What will it take to reach BC’s cleantech potential? Four diverse perspectives at BC Middle Market Growth Conference

Does BC’s future include realizing our cleantech potential?

Cleantech has become one of the fastest-growing segments of our economy. The innovation happening in BC is leading us toward a more sustainable economy and has become a major driver of growth.

The transition to a low carbon economy is just beginning. The shift represents enormous potential and also raises the question of whether BC has the right environment for continued growth.

At BC Middle Market Growth Conference on April 9, we’re bringing together diverse perspectives on BC’s cleantech industry in a discussion moderated by Paul Austin of Fort Capital Partners. Our panelists represent government, academia, private business and the financing side of the business — all of them playing a unique role in shaping the industry’s future.

We asked our panelists: What does BC’s cleantech future look like?

“BC continues to be a leader in cleantech and we have the opportunity to expand this. We’ve found that BC has a supportive government, great talent, good infrastructure and an international reputation as a desirable place to work. Cleantech is going to be one of the most important industries of the future – let’s build it here.”
– Steve Oldham, CEO, Carbon Engineering

“BC has real economic opportunities in new clean technology companies that are capable of transforming the province’s traditional industrial sectors. Positioning these sectors for growth is a multi-trillion-dollar opportunity in the next decade that will create new wealth, jobs and prosperity. Chrysalix will help BC lead the way through our support for homegrown companies and other new investments in resource productivity, while attracting more large industrial companies to invest here.”
– Wal Van Lierop, Executive Chairman, Chrysalix Venture Capital

“A vibrant cluster working at home to enable BC to meet its commitments to reduce emissions and working internationally to deploy cutting-edge technologies that move the world to less carbon-intensive energy use.”
– Stephen Brydon, BC Innovative Clean Energy (ICE) Fund

“BC is already recognized as a global thought leader and start-up generator in the emerging cleantech sector. The potential for economic growth – particularly the latent potential represented by our university investors – is substantial.”
– Elicia Maine, Professor, SFU’s Beedie School of Business

More about our cleantech panelists:   

Steve Oldham, CEO of Carbon Engineering

Steve Oldham has led Carbon Engineering (CE) since February 2018 as Chief Executive Officer. Steve brings an impressive track-record of technology commercialization to CE, with previous positions in technology, robotics, and aerospace sectors, and a succession of executive positions at MacDonald Dettwiler & Associates (MDA) in Vancouver, BC. He has played a lead role in a number of ‘Canada firsts’ in technology commercialization, including the first robot performing brain surgery, the first commercial radar satellite, robots that clean the inside of nuclear reactors, and satellites that service and repair other satellites.

Wal Van Lierop, Executive Chairman, Chrysalix Venture Capital

Wal is an award-winning business leader and visionary in innovation, sustainability and cleantech, with unique industry insights gained through his experience as a venture capitalist, corporate executive, international consultant and university professor. Wal founded Crysalix Venture Capital, a private equity firm focused on industrial innovation, where he helped raise more than $250M and participated in more than $1B in venture capital financings. He has sourced, invested in and advised numerous startups, assisting them in building breakthrough solutions for the new world economy while working hand-in-hand with large multinational companies on their innovation strategies. Wal is a member of the Board of Directors at Chrysalix portfolio companies General Fusion, Inventys and Axine Water Technologies. He is a founder of New Ventures BC, a founding member of the BC CEO Alliance and Evok Innovations, Advisory Board member of the Cleantech Group and judge of the Cleantech 100. He has been an adjunct professor at both SFU and UBC’s Sauder School of Business, and frequently speaks at industry events.

Stephen Brydon, Director, BC Innovative Clean Energy (ICE) Fund

Stephen Brydon is a Director of the Innovative Clean Energy (ICE) Fund, BC Ministry of Energy, Mines and Petroleum Resources. The ICE Fund is a Special Account, funded through a levy on certain energy sales, designed to support the Province’s energy, economic, environmental and greenhouse gas reduction priorities, and to advance BC’s clean energy sector. Stephen joined the Ministry in 2016 from BC Transit where he was Manager, Environment & Climate Action responsible for environmental risk management and compliance. Stephen has worked in the BC Public Service in a number of provincial government ministries and crown agencies (including BC Hydro) with a focus on clean energy innovation and economic development; and began his career in the UK civil service, working in regional trade and investment promotion, including postings in Hong Kong and Europe.

