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April May 2013



Prairie Meats supporting the community Owner Gene Dupuis brings a family focus to the business

Building your business When it comes to sales, relationships matter Chamber and Member news, President’s View & more

Gene Dupuis of Prairie Meats at his retail location on Miller Avenue in Saskatoon

BUSINESS View April May 2013

Featured Articles


Prairie Meats - supporting the community Owner Gene Dupuis brings a family focus to the business


Building your business When it comes to sales, relationships matter

Promotional Features

Gene Dupuis, owner of Prairie Meats, whose motto is “From the Prairies, For the Prairies.” Image: Grant Romancia

BUSINESS View­is a bimonthly publication of the Greater Saskatoon Chamber of Commerce 104-202 4th Avenue North, Saskatoon, SK S7K 0K1 Phone: (306) 244-2151 Fax: (306) 244-8366 Email: Website: Twitter: @stoonchamber SaskatoonConnected: Reproduction of any material contained in Business View is permitted provided credit is given to the Greater Saskatoon Chamber of Commerce. Articles and criticisms are invited, but views expressed in Business View are those of contributors and are not necessarily endorsed by, or are policy of, the Greater Saskatoon Chamber of Commerce. We encourage you to support the business leaders whose names and products you see advertised in this issue as well as throughout our entire membership. The Board reserves the right to edit submissions.

BUSINESS View­ April May 2013

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SIAST Campus Update Airport Update 2WEBDESIGN

The Chamber

Greater Saskatoon Chamber of Commerce Building the Best Business Climate in Canada, Thereby Creating a City of Opportunity


Cover image by Grant Romancia

Kent Smith-Windsor, Executive Director Derek Crang, Membership & Marketing Director Terry Lawrence, Administration Roz Macala, Executive Secretary Breanne Lishchynsky, Director of Operations Linda Saunders, Bookkeeper Kevin Meldrum, Director of Communications Kayla Brien, Amy Dugan & Carson Widynowski, Committee Activity Co-ordinators




n May 16th the Chamber of Commerce will welcome a new board bringing to a close another successful year. With our year coming to a close I thought I would reflect on what I’ve seen relating to the business community, our youth, and the community as a whole. This is one of the most amazing business communities in Canada, if not the world. We have a group of individuals who constantly push the boundaries in their respective industries. Not only are they innovative but they are also community focused. This is evident by their willingness to spend the time required to mentor the next generation. The next generation of business leaders are here but we need to invest in them and help them grow into the community. Leaders in Saskatoon understand this and graciously give of their time. While we’re innovative and grounded, the business community needs to find its voice relating to their challenges. We’ve seen small steps towards this as evident from the

Prosperity Saskatoon campaign that brought its concerns to the forefront of the civic election. There is nothing wrong with trying to create the best business climate in the world especially when the community as a whole benefits from those efforts. Our youth is a precious resource and must be encouraged, nurtured, and pushed; heavy emphasis on pushed. There is no time for complacency in this market. There is a momentum that has swelled over the last five years that needs an incredible amount of work to be maintained. It scares me that in a market that is creating record job numbers, there are people out there saying we can’t find work. If we can’t get our youth engaged, we’re going to find ourselves pulling resources from all over the globe to maintain this momentum. Our community is in good hands and I’m not simply referring to elected officials. This community is full of leaders who selflessly donate their time, energy, and expertise for one purpose; to improve the community they call home. With that type of commitment we can

be assured that we will continue towards creating a community we can all be proud to call home. This brings to a close a challenging year for the Chamber of Commerce. Growth presents PRESIDENT unique challenges Christian Braid that require great attention and effort to overcome. You elected a tremendous board that rose to the occasion and consistently worked to serve the needs of our members. I am proud of their commitment and the accomplishments achieved through their collective efforts. It was an honor to serve as your President and Chair over the past year and I thank you for that opportunity. - Christian Braid

2012-13 Board of Directors Barry Berglund CTV

Debby Criddle Synergos Management

Evan Drisner Nu-Fab - Kitchen Craft Cabinetry

Silvia Martini Interlink Research Inc.

Shawna Nelson Sheraton Cavalier Hotel

Sanj Singh AdeTherapeutics Inc.

Rhonda Speiss PotashCorp Gerry Bonsal SIAST Kelsey Campus Kristy Rempel Saskatoon Community Foundation

President: Christian Braid Braid Flooring & Window Fashion


Vice-President: Tracy Arno Essence Recruitment

Past-President: Monica Kreuger Global Infobrokers Inc.

Executive: Tanya Knight MNP LLP

April May 2013

Executive: Tony Van Burgsteden AREVA Resources Canada Inc.

