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April/May 2017

Murad Al-Katib President and CEO, AGT Food and Ingredients

Compassionate entrepreneurship Murad Al-Katib first Canadian to receive Oslo Business for Peace Award

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Table of Contents

April/May 2017

Featured Articles Cover Story: Compassionate Entrepreneurship Pg. 6 Murad Al-Katib First Canadian to receive Oslo Business for Peace Award

President’s View Pg. 4

Murad Al-Katib - A local hero

New CEO Appointed

Pg. 5

The Chamber Welcomes Darla Lindbjerg to Saskatoon

Upcoming Chamber Events Pg. 9 Health Vision 2020 and Carbon yXe

Five Minutes for Business -

Pg. 15

Federal Budget 2017

Board Election Candidates -

Pg. 20

Oslo Business for Peace Awards Pg. 6. (Image: Grant Romancia Photography).

BUSINESSView­is a 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 Feedback on articles is 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 or its Board of Directors. 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.


Kent Smith-Windsor, Executive Director Derek Crang, Sales & Membership Director Terri Eger, Events and Communications Manager Terry Lawrence, Administrator Roz Macala, Executive Secretary Kevin Meldrum, Marketing Director Linda Saunders, Bookkeeper

Canadian Publications Mail Agreement No. 40052085 Return Undeliverable Addresses to: Greater Saskatoon Chamber of Commerce 104-202 4th Avenue North, Saskatoon, SK S7K 0K1 Publisher: Kevin Meldrum

Cover Image by Grant Romancia

Advertising Sales: Derek Crang

Writer: Terri Eger Photographer: Grant Romancia BUSINESS VIEW SASKATOON APRIL/MAY 2017 3

President’s View

Murad Al-Katib - a local hero Oslo Business for Peace Award recipient

It was announced this week that for the first time a Canadian was the recipient of the Oslo Business for Peace Award. Although this award may not be well known to many of you reading this piece, it is a very prestigious and internationally recognized award. This year there were submissions from Jason Yochim over 40 countries 2016/17 President Greater Saskatoon around the world. Chamber of Commerce This award is presented by Nobel Laureates, involved in economic sciences and peace, to business leaders who create value for business as well as society in a responsible and ethical way. The Canadian recipient, Murad Al-Katib, came from humble beginnings, born to Turkish immigrant parents in rural Saskatchewan. Today he is the President and Chief Executive Officer of AGT Food and Ingredients Inc. His passion for business and desire to solve the global problems of food security, famine, food aid and emergency refugee food is what continues to drive him. There are many examples in our business community like Murad who are content to quietly go about their business and are not in it for the recognition. Thankfully, behind the scenes, Kent Smith-Windsor,

Executive Director of the Greater Saskatoon Chamber of Commerce, in conjunction with the SABEX Awards committee, have been responsible for submitting many worthy nominees over the years. Without these efforts, many worthwhile individuals and companies in Saskatoon and area would not receive the recognition they deserve for their

The Oslo Business for Peace Award (supplied photo)

humanitarian efforts. For several years the Chamber has nominated individuals for the Business for Peace Award. As in many things, persistence pays off. Murad joins a group of notable honorees such as David MacLennan, COO and President of Cargill, USA; Richard Branson of Virgin Group, United Kingdom and Jeffrey Immelt, Chair of GE. One of the significant benefits of serving as president of the GSCC is learning about the many quiet business success stories in

our city. I am continually amazed with the diversity and creativity that exists right here in our own back yard. There are dozens of very innovative companies doing great things in the fields of health, agriculture, science, technology and manufacturing. One might ask, why here? Having been born and raised in this province I believe that humility, work ethic and the care for others who are less fortunate is the fabric of the Saskatchewan people. Companies recognize these intangibles and the value they add to the success of a business. There also seems to be a unique entrepreneurial spirit that doesn’t quit in the face of adversity. For over 20 years the GSCC has celebrated many of these quiet success stories through the SABEX Awards. As a past volunteer on this committee I have seen firsthand the many hours that this committee invests for the sole purpose of bringing recognition and awareness to those who should be celebrated. It is this recognition that gives many of these companies that extra awareness both locally and abroad. The GSCC has nine additional committees that are dedicated to the investment and growth in local companies. This takes the effort of many dedicated volunteers giving many hours of their time to foster an environment for idea generation, growth and expansion. I would like to personally thank these individuals and committee leaders who have fostered business development and growth in our great city.

2016-17 Board of Directors for the Greater Saskatoon Chamber of Commerce President Jason Yochim - Saskatoon Region Association of REALTORS®. 1st Vice-President Kelly Bode - WMCZ Lawyers & Mediators. 2nd Vice-President, Finance Peggie Koenig - Koenig & Associates. Past President Tanya Knight - MNP LLP Chair, Governance Bill Cooper - PotashCorp. Paul Labbe - Stantec Inc. Silvia Martini - Interlink Research Inc. Linda Mason - PCL Construction Management Ltd. Deborah Meyers - Saskatchewan Polytechnic. Karl Miller - Meridian Development. Sandra Ribeiro - Canadian Light Source Inc. Chris Sicotte - Affinity Credit Union. Sanj Singh - Lighthouse Management Co. Brian Skanderbeg - GFG Resources Inc. Trevor Thiessen - Redekop Manufacturing. Chris Woodland - MLT Aikins.