Elicia Maine, Professor, SFU’s Beedie School ofBusiness

Specializing in technological innovation and science entrepreneurship, Professor Elicia Maine uses her expertise to guide innovation policy and commercialization strategy and to mentor emerging innovators. Founder and Academic Director of Invention to Innovation (i2l), a novel graduate program in Science & Technology Commercialization, Prof. Maine has been awarded the TD / Canada Trust Distinguished Teaching Award and was a finalist of BC TECH’s “Person of the Year” award. She holds a PhD in Technology Management & Materials Engineering from Cambridge University and Master’s degrees in Technology & Policy Materials Engineering from MIT. She teaches “Managing Technological Innovation” and “Lab to Market” at SFU’s Beedie School of Business and has published research on innovation management. She is active as a keynote speaker, judge, and advisor for conferences, competitions, and ventures enabling cleantech innovation and health innovation. She serves on the Board of Directors of the Foresight Cleantech Accelerator and of New Ventures BC.

Keynote Nancy MacKay tells Business in Vancouver about today’s biggest leadership challenge

In today’s world, we’re all struggling to process an increasingly-high volume of content that’s coming at us very quickly. According to Dr. Nancy MacKay, this year’s BC Middle Market Growth Conference keynote, this proliferation of content puts more demands on our time and requires a faster decision-making process.

In a recent interview with Business in Vancouver, MacKay said: “Time mastery is a fundamental leadership skill in today’s world of exponential change.” She adds that most business leaders and owners don’t have the much-needed time management skills – a challenge that can often get in the way of their success.

On April 9, at the BC Middle Market Growth Conference, Dr. Nancy MacKay will share the tools and techniques of time mastery and why it’s key to effective and inspiring leadership. You can get a preview of her upcoming session in this month’s Business in Vancouver.

Last week for early-bird pricing. Register before Friday March 15.

Click here to register.

About Dr. Nancy MacKay

Nancy is a CEO coach, dynamic keynote speaker, published author and former university professor. She founded MacKay CEO Forums – a high-impact, intensive peer group for more than 1,000 CEOs, executives and business owners across Canada. She’s also host of The CEO EDGE podcast and co-author of The Talent Advantage. Nancy holds a B. Math and a Master’s degree in Management Sciences from the University of Waterloo, as well as a Ph.D. in Business from Canterbury University in New Zealand.

Fueling BC’s tech engine: what industry leaders are saying

Technology in BC is more than an industry – it’s become a vital engine for growth, fuelling other industries and providing a key source of innovation, GDP, job growth and economic diversity. However, this strong performance may have created a false sense that improvements aren’t necessary for the industry’s continued growth.

The BC Tech Association just released its latest policy recommendations for addressing the industry’s top challenges and realizing its potential.

“BC has an estimated $25 billion opportunity, if we can address the struggles companies are having when it comes to recruiting talent and bringing their businesses to scale,” said Jill Tipping, President and CEO of BC Tech Association. “In other words, the future of technology in BC is limitless, but only if we stop limiting it.”

Join us at the BC Middle Market Growth Conference on Tuesday, April 9 as we talk about the future of tech in BC and how to fuel the growth engine. Hear from our panel of industry leaders on how we can shape BC’s tech future with new tools, tactics and ideas, in a discussion moderated by BC Tech Association President & CEO, Jill Tipping. Register now by visiting our website.

Our BC tech panel:

Moderator: Jill Tipping, BC Tech President & CEO
Jill is President and CEO of BC Tech, a non-profit dedicated to making BC the best place to grow and scale a tech company. Previously, Jill was VP Operations and CFO with Schneider Electric Solar and started her career as a director in Deloitte’s telecoms, technology and media group in the UK. Jill holds an MA in Economic History from St. Andrews University and an MSc in Management from Stanford. She is a member of the Board of Directors of the Vancouver Economic Commission, the Digital Technology Supercluster, the Emerging Economy Task Force and the Vancouver Symphony Orchestra.

