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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!

Disruptive trends are sweeping B.C.’s advisory space

Disruption hasn’t spared the advisory space. In fact, today’s advisors are tasked with guiding a new type of client armed with tools and technology that are putting them much more in tune with the business. On April 10, at our BC Middle Market Growth Conference, we’re re-examining the rapidly-changing advisory landscape and the major trends we see unfolding:

  • Georgraphy no longer matters. Buyers and sellers are finding one another in new ways – including online data rooms – to share valuable trade information, making them a much savvier and more connected group.
  • A boom for boutiques. B.C. is seeing a growth of specialized firms focusing on niche industry sectors, giving larger, full-service firms a run for their money.
  • The business lifecycle, disrupted. New products are changing the way deals get done. Representation and Warranty insurance is one example of a game-changing tool that advisors are focusing on to stay competitive.
  • Disruptive technology is changing the way advisors approach solutions for clients. Artificial intelligence is going as far as replacing some advisory functions.
  • A personalized approach wins. Despite technology advancements, when the stakes are high and a transaction is completed, clients still feel more at ease dealing with a human face. This means a personalized approach and high level of customer service are still required to win opportunities.
    Meet our esteemed panel of advisors that will be talking about what’s changing for good, and what values remain the same.


Angus Reid, Commercial Risk Advisor with Reliance Insurance

Angus and his team help companies take control and manage their overall cost of risk. Protecting long-term value of a company’s brand, assets, profits and people is Reliance’s primary objective. They accomplish this by delivering custom insurance solution, results-based risk management planning, claims advocacy and M&A due diligence services.

David Merner, Executive Director, Innovation at The Ministry of Attorney General

David has led disruptive changes to BC’s justice system over the past decade, including BC’s Civil Resolution Tribunal, Family Justice Solution Explorer, and Tribunal Transformation Initiative. Prior to his call to the British Columbia bar in 1990 and the Ontario Bar in 1991, David completed degrees at Harvard, the University of Alberta, Oxford, and the University of Toronto.


Brian Gilbreath, Vice President of Sales, Merrill Corporation
Brian is a Vice President of Sales for DataSite’s Western region and has held a number of senior roles at Merrill Corporation since 2012. His previous experience includes positions with PostX, Intel and the National Security Agency. He holds a Masters of Science in Business from Johns Hopkins University.



The discussion will be moderated by Leo Wilson, Senior Vice President, KPMG Corporate Finance Inc. Leo provides acquisition, divestiture, capital raising and strategic advisory services to mid-market private companies.




Less than two weeks remain until BC Middle Market Growth Conference, ACG’s biggest event of the year. Get your tickets this week while they’re still available by clicking here.

What’s the difference between innovation and disruption?

This week’s Business in Vancouver features the Association for Corporate Growth and our upcoming BC Middle Market Growth Conference.

Conference Chair Aleem Jinnah tells BIV, “We wanted to tackle the theme of disruption at this year’s event because there is so much happening here in B.C. – technologies and ideas being developed locally that are affecting change globally.”

The article also features Matt Switzer of Hootsuite and Northwest Capital Partners, and Penny Green of Glance Technologies – both of whom will be panelists in our afternoon plenary discussion on disruptive B.C. businesses and their global impact.

Read Business in Vancouver article here.

See below for more information on the BC Middle Market Growth Conference on April 10 and our local disruptors panel.

Matt Switzer, Chief Operating Officer, Hootsuite

Matt has spent his career starting and growing companies as an investor, advisor and executive. Matt is currently Interim COO at Hootsuite, where he leads strategy, partnerships, financings, M&A and innovation. Matt has helped build Hootsuite from 30 to more than 1,000 employees, raised more than $200M, acquired 10 companies and built the market-leading social relationship platform.

Matt formerly worked in Venture Capital, advising & investing in early-stage starups with a focus on technology and telecommunications. Recently, he co-founded Northwest Capital Partners – a fund looking to acquire operating businesses in B.C. – and was named one of Canada’s Top 40 under 40.

Penny Green, Co-Founder and Director, Glance Technologies

Penny Green is a serial entrepreneur with more than two decades of experience building successful companies. Penny has been instrumental in building Glance to a valuation in excess of $240 million and Glance is recognized as the #5 top valued company on the CSE25Index.
Penny has been named on PROFIT Magazine’s W100 list of top Canadian female entrepreneurs and was one of five national finalists for the 2012 Royal Bank of Canada Award for Excellence in Entrepreneurship. Under her leadership as CEO, her firm Bacchus Law Corporation was included in the PROFIT 500 Fastest Growing companies two years in a row.