Chamber News

Greater Saskatoon Chamber of Commerce announces Darla Lindbjerg as new CEO Lindbjerg will begin her role as CEO of the Chamber in May, 2017

Lindbjerg is the former CEO of the Swift Current Chamber of Commerce and most recently the Associate Vice President of Marketing & Strategic Intelligence at Innovation Credit Union. (Supplied photo)

The Greater Saskatoon Chamber of Commerce is pleased to announce Darla Lindbjerg has been hired as its new Chief Executive Officer. She is expecting to begin her role on May 1, 2017. Lindbjerg is replacing Kent Smith-Windsor who is retiring after 21 years. Lindbjerg most recently served as the Associate Vice President of Marketing & Strategic Intelligence at Innovation Credit Union in Swift Current. She also has more than a decade of experience in the chamber network serving as both Board President and CEO of the Swift Current and District Chamber of Commerce. Lindbjerg possesses an MBA from the Kenneth Levene Graduate School of Business (University of Regina), a Chartered Director designation through

The Director's College (DeGroote School of Business - McMaster University), a Bachelor of Business Administration degree with a major in Finance (U of R) as well as a Public Relations Certificate (U of R). Lindbjerg has a strong ability to engage local members and is passionate about business and its role in society. “Running a business is not easy, but is vitally important as businesses are the heartbeat of the city,” Lindbjerg said. “It is important to ensure Saskatoon businesses not only survive, but thrive. I am excited to work with the board, committees and members of the Greater Saskatoon Chamber of Commerce in the future and know that we will achieve great things for the city of Saskatoon!” “The Board is extremely happy to have

“I am excited to work with the board, committees and members of the Greater Saskatoon Chamber of Commerce in the future and know that we will achieve great things for the city of Saskatoon!”

engaged Darla as our new CEO,” said Chamber Board President Jason Yochim. “Darla brings a deep resume, an entrepreneurial spirit and enthusiasm to her role. We look forward to charting this new path together.” “The Chamber wants to thank Kent for his dedication, his many achievements and his hard work. He is leaving the organization in a great position for continued success,” said Yochim. In her free time, Darla enjoys spending time with her husband Halden and their three children, Aida, Ethan and Eva. Other pastimes that she enjoys include traveling and photography. On behalf of the membership, board, and the business community we welcome Darla to Saskatoon!


Image by Grant Romancia.

Compassionate entrepreneurship “I believe strongly that entrepreneurism is key to finding solutions to problems facing the world. Whether feeding the world, climate change, stopping violence or ensuring safe drinking water – we can make a difference.”



Cover Story

Murad Al-Katib first Canadian to receive Oslo Business for Peace Award By Terri Eger For Murad Al-Katib, helping others is at the core of his personal values and his business ideals. “I want to be a champion of compassionate entrepreneurship, in a world in which entrepreneurs harness their energies to help society solve some of its problems,” he said. “For me, food security, famine, food aid and emergency refugee food response is a chosen lifetime cause for me – one that I feel strongly about.” It’s that passion and commitment that led the Greater Saskatoon Chamber of Commerce to nominate Al-Katib for the prestigious Oslo Business For Peace award for 2017. The annual prize is awarded to international business leaders who create value for business as well as society in a responsible and ethical way. This year’s award committee consisting of Nobel Laureates in peace and economic sciences announced Al-Katib as the first Canadian to receive the honour. “I am very proud to be recognized with such a prestigious, international award,” said AlKatib. “I believe strongly that entrepreneurism is key to finding solutions to problems facing the world. Whether feeding the world, climate change, stopping violence or ensuring safe drinking water – we can make a difference. Private sector entrepreneurs in partnership with government and non-governmental organizations need to innovate and invest to find solutions.” Al-Katib is the President and Chief Executive Officer of AGT Food and Ingredients Inc. AGT is one of the largest suppliers of value-added pulses, staple foods and food ingredients in the world. The company supplies more than 120 countries and has facilities on five continents. The huge success of the business started with a small leap of faith for Al-Katib and his wife who was expecting their twins when he quit his job to start his own company. Armed with a strong work-ethic, knowledge of the industry and an entrepreneurial spirit, AlKatib built a successful business. “I saw an opportunity and I seized it,” he said. “I was young, educated in economic

development, and I knew if I didn’t succeed I could apply for another job.” Al-Katib encourages fellow entrepreneurs to move forward with their ideas. “More than ever, entrepreneurial ventures can make viable careers,” he said. “But you have to do your homework. A great idea alone doesn’t guarantee success.” His second piece of advice is to surround yourself with quality people. “A great leader will surround themselves with people who are opposite to them. You want people who will challenge your ideas and bring different skills to the organization. You need to celebrate the differences in your team.”

“I believe it is our corporate and social responsibility to help solve the world hunger problem.” The son of Turkish immigrants, AlKatib was born and raised in Davidson, Saskatchewan and credits his parents with instilling in him and his brother, Omer, the need to help others. Their father was the town doctor and their mother, an immigrant Muslim woman who had to learn English later in life, spent 27 years in elected office including nine years as the community’s mayor. “Putting the well-being of the community first was important to our family,” he said. Today, AGT brings Saskatchewan lentils, chick peas, peas and durum wheat to the world. While doing business and remaining profitable, Al-Katib saw a need to assist the United Nations with its refugee relief efforts.

In the past, large containers of products were shipped to war-torn countries and supplies were dispersed one at a time. Inefficiencies in the system and damaged or stolen products made the process costly. “We consolidated those ingredients into a family ration package and put it into a tamper proof box,” said Al-Katib. The process began with a 20,000 parcel trial and has been developed into the production of 30,000 parcels a day. Through a partnership with the United Nations World Food Programme and International Committee of the Red Cross, AGT has helped to optimize the procurement, consolidation, and distribution process to produce and deliver more than four million family ration cartons to international agencies for Syrian refugees. This program has saved the partner organizations millions of dollars per year and has aided in getting these life sustaining and critical food supplies to those most in need. AGT is looking beyond relief efforts and is doing its part to feed the world. “Food security is a real challenge,” said Al-Katib. “As a society, we need to produce as much food in the next 50 years as has been produced in the past 10,000 years of civilization. I believe it is our corporate and social responsibility to help solve the world hunger problem.” Whether globally or locally, he encourages businesses to make changes through compassionate entrepreneurism. “I think our private sector entrepreneurial spirit will solve the problems of food security and safety,” he said. “Good business and social responsibility go hand-in-hand and can create opportunities.” “I want to be known as an entrepreneur who worked hard to bring our environmentally sustainable crops to the world as lentils, peas and chickpeas play a big role in feeding the world. I want to be known as someone who made a difference to the economic success of the rural communities in which we operate, creating opportunities for the Continued on page 14


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July 19 & 20, 2017

Upcoming Chamber Events

Health Vision 2020 - “The Time for Change is Now”, June 23-24 The Saskatoon Chamber of Commerce’s Health Opportunities Committee is pleased to present the 2017 edition of the 2020 Health Vision series June 23-24. This year’s conference is being held at the Delta Bessborough Hotel in conjunction with the Saskatoon Jazz Festival and is sure to be an event you won’t want to miss. Under the theme of Exploring Health Market Opportunities, the conference will include speakers on topics including: Connected Care, Disrupting and Transforming Technologies, Virtual Reality, Local Innovation, and Imaging & Artificial Intelligence. Speakers at this year’s conference will include: Brian Ferguson, who served as an officer in Naval Special Warfare Navy SEAL Teams. During his seven years on active duty and subsequently in government service and the private sector, he worked on

efforts to understand the role of accelerating technology in high performance organizations. Brian works to understand how to build adaptive, flexible organizations in today’s fast-paced environment where unlocking deeper levels of individual potential is more attainable than ever. Brian holds a BA in Diplomacy and Foreign Affairs and a M.Sc. in International Economy from the London School of Economics. Dr. Douglas Johnston, a graduate of Harvard Medical School and currently a Cardiac Surgeon at Cleveland Clinics. Dr. Johnson partnered with Brian Ferguson and his team to bring the virtual reality technology to the hospital's cardiology department. The devices have already helped heart surgeons-in-training learn to calmly navigate emergency situations they'd rarely or never encounter in their short time as resident doctors. Dr. Dennis Kendall, a well-known Health Policy and Health Services Consultant. He

has served in many leadership roles in the Canadian Health Sector focusing on improving health delivery and safety. Kendall serves as the Chair of the Ministry of Health – Health System Redesign for the Province of Saskatchewan. Ron Parker played a key role in the development of health technology in Canada and internationally as a Health Consultant and entrepreneur and over the past 15 years has been a Director for Canada Health Infoway. Ron is currently the Group Director, Emerging Technologies for Canada Health Infoway. Dr. Preston Smith, the University of Saskatchewan Dean of Medicine. Dr. Smith is a strong advocate for the creation of a culture of local knowledge and awareness resulting from academic interactions and development opportunities generated from locally led and conducted research. Please visit for additional conference details and registration information.

Carbon yXe Event, July 19-20 - “Changing the conversation around carbon” The Greater Saskatoon Chamber of Commerce, together with Tourism Saskatoon, is working to change the conversation around carbon. A volunteer committee comprised of Saskatoon business leaders has invited the finalists of the international Carbon X Prize to Saskatoon for a summit on July 19th & 20th, 2017 to showcase their submissions. The total prize purse, worth $20 million, will be awarded to the winning teams which capture the most value from CO2 emissions and will be awarded in March 2020 by the XPRIZE organization. The diverse industry sectors in Saskatchewan that would be interested in this type of technology include mining, construction, energy and agriculture. Saskatchewan is home to many global leaders in these sectors so inviting these teams here presents a real opportunity to connect the innovators to the industry players that will ultimately deploy solutions to the carbon challenge. As such, the Chamber is planning an event where the finalists will have the opportunity to tell their stories while learning what

Saskatchewan industries can benefit from these new technologies. The intent is to inform the competitors of the scope of businesses from various industries that offer the potential to partner and capture value added carbon opportunities. Saskatchewan offers world class institutions and technology as well as one of the best business climates in the world. Through this event we intend to spur new approaches for Saskatoon and area businesses to find opportunities in the carbon challenge. Visit www.saskatoonchamber. com as event details are released for more information.



SREDA’s Sold-Out Economic Outlook Forum Ends on a High Note “Saskatoon is still going strong”

SREDA’s recently sold out Economic Outlook Forum has become a key event for the Saskatoon business community (supplied photo) On February 28th local business leaders converged at Saskatoon Regional Economic Authority (SREDA)’s annual “Saskatoon Regional Economic Outlook Forum” at TCU Place in Saskatoon. The forum provided attendees with a detailed and insightful look at the year ahead focusing on the theme “New Drivers of Economic Growth.” The agenda included the projected outlook for the local economy, the new economic growth drivers and SREDA’s 2017 priorities to strengthen and grow the economy. Alex Fallon, President and CEO of SREDA presented SREDA’s economic outlook for 2017. “As we move through 2017, we are expecting gradual growth overall with GDP forecast to be in the 2% range,” said Fallon. “The Saskatoon Region’s diverse economy continues to generate future opportunities for strength and growth. When you mix our science/technology, construction, retail/ wholesale, energy, agriculture, mining and manufacturing sectors along, with our 10


bigger and better this year and incorporate some unexpected twists,” said Fallon. “We had 15 national, provincial and local speakers making it the biggest SREDA forum to date. We also added morning information sessions focusing on new drivers of growth and a special panel discussion on Aboriginal Economic Inclusion.” One of the highlights of this year’s forum was a surprise performance of SREDA’s new theme song ‘Saskatoon is Still Going Strong.’ The performance was performed by Sum Theatre and brought the crowd to its feet with a standing ovation. “It is important in times of economic transition to remain confident in the local economy’s longer term outlook. The song was a tribute to the Saskatoon Region’s strength and diversity, and reminds people, even though the boom is gone, we are still going strong in Saskatchewan.”

increasing population, it is clear the local For a list of SREDA events, visit region is strongly diversified. This will help provide stability in times of economic transition.” Keynote speakers included John Baird, Senior Advisor, Bennett Jones LLP (former Foreign Affairs Minister); Scott Banda, CEO, Federated Cooperatives Limited; Dylan Jones, Deputy Minister, Western Economic Diversification Canada; Craig Klemmer, Senior Agriculture Economist, Farm Credit Canada; Daniel Simair, Vice-President, SkipTheDishes Restaurant Services Sum Theatre performing SREDA’s theme song ‘Saskatoon is Still Going Strong.’ (Supplied photo) Inc. and more. “We set a goal to go

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Business News

Brandt steps up with plan to save shuttered Saskatoon manufacturing facility The Brandt Group of Companies has entered into a binding agreement with US-based industrial liquidator Prestige Equipment and financial services company Hilco Global for the former Mitsubishi Hitachi Power Systems Canada Ltd. (MHPSC) facility in Saskatoon. The entire 22-acre parcel, located in the city’s Hudson Bay Industrial area, along with its 208,000sq/ft. manufacturing facility and all of its highly specialized equipment will make the transition to local ownership for an undisclosed sum. The plant features the largest machining and fabrication equipment in Canada and has produced power generation equipment for customers around the world, including SaskPower. “We realized that it was critically important for us to move quickly,” says Brandt President, Shaun Semple. “When we learned that the Hitachi assets were going to be broken up and sold off in spring, we had to act fast or the province would lose a worldclass facility and the ability to produce large-scale green energy products. With almost 400 workers already out of

work as a result of the plant’s decline and final closure in October 2016, an auction and liquidation would have assured long-term unemployment for the highly skilled local workforce. With Brandt already constructing a world-class engineering facility in Regina and looking at further expansion possibilities

Brandt President, Shaun Semple, making the announcement in Saskatoon of the former Mitsubishi Hitachi Power Systems Canada Ltd. (MHPSC) facility in Saskatoon.

in that city, the Saskatoon facility presents an excellent additional opportunity for growth and diversification. “It is our plan to reintroduce green energy technologies such as wind turbines to assist SaskPower with its mandate to diversify beyond traditional fossil fuels," adds Semple. “We will be sitting down with the provincial government, the City of Saskatoon and SaskPower to see what can be done to save this valuable asset. But, we’re just getting started; there is a lot of work still to be done to guarantee a successful outcome.” The acquisition of this facility will bring Brandt’s manufacturing footprint in the province to over 500,000sq/ft., split evenly between Regina and Saskatoon. “Except for Brandt’s new Engineering Centre, currently under construction, we have temporarily suspended our other expansion plans in Regina until our manufacturing future planning is complete and a number of development issues are worked out,” concludes Semple. The expected closing date for the Saskatoon deal is April 10, 2017.


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“Cover Story” continued from page 7 families of our employees, farmers and stakeholders. This, I hope inspires other entrepreneurs to mobilize their commercial enterprises for the betterment of humanity in some way.” About the Oslo Business for Peace Award The Oslo Business for Peace Award recognizes outstanding business people who have been able to achieve business success while acting in an ethically responsible way. The ambition of this award is to accelerate the development of ethical business practices through increasing awareness of the strengths of the ethical business case. The vision is to inspire and encourage business people to foster peace and stability to the benefit of humanity. In the spirit of corporate social responsibility, ethically aware business practices build win-win relationships, forging a union between not only the business partners, but also with the societies which are touched by their business activity. The International Chamber of Commerce supports the notion that responsible long-term oriented entrepreneurship is the driving force for sustainable economic development and thus The Oslo Business for shares a common objective with the Business for Peace Award (supplied Peace Foundation. photo) Al-Katib is the first Canadian to be recognized with the Oslo Business for Peace Award. (Photo courtesy AGT Food & Ingredients)

Meet our new CEO

Shaun Dyer

The Board of Directors of United Way of Saskatoon and Area is pleased to announce the appointment of Shaun Dyer as our new Chief Executive Officer. Shaun believes that the most accurate gauge of our society's health and prosperity is our posture toward those who face the highest obstacles to inclusion. That is why his career in the social profit sector has been dedicated to removing barriers and creating pathways to community. As United Way continues to be a trusted leader in our community in addressing social issues, and making informed community investments, we look forward to Shaun sharing his passion and vision. 100, 506 - 25th Street East Saskatoon, SK S7K 4A7 P| (306) 975-7700 E|



Five Minutes for Business

Federal Budget 2017 - let’s not “wait and see” By Hendrik Brakel Senior Director, Economic, Financial & Tax Policy, Canadian Chamber of Commerce The funniest line on Budget 2017 officially goes to John Ivison who said reading the federal budget was like being “relentlessly flogged with warm lettuce.” The runner-up comes from one of our NDP friends who described it as the “Seinfeld Budget” (a show about nothing), and Andrew Coyne gets the honourable mention for “a wealth of bafflegab and buzzwords.” Why is everyone so harsh? For starters, the Liberals built massive expectations. Since November, they had been telling everyone in Ottawa this was to be the Innovation Budget, with big, bold ideas to transform Canada. Of course, every government in the past 50 years has tried to transform Canadian innovation, and it’s near impossible at the best of times, even harder to do on the cheap (with just $800 million set aside). So, with the innovation agenda disappointingly thin, they shifted to skills and the familiar territory of “Building a Strong Middle Class.” It was a fairly thin document: of the $5.4 billion of new spending, $4.2 billion is reallocated from other programs or sourced from the existing framework. The Strategic Innovation Fund sounds exciting, but it’s really just a consolidation of four existing funds. And, the tax changes were so modest—removing the public transit credit while raising the tax on alcohol and tobacco—most observers could only conclude the government was in wait-and-see mode.

With Mr. Trump promising huge cuts to corporate tax rates, the government must be waiting to see what the U.S. does. Never mind Mr. Trump. Canada’s budget is so thin because the money had already been spent. The deficit has increased five times and is now at $28 billion. Polls show Canadians have been generally tolerant of rising deficits because they believe investment would generate growth. There’s little evidence of incremental growth, and the Canadian economy is showing distinct signs of weakness. Canada’s business investment has fallen nine (9!) quarters in a row. We’ve had two years of zero (0!) export growth. And, when we talk to businesses, they complain about rising costs—CPP increases, electricity rates in Ontario, carbon taxes, new regulations and the deferral of the small business deduction. Improving our competitiveness is the best way to boost growth and create jobs. That’s why U.S. conservatives want to reduce the corporate tax rate from 35% to 20% and slash regulations by 75%. But, it’s crazy to try to change Canadian tax policy based on what might happen in the U.S., and why would we want to wait? Now that President Trump’s first important legislation, the Obamacare “repeal and replace,” ended as a calamitous debacle, there’s good reason to believe tax reform would be even harder to pass through Congress. Firstly, the repeal of Obamacare

was supposed to generate $1 trillion of savings that could be used to pay for tax cuts. This isn’t going to happen. Secondly, tax reform is extremely complex. The statutory corporate rate of 35% is massively reduced by a web of deductions so that the effective rate is actually closer to 12%. Each deduction has a dedicated constituency and lobbyists, so no one agrees on how to fix them. Finally, the only source of revenue the GOP has discussed is the nonsensical border tax that would start a trade war. The point is that waiting for U.S. tax reform could be like waiting for Godot. It’s time to go ahead with our own competitiveness drive. A Made in Canada approach to reduce business costs and improve regulation would go a long way to generating growth. For more information, please contact: Hendrik Brakel, Senior Director, Economic, Financial & Tax Policy 613.238.4000 (284) | (Reprinted with permission)

5 Minutes for Business


The Federal Budget and Business: Maybe They’re Just Not That into You?

Contact the Greater Saskatoon Chamber of Commerce to learn more!

Canadian Chamber

More urgency needed to close Canada’s competitiveness gap: Canadian Chamber of Commerce More urgency is needed in reducing business costs and improving competitiveness says the Canadian Chamber of Commerce. “While we welcome specific measures in the budget on skills and innovation, our international competitors are racing ahead,” said the Hon. Perrin Beatty, President and CEO of the Canadian Chamber of Commerce. “As our number-one trading partner rolls back regulation and cuts taxes, Canadian businesses face more regulation and increased costs imposed by all levels of government for fees, taxes and essential inputs like electricity.” The budget foresees Canada remaining in the low-growth trap at least until 2021. Mr. Beatty called upon the federal government to meet urgently with the provinces to identify specific measures to cut the cost of doing business in Canada. “The Canadian economy is fueled by trade,

yet there has been nearly no export growth in the past two years, and business investment has decreased for nine straight quarters. Despite this, governments still don’t seem to recognize the problem,” said Mr. Beatty. “We need a national strategy, and it should be announced in the fall economic update at the very latest.” “Investment crosses borders like light through glass. If we continue to allow a growing gap between what it costs to do business in Canada and the costs our competitors face, businesses will be forced to locate their activities elsewhere,” he said. The commitment to skills training is welcome. “Business needs a modern, welltrained and constantly-evolving workforce to compete in the economy of the 21st century,” said Mr. Beatty. “We commend the government for its measures on skills, but urge it to do more to ensure our businesses can compete on all levels.”

“We are an innovative nation but we are falling behind in turning research into products,” said Mr. Beatty. “Support for clusters and late-stage venture capital are good elements that will help existing companies. We need concrete steps to make it easier for companies and individuals to transform ideas into commodities and services. In turn, these new businesses will support more high-tech jobs and foster further innovation. Canada needs to become an innovation leader to make sure new technologies and new jobs are created here, not in Silicon Valley.” “The U.S. government is moving quickly to attract new investment,” said Mr. Beatty. “Unless all levels of government work together to ensure Canada is a desirable place to invest and do business, we will see business and investment taking place across the border instead of here. This is not simply a federal issue, but an urgent national concern.”

ANSWERING THE CALLS TO ACTION A two-day training program that unites citizens through a common and shared understanding of the history and legacy of the residential school system and how it has impacted the Indigenous peoples of Saskatchewan. For more information, contact: SIIT’s Workforce Development Unit Tel: 306-477-9242 or



Great networking events from the Chamber The Chamber’s monthly free networking events, Chamber on Tap and Shaken with a Twist, as well as our health-industry focused H.O.T 4.16 are free for members to attend. Shaken with a Twist is the second Thursday of the month at Village Guitar and Amp, sponsored by Trusted Marketing Services and BDC, and co-presented by Women Entrepreneurs of Saskatchewan with food provided by PickNic’s Catering. Chamber on Tap is the first Wednesday of the month at our host location LB Distillers, and is sponsored by Aurora Workplace Solutions, Sutton Financial Group, and Edwards School of Business. Sound is provided by Soundlounge by tBone. H.O.T. 4.16, sponsored by Wiegers Financial & Benefits, explores what’s new and hot in the healthcare innovation and technology sector, and is hosted by our co-sponsor Rock Creek Stonebridge on the third Wednesday of the month. Join us for fun, networking and a great guest speaker at these Chamber events each month! Visit for information on all our upcoming events, or check us out on Facebook. “On Tap” and “Shaken with a Twist” photos are courtesy of Grant Romancia Photography.

Chamber on Tap: Clay Sparks, Breathe Cycle & Yoga Studio (left)

Shaken with a Twist: Katherine Regnier, Coconut Calendar (left)



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Board Elections

Meet the Candidates For the Greater Saskatoon Chamber of Commerce 2017-18 Board of Directors There are six positions up for election for the 2017/18 Board of Directors. Member representatives of the Chamber will have received an electronic ballot and voting information by email. Voting takes place during the month of April, and the winners sworn in at the AGM in May. If you have questions on the voting process, please contact Terry Lawrence at

Jason Aebig

Adam Porter

Creative Fire

IBM Canada


Current Chamber Involvement: Government Affairs Committee Current Roles in Other Organizations: Past Chair, United Way of Saskatoon and Area Strengths and Sector Knowledge I can Contribute: Communications and brand strategy; knowledge of Saskatchewan SME and corporate sectors; board governance; government relations. My Favourite Thing About Saskatoon is: Our city’s enterprising and community spirit. Few cities in Canada have the drive and ambition to take risks, try new things and punch above their weight. That’s Saskatoon’s brand and I’m proud to promote it. Why the Chamber Board? It would be a privilege to contribute to the growth of our city, and help position Saskatoon, our Chamber and local businesses as leaders in smart economic development.

Stacy Dybvig Managing Partner

ICR Commercial Real Estate

Current Chamber Involvement: Chamber Member Current Roles in Other Organizations: Board Member, Huskie Volleyball Club Strengths and Sector Knowledge I can Contribute: I have a very good handle on what is going on within Saskatoon with regard to business expansion or relocation and challenges they may face. My Favourite Thing About Saskatoon is: I was born and raised in Saskatoon and just love the city. It’s a great place to raise children. Why the Chamber Board? I will be able to provide up-to-date insight into the commercial Real Estate sector in Saskatoon which I hope will help grow this city in the right direction.

Usha Kapoor Controller

Park Town Enterprises Ltd.

Current Chamber Involvement: Chamber Member Current Roles in Other Organizations: Board Member, Saskatoon Open Door Society; and Nomination Committee, India Canada Cultural Organization. Strengths and Sector Knowledge I can Contribute: Financial, analytical and organizational skills. During my involvement with other boards in various capacities I have successfully applied my knowledge, financial, analytical and team building skills to have an effective board. Have a great interest in learning and providing a vibrant Saskatoon community that allows people to experience a positive life. Experience in dealing/handling with HR issues. My Favourite Thing About Saskatoon is: How warm and welcoming everyone is. Saskatoon is the perfect size with so much to do! The city and its economy are growing significantly which proves that Saskatoon is a great place to do business. Additionally, our diverse community, continual development and beautiful communities make Saskatoon my favourite city. Why the Chamber Board? I am excited for the opportunity to serve on the Chamber board, as it will enable me to contribute toward the growth and development of the business community in Saskatoon. As a business professional, I have a vast amount of experience within various industries that I look forward to contributing. I am a passionate individual and enjoy building collaborative relationships and advocating on key issues that will support business growth in our community. 20


Sr. Client Executive

Current Chamber Involvement: Chamber Member Current Roles in Other Organizations: Executive Committee, Kinsmen Club of Saskatoon POW City; and EKO Consultants Strengths and Sector Knowledge I can Contribute: Strong business acumen from co-founding multiple small businesses and owning/operating rental properties, combined with extensive technology experience. My Favourite Thing About Saskatoon is: The balance it allows between work and family life, while still providing opportunities for business and entrepreneurship. Why the Chamber Board? With a growing technology sector in Saskatoon, and a growing importance within many companies, I can bring my unique business and technology expertise to help serve the community. Using my strong work ethic, entrepreneurial spirt, and experience, I’d like to work with the Chamber to help to ensure future investment in our community.

Sandra Ribeiro Communications Advisor

Canadian Light Source

Current Chamber Involvement: Board of Directors and Business of Science & Technology Committee Current Roles in Other Organizations: Remai Modern Community Champions; Chair, Management Board,; Editorial Board, University of Saskatchewan “On Campus News”; Saskatoon Airport Community Consultative Committee Strengths and Sector Knowledge I can Contribute: Extensive knowledge of the local science, technology, education and innovation sectors. Expert communicator and marketer. International work experiences allow me to “translate” to potential investors the value of Saskatoon. My Favourite Thing About Saskatoon is: The wonderful quality of life we have, as exemplified by the great schools, growing small business sector, wide open spaces, and the short commute to work. Why the Chamber Board? I would like to contribute to our growing city. I believe I bring an interesting perspective and insight, having grown up and worked in other countries and cultures.

Chris Sicotte

Business Development Manager Indigenous Partnerships

Affinity Credit Union

Current Chamber Involvement: Board of Directors and First Nations & Métis Opportunities Committee Current Roles in Other Organizations: Board Chair, AFOA Canada; Board President, AFOA SK; Director, Provincial Métis Housing Corporation; Director, READ Saskatoon; Treasurer and Director, SFNFCI Strengths and Sector Knowledge I can Contribute: My main area of focus has been First Nations and Métis business and economic development. Extensive background in business plan analysis. My Favourite Thing About Saskatoon is: Our ability to engage with the Indigenous community to create business opportunities. Why the Chamber Board? I have been privileged to serve the board for the past two years. I look forward to continuing this work and advocating for Indigenous business.

Board Elections

Bert Sutherland Business Development Officer

Bridgepoint Business Brokers

Current Chamber Involvement: Co-chair, Agribusiness Opportunities Committee; Chair, First Nations and Métis Opportunities Committee; Business Growth Committee; Carbon yXe project Current Roles in Other Organizations: None Strengths and Sector Knowledge I can Contribute: I have previous board experience with the Saskatoon Prairieland Board of Directors. I have been a committee chair for more than 10 years. I understand how committees work as I have sat on several committees from time to time. I am connected to agriculture and have been for 40 years. My Favourite Thing About Saskatoon is: Sorry, I have several. The vibrant downtown core. The river area including Persephone Theatre and the Remai Art Gallery. The business attitude of Saskatoon businesses. The vast selection of available restaurants. Why the Chamber Board? I believe the heart and soul of the Greater Saskatoon Chamber of Commerce are the committees. “Before you can do, you must be.” The Chamber believes in Agriculture and indigenous interests and these are significant opportunities facing Saskatoon and Saskatchewan in the next 50 years. I have served these two committees. The Chamber is well led by engaged, helpful, and inspiring staff. I believe the Chamber cares about business development and are forward thinking about all issues affecting business. I share their vision and direction and want to be as involved and inspiring as I can be for our Greater Saskatoon businesses.

Trevor Thiessen President

Redekop Manufacturing

Current Chamber Involvement: Board of Directors and Brand Assessment Committee Current Roles in Other Organizations: Board Member, Innovation Saskatchewan; Board Chair, Ebenezer Baptist Church; Board Member, Brett Young Seeds Strengths and Sector Knowledge I can Contribute: Strategic Planning and Governance. My Favourite Thing About Saskatoon is: The creative spirit and energy of Saskatoon is inspiring. It is a great city to balance family and work. Why the Chamber Board? Saskatoon is a great city and has experienced a lot of change in the past decade. This change brings many challenges to all aspects of life in the city. Participating as a member of the Chamber Board is a chance for me to positively influence the direction and growth of Saskatoon.

Mike Wesolowski

President & CEO / Adjunct Professor

Luxsonic Technologies Incorporated / University of Saskatchewan

Current Chamber Involvement: Health Opportunities Committee and 20/20 Health Vision Conference Committee Current Roles in Other Organizations: Advisory Board, Med Hack Enterprises Inc.; COO and Board Member, Aura Technologies Inc.; Co-founder and Advisor to the current Executive Committee, Society of Postdoctoral Scholars at the U of S Strengths and Sector Knowledge I can Contribute: Scientific background in Health & Nanotechnology sectors. Experience bridging the gap from research to innovation to entrepreneurship. Effectively communicating with scientists, business professionals, and government officials. My Favourite Thing About Saskatoon is: After a bitter winter and a dreary spring, the city comes alive! From walking along the Meewasin Trail on a warm evening with my family, to exploring our cultural diversity at Folkfest, from discovering new artists at the Jazz Festival to enjoying a craft beer with friends on a patio under the sun, experiencing Saskatoon in the summer is my favourite thing. Why the Chamber Board? These are turbulent times for the province and city, however, misfortune can also lead to opportunity. There is a growing community of young innovators who want nothing more than to stay in Saskatoon to help ensure that our city has a prosperous future. As a Chamber board member I will actively work to ensure that they have the opportunity to do just that.

Colton Wiegers Business Development

Wiegers Financial & Benefits

Current Chamber Involvement: Business Growth Committee Current Roles in Other Organizations: None Strengths and Sector Knowledge I can Contribute: Owned a painting and renovation business for three years and have knowledge in trades sector. Background is finance and have current experience working in a corporation in the financial planning and insurance sector. Co-founder of U of S Junior Chamber of Commerce. My Favourite Thing About Saskatoon is: It has big city potential with a small town feel. You can hardly go to any event without seeing someone you know and I think this is what helps build a strong community. In Saskatoon you know your neighbours, business community, and competitors on a first name basis. People truly treat the city as a shared community and work to reach goals together. Why the Chamber Board? The Saskatoon Chamber is where I got my start into the business community. When we approached them as students they welcomed us with open arms and every member of the board went out of their way to introduce themselves and make us feel welcome. I still see a disconnect between colleagues of mine and the business community and I’m hoping to bridge that gap.

Chris Woodland Partner

MLT Aikins LLP

Current Chamber Involvement: Board of Directors; Audit & Finance Committee; Human Resources & Compensation Committee Current Roles in Other Organizations: None Strengths and Sector Knowledge I can Contribute: As a business & technology lawyer, I am involved daily in addressing the needs of the local business community in a variety of industry sectors. My practice serves local, national and international clients which provides a broad perspective to the Chamber Board. As one of the few Saskatchewan lawyers with a niche practice in Intellectual Property and Information Technology law, I have a unique lens with which to contribute to discussions relevant to the knowledge economy. My Favourite Thing About Saskatoon is: The people. Saskatoon and area residents are humble, honest hardworking folks with an enterprising and entrepreneurial spirit. The highest achievers don't put on airs, they treat others with dignity and respect. The people give back – time or money or both - to the community. That's the kind of place where I want my kids to get their start in life. No matter where they may end up, they will forever take with them that sense of being a part of a caring, volunteer-oriented, grounded community. Why the Chamber Board? The Chamber is a strong advocate for Saskatoon and area business. It is a respected, and respectful, voice at City Hall and in the Provincial legislature. The Chamber facilitates the networking of business owners and other like-minded people in a number of industry segments that are important to the local economy. A robust economy helps us afford to provide opportunities for everyone in our community.


MEMBERSHIP & ANNOUNCEMENTS COMMITTEE CHAIRS Agribusiness Opportunities Bert Sutherland - Bridgepoint Business Brokers

Loran Forer - BMO Business Growth Mark Zielke - Business of Science & Technology Bill Lewis - Engineering for Kids Sandra Ribeiro - Canadian Light Source Chamber on Tap Evan Drisner - Nu-Fab Building Products First Nations and Métis Opportunities Committee

Bert Sutherland - Bridgepoint Business Brokers

Future Opportunities Committee

Bill Brooks - Eclecthink International Going Global Ken Ziegler - Robertson Stromberg LLP Monica Kreuger - Global Infobrokers Government Affairs Michael Chudoba - Foundation Realty Ltd

Health Opportunities Sanj Singh - Lighthouse Management Inc. SABEX Awards Jess Tetu - Just For You Day Spa Shaken with a Twist Shawna Nelson - Sheraton Cavalier Sustainability Opportunities Colleen Yates - Equinox3 Consulting Ltd.

To get involved or to join a volunteer committee email us for more information at:

360 Painting Saskatoon is a local residential and commercial painting company located in Saskatoon since May of 2015. 360 Painting Saskatoon completes both interior and exterior paint jobs with professional painters who have years of painting experience. 360 Painting is actually an international franchise with multiple locations across Canada and the United States, but the local franchise owners Terry and Marie Wuschenny were both born and raised in Saskatchewan. 360 Painting is fully insured, including General Liability Insurance as well as Worker's Compensation coverage. Lastly, they also provide a two year warranty on our work, which is even transferable, if you decide to sell the property in the two years. Free estimates are provided, and 360 Painting prides themselves on providing high quality paint jobs and great customer experiences. They would love the chance to earn your business. Visit for information.

Expansion Announcement: Travis Kellett expands his business with Bridgepoint Business Builders. Bridgepoint is well known for brokering the sale of businesses in the Saskatoon area and throughout Saskatchewan. This past BROKERS year Bridgepoint hired Bert Sutherland, well known as a chamber volunteer, to assist him in identifying businesses that need help or people who want to increase the value of their business. Sutherland has sales and marketing experience in areas of retail and manufacturing. Bert’s marketing background found opportunities for Bridgepoint with various companies, helping them in developing their businesses. He recently attended training with Value Building Systems and became certified to offer assessments and value building engagements. This, offered with Bridgepoint’s own Bert Sutherland Market Value Assessment and a systematic selling approach proves to be a winning solution for Saskatoon and Saskatchewan businesses. Value Builder Systems, based in Toronto, is known throughout North America for working with companies to improve themselves so that they will maximize their value at the time of their business’ sale. They have an organized and purposeful structure for the interrelated and interdependent components of the eight attributes or drivers of a company’s value. The system maps out the directions and vehicles utilized to achieve premium value for businesses. Please join us in congratulating Travis and Bert on their new business venture, Bridgepoint Business Builders.

Small Business Owner? The Saskatoon Chamber of Commerce represents over 2000 business owners & individuals in our community, most of which are small businesses. Members get benefits like networking, learning, & advertising opportunities and special discounts on business services like group health insurance, and credit/debit processing.

See how Chamber membership can benefit your small business. 306-244-2151



For membership information contact Derek Crang (306) 664-0702 Visit today

360° Painting Saskatoon Home Builders / Renovations AND Interior Design / Decorators PO Box 33066 RPO Confed Park, Saskatoon Phone: (306) 270-6701 Carly Wuschenny 617311 Saskatchewan Ltd. Home-Based Business Phone: (306) 934-6844 Lynn Hudson Agroglobe Traders Limited Agricultural AND Import / Export 2366 Avenue C N, Saskatoon Phone: (306) 880-1504 Prudhvi Kolla Braschuk Oilfield Consultants Phone: (403) 318-9497 Paul Braschuk Breathe Cycle & Yoga Studio Health & Fitness 140-1804 McOrmond Dr, Saskatoon Phone: (306) 974-2220 Clay Sparks Creeway Gas East Service Stations / Service Station Equipment 343 Packham Ave, Saskatoon Phone: (306) 955-8873 Geoff Schmidt Creeway Gas West Service Stations / Service Station Equipment 2511 22nd St W, Saskatoon Phone: (306) 975-0125 Anneli Greyes / Geoff Schmidt

Welcome New Members

Derrick Stretch Realty Inc. Real Estate - Residential 3032 Louise St, Saskatoon Phone: (306) 373-7520 Derrick Stretch

Morgan Palmer Search Directives Inc. Employment Agencies Phone: (306) 529-0988 Doug Wallace

DR Bookkeeping Services Accountants / Bookkeepers 276-8B 3110 8th St E, Saskatoon Phone: (306) 381-8636 DeAnne Robblee

MOTIF Marketing Ltd. Marketing / Market Research 3328 Ortona St, Saskatoon Phone: (306) 241-4402 Joel Antumniuk

EncoreFX Financial Services / Planning 900-410 22nd St E, Saskatoon Phone: (306) 986-0479 Deanna Williams Frayling Denture Clinic Health Care - Services / Supplies 35-102 Hampton Circle, Saskatoon Phone: (306) 382-7767 Brian Frayling Jeremy Wiebe Mudding Construction AND HomeBased Business Phone: (306) 717-2536 Jeremy Wiebe Living Sky Marketing Marketing / Market Research AND Home-Based Business Phone: (306) 251-0315 Bob Kerr Luxsonic Technologies Inc. Health Care - Services / Supplies 411E Herold Crt, Saskatoon Phone: (306) 880-7297 Mike Wesolowski

Real Canadian Property Management Professionals Inc. Property Management 3335D Wells Ave, Saskatoon Phone: (306) 244-7276 Carla Browne Reds Liquor & Beer Inc. Distributors AND Retail 130-103 Marquis Crt, Saskatoon Phone: (306) 241-1544 Tony Dewji Saskatoon Ultimate DiscSport Society Non-Profit Organizations 218-220 20th St W, Saskatoon Phone: (306) 291-9882 Aaron Chubb Susan Walker Realty PC Real Estate - Residential 258 Meglund Cres, Saskatoon Phone: (306) 230-8703 Susan Walker

BUSINESS VIEW SASKATOON APRIL/MAY 2017 23 | (306) 933-2727

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Profile for Greater Saskatoon Chamber of Commerce

BusinessView Saskatoon April/May 2017  

Publication of the Greater Saskatoon Chamber of Commerce. Cover story: Murad Al-Katib becomes first Canadian to win the Oslo Business for Pe...

BusinessView Saskatoon April/May 2017  

Publication of the Greater Saskatoon Chamber of Commerce. Cover story: Murad Al-Katib becomes first Canadian to win the Oslo Business for Pe...

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