Matt Switzer, Partner, Northwest Capital Partners
Matt has 16 years’ experience buying and building companies. He helped grow software company, Hootsuite, from 30 people to more than 1,000 and was an early employee at Workbrain, which grew to 700 people and IPO’d in 2003. During his career, Matt has led successful acquisitions of 10 companies and participated in over $5Bn worth of M&A as an investment banker at Merrill Lynch. He holds a BSc. from Western University and an MBA from University of Toronto’s Rotman School of Management and was named one of Canada’s Top 40 Under 40 in 2017. He currently runs Northwest Capital Partners, which he’s focused on acquiring and growing BC-based businesses.

Francis Steiner, Director, Hatch, UBC
Francis manages HATCH, UBC’s Accelerator program, which provides early-stage companies with business advice to accelerate their growth. Francis has worked for Deloitte’s Strategy arm in London and PWC, where he led various due diligence projects. Since 2002, Francis has been Principal at Godfrey, Graseby and Reeves, launching four different start-ups. In 2007, he arrived in Vancouver, where he took on a consulting role at KPMG and became Director of Strategy, Analytics and Implementation at 1-800-GOT-JUNK?

Kristine Steuart, Co-Founder, Allocadia
Kristine and her twin sister Katherine Berry co-founded Allocadia in 2010, after experiencing first-hand the difficulty in gaining insight into marketing investments and measuring performance. Kristine has led Allocadia from a bootstrapped start-up with a handful of customers, to a global organization with hundreds of enterprise customers worldwide and partnerships with marketing cloud leaders like Oracle, IBM and Marketo. Kristine was named among the Top Forty Under 40 in Business in Vancouver, The Top 10 Women in Tech to Watch in 2015 by inc. magazine, and one of BC’s top 35 Most influential Women in Business.

Tech by the numbers:
BC has more than 10,600 tech companies employing more than 106,000 peopleThe province also employs another 50,000 tech workers in non-tech companiesAn estimated 40 percent of downtown Vancouver’s commercial real estate is occupied by high-tech business and workersData provided by BC Tech Association

What does BC’s future look like?

What does BC’s future look like?

Find out at the 2019 BC Middle Market Growth Conference!

Save the date for the 2019 BC Middle Market Growth Conference

Monday, April 8: President’s Reception (Sponsored by Blakes) – 6 p.m. to 9 p.m. (location to be announced)

Tuesday, April 9: BC Middle Market Growth Conference  – 7 a.m. to 5 p.m at the Fairmont Waterfront Hotel.

Tickets on sale now! Click here to register – Earlybird rates apply until March 15

Get the scoop on what’s happening at this year’s event from BC Middle Market Growth Conference Co-Chairs Aleem Jinnah and Arik Broadbent.

What’s new at the 2019 BC Middle Market Growth Conference?

Arik: This year we’re focusing on the future of BC’s economy. Our province’s economic drivers are shifting, with traditional resource-based industries making way for increasingly diverse segments like technology, cannabis, cleantech and new models of real estate. Understanding the future drivers of growth in an increasingly diverse marketplace is essential for middle market entrepreneurs and professionals.

Aleem: Agreed. A lot of people think we’re at the top of a cycle. So, we thought it was important to centre our discussions around what’s on the horizon, in terms of both risks and opportunities. That’s how we chose our themeThe Future of Business in BC.

What’s on this year’s agenda?

Arik: We’re finalizing our full lineup of expert speakers and panels moderated by some well-known industry leaders. We’ll be announcing those details soon, so stay tuned – and make sure to register before March 15 to secure the earlybird rate.

Aleem: Our survey from last year’s event told us that diverse speakers, panel variety and networking are the most valuable aspects of this event. So, this year, attendees will be getting more of what they want, with a focus on helping them stay a step ahead. 

What makes this event stand out?

Arik: The fact that our participants return every year and tell us its the best event for making valuable connections with the broader deal-making community.

Aleem: And we’ve got a really unique format, where attendees aren’t just sitting through sessions. The day is broken up with networking and our trade show that’s become very popular over the years.

Aleem Jinnah, Co-Chair – BCMMGC2019

Aleem Jinnah is an Investment Banker with Fort Capital Partners focusing on mergers & acquisitions, divestitures and capital raising for both public and private companies in Canada. Aleem is also a Director of the Association for Corporate Growth BC.

Arik Broadbent, Co-Chair – BCMMGC2019

Arik Broadbent is a corporate lawyer at Farris Vaughan & Murphy LLP, who advises business owners and executives of companies of all sizes and stages (private and public). His primary areas of practice are: corporate finance (debt and equity), securities compliance, corporate governance and mergers and acquisitions (domestic and cross border).

Showcase your brand at our biggest event of the year

ACG BC is excited to welcome back Nicola Wealth Management as our Official Event Sponsor. For details on sponsorship levels and opportunities, contact Sherryl Parsons.

About BC Middle Market Growth Conference

Now in its 18th year, the BC Middle Market Growth Conference has become the leading M&A Conference in Western Canada, with close to 350 attendees, a popular exhibitor trade show and valuable networking opportunities.

What’s the key to investing in an age of disruption?

Investing in an age of disruption

Client demands are changing fast. In the quest for better returns, today’s mainstream institutional and high-net-worth clients are interested in exploring the alternative marketplace through hedge funds and private equity. On the other side of the business, asset managers are being forced to reassess virtually every aspect of their business, from fees and operating models to diversifying the products in their portfolios. Expanded offerings include a wider asset class – ETFs, long/short strategies and private equity.

Investing in an age of disruption requires unprecedented flexibility; being nimble enough to capitalize on opportunity as the landscape shifts. To achieve this, firms are relying on emerging technology to allow them to pivot and adapt quickly. They’re finding effective ways to apply big data analytics and artificial intelligence to stay ahead of the curve and generate returns.

On April 10 at the BC Middle Market Growth Conference, we’ll be talking strategies for investing in the age of disruption during our highly-anticipated panel moderated by David Sung, President of Nicola Wealth Management.  Meet our esteemed panelists below:



Dave Barr, President, CEO and Portfolio Manager, PenderFund Capital Management

Dave began his investing career in 2000. He initially worked in private equity, which gave him a unique background for investing capital. At the end of 2007, he became a partner at PenderFund Capital Management Ltd., and was appointed Chief Investment Officer with the objective of launching Pender’s mutual fund business. In April 2016, Dave was appointed President and CEO of Pender. The Pender Small Cap Opportunities Fund, managed by Dave, has won a Lipper Fund Award for Best Canadian Small/Mid Cap Fund over both three and five year performance periods for the last three consecutive years. The Pender Small Cap Opportunities Fund has also received Fundata’s FundGrade® A+ Award for the last six consecutive years. Dave holds a Bachelor of Science degree from the University of British Columbia and an MBA from the Schulich School of Business. He earned his Chartered Financial Analyst (CFA) designation in 2003 and is an active member of the Vancouver chapter. He is a past President of CFA Vancouver, having also served on its Board of Directors for four years.

Chad Danard, Managing Director, TriWest Capital Partners

Prior to joining TriWest in 2005, Chad worked at Morgan Stanley in the Global Energy and Utility Group in New York and in the Canada Group in Toronto. While at Morgan Stanley, he was involved in a variety of M&A-related strategic advisory assignments, equity offerings and both private and public debt financings. Chad also spent time in India, where he co-managed the day-to-day operations for the investment banking division of Morgan Stanley Advantage Services. Chad currently serves as a board member for the Calgary Chapter of the Association for Corporate Growth. He holds a Bachelor of Commerce degree (finance concentration) from the Queen’s School of Business, where he graduated at the top of his class.

Francis D’Andrade, Vice President, Private Client Services & Associate Portfolio Manager, Forstrong

Francis D’Andrade joined Forstrong Global in 2013 as Vice President, Private Client Services and brings almost 30 years financial services experience to his role. Prior to joining Forstrong Francis owned Financial Outcomes, an investment services consultancy that specialized in the delivery and distribution of financial products and services. Previously, he owned and operated a financial planning boutique in Markham Ontario that integrated investment and insurance solutions for business owners, executives and professionals. Francis was responsible for many industry innovations during his 15 years at Altamira Investment Services, where he was a Vice President and Managing Director, Sales, Marketing and Distribution.

Only a few days left until BC Middle Market Growth Conference!

This event will be sold out. Some tickets are still available by clicking here.

We look forward to seeing you there!

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