Recent Posts on BCBusiness - Page 7
The war of words about the Canadian economy masks a much bigger problem. We're all about yesterday or today, and seem to be incapable of looking ahead to the future. It’s been interesting to watch the current Canadian economic debate between the East and the West. Interesting because it’s very close to déjà vu all over again. We had a similar debate 30 years ago, and it was only “resolved” by a Pierre Trudeau government’s National Energy Policy.
Create repeat business by offering easy-to-use tools One-offs, or single projects, are the bane of every service business. While they are often the mainstay of the business, they also mean irregular use of resources and unpredictable income flows. At some point in its life, every service business plagued by the one-off blues starts looking for a way to stabilize its client list and earn recurring revenue. The Problem
Why all the moaning about the effects of the boomer retirement wave? Most of them will continue working, but in different roles. I find it interesting that most of the coverage of the latest data from the 2011 census focuses on how Canada is going to cope with the grey wave.
Let's hope a visit by a delegation from the tiny European duchy of Luxembourg sparks some creative and innovative thinking in B.C. A couple of weeks ago, a delegation from the Grand Duchy of Luxembourg visited Vancouver to generate some interest for its newest industry. I know, I know: Luxembourg? A duchy (the only one in the world) that's approximately the size of a Vancouver suburb?
The government ordered the utilities commission to agree with BC Hydro's reduced rate increases, but that's nothing new. When it comes to increasing utility rates, it's been a longstanding practice in B.C. for government to interfere. I admit to being more than a little amused at the squealing going on over the Liberal government’s interference in BC Hydro’s rate setting. It was so predictable.
A recent study out of Ottawa insists that the federal government gave Canada's biggest banks a "secret bailout" during the financial crisis of 2008-2009. Not quite, says the government: It was just a loan to create "liquidity support." Much after the fact comes support for the theory that Canadian banks didn’t exactly escape the “financial crash” of 2008 that drove the U.S. and Europe into recessions that they’re still climbing out of.
The Canada Pension Plan fund is one of the world's best investors, showing sterling returns in the worst decade for investing we've seen in the past 200 years. But nobody outside the investing community seems to know about it. If you’re worried about your government pension in the future, don’t be. The Canada Pension Plan is doing very well, thank you. And it will continue to do so for the next 60 years or so.
Skyrocketing real estate prices have reached their inevitable conclusion, apparently stopping the real estate frenzy of recent years. This year so far, house prices have fallen by some 20 per cent in the Vancouver region. It's about time. All those taking part in Vancouver’s favourite investing game – real estate – may want to consider another pursuit. Meanwhile, those who were shut out of the market because of absurd prices may be getting some relief, albeit still minor.
Digital effects are the new star in Vancouver's creative sector. But before we shower too much love on digital special effects, we might want to look at what's happened to some of the other creative industries here. It looks like the creative industry has found a new star. By that, I mean Vancouver’s rising new “star” on the global stage – its digital media sector – which was touted by Vancouver Mayor Gregor Robertson in a recent Vancouver Sun story.
Successful growth depends on maintaining the agility of a startup. When new businesses change direction to find better markets or other revenue-generating opportunities, it is usually referred to as a “pivot.” However, as business conditions change ever more rapidly, larger and established businesses are also continuously pivoting to take advantage of changing market conditions and business landscapes. Tio Networks Corp., a North Vancouver company that has been operating for almost 15 years, has pivoted several times.
The City of Vancouver (and related municipalities) should fast-track their trimming of bylaws that prevent urban farming. It's an innovative industry whose time has come. It seems the City of Vancouver is going to take a scythe to the tangle of laws that prevent urban farming businesses within the city boundaries. Finally.