of the network. The team will be out throughout the summer, fall, and winter interacting with road

users at various locations. Stop by, say hi and grab some cool swag! In addition to the street team, the education program also includes, brochures and flyers, how-to videos, online advertising, and other tools to reach Edmontonians. So what’s next for cycling in Edmonton? The Downtown Bike Network is just one of four bike projects on the go. By the end of 2017, a corridor of 106 Street & 76 Avenue will be complete, as well as the second phase of the 83 Avenue Bike Route. The last of the 102 Avenue Bike Route will also be completed, providing a safe space for cyclists coming from Edmonton’s west end. It’s an exciting time to cycle in Edmonton! Stop by the Cycle in the City Bike Party on Saturday, August 26. The party will showcase the new Downtown Bike Network with five unique pit stops along the route. A main stage at the Legislature will provide music and lots of fun for all ages. For more information about the Downtown Bike Network, the party and to book a tour, visit edmonton.ca/bikedowntown. See you on the lanes!

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www.bomaedmonton.org | BOMA Edmonton Newsletter | September 2017

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“CHALLENGING”: INDUSTRY INSIDERS // OIL & GAS

“CHALLENGING”: INDUSTRY INSIDERS DISCUSS THE PRESENT, AND FUTURE, OF EDMONTON’S OIL & GAS SECTOR WITH THE PACIFIC NORTHWEST PIPELINE CANCELLED, EDMONTON’S OIL AND GAS SECTOR FACES MORE CHALLENGES, BUT SOLUTIONS ARE OUT THERE, AND GROWTH CAN CONTINUE.

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“CHALLENGING”: INDUSTRY INSIDERS // OIL & GAS

The announcement was swiftly followed up with worries about Alberta’s oil and gas sector. Hit with a major decrease in price and the Wood Buffalo forest fires of last year, the oil and gas industry has been a major headline for Alberta for years. Provincial and federal governments quickly pointed to the free market and globalization as reasons for the project’s cancellation. B.C.’s Energy Minister, Michelle Mungall, said that “this was a decision they are making because of the economic challenges in the global energy marketplace.” Executive vice-president and CEO Anuar Taib agrees, saying the “extremely challenging environment brought about by the prolonged depressed prices and shift in the energy industry” are the reasons for the pipeline’s ultimate end. The Pacific Northwest LNG Pipeline is another lightning rod for many of the anxieties facing Alberta, and Edmonton specifically, since the economic downturn started. On one hand, governments have worked hard to balance environmental policy with encouraging oil sands production, including Alberta’s pro-pipeline stance that runs counter to their NDP equivalents in B.C.. On the other hand, carbon taxes, regulations, and government red tape are being blamed for a continued slouch in an oil industry already faced with a supply glut. With an estimated 99 per cent of Canada’s oil exports going to the States, projects like the Pacific Northwest LNG promised a diversified set of buyers for oil and gas. However, not all is lost.

BY ZACHARY EDWARDS

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n late July, Malaysian energy giant Petronas announced it was scrapping the Pacific Northwest Liquid Natural Gas Pipeline. The project, with an estimated $36 billion price tag, was set to connect Northern B.C. to the Pacific Ocean, and would have helped Canada get much of its oil and gas resources to the Asian markets.

While the common discussion around Alberta’s oil and gas sector has settled into a repeat of doom and gloom, The City of Edmonton’s chief economist, John Rose, says there is hope now and on the horizon. While we are “not near a full and complete recovery,” Rose says, noting that Edmonton’s economy specifically is starting to see upwards change. This is predicated, however, on oil prices staying around $50 a barrel, the “magic number” at which Rose believes the industry “can sustain its operations and undergo some reasonable expansion.” He also points out that recovery is already underway, especially in Edmonton, because of its relationship to the oil and gas industry. “The City of Edmonton’s involvement with the energy sector isn’t as direct as Calgary or Grand Prairie. Our relationship is indirect through our manufacturing,

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

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“CHALLENGING”: INDUSTRY INSIDERS // OIL & GAS

our professional services and our construction companies,” Rose explains. “We have seen a significant turnaround in employment in those sectors. Over the course of the recession, Edmonton actually saw employment growth up until about May of 2016, when it took a very sharp dip. Since January, we have seen a turnaround, especially in the manufacturing sector, with a return of exploration activity and the completion of a number of investment projects in the energy sector.” Looking forward, Rose is “quite confident” that Edmonton will continue to see gains in employment, especially as oil prices continue to at least hold steady. He also mentions that this puts Edmonton in an excellent position, combining affordability with an ideal position for logistics. “Edmonton is a fantastic logistics hub. We are well-positioned to support energy exploration and investments,” Rose says. “Edmonton is, by Vancouver and Toronto standards, amazingly affordable. Not just in terms of housing prices, but in terms of office space, commercial space and industrial space. We are very competitive from an operations perspective and finding new facilities to operate from.” Locally, oil and gas businesses are hard at work keeping up with the new normal of the industry, innovating and changing their business models for future success. While many are discovering new ways to make a profit, many others are anxious to see how Alberta can, once again, regain its advantage.

IF THERE IS A WAY BACK, STEVENS SAYS IT HAS TO COME THROUGH EASING RESTRICTIONS, BECOMING COMPETITIVE IN TAXATION AND, FINALLY, FINDING THE WORKERS AGAIN. Ron Feigel, head of business development at Universe Machine Corp., says while jobs are returning, they aren’t the same as before the downturn. “There is more drilling activity and we are seeing some improvement in certain areas of our business, but certainly not significantly or across the board,” he says. “When we do win jobs the demands are higher, margins lower, and timeframes [are] often shortened. Most areas of our business still do not have enough consistent work to justify hiring more staff.” John Stevens, president and CEO of ENTREC, a company that rents cranes and heavy-duty machinery to resource extractors, describes the current situation as “challenging” but also says his company has found ways to grow under the new reality. Unfortunately, much of that growth has seen them ship more resources south of the border, where fracking and oil development is helping the industry grow. LEFT: JOHN ROSE, CITY OF EDMONTON, CHIEF ECONOMIST. MIDDLE: RON FEIGEL, UNIVERSE MACHINE CORP, HEAD OF BUSINESS DEVELOPMENT. RIGHT: JOHN STEVENS, ENTREC, PRESIDENT & CEO.

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“CHALLENGING”: INDUSTRY INSIDERS // OIL & GAS

CERTAINLY, FINDING THE WORKERS COULD PROVE DIFFICULT AS ALBERTA CONTINUES TO RECOVER. ACCORDING TO A REPORT BY THE ALBERTA GOVERNMENT’S TREASURY BOARD, ALBERTA SAW A DECREASE IN UNEMPLOYMENT THIS JUNE TO 7.4 PER CENT AS AN ESTIMATED “48,900 MORE PEOPLE WERE EMPLOYED IN JUNE [2017] THAN AT THE JULY 2016 LOW.” “ENTREC has moved much of its equipment into the States, especially to Texas and North Dakota,” Stevens says. “We have also diversified, supplying equipment for the power and infrastructure sectors.” If there is a way back, Stevens says it has to come through easing restrictions, becoming competitive in taxation and, finally, finding the workers again. “The downturn has seen many people leave the area and the industry,” he says. “Lots of people who worked in the industry have moved back east and are working closer to home, which they like. Those who are here have often retrained or moved into other industries, and they aren’t exactly eager to get back to the shift work that comes with the oil rigs.” Certainly, finding the workers could prove difficult as Alberta continues to recover. According to a report by the Alberta Government’s Treasury Board, Alberta saw a decrease in unemployment this June to 7.4 per cent as an estimated “48,900 more people were employed in June [2017] than at the July 2016 low.” Those jobs, as Stevens mentioned, have generally moved away from oil and gas and into goods and service sectors, but not all. Syncrude’s Mildred Lake project, now recovered from a fire, helped contribute to a 13 per cent national uptick in unconventional resource extraction.

Conventional resource extraction is also up 3.2 per cent yearover-year. Feigel agrees with Stevens on the need for change, pointing to recent taxation initiatives that are hindering growth in the industry. “We need provincial and federal governments to remove headwinds like carbon taxes, royalty and regulatory regime changes, pipeline takeaway issues, etc. and actually support our oil and gas industry in Alberta and across Canada,” he explains. “Everyone in Canada benefits when our natural resources are wisely utilized and the wealth from them is not squandered.” Alberta’s place as an oil and gas powerhouse has been continually challenged over the past few years. Yet despite setbacks, the industry has eked out a new normal and is set to make major comebacks through a combination of innovation and strategizing. While the industry may never reach its previous heights, Edmonton and the surrounding area remain integral to its existence. As a competitive place perfectly situated from a logistics perspective, Edmonton is set to become a point of recovery. It may be slow and it won’t be easy, but oil professionals are confident that the right changes can help Edmonton, Alberta, and Canada grow.

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

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GET READY TO BOOST YOUR BRAND WITH SMALL BUSINESS WEEK // SMALL BUSINESS WEEK PREVIEW

GET READY TO BOOST YOUR BRAND WITH SMALL BUSINESS WEEK 50

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


GET READY TO BOOST YOUR BRAND WITH SMALL BUSINESS WEEK // SMALL BUSINESS WEEK PREVIEW

A LOOK AT THE BIGGEST EVENT FOR SMALL BUSINESSES BY RAMONA KORPAN

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very October, Edmonton celebrates the local innovators and entrepreneurs that make its business community so vibrant. This year, Small Business Week will, once again, put the spotlight on little companies that make a big impact. The annual event was founded by the Business Development Bank of Canada (BDC), which remains the presenting sponsor of Small Business Week in Edmonton and across Canada. The week’s sessions, panels and events in the Capital City are coordinated by the Edmonton Chamber of Commerce. Janet Riopel, CEO of the Edmonton Chamber of Commerce, describes it as “an annual, national event celebrating entrepreneurship.” “BDC initiated Small Business Week back in 1979 as a means of recognizing entrepreneurs and the important role they play in our communities,” says Todd Tougas, vice president of the Alberta North region of BDC. “BDC has remained heavily involved in organizing or sponsoring Small Business Week events ever since, often in conjunction with organizations such as the local Chambers of Commerce.” It’s no wonder the Chamber would have an interest in supporting small businesses, which may not be big in size, but collectively, they play a large and vital role in our local economy. “Close to 85 per cent of our members are small enterprises,” says Riopel. “They are core to everything we do at the Chamber and to our key mission of creating the best environment for business in Edmonton.”