Tony Guglielmin, Chief Financial Officer, Ballard Power Systems

Tony Guglielmin joined Ballard as Vice President and Chief Operating Officer in June 2010. He previously served as SVP Finance and Chief Operating Officer of Canada Line Rapid Transit Inc. (CLCO), a $2 billion rapid transit project connecting the Vancouver International Airport, City of Richmond and downtown Vancouver. Tony has also held senior management roles at Finning International Inc., British Columbia Hydro, and The Bank of Nova Scotia in Toronto.

Tony holds a BA in Economics in Political Science and an MBA from McGill University, as well as a Chartered Financial Analyst designation. He serves on the Board of Information Services Corporation (where he also serves as Chair of the Audit Committee), as well as a number of private companies.



The panel will be moderated by Kristi Miller, Co-founder and National Managing Director at First West Capital.




About BC Middle Market Growth Conference

Now in its 17th year, BC Middle Market Growth Conference is the leading M&A Conference in Western Canada, with close to 350 attendees, a popular exhibitor trade show and valuable networking opportunities. For more information on this year’s event, visit www.acgbcevents.com

Limited sponsorship opportunities remain. Contact Sherryl Parsons sparsons@rareaffairs.com for more information on partnering with ACG British Columbia to showcase and build your brand at ACG’s biggest event of the year.

Announcing our next BC Middle Market Growth Conference panel

A New Landscape For Financing Growth

The ways in which middle market businesses access capital for growth and acquisitions are undergoing significant changes. No longer dominated by senior lenders and mezzanine financing, today’s industry has welcomed new capital providers, offering innovative products that include royalty funds, dividend funds and patient private equity. These offerings are driving new possibilities for growth and exit and – combined with the arrival of disruptive technologies like blockchain – the entire capital raising process could shift dramatically.

We’re continuing our theme of disruption as we announce our third panel for the BC Middle Market Growth Conference on April 10. This much-anticipated session will be a valuable learning opportunity for business owners and transaction professionals alike. The discussion will be moderated by leading M&A counsel, Peter Mogan, and includes a panel of market-leading capital disruptors:

  • Sean Morrison, founding partner of Diversified Royalty
  • Cooper Seaman, founding partner of Regimen Equity Partners
  • Gregg Delcourt, Senior VP of Alaris Royalty
  • Harpreet Padda, Senior VP of Founders Advantage

Click here to register before earlybird rates expire on March 16!

Did you know that attending BC Middle Market Growth Conference helps ACG BC give back?

Our 2018 charitable partner is Take A Hike Youth Foundation. This local alternative education program empowers at-risk youth to forge the path to success both personally and academically. For more details visit: http://www.takeahikefoundation.org

About BC Middle Market Growth Conference

Now in its 17th year, BC Middle Market Growth Conference is the leading M&A Conference in Western Canada, with close to 350 attendees, a popular exhibitor trade show and valuable networking opportunities. In 2017, the Association for Corporate Growth relaunched its signature event with an expanded purpose to create growth opportunities for BC middle market businesses, delivering valuable connection opportunities, expanded content and high-impact speakers. For more information on this year’s event, visit: www.acgbcevents.com

Limited sponsorship opportunities remain. Contact Sherryl Parsons sparsons@rareaffairs.ca for more information on partnering with ACG British Columbia to showcase and build your brand at our biggest event of the year.

Changing lanes: the shift to autonomous vehicles

This year, our BC Middle Market Growth Conference is tackling disruption. Today, we announce our panel on a topic that is, quite literally, driving transformative change in the transportation sector.

There are a number of disruptive technologies changing our current patterns of behaviour, but autonomous vehicles have the potential for a larger ripple effect, disrupting many other industries along the way:

  • With driverless cars, will there still be a need for insurance?
  • Or car dealerships; will we still own the vehicles that transport us?
  • As an important hub for logistics – what are the implications for B.C.’s moving, trucking and transport companies?
  • How will our urban landscape change – what becomes of parking lots?

The reality of driverless cars on our roads is closer than ever. Suncor recently announced it will begin using autonomous vehicles at company-operated mines, leaving us to think about implications for other kinds of heavy machinery jobs. Google’s autonomous driving company Waymo has been testing and will soon make its official debut as a full-scale service on public streets.

Its a topic full of potential, but not without controversy. While many hail the potential safety improvements and environmental efficiencies, others have raised concerns about potential job losses and an industry operating without human judgement.

The question is: are we ready? ACG has comprised a panel of industry leaders and first movers to talk about the ways different industries and business models may be affected in B.C., and how to prepare for this advancing technology as it becomes part of the mainstream.

Here’s who’s driving this much anticipated panel:

Alan Hart – Founder and CEO of VIA Architecture

Alan Hart is a founding principal of VIA Architecture, creating communities that are most walkable, livable, sustainable, and better connected, for more than 35 years. A strong advocate for clarity and integrity in the design process, his expertise includes the creation of high quality urban environments from transit systems to urban development. He consistently serves as a champion for architectural and urban design of infrastructure as an integral part of a community vision.

Bruce Sharpