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November 2017

In this issue

Nov 22, 2017
Robo Crop: Seven B.C. companies pushing the boundaries of robotics
Scott Neufeld

Robots are on the move in B.C., if you know where to look. A mix of established veterans and promising startups, the province’s robotics companies are doing everything from delving into undersea exploration to teaching machines how to think like people. Some have become acquisition targets, a trend highlighted by camera maker Point Grey Research, a leader in machine vision...

Nov 21, 2017
Some Icelanders cool to a local hydro project backed by Ross Beaty’s Alterra Power
Scott Neufeld

There are few places more remote than Árneshrep­­pur. Nestled in Iceland’s Westfjords region, encircled by mountain peaks that undulate like the ocean below, it’s the nation’s least-populated county, with just 30 year-round residents. Árneshreppur is facing extinction. Weak transportation links, an unreliable power grid and an economy based on small-scale fishing and agriculture have triggered an exodus of young people.

Nov 16, 2017
Leadership: BMO’s Mike Bonner nurtures a new generation of leaders with a mix of drive and empathy
Scott Neufeld

In business, the person leading at any given point isn’t necessarily the one with the title and the corner office, says Mike Bonner, senior vice-president at BMO Financial Group, who heads the bank’s B.C. and Yukon division.“Leadership has nothing to do with the business card; it has nothing to do with your position,” Bonner contends. “I don’t think you have...

Nov 16, 2017
Leadership: Copperleaf CEO Judi Hess promotes women in tech
Felicity Stone

Judi Hess supports affirmative action. Since becoming CEO in 2009 of Vancouver-based Copperleaf Technologies Inc., she has increased the number of female employees from roughly 10 per cent to about a third. Over that period, the company’s total staff rose from 29 to more than 120. “I think it’s a big deal,” says Hess, who is slender, with a mane...

Nov 15, 2017
Leadership: BCLC boss Jim Lightbody is on his game
Nick Rockel

At age nine, Jim Lightbody found himself thrust into a leadership role. In his native Victoria, Lightbody belonged to a talented soccer team, some of whose members went on to play in the National Hockey League (ex–Vancouver Canuck Geoff Courtnall) and represent Canada in soccer and rugby. The squad had no permanent captain, and they never lost a game—until one...

Nov 14, 2017
Leadership: Shoulder to shoulder, Lyndon and Jamie Cormack lead global phenomenon Herschel Supply
Nick Rockel

So, this is where my kids’ backpacks got their start. At Herschel Supply Co. headquarters in East Vancouver’s rough-hewn Railtown neighbourhood, the atmosphere on a sunny August morning is brisk. About 130 of the company’s 170 employees work here, alongside founders Lyndon and Jamie Cormack, who are chatting with staff. The ground floor of the 28,500-square-foot digs is open space...

Nov 9, 2017
Numerology: Artisanal markets in B.C. kick off the gift-buying season
Melissa Edwards

As the gift-buying season approaches, that’s about how many craft markets will set up across the province to help local potters, carvers, glass blowers, jewelry makers and other artisans get their wares into holiday shoppers’ hands. Indie fairs are growing fast, and convention-centre events draw visitors by the tens of thousands, but they alone can’t support an artisan industry facing...

Nov 8, 2017
A conversation with Mining Association of BC president and CEO Bryan Cox
Nick Rockel

You might think the mining sector and the beer business have little in common. Bryan Cox knows different: both are technical, highly regulated and people-driven industries, says the president and CEO of the Mining Association of BC (MABC), who led public affairs for Western Canada at Molson Coors Canada before joining the provincial advocacy group in 2014.Alberta native Cox, who...

Nov 3, 2017
How will business fare with the NDP back at the helm?
Richard Littlemore

They’re back.The dreaded New Democrats, who former premier Christy Clark warned would ransack the provincial treasury and crash the economy, have seized the reins of government, with an electoral minority and the support of a perhaps more frightening Green Party, led by climate Cassandra (and Nobel Peace Prize–winning scientist) Andrew Weaver. After several months of NDP rule, it’s amazing that...

Nov 1, 2017
New and Improved: The latest developments in the world of lifestyle, from hotels to eyewear (and more!)
Felicity Stone

SEE/ Founded by Vancouver optometrist Harbir Sian, online retailer Kingsley Eyewear sells a range of eyeglasses with handmade Italian acetate frames. For every pair purchased, a person in need receives a full eye exam and a pair of glasses through Optometry Giving Sight. STAY/ This month, Marriott International Inc. expects to open its Civic Hotel at Surrey City Centre. The Autograph Collection...

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