WHAT TO EXPECT THIS YEAR “Small Business Week will include several smaller-scale, intimate events, which our members always respond enthusiastically to, offering entrepreneurs and small

business owners the opportunity to build meaningful, valuable connections” says Riopel. “Even in the era of technology, people still crave connection.” According to Riopel, some events to look forward to include a panel discussion on innovation featuring several high-profile business leaders, a keynote address on technology, a “Meet the Maker” event at the Italian Centre and several networking events featuring unique twists. One the more unconventional sessions combines networking with working out. “It was so popular last year, we’re bringing it back!” says Riopel.

ABOVE: JANET RIOPEL, CEO OF THE EDMONTON CHAMBER OF COMMERCE.

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

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GET READY TO BOOST YOUR BRAND WITH SMALL BUSINESS WEEK // SMALL BUSINESS WEEK PREVIEW

Small Business by the Numbers 34,000+

94 per cent

• Of the businesses in Edmonton, are considered small businesses, employing less than 50 persons • Alberta is home to nearly • Small businesses account for

166,000 small businesses

97.9 per cent of all firms in Canada 87 per cent

1.2 million

• Between 2005 and 2015, over of the jobs were created in Canada, were attributable to small businesses

Why Should Small Business Owners Attend? Small business owners don’t have a lot of time on their hands, so attending industry events can often take a back seat to work. However, the learning and networking opportunities at Small Business Week are invaluable. It’s a chance to take a step back from the day-to-day operations and look at where your business fits within its industry, the broader market and your own long-term goals. “Getting out to a Small Business Week event gives business owners a chance to network, to learn what’s happening in the economy both domestically and globally and how it may impact their business, and to learn from each other,” says Tougas. Small Business Week events also provide an excellent opportunity to connect with others who understand the unique joys and challenges of operating your own business. “Being an entrepreneur can actually be a lonely proposition,”

says Tougas. “Sometimes it helps to share your experiences with others who may be facing similar challenges.” Tougas also points out that Small Business Week has networking potential beyond connecting with other small businesses. It’s an opportunity to connect with potential partners who can help take small businesses to the next level. “Small Business Week gives us a chance to reach out to more entrepreneurs to ensure they are fully aware of who we are and what we do,” he says. “Not all businesses know there is a bank like BDC that is dedicated exclusively to the needs of entrepreneurs, and that we offer so much more than just financing.” Small Business Week is also about taking a moment to pause and celebrate the value and achievements of small business, and the important role they play in our community. “BDC Small Business Week is really a celebration of entrepreneurs and the incredible contribution they make to our economy,” says Tougas.

ABOVE: TODD TOUGAS, VICE PRESIDENT OF THE ALBERTA NORTH REGION OF BDC.

52

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


GET READY TO BOOST YOUR BRAND WITH SMALL BUSINESS WEEK // SMALL BUSINESS WEEK PREVIEW

economy,” says Tougas. “That’s why we sometimes refer to small business as being ‘big business’ as the small business sector is the engine of our economy.” According to Tougas, Edmonton, in particular, is a breeding ground for small, original ventures. “Edmonton is an entrepreneurial community, one where we have a long history of successful entrepreneurs and strong family businesses,” he says. “I believe Edmontonians are predisposed to supporting businesses where the owners are part of the community. Edmonton also provides a favorable environment for business to succeed. The city continues to grow, the population is diverse, and it has the youngest demographic of all the major cities in Canada.” Of course, small businesses in Edmonton don’t have to remain in that category. According to Riopel, events like Small Business Week can be just what an entrepreneur needs to help propel themselves into a more ambitious position. “Small Business Week is meant to celebrate and inspire entrepreneurs to new heights,” she says. “Innovation, diversification, and exporting to new markets—that’s how small businesses become big businesses. We want to encourage small business owners to think big.”

“I BELIEVE EDMONTONIANS ARE PREDISPOSED TO SUPPORTING BUSINESSES WHERE THE OWNERS ARE PART OF THE COMMUNITY. EDMONTON ALSO PROVIDES A FAVORABLE ENVIRONMENT FOR BUSINESS TO SUCCEED. THE CITY CONTINUES TO GROW, THE POPULATION IS DIVERSE, AND IT HAS THE YOUNGEST DEMOGRAPHIC OF ALL THE MAJOR CITIES IN CANADA.” ~ TODD TOUGAS SMALL BUSINESS IN EDMONTON With almost 166,000 small businesses across the province, this business segment is a big deal. “SMEs (small and medium sized enterprise) represents almost 99 per cent of all businesses and generates about 65 per cent of all the jobs in Canada, so the role of small business is vital to our local

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

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Looking and feeling your best with the latest innovations in dermatology.

By Nerissa McNaughton Thomas Nakatsui, MD FRCPC FAAD, is the medical director of the Groot DermaSurgery Centre, which was founded by Dr. Don Groot to provide Edmonton and surrounding areas with state-of-the-art medical dermatology, laser, surgical skin care, and hair transplant surgery. The Groot DermaSurgery Centre was first launched out of the LeMarchand Mansion, a one-of-a-kind professional building in Edmonton’s community of Oliver, where beautiful architecture and spectacular views were part of what the Centre’s clients enjoyed. New lasers and technology, along with a growing list of patients, meant a move in 2000 to the upscale and elegant Crestwood Centre. It was also in 2000 that Dr. Nakatsui was asked by Dr. Groot to join the practice.The team worked together until Dr. Groot’s retirement in 2015, at which time Dr. Nakatsui became the sole owner. “Dr. Groot was a pioneer in laser surgery and pushed the envelope in terms of new technologies,” Dr. Nakatsui confirms. “I have continued the drive for finding the best available technologies and keeping up with the most recent advances and techniques.” The Groot DermaSurgery Centre is very pleased to be one of the clinics in Edmonton offering a safe non-invasive alternative to fat reduction surgery. “CoolSculpting,” Dr. Nakatsui explains, “is the most common nonsurgical technique for freezing away fat cells. Our Centre was one of the first in Alberta to use the new second-generation CoolAdvantage applicators, and it was one of the first to use the CoolMini and CoolPetite applicators for smaller areas of fat.” “Another big change,” he adds, “was the addition of HydraFacial for revitalizing the skin, which is one of the most popular procedures we currently offer. Other new technologies include ThermiTight®, which is a radio frequency treatment to tighten skin and tissue. Our most recent acquisition is the Cutera® excel HR laser for hair removal, which offers faster, less painful hair removal

treatments. Other new products include longer-lasting fillers for facial rejuvenation and a new injectable medication called BELKYRA® that destroys fat cells, particularly for the double chin.” In addition to the new treatments that are offered, Dr. Nakatsui continues to be one of the busiest to perform rejuvenation treatments such as BOTOX® and Juvederm® (fillers). These treatments are quick and effective ways to rejuvenate the face, with little to no downtime. “Patients often tell us that their friends and relatives say they look refreshed, but can’t pinpoint what has changed. This is what we like to hear,” smiles Dr. Nakatsui. The Centre is also fortunate to have a contract with Alberta Health Services to provide laser treatments for vascular birthmarks. This contract is important as it allows Dr. Nakatsui to treat patients born with vascular birthmarks such as port-wine stains and hemangiomas at no cost to the patient. This is the only centre in Edmonton to have such a contract. The Centre utilizes highly trained nurses, and most have certification in advanced cardiac life support; some have been with the Centre for over 15 years. “Our very experienced staff take continuous training and always put the patients’ needs first,” the doctor confirms. With such a focus on quality, and on remaining at the forefront of derma-technology, it’s easy to see why the Centre’s independent Google reviews are so high – which, incidentally, leads to an interesting challenge. “Our greatest challenge continues to be finding a way to see all the patients that request assessment and treatment at the Centre,” informs Dr. Nakatsui. “We continue to look for another dermatologist to join us, and we are fortunate to have as part of our team, Dr. Linda Smith, who focuses her practice here on acne, rosacea, and warts; and Dr. Bruce Ramsey, our anesthesiologist. “The most rewarding thing we do is making patients happy about themselves. It is extremely gratifying to


see patients empowered by improvements in their skin. Although the skin doesn’t necessarily reflect the type of person we are inside, the skin is one of the first things someone else sees. Improving someone’s skin, whether that be treating acne, rosacea, eczema, moles, scarring, or wrinkles, is so empowering for the individual. We simply cannot underestimate the profound effect this has on a person’s life.” Dr. Nakatsui has some great advice when it comes to self-care and preventative measures for your skin. “The most common thing that people overlook when caring for their skin is the damaging effects of ultraviolet radiation (UV) over the long-term. Concern about excessive UV radiation and sunburn is, thankfully, becoming more common, but it is still one of the most overlooked skin issues. There are still many people who allow themselves to become sunburned, and many people who still use tanning beds. Be nice to your skin! It’s going to be with you for a very long time.” The doctor is pleased to work alongside his wife, Melanie, who oversees how the entire clinic is run. She ensures that the clinic is well maintained, ensures that the staff are doing a great job, and determines whether there is a need for new equipment or upgrades to the facility. Many varied components fall within her sphere, but one of the most important is staff management. Teamwork is valued throughout, as each member, in their role, is extremely valuable to the team. Dr. and Mrs. Nakatsui proudly support many charitable organizations, including: the Royal Alexandra Hospital Foundation, the Edmonton Opera,The Works International Visual Arts Society, the Singing Christmas Tree, Fashion with Compassion, McDougall House, Crescendo, Free2BeMe, and other local organizations. They were honoured to be nominated by the Royal Alexandra Hospital Foundation and receive an award for philanthropy in 2014 as part of AFP’s National Philanthropy Day. The couple is happily raising a very athletic daughter, who is entering junior high in the coming year.

“She is an avid badminton player and loves golf,” smiles the doctor. “She recently went to the Junior Pan American games and won a bronze medal in mixed doubles with her partner. She also plays the piano and enjoys swimming, and skiing. She loves horses and dogs, and would love to have one of each.” The Groot DermaSurgery Centre is the proud recipient of numerous awards and recognitions, including eight Consumer Choice Awards, Top Choice Awards, and Metro Community Choice Awards, among other awards for hair transplant surgery. “My time at the Centre has taught me that there is a lot more required to running a clinic than just seeing patients,” Dr. Nakatsui admits. “Decisions need to be made on a daily basis, ranging from new equipment to repairs to renovation to staffing. I also learned that leading a wonderful team like we have requires me to be inspirational and focussed, but also mindful of the needs of the staff, and that sometimes means I need to stand up for and protect the staff when needed.” Ensuring patient care on all levels remains at the forefront of everything they do. Dr. Nakatsui, Melanie, and the entire team at the Centre couldn’t be happier to continue Dr. Groot’s legacy while carving their own path into the future of all skin care needs. “We want to continue to serve patients and be on the cusp of modern technologies in dermatology and all skin care needs,” concludes Dr. Nakatsui. “We also want to focus on inner and outer health as we strive for prevention rather than intervention. If intervention is needed, then we want to have all the current tools and knowledge on how to treat our patients, medically or cosmetically.” Phone | 780-482-1414 Web | www.grootdermasurgery.com Email | info@grootdermasurgery.com #200, 9670 142 Street NW Edmonton, AB


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Hino Central Provides Quality and Durability for More than 20 Years By Nerissa McNaughton

H

ino Motors Canada Ltd., a Toyota Group Company, exclusively distributes Hino trucks in Canada. The brand has more than 40 years of history in the nation, and opened an assembly plant in Woodstock, Ontario in 2006. Customers across Canada depend on Hino’s reliable, high-quality trucks to perform with superior fuel economy and eco-friendly engineering. Hino Central Edmonton, under its parent company, DRIVING FORCE Inc., is celebrating more than 20 years in the medium-duty truck business. Hino Central also has locations in Calgary, Langley and Fort McMurray. Hino Central Edmonton is proud to showcase a variety of transport, utility, delivery and service trucks in a 16,500 square foot modern dealership. The facility includes nine service bays, an expansive parts department, and plenty of parking. “We sell high-quality, fuel efficient trucks and pride ourselves on the after sales service we provide our customers,” says Greg Tilley, vice president, Hino operations. “The Hino truck is one

of the most technologically advanced trucks in the marketplace. Being part of the Toyota Group, the technology and engineering that goes into these trucks is top notch. A lot of the components come from Japan and the trucks, for the most part, are assembled in Woodstock, Ontario.” “We specialize in more than new trucks, as we have a selection of good pre-owned trucks that we recondition and offer, as well as financing and leasing services,” Tilley continues. Tilley joined Hino Central in 1996 and is proud of the team of professionals that have been assembled over the years. Through their hard work, Hino Central has grown into one of Hino Canada’s premier locations across the country. Garry Pysyk, general sales manager, explains, “Our business is commercial trucks and we service a wide variety of vocations, including trucking/fleet companies, tow truck companies, furnace cleaners and many more. We sell class 4 to 7 trucks, with class 7 being our biggest seller.”

Hino Central | 20+ Years | 1

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It’s more than the trucks, however, that contribute to Hino Central’s success. “Quality customer service and customer satisfaction,” Pysyk points out, “drives our decades-long success. We have earned the loyalty of the same customers year over year, in addition to attracting new ones to this high-quality brand.” In an industry that is very competitive in the best of times, and that has had to deal with the economic downturn in recent years, Hino’s products, and commitment to its customers, continues to set them apart. “We like to believe that the recession never hit us,” laughs Pysyk. “To be honest, it has impacted us but not as much as many other companies out there, because of our quality products and outstanding customer service.”

share. In 2009, we reintroduced the cab-over for two years, then brought out a redesigned cab-over in 2012. We currently offer both conventional and cab-over models in North America.” Hino protects its customers with Hino Watch, a program that runs for the first three years of ownership and is not dependent, as many such program are, on the truck’s mileage. Hino drivers need only call a toll free number from anywhere in Canada to access roadside assistance to get a towed to the nearest authorized Hino dealership. The program also helps drivers that are locked out of their truck, out of fuel, in need of a battery jumpstart, or troubleshooting for minor issues.

In fact, Tilley admits, “Supply can be a challenge. Hino is number 1 in market share in Canada and there is a very high demand for this product.”

Another industry leading program that is available is our 3 year Parts Warranty. Have a repair completed at an authorized Hino dealer and that part is covered for 3 year, unlimited mileage, including labor. It does not get any better than that.

“Hino introduced the conventional cab back in 2005,” says Pysyk. “We used to only sell cab-over trucks. When the conventional cab was introduced, that eliminated cab-overs from our brand in North America. The conventional cab had way more market

“Our goal is to make the process for our customers as easy as possible,” says Tilley. “We supply trucks, add decks, equipment, tailgates, pickers, etc. Then we provide maintenance and service for the life of the truck.”

Congratulations

to Hino Central on 20+ years in business!

We partner with vendors and manufacturers alike to provide leasing programs for the small and mid-ticket market.

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Congratulations Hino Central on 20+ years of success from everyone at NAPA Auto Parts Edmonton!

Hino Central | 20+ Years | 2


9835 - 199A Street, Langley, BC Phone: 604-888-2812 Fax: 604-888-7689 Toll Free: 1-800-663-6761

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Trevor Robertson, #1 rated Hino technician in Canada on the Hino Central team!

Equally impressive are Hino’s warranty programs that deliver peace of mind along with “Total Support” and the signature Hino Premium Protection. Conventional and COE warranty packages are available and include preventative maintenance. “We are in four different locations that are all interconnected so customers can service their trucks anywhere we operate,” says Tilley. “Although our shops service all makes and models, we specialize in Hino, and our technicians are factory trained.”