BUSINESS View­­­ ­


Prairie Meats - supporting the community Owner Gene Dupuis brings a family focus to the business By Kira Olfert for BUSINESS View

Gene Dupuis, owner of Prairie Meats, is proud of the family focus and community involvement of the business. Image: Grant Romancia.


ene Dupuis and his late brother, Louis, bought Prairie Meats in 1983. The brothers started cutting meat together forty years ago in Cut Knife, and brought that sense of family forward with them to start their new business. Between learning to cut meat at the age of 14 to opening Prairie Meats, Gene Dupuis, now 54, honed his meat cutting skills and his knowledge of the business with meat cutting and sales positions at Loblaws, Gainers Meats and Safeway. Prairie Meats started out with five employees at the store’s original Ontario Avenue location. In 1990, the business moved to the Millar Avenue location and increased its staff to 12 people. Since then, Dupuis and his team have grown the business to add a store on 8th Street, as well as adding a 33,000 square foot processing plant on the city’s west side. The company has also expanded into

BUSINESS View­ April May 2013

the southern parts of the province by buying in as partners at Hub Meats in Moose Jaw and by purchasing Frank’s Meats in Regina, and now employs over 110 people. The fact that Prairie Meats has not only survived but thrived in the face of big box grocery stores owes a lot to the sense of professionalism and excellent customer service exhibited by Prairie Meats staff, along with the good value customers receive for their dollar. Using locally sourced products whenever possible, Dupuis says that one of the things customers appreciate is being able to “watch while their meat is cut, to choose the shape and size and thickness of, say, a steak. Other stores put walls up to keep customers from seeing this process, but we took the walls down. We want our customers to know they can buy our products with confidence.” These products include all kinds of meat, prepared meals, sides, salads, cheeses and desserts. Prairie Meats also prides itself, and attributes part of its success to, its focus on family. Customers are able to purchase prepared meals that can be ready in 20 minutes or less, so that they can spend less time preparing a meal and more time enjoying it with good company. The knowledgeable staff is also happy to make suggestions as to what sides go well with which cuts of meat or entrees, and a full time chef is on hand to continue to ensure that new, quality, delicious dishes are on offer.

Prairie Meats offers prepared meals, catering, and sides for any event or function. Image: Grant Romancia.

Prairie Meats motto is “From the Prairies, For the Prairies”. Image: Grant Romancia. Prairie Meats also prepares food for catered occasions, to once again give the customer more time to spend with loved ones. This focus on family extends to the Prairie Meats family as well, as the store is closed on Sunday to ensure its staff has a chance for their own quality family time. In addition, Prairie Meats prides itself on being a good member of the community, supporting many local charities such as the Kinsmen, the United Way, and Hospitals Foundation. Dupuis is also a proud supporter of the military, in honour of his own Second World War veteran father, and is pleased to hold annual barbecues in support of Military Family programs, as well as offering a special discount to military members. Prairie Meat’s goals for the future, says Dupuis, is to “try to stay strong locally and within the province, including buying and processing locally whenever we can. We’d also like to continue to grow our brand in southern Saskatchewan, either by opening new stores or by partnering with existing shops.” In order to ensure that Prairie Meats moves ahead with the success they’ve already enjoyed, Dupuis and his staff are working on building a management team with four directors, which will keep the business family friendly and enforce the store’s motto of “From the Prairies, For the Prairies.”


Reproduced with permission of BHP Billiton

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When it comes to sales, relationships matter By Evan Drisner

© Pavel Losevsky |

Character and integrity help close the deal


f you were to Google “Sales Tips” you would find hundreds of articles on how to make a sale. Having been in a number of different industries I have experienced how each industry varies slightly in the sales process. Yet one thing remains at the center of a successful sales person. Whether you are in a commodity business selling a product, or an industry that sells a lifestyle, this one thing still matters. Prices can be negotiated, the customer’s needs can be redefined, but one thing will always need to remain the same – that is your character! The biggest sale I ever landed happened almost 12 years ago. I finally worked up the courage to close on the deal, and my fiancée said yes. My wife and I courted for 3 years. During those three years we got to know each other (do you know your customers well?). We learned to compromise, we learned how to get over disagreements, but most importantly we learned how to care for each other’s needs. You learn quickly in a relationship that lying won’t get you far and taking advantage of someone won’t last long. Until there is mutual respect and trust, the relationship will always be on thin ice. So what makes others respect and trust you? Your accolades may get you

BUSINESS View­ April May 2013

in the door but your character is what will get you invited back. Sales above all is relational. Price and product do matter but who you are makes or breaks any relationship and deal. Things have changed substantially over the past 30 years. You can see it in the movies we watch. The theme of many movies in the 80’s was about making millions of dollars, riding in square limousines and talking on brick cell phones. “The Secret to my Success” with Michael J. Fox is a prime example of the ideology of the 80’s. It appears that our culture is moved by different things these days. Movies like “Seven Pounds” show us that our ideology is changing. Roy H. Williams wrote a book called Pendulum that expresses the movement from a “ME” to “WE” society. I believe this change is evident in how we do business today, and for the foreseeable future. A sale today is less and less about what you’re selling, and more and more about who is selling it. In order to be successful at any long term sales position, you need to be authentically trustworthy. You need to be someone people can respect and even like, and you need to work at being that person every day. If I didn’t work at caring for my wife, her needs and ensuring I was

someone she can trust and respect, I suspect that I would be a lonely man. You want to sell more? Earn it. Tell the truth, be sincere, don’t give pat answers, don’t make your customers work harder. YOU find solutions to their problems and do it because you care about them and their success. Do this consistently and your problem won’t be selling but adequate staffing.

Evan Drisner is on the Board of Directors with the Greater Saskatoon Chamber of Commerce. He currently holds the role of Business Development with Nu-Fab Building Products and with a focus on their KitchenCraft Cabinet Division. He and his wife moved to Saskatoon in 2003 and are very active in their community. Along with their two young boys they are proud to call Saskatoon home.




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Walmart’s Preston Crossing location celebrates grand reopening in Saskatoon


almart Canada celebrated its Saskatoon Preston Crossing Walmart Supercentre grand re-opening as a supercentre on Friday, March 22nd. “We have worked hard to ensure that all of our customers will enjoy the changes to the store, which include a larger footprint and an expanded merchandise assortment that now includes fresh food,” said Store Manager Barry Comber. “We have grown and enhanced the areas customers told us we should and we’re so excited to unveil the results of many months of hard work.” The store is one of 37 supercentre projects planned for the company’s current fiscal year by January 31, 2014. The 37 projects include building new stores and expanding, remodelling or relocating existing stores and represent an investment of more than $450 million in the Canadian economy. The 170,000 square foot supercentre will offer a full line of groceries, electronics, home décor and apparel, a pharmacy, vision centre, medical centre, connection centre for wireless services, photo centre, portrait studio, Walmart Tire & Lube Express, McDonald’s, and Western Union. Customers will also appreciate the store’s updated design, which includes easy-to-navigate aisles with directional signage, and a bright interior colour palette, which help define the store’s merchandise areas, and lower shelving throughout for an improved sightline. The Saskatoon Preston Crossing Walmart Supercentre now employs 371 associates. To fill the 90 new positions, Walmart received hundreds of applications for roles such as cashiers, sales associates, and other hourly positions. Walmart continues to show its responsibility to energy efficiency, renewable energy and environmental sustainability. The store features LED exterior signage, waste diversion streams including paper and plastic and sells environmentally-preferable products. As part of Walmart’s mission to helping Canadian families in need, thousands of dollars in donations will be presented to community organizations. The store will build on these donations with additional charitable and community support and fundraising throughout the year. By the numbers

1.800.667.8201 1 - Calculation based on usage metrics from a 2011 Consumer Usage Survey, Arcas Group 2 - CRM Associates 3 - 2011 Consumer Usage Survey, Arcas Group


Saskatoon Preston Crossing Walmart Supercentre: . 371 associates . 90 new jobs created by the expansion . 170,000 square feet, expanded by 40,000 square feet

April May 2013

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Promotional Feature

SIAST collaborating with Marei Therapeutics Inc. on research and development


IAST and a local bioscience research and development company are testing new compounds that could reduce oral candidiasis and dry socket infections. “The collaborative work between SIAST and Marei Therapeutics Incorporated is crucial at this point for our products’ development,” says Dr. Ahmed Marei, president of MTI. The first round of research at this stage is “proof of concept,” necessary for further development and commercialization of MTI’s products. The project involves analyzing several natural compounds in MTI’s prototype products for their ability to combat microbes that may cause infection and complications following oral surgery. Marei Therapeutics contacted SIAST’s BioScience Technology program to assess SIAST’s research capabilities to carry out the required

type of research. SIAST’s Office of Applied Research and Innovation facilitated the partnership and helped secure a $25,000 grant from the College and Community Innovation program, managed by the Natural Sciences and Engineering Research Council of Canada (NSERC). SpringBoard West Innovations Inc. is providing business mentoring and support. SIAST BioScience students, supervised by instructor Lance Wall, will establish a methodology for testing the anti-microbial ability of MTI’s novel compounds. The actual tests will be performed in SIAST’s microbiology lab. "SIAST instructors have real-world expertise and bring problem-solving skills to companies that are developing new products,” says Wall. “Handson learning is one of the strengths of SIAST. Applied research projects build on that strength by providing handson research experience for the students

involved. This translates into increased confidence and refinement of the strong skill base developed through the BioScience curriculum and into success in future careers.” SIAST is Saskatchewan’s primary public institution for post-secondary technical education and skills training, recognized nationally and internationally for its expertise and innovation. Through program and course registrations, SIAST serves 26,000 distinct students with programs that touch every sector of the economy. SIAST operates campuses in Moose Jaw, Prince Albert, Regina and Saskatoon, and provides a number of courses and programs through distance education. Marei Therapeutics Inc. is a Canadiancontrolled private corporation based in Saskatoon. It is a research and development company focused on finding therapeutic solutions to certain human dental and medical conditions using naturally occurring substances including, but not limited to, plant-based compounds. Its mission is to provide the Canadian and the international markets with new therapeutics and biomaterials.

Left to right: Dr. Ahmed Marei, President Marei Therapeutics Inc. Lance Wall, SIAST BioScience Technology Instructor. Megan Letkeman, SIAST BioScience Technology Student. Photo: SIAST

BUSINESS View­ April May 2013



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April May 2013

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Promotional Feature

U of S Entrepreneurs smell success with Shutout

Dan Robinson and Chad Fischl


or Dan Robinson and Chad Fischl, it began as a class assignment in early 2007: identify an underserved market niche, conceive a hypothetical product for that niche, and develop a business plan to bring it to market. The two hadn’t met before they became partners in an entrepreneurship class at the Edwards School of Business at the University of Saskatchewan, but they shared a passion for hockey. As any player knows, one of the hazards of the game is the sometimes eyewatering odour that emanates from equipment bags. They dubbed their fictional product “Shutout”—something that would clean equipment and defend

against odour like a champion goalie deflects pucks. As they wrote their business plan, they drew on knowledge from a biotechnology class taught by Nick Ovsenek, associate dean of biomedical sciences and graduate studies in the College of Medicine. “Dan did a project on nanomaterials, which got him interested in nanosilver,” says Ovsenek, who has acted as a technical advisor to the entrepreneurs and has helped with some of their promotional work. Silver has been known for its antimicrobial properties for thousands of years. Robinson and Fischl wondered: could a nanotech twist provide what they needed? “We found a company in South Korea that had the silver technology,” Robinson says. “We said during our presentation, ‘this is one idea we came across, it’s natural silver and it’s antibacterial, and it’s the frontrunner for what we would use.’” Robinson and Fischl realized their idea might actually be viable, and secured an exclusive North American licence for the patented technology. The partners dubbed this

technology “SilverSync.” Another “sync” connection is their quality control partners: the Canadian Light Source (CLS) synchrotron at the U of S. Shutout needed a way to ensure the nano-sized particles in their formulations worked as advertised. CLS testing provided information for the manufacturer to adjust their processes so the product consistently met these standards. The duo then started selling. They’ve landed supply arrangements with NHL teams, and secured testimonials from Canadian UFC fighter Jason MacDonald and Matt Mazurik, captain of the U of S Huskies cross country team, to start pushing into these markets. Several Saskatchewan potash mines now use Shutout products to treat boots and wash coveralls, and ski resorts such as Fernie, Kimberley, Kicking Horse and Nakiska use Shutout to treat rental ski and snowboard boots. “Since the beginning, Chad and I agreed: we’ve got to do this full time or not at all,” Robinson says. “We’ve got to grind it out and make this our 100 per cent focus. We’ve been able to do that and get it to the point where it is now our career.”

“Since the beginning, Chad and I agreed: we’ve got to do this full time or not at all. We’ve got to grind it out and make this our 100 per cent focus. We’ve been able to do that and get it to the point where it is now our career.” –Dan Robinson

The Canadian Light Source was a quality control partner in Shutout.

BUSINESS View­ April May 2013

Photo courtesy of Canadian Light Source


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SIAST awarded $3.4M CIDA project to enhance business training in Ukraine


he Saskatchewan Institute of Applied Science and Technology (SIAST) has been awarded a $3.4 million project in Ukraine funded by the Canadian International Development Agency (CIDA). The Skills for Employment Project will enhance business programming in selected schools in Kyiv, Lviv and Ivano-Frankivsk. Over the next three years, the project will transfer Canadian know-how and experience in developing relevant labour market training to support medium and small enterprise development. It is tailored to the needs of participating communities and skills training institutions, providing better services to students and entrepreneurs. "CIDA is proud to partner with the Saskatchewan Institute of Applied Science and Technology to increase employment and skills training opportunities for students in Ukraine," said the Honourable Julian Fantino, Minister of International Cooperation. "Access to quality education and training are key to breaking the cycle of poverty and creating sustainable


improvements in the lives of Ukrainians." “SIAST brings significant resources and expertise to international education partnerships. We’re essentially exporting our experience in developing employer-driven technical education,” says Dr. Larry Rosia, SIAST president and CEO. “The Ukraine project will pay special attention to ensuring that existing and newly established training programs are open and accessible to a wide range of equity and special needs groups, particularly women and youth.” The project will focus in particular on building strong partnerships between training institutions and the private sector. SIAST faculty and managers will lead development and training initiatives. In addition, volunteers from the Saskatchewan Ukrainian community will be recruited to help with specific initiatives both in Canada and in Ukraine. The Ukrainian Canadian Congress - Saskatchewan Provincial Council, Inc. (UCC-SPC) will help SIAST with the recruitment and selection of the volunteers.



“The Value Leader” BUSINESS View­ April May 2013



PotashCorp donation helps provide food security for Saskatoon children


n March 16th, Artists Against Hunger held their annual fundraiser and art auction, this year in support of CHEP Good Food Inc. Not only was PotashCorp a major sponsor of the event, they also announced a $50,000 gift that will assist CHEP in providing nutritious meals for Saskatoon children. Each year members of Saskatoon-based Artists Against Hunger donate works of art to be auctioned off for a foodrelated charity. This year they chose to support Child Hunger and Education Program (CHEP). CHEP is a not-for-profit organization that works locally to improve access to nutritious food, promoting local food security. “PotashCorp is dedicated to addressing the issue of food security,” said Rhonda Speiss, Manager of Corporate Philanthropy for PotashCorp. “As the world’s largest producer of crop nutrients we are helping farmers to grow the food that is feeding the world. CHEP is addressing the issue of food security right here, on the local level, and we’re proud to continue to support that initiative.” Each year CHEP helps provide over 325,000 meals to children at schools and other sites throughout Saskatoon.

Additionally, CHEP delivers education programs on healthy eating and has established programs for community gardens and wholesale food distribution, as well as helping open an inner city co-operative grocery store. “Food security means that everyone has access to adequate amounts of nutritious food,” explained Speiss. “The programs that CHEP delivers not only educate and address food security, but they are also helping to improve the quality of life for Saskatoon residents who may not otherwise receive healthy food, and that’s something we wholeheartedly stand behind.” Previously PotashCorp has shown their support of CHEP through a $50,000 donation in 2012 in support of a new community kitchen at Station 20 West, and a $25,000 contribution in 2011. “PotashCorp understands how important nutritious food is for growing a healthy community,” said CHEP Chairperson Candice Grant. “Their on-going support is invaluable in our efforts to address food security on a local level and we are grateful for their dedication to improving our community.”

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April May 2013

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Concierge by Carley opens in Saskatoon


askatoon is one of the most rapidly growing cities in Canada. Concierge by Carley is a service business established to meet the needs of the business community. They provide employers with services geared toward the recruitment and retention of skilled employees arriving or living Saskatoon and area. Concierge by Carley provides customized relocation services that range from orientation visits through to settling in assistance, and provide ongoing support to new arrivals. They offer personal assistance - taking on tasks employers or employees don’t either have the time or don’t want to do. Some estimates place employees spending time on unavoidable personal tasks as high as 2.5 hours a day. By providing a concierge service reduced stress can lead to increased productivity and employee retention. Concierge by Carley works with an established network of reliable vendors who are known for providing excellent levels of service in their fields. This is invaluable to new arrivals and residents who may not be familiar with Saskatoon. It allows the company to provide top quality services on the personal assistance side. For information visit

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Promotional Feature

Airport to increase service capacity


he Saskatoon community can look forward to significant capacity increases with the introduction of the Q400 service for both Air Canada and WestJet. Collectively over 1500 seats weekly will be added by the two major Canadian carriers. The Q400 is a turboprop airliner manufactured by Bombardier. They are typically configured to carry between 70 – 80 passengers. Air Canada will be phasing out their CRJ service replacing with the Q400 and effectively increasing from 50 – 75 seats per flight. This has resulted in an additional 680 seats weekly to both Calgary and Edmonton out of Saskatoon; a 5.2 % increase in weekly seat capacity. With the announcement of WestJet’s launch of their Encore (Q400) service in Western Canada in June of this year, we will welcome an additional 546 seats per week to our market. WestJet will also provide an additional 391 seats weekly with a three, non-stop flights to Toronto with the B737 aircraft. United Airlines has announced they will eliminate the Regina station stop en route to Chicago daily, effective August 27th, making this daily flight direct, non-stop. All this added capacity is welcomed following another record breaking year in terms of passenger volumes. 2012 saw a total of 1,326,838 passengers through our terminal, an increase of 6.5% over the previous year. All sectors of travel experienced growth including international with an increase of 13.8%; transborder up 9.2% and our domestic

market grew by 5.5 %. The terminal expansion is progressing on time, with Phase I scheduled to open in late September of this year. The expansion project presented some challenges this past winter season to providing bridges for boarding and deplaning as well as congestion at the de-ice pad. We look forward to the completion of our expansion in late 2014 when many of these challenges will be significantly reduced or eliminated altogether. Expansion updates can be viewed on our website at www.

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April May 2013

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The business of charity - smart and caring By Kristy Rempel, Donor Services Manager at Saskatoon Community Foundation

© Feng Yu |


ne of the best keep secrets in Saskatoon is the nonprofit that hired me last fall. To be honest, until I did my interview research, I didn’t have a clear concept what the Saskatoon Community Foundation did either. One of the reasons for SCF’s lack of awareness seemed to be that the Foundation itself doesn’t have a cause; it is more of a means. Sometimes a charity’s mission can be easily identifiable by its name, as with Children’s Hospital Foundation, Cancer Society, or the Saskatoon Food Bank and Learning Center. And when you give to these places, you know what they are using your money for. With SCF it is somewhat different. Endowment is a big word, with a long explanation, especially in relation to what we do. Although I have been trying, I haven’t fit it into an “elevator speech” just yet. Of course if you ask me, I’d be happy to tell you all about it. Our name, the Saskatoon C o m m u n i t y Foundation actually tells you more about us than you’d think.

BUSINESS View­ April May 2013

Our focus is the Saskatoon community and making it the best place to live and we’re in it for the long haul! We accomplish this through our encouragement of philanthropy and investing the donations we receive into endowments. How it works – you donate to us. We invest the capital. The earnings from that investment are granted back into the community….to other charities. The causes we support are often chosen by the donor. “Great” you’re thinking, “so what?” Last year alone we granted back over $2 million to the Saskatoon Community! Over the history of the Foundation we have granted over $12 million to Saskatoon’s charities. And the best part – is the capital is never touched. That money will keep growing and keep granting to Saskatoon….forever! So the secret is out! And the recent challenge set out by the Governor-General of Canada to create Smart and Caring Communities has helped us in telling our story. Also, I was never very good at keeping secrets. For additional information please visit our website at or Google “Smart and Caring Communities.”

Kristy Rempel is the Donor Services Manager at the Saskatoon Community Foundation and also sits on the Board of Directors for the Greater Saskatoon Chamber of Commerce.



Promotional Feature

Surviving the Panda Punch


o I am not referring to the cute critters we all adore or Po (from Kung Fu Panda) that my daughter loves. The panda that I am referring to impacts almost every business with a website and is no way near extinction. On February 24th, 2011, Google Panda was born to enhance the quality of search results by prioritizing rankings of websites that focus on “user experience”. The goal was to favor rankings of websites that are active, feature quality content, have minimal advertising and employ user retention strategies. In fact, this was a major update to Google’s search algorithm and it had a significant impact on high traffic websites. Many businesses were ticked off because this not only meant reshaping their search engine strategy, but it also required restructuring their website to make the Panda smile. The Aftermath Overall, the benefits were great. Gone were the websites that had clusters of links and auto-generated content enticing visitors to click. Websites that were using duplicate content pages to target specific keywords were penalized. Less priority was given to keywords in actual domain names and more weight was given to website content. All this resulted in a win-win situation by generating quality search results for users and a level playing field for online marketers. History has shown that drastic changes spawn innovative ways to overcome challenges that occur as a result of those changes. The aftermath of Google Panda is that businesses have started to take search engine optimization more seriously and have prioritized their focus on user experience. Hence in the past two years, there has been more advancement in A/B testing and analytical tools that track user behavior than ever before. When my team is working on a website project, before we even commence the design I find that it is critical to analyze user behavior so we can determine the current flaws and come up with a more effective, goal-oriented design. Great websites need to be beautiful but also functional. Taming Google Panda Google Panda will continue to evolve as it gulps websites and processes more content. In the most recent release of information during the SMX West expo (March 2013), Matt Cutts from Google trickled some details on what is to come later this year and how you can tame the Google Panda. Following is a strategy that I would use:


By Mouneeb Shahid

1. Analyze traffic Extract the least performing pages on the website and analyze user behavior. Through Google Analytics you can see how much time people are spending on each page. In addition you can use mouse movement and click analysis software to view if users are even looking at the content below the fold by scrolling. Once you have some data, you can add content and redesign it to create more value for the page, or redirect it to a better and higher performing page. 2. Increase quality content score There are extensive guidelines just around content and the type of industry you are in. As a general rule, grammatically correct content that is interesting to read for the user is critical and should appear right from the start of the page. You can also incorporate social media sharing capability so interested users can tag it in their choice of social media platform. Finally, having rich media content such as video is a great way to retain traffic and address lazy people. All this would result in users spending more time on the web page. 3. Eliminate empty pages and duplicate content Empty pages are like open graves waiting for the dead. They add no value and are considered a red flag indicating an inactive website. Duplicate content is normally used to target variations of keywords and is considered a borderline black-hat strategy. There are ways on how you can shape content so that it looks original, but technically isn’t. The Panda has brains to detect this now and will start penalizing websites that use this strategy. There are many other elements that need to be factored in when it comes to ranking your website more effectively. For those of you who are interested, you can download our most recent and free SEO Guide called Taming Google Panda at the following link: You can also access this article on our blog at - While you are there, be sure to subscribe to get access to some great tactics.

April May 2013

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CHAMBER COMMITTEES COMMITTEE CHAIRS Aboriginal Opportunities Melanie Stroh - Radisson Hotel

Meetings: 1st Tuesday of the month - 9:00-10:30 am

Agribusiness Opportunities Bert Sutherland - Dave Sim - Dave Sim Consulting

Meetings: 2nd Monday of the month - 3:30-5:00 pm

Business Growth Elise Hildebrandt - The Mortgage Centre

Calendar of Upcoming Events April 10 CGI “Defending Cyber Space” presentation on cyber security for your business April 16 Celebrate Success! Nominee Reception April 18 Shaken with a Twist at 5:00 (TusQ Lounge) May 1 Chamber on Tap at 4:30 (Hudson’s Canadian Tap House)

Meetings: Last Tuesday of the month - 8:00 am

May 9 Celebrate Success! Gala and Awards Banquet

Business of Science Sanj Singh - AdeTheraputics Inc.

May 16 Saskatoon Chamber AGM at 4:30 Radisson Hotel

Meetings: TBA

May 21 U of S President Ilene Busch-Vishniac Luncheon

Celebrate Success! Christian Braid - Braid Flooring & Window Fashions Tracy Arno - Essence Recruitment

May 23 Shaken with a Twist at 5:00 (TusQ Lounge)

Meetings: Depending on need - more closer to event

Environmental Sustainability Chair Position Vacant

Meetings: Last Monday of the month - 3:30-5:00 pm

Going Global Ken Ziegler - Robertson Stromberg Pedersen LLP Monica Kreuger - Global Infobrokers

May 30 New Member Orientation Breakfast June 13 Chamber President’s Golf Classic at Dakota Dunes

To register for these events, go online to

Meetings: Last Thursday of the month - 3:30-5:00 pm

Government Affairs Michael Chudoba - Innovative Residential

Meetings: 2nd Wednesday of the month - 4:00-5:30 pm

Health Opportunities Dave Dutchak - MD Ambulance Care Ltd. Debby Criddle - Synergos Capital Management Inc. Meetings: TBA

Knowledge & Youth Development Taunya Woods Richardson - Canadian Youth Business Foundation Meetings: 2nd Wednesday of the month - 5:00 pm

Membership Development Evan Drisner - Nu-Fab Building Products Kristy Rempel - Saskatoon Community Foundation Meetings: 2nd Thursday of the month - 11:45-1:30 pm

More information available online at under Committees.


April May 2013

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CHAMBER COMMITTEE EVENTS Tickets for the 2013 Celebrate Success! Awards are now on sale! Celebrate Success! 2013 tickets (sponsored by PotashCorp) are now for sale online at for the Awards Gala on May 9th 2013 at Prairieland Park. Join us for a night of celebration and glamour in the style of old Hollywood as we honour the best in our community. Don’t miss the Crooner’s Club exclusive after party and cocktail hour sponsored by Lucky Bastard Distillers.

Chamber of Commerce volunteer committees continue to put out great networking and social events The Chamber’s volunteers put out great programming for both members and non-members to enjoy, with networking and social opportunities with others in the business community. The Membership Development committee holds “Chamber on Tap” the first Wednesday of the month at Hudson’s Canadian Tap House with March featuring Tim Giztel of Cameco (sponsored by the Chambers Group Insurance Plan). The Business Growth Committee holds “Shaken with a Twist” at TusQ with a prominent female community leader. March featured Allison Hunter of Hunter’s Bowling Alley (sponsored by Eden Flowers). For details on all events visit our website at

Event photos by Grant Romancia.

BUSINESS View­ April May 2013


New Members 3D Marketing Solutions Ltd. Advertising / Public Relations AND Marketing / Market Research 3328 Ortona St, Saskatoon Phone: (306) 717-1538 Dan Antumniuk Aberdeen Agencies Ltd. Insurance Companies / Agents 407 Main St, Aberdeen Phone: (306) 253-4654 Sarah Edwards Allegro Montessori School Education / Training 4215 DeGeer St, Saskatoon Phone: (306) 931-4000 Liz Reynolds Associated Appraisal Co. Business Services 3-320 5th Ave N, Saskatoon Phone: (306) 934-2444 David Lazeski Brunskill Pharmacy Pharmacies AND Retail 1302 Temperance St, Saskatoon Phone: (306) 653-2922 Ron Mack Castle Designer Glass Home Builders / Renovations AND Manufacturers 139 105th St E, Saskatoon Phone: (306) 477-0098 Janet Parkinson CGI ISMC Inc. Business Services AND Technology Phone: (306) 761-4000 Allan Fair / Vaunley John Concierge by Carley Immigration / Relocation AND Home-Based Business Phone: (306) 261-9422 Carley Caverly

Epic Plumbing Heating & Electrical Electrical Contractors / Equipment / Services AND Plumbing / Heating / Air Conditioning PO Box 69, Osler Phone: (306) 280-8030 Ray Wiebe Frontier Bookkeeping & Payroll Accountants / Bookkeepers 24-302 Herold Rd, Saskatoon Phone: (306) 683-2634 Jenna Rolston Global Gathering Place Non-Profit Organizations 100 5th Ave N, Saskatoon Phone: (306) 665-0268 Belma Podrug Honey Bun Café Inc. Restaurants 167A 2nd Ave S, Saskatoon Phone: (306) 717-5702 Joscelyn Armstrong Jazz Custom Cabinets Ltd. Cabinets / Windows AND Manufacturers 203E 47th St E, Saskatoon Phone: (306) 652-5299 Michelle Mosure Lam, Wai-Keung (Raymond) Individual Members Levi’s Plumbing & Heating Inc. Home-Based Business Phone: (306) 262-6961 Levi Lust Manpower Consultants - Employment / Training AND Employment Agencies 101-1132 College Dr, Saskatoon Phone: (306) 261-8830 Damian Giesinger

Digihaven Computers - Custom Software 103 Penryn Cres, Saskatoon Phone: (306) 716-2944 Josh Blomme

Metro Saskatoon Publications / Publishers AND Advertising / Public Relations 100-728 Spadina Cres E, Saskatoon Phone: (306) 649-2025 May Lam / Barry Paton

E & V Finishing Carpentry Inc. Contractors AND Home Builders / Renovations 1308 33rd St W, Saskatoon Phone: (306) 881-6788 Eric Chandara

NICS Ltd. Computers - Sales / Services / Supplies 2-3603 Kochar Ave, Saskatoon Phone: (306) 220-9978 Shayne Zaba


Nu Vu Auto Glass & Repair Home-Based Business Phone: (306) 384-4461 Lloyd Mykytyzyn Nyong Web Designs Home-Based Business Phone: (306) 880-0170 Ndon Nyong Penforth Design & Drafting Other Services 214 Egnatoff Cres, Saskatoon Phone: (306) 361-9035 Bryan Cornforth Provincial Council of ADD Boards for Sask Inc. Non-Profit Organizations 220-333 25th St E, Saskatoon Phone: (306) 955-5477 Tamara Weir-Shields Q-Terra Excavating Construction AND Home-Based Business Phone: (306) 260-0689 Peter Quiring Rubin Thomlinson LLP Legal Services AND Education / Training 1104-20 Adelaide St E, Toronto Phone: (416) 847-1814 Shawne Fagan Saskatoon Co-operative Association Limited Service Stations / Service Station Equipment 22nd Street C-Store Gas Bar 402 22nd St W, Saskatoon Phone: (306) 933-3824 Saskatoon Co-operative Association Limited Service Stations / Service Station Equipment 51st Street C-Store Gas Bar Car Wash CardLock 922 51st St E, Saskatoon Phone: (306) 933-3825 Saskatoon Co-operative Association Limited Retail 8th Street Home Centre 2010 8th St E, Saskatoon Phone: (306) 933-3817

April May 2013

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For membership information contact Derek Crang

(306) 664-0702 Visit today under Member Services for more details

Saskatoon Co-operative Association Limited Food Stores AND Retail 201-503 Wellman Cres, Saskatoon Phone: (306) 933-3801 Harley McClughan / Grant Wicks Saskatoon Co-operative Association Limited Agricultural Agro Centre 1327 North Service Rd - Highway #16 West, Saskatoon Phone: (306) 933-0303 Saskatoon Co-operative Association Limited Service Stations / Service Station Equipment Attridge C-Store Gas Bar 402 Ludlow St, Saskatoon Phone: (306) 933-0312 Saskatoon Co-operative Association Limited Food Stores Attridge Food Store 402 Ludlow St, Saskatoon Phone: (306) 651-5560 Saskatoon Co-operative Association Limited Service Stations / Service Station Equipment Avenue C C-Store Gas Bar Car Wash 311 Circle Dr W, Saskatoon Phone: (306) 933-3830 Saskatoon Co-operative Association Limited Retail Avenue C Home Centre 311 Circle Dr W, Saskatoon Phone: (306) 933-0334 Saskatoon Co-operative Association Limited Service Stations / Service Station Equipment Card Lock - 105th Street 201 105th St E, Saskatoon Phone: (306) 477-6462 Saskatoon Co-operative Association Limited Service Stations / Service Station Equipment Card Lock - Highway #16 West 1327 North Service Rd, Saskatoon Phone: (306) 242-1505

BUSINESS View足 April May 2013

New Members

Saskatoon Co-operative Association Limited Service Stations / Service Station Equipment Fairhaven C-Store Gas Bar 3366 Fairlight Dr, Saskatoon Phone: (306) 933-3823 Saskatoon Co-operative Association Limited Service Stations / Service Station Equipment Greystone C-Store Gas Bar Car Wash 2511 8th St E, Saskatoon Phone: (306) 933-3893

Saskatoon Co-operative Association Limited Service Stations / Service Station Equipment Warman C-Store Gas Bar Car Wash 310 Central St E, Warman Phone: (306) 933-0333 Saskatoon Co-operative Association Limited Service Stations / Service Station Equipment Westview C-Store Gas Bar 1624 33rd St W, Saskatoon Phone: (306) 933-3873

Saskatoon Co-operative Association Limited Food Stores Greystone Food Store 2511 8th St E, Saskatoon Phone: (306) 933-3884

Saskatoon Co-operative Association Limited Food Stores Westview Food Store 1624 33rd St W, Saskatoon Phone: (306) 933-3865

Saskatoon Co-operative Association Limited Service Stations / Service Station Equipment Martensville C-Store Gas Bar 8-7 Centennial Dr, Martensville Phone: (306) 933-0390

Saskatoon Co-operative Association Limited Travel Services Westview Travel 1624 33rd St W, Saskatoon Phone: (306) 933-3826

Saskatoon Co-operative Association Limited Service Stations / Service Station Equipment Preston Crossing C-Store Gas Bar Car Wash 1755 Preston Ave N, Saskatoon Phone: (306) 933-0356 Saskatoon Co-operative Association Limited Service Stations / Service Station Equipment Stonebridge C-Store Gas Bar Car Wash 106 Stonebridge Blvd, Saskatoon Phone: (306) 933-0306 Saskatoon Co-operative Association Limited Food Stores Stonebridge Food Store 511 Wellman Cres, Saskatoon Phone: (306) 651-3266

Saskatoon Woodworks Carpentry / Woodworking / Millwork 111-2103 Airport Dr, Saskatoon Phone: (306) 975-WOOD Alex Sipko WEED MAN Landscape Services 8-3111 Millar Ave, Saskatoon Phone: (306) 242-2128 Dwayne Nyholt Wellwise China Ltd. Home-Based Business Young Minh Li Whetstone Consulting Inc. Consultants AND Home-Based Business 1918 McKercher Dr, Saskatoon Phone: (306) 260-1547 Arthur Whetstone




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