Hino Central is proud to have Trevor Robertson, the #1 rated Hino technician in Canada on their team. He earned this distinction earlier this year when Hino Central participated in a sales, parts and service skills competition during a national dealer meeting in Ontario. Eric Smith, senior vice president, sales and customer support for Hino Canada, had this to say about the skills competition: “We

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10571 178 St NW, Edmonton, AB T5S 2K4 (780) 453-7979 www.delequipment.com


really wanted to underline how important it is for our dealers and customers to understand that each and every individual in each department of our company is what makes the Hino experience so unique. We need everybody to pull in the same direction to ensure total support to our customers, whether it’s a matter of sales, parts, service or the three at the same time.” Parts teams had to compete in 15 different stations that covered all aspects of the Hino business, including video and warehousing, storage, factory specs, and one-on-one battle rounds with last year’s champion. Service teams had to correctly diagnose and identify malfunctions and were judged on

how they handled tools, accessed manuals, and their ability to monitor and interpret relevant data. The competition proves just how dedicated Hino Canada is to its brand, its dealerships and its people, and Hino Central couldn’t be prouder to be part of such a never-ending commitment to quality and dependability at every level. The team, from the sales floor, to the service bays and parts counter, work seamlessly together for the good of the company and its many customers, and maintains ongoing training in all aspects of their jobs to ensure peak performance.

Multivans Inc would like to Congratulate Hino Central on their 20+ years in business! Serving the Alberta market place since 1962 as the most recognized Truck Body Manufacturer in Canada. 13289 Coleraine Drive Bolton, Ontario L7E 3B6 Main: 905-857 3171 • Toll Free: 1-800-689-9249 • Fax: 905-857-9863

Hino Central | 20+ Years | 5


“The most rewarding thing for me,” says Pysyk, “is the team. The people we work with come first and foremost. It’s a great place to work, which is why a lot of us have been here well over 10 – 15 years.” Under the company’s DRIVING FORCE banner, Hino Central is also pleased to be a supporter of community events and non-profit initiatives, and they are happy to give back to the cities that have supported and welcomed the brand for many years. Hino Central also appreciates the role that DRIVING FORCE plays in the success of both the dealerships and the Hino brand. “They are not only our parent company, they are one of our biggest customers as well. Their large fleet of medium-duty rental trucks is exclusively Hino product,” says Tilley. Hino Central thanks all of it’s suppliers and associates for their support and looks forward to continuing to supply the region with some of the highest-quality, most durable and ecologically responsible trucks on the market.

10931 184 Street NW, Edmonton, AB T5S 0A6 • (780) 474-4667 www.hinocentral.com

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Hino Central | 20+ Years | 6


Brett Morgan

A Family Legacy: Sandy Lane Auto Celebrates 50 Years by Nerissa McNaughton

S

andy Lane Auto provides a full suite of repair services, preventative maintenance packages, vehicle inspections and tire sales and storage for all makes and models of European vehicles. In 1927, the first Volvo was produced in Gothenburg, Sweden. In 1963, the car company opened its first plant outside Swedish borders in Dartmouth, Nova Scotia. The final screw on Canada’s first Volvo was tightened with a golden screwdriver wielded by Sweden’s Prince Bertil, and Sandy Lane Auto was among the first maintenance shops in Canada to specialize in Volvo repair and maintenance. “My grandparents founded Sandy Lane Auto in 1968. My grandfather was the technician and my grandmother worked in the

front as a service advisor. My father bought the company from him in 1980 and I bought the company from my father in 2006,” says Brett Morgan, the owner of the 50-year old family business. “We started on the west end on 156 Street in the Sandy Lane shopping mall – hence the name. We were there until the late ’70s, then moved to a larger location about five blocks from where we currently reside. In 1997, Sandy Lane Auto moved to this site. My father built this building.” Although Sandy Lane Auto started as a Volvo repair and maintenance shop, the company evolved over the years to accommodate a wide variety of high-quality, European vehicles, including BMW, Audi, Volkswagen, Mercedes, Land Rover, Porsche, and MINI® Cooper.

Sandy Lane Auto • 50 Years • 1

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Word is spreading fast across the city that Sandy Lane Auto is one of the highest rated European vehicle repair shops in Edmonton.

Sandy Lane Auto branched out in 2007 to include servicing for other European brands. Morgan points out, smiling, “Before then, we were quietly repairing those other overseas brands without advertising it.” Word is spreading fast across the city that Sandy Lane Auto is one of the highest rated European vehicle repair shops in Edmonton. More than 100 reviews across three different, independent consumer aggregate review sites rate the shop between 4.7/5 – 5/5.

congratulations sandy lane on 50 years of successful business.

“I couldn ’t be prouder of those unsolicited reviews,” Morgan beams, going on to note a few of the customer service details that keep clients coming back. “Every car we work on gets washed, vacuumed and has a light interior clean. We have a customer shuttle to ensure clients get to where they need to go while their car is in our shop.” One thing Morgan is firm on is that he and his staff never lag behind in the fast-changing world of vehicle repair technology. “Things change dramatically year over year,” he admits, “so we

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Joe Glumpak, Brett Morgan and Chris Mack.

keep educating our technicians. We send our people all over North America for training. I have seven people going to Dallas in April. “Over the years, we have seen advancements in diagnostic testing tools improve. Access to education in our field has also gotten better. I like to hire local, and I am very pleased with the quality of the technicians coming out of the Northern Alberta Institute of Technology (NAIT).” Ongoing education is not the only thing that sets the Sandy Lane Auto crew apart. Morgan and his team know how to practically apply their knowledge, even when it contravenes a vehicle’s promotional promise. “Some European manufactures were advocating yearly oil changes,” Morgan explains. “But the studies were done in locations where the climate is much more temperate, and they failed to mention that materials in the oil filter are not designed to last for 20,000 kilometres of driving. Annual oil changes are very hard on the vehicles engine. We are proud to be able to inform and educate our clientele to make

One thing Morgan is firm on is that he and his staff never lag behind in the fast-changing world of vehicle repair technology. the best possible decisions about their vehicle’s repair and maintenance.” He continues, “We stress the importance of getting routine maintenance done. Bring your vehicle in twice a year: in the spring before those big road trips, and in the winter before the cold weather hits. This will help you avoid problems and stay safer on the road all year long.” Sandy Lane Auto is pleased to help owners of European vehicles keep their rides in top shape, but Morgan, his family, and his team are also focused on giving back to the community by helping to erase adult illiteracy in Alberta. “My wife has volunteered

Congratulations Sandy Lane Auto on your 50th Anniversary. We wish you continued success!

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Morgan couldn’t be happier to be celebrating 50 years with his team in the building his father built, and with clients that have been loyal to the brand since the 60s. for and supported the Centre for Family Literacy (CFL) for many years,” Morgan explains. “The social impact of illiteracy is evident; this was a meaningful program for us to get behind.” The company also sponsors the exotic car rally Wheels for Wellness, which is an event that raises money for the Stollery Children’s Hospital Foundation and the Mental Health Foundation. Giving back is one way Morgan stays grounded and focused. He also relies on exercise, road biking, skiing and writing. Few people know he was in the film industry for seven years, working behind the scenes on a variety of well-known hits, including Shanghai Noon. He also leans on the lessons and mentorship from the Entrepreneurs’ Organization, of which he is board member. “These positive influences have taught me that effective leaders are first and foremost effective communicators. Learning those skills has helped me in expanding the Sandy Lane brand and

supporting and building a dedicated team. I’ve also learned that work/life balance is a bit of a fallacy. Some of your best work happens when you are at work, but sometimes it happens when you are home with your family. It’s fluid. You have to be present at both ends of the spectrum.” Morgan couldn’t be happier to be celebrating 50 years with his team in the building his father built, and with clients that have been loyal to the brand since the ’60s. “It’s such a pleasure to serve our customers,” he beams. “We have very high employee retention and a strong family atmosphere in both locations. When we reopened on the west end five years ago, we were welcomed with open arms. People remembered us from being on the west side when the company was just getting started.” Where does Sandy Lane Auto go now? Morgan says they are driving right into the future without hesitation. “We will continue to push the brand forward and are looking to expand outside of Edmonton. Thank you, Edmonton, for 50 years of support. We appreciate your loyalty.”

Congratulations Sandy Lane Auto on your 50th Anniversary!

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South Side: 8105 Argyll Rd NW, Edmonton, AB Phone: 780.469.0075 West End: 15820 111 Ave NW, Edmonton, AB Phone: 780.733.0075 www.sandylaneauto.com Congratulations on your 50th year Sandy Lane Auto, AccuChem is proud to be a part of your success.

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Sandy Lane Auto • 50 Years • 4


The Carpet Studio Inc. Celebrates 30 Years CEO Marty VanKeulen tells us how adaptability leads to success and business longevity By Nerissa McNaughton

I

n the ’80s, Marty VanKeulen, the co-founder and CEO of The Carpet Studio Inc., thought the level of service provided by the flooring companies in the city could use a boost. He, along with friend Frank VanDenBiggelaar, took action. “In 1987, we started The Carpet Studio with just Frank, myself and a receptionist,” says VanKeulen. “Two years later, we moved from our first location, a small store offering 24 different styles of carpet and one brand of lino.” He must have been right about good service because the company grew – fast. “In 1989, we took over Economy Floor Coverings, and that doubled our volume overnight!” VanKeulen continues, “Over time, we decided to diversify. Soon we were doing floor coverings for new home contractors and were starting to work with property managers, insurance restoration contractors and commercial developers.” At the start of the new millennium, however, things changed dramatically. Sadly, in 2001, Frank passed away. In 2002, the lease on their current building was up. VanKeulen decided to become the sole owner, and to purchase a building outright for the still-growing company. With the purchase of the building on 156th street and 111th Ave, he

CEO Marty VanKeulen

doubled the operating and showroom floor space and added a roster of administrative staff. Today, The Carpet Studio boasts 6,000 square feet of showroom in its headquarters, has three locations in Alberta, 35 staff members and up to 50 contract installers (depending on the season).

The Carpet Studio | 30 Years | 1

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is worth more than describing all of our products in one title.” Those products include residential: carpet, hardwood, luxury vinyl, tile, stone, linoleum, sheet vinyl, laminate, cork, area rugs, window treatments, and granite countertops, as well as a variety of wall coverings. A full library of commercial products are also available. In the South Edmonton showroom, customers can not only shop for flooring, but also purchase Benjamin Moore paint and accessories. The Jasper location boasts the Coronado paint line in addition to the selection of flooring products available. The Carpet Studio was also selected for a partnership with Costco. “The home shopping service for Costco redefines how flooring can be sold,” says VanKeulen. “We are very fortunate that Costco chose us to provide flooring to their customers in Edmonton, Sherwood Park and St. Albert. We were selected from among several other flooring retailers, and that’s been good confirmation for us and for our customers. When Costco chooses you, you know you are doing business differently than average.” “We are a complete flooring shop, not just a carpet store,” laughs VanKeulen. “The name is a little misleading! We thought about changing it, but the longevity of the name

He continues with a smile, “The Carpet Studio is a large company that hasn’t forgotten that we are like a family. Our goal is to help people turn their project into something they will be extremely proud of. We have interior designers and

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This milestone is a great accomplishment. We would like to wish you many more successful years! P: (780)-453-0102 | F: (780)-452-6067

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Congratulation to The Carpet Studio on 30 great years! We wish you many more to come. 11603 - 180 Street NW • 1-888-263-7276 www.amestile.com

The Carpet Studio | 30 Years | 2

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Congratulations to The Carpet Studio on 30 years!


can do everything from choosing colours to creating 3D renderings and more. We can coordinate everything, and thanks to the great contractor relationships we have built up over the years, we can also manage additional subcontractors if our clients need, for example, a plumber or a house painter.” VanKeulen knows the key to running a successful business is to make sure he and his team are healthy, happy, inspired and engaged in their work and hobbies. “People that know me know that I say we all should work to live, not live to work. I’m a big believer that family and life comes ahead of our business. Over the years, if you have one or two mishaps, you can let those things bring you down, or you can use the experience to assist someone else.” The Holland-born entrepreneur has had his fair share of mishaps, but he has turned each one into an opportunity—

and a chance to learn more about himself and the world around him. He has been on the volunteer ski patrol for 25 years, scuba dives all over the world and travels extensively. “I personally feel that, in Canada, and especially Alberta for the last number of years, a lot of people have their work/life balance mixed up,” VanKeulen muses. In Europe, a 37-hour work week is quite normal. When you look at the years past in Alberta, people are putting in, 60-70 hours a week! You can’t be productive like that. When I was installing, I found with a couple of days off per week, I could get more done than working right through the weekend.” The company owner works hard to make sure his staff have balance in their lives and feel appreciated for their hard work. “It’s the people that have allowed us to be here for 30 years. A lot of the staff have been with me for over 15 years. I like

BUCKWOLD WESTERN AND ARMSTRONG WOULD LIKE TO CONGRATULATE THE CARPET STUDIO ON 30 YEARS.

ARMSTRONG® HAND-SCRAPED HARDWOOD

• Staff in all locations with the knowledge and ability to help you solve your flooring installation problems

Congrats to The Carpet Studio on 30 years!

• Daily delivery service to established flooring dealers in the five cities with Shamrock branches • Same day shipping to all rural locations • Wide range of installation products • Continually source out innovative products • Alberta owned and operated • Partners in buying groups in both Canada and United States

Proud Supplier to Carpet Studio!

www.shamrockflooring.com The Carpet Studio | 30 Years | 3


the fact that The Carpet Studio attracts quality staff that remain with the company long-term. “I’ve learned how to manage people, no matter their background or their age. Our staff ranges in age from 20-77. With different generations, cultures and religions, it’s a melting pot here. I’ve had to learn that not everyone is motivated the same way. Every person needs a slightly different management style. One thing that being a leader in ski patrol has taught me is that you lead people by being part of their team. You can’t lead people by sitting in your office and being demanding. You must lead by example. The general manger and I don’t expect anything from others that we won’t do ourselves, including driving the truck and assisting customers.”

recognize from all our staff and suppliers. They helped us get where we are. All different types of people make up a company.” VanKeulen is grateful to his staff, suppliers, vendors and customers for 30 great years in the Capital City, and he’s looking forward to the next phase of The Carpet Studio. “Even in this market that is supposed to be down, we are busy, and part of that is because we are so diversified. We are happy with the amount of volume we are doing,” he concludes. “What comes next is growth, when and where we see the opportunity. We will keep continuing on the same path, recognizing that sometimes we have to bend when the path curves. There are still lots of opportunities.”

He and his team also know that giving back is a big part of a balanced life. The Carpet Studio supports The Good Samaritan Society and cancer research-related non-profit organizations. To lead his team, VanKeulen looks to Warren Buffet’s management style because “[Buffett] has shown that you can do business without stepping on people’s toes. He’s never been known to get ahead by cutting and eliminating jobs and positions. He does it by surrounding himself with great organizations and people. That’s the one thing I

Timeless Wood Floors Congratulates The Carpet Studio on their 30th Anniversary!

timelesswoodfloors.ca The Carpet Studio | 30 Years | 4

15620-111 Ave, Edmonton • 780-452-4044 4931-55 Avenue, Edmonton • 780-462-6668 #53, Stan Wright Park, Jasper • 780-852-5887 carpetstudio.ca

MAKE ROOM

FOR THE NEW

Thank you for supporting a Canadian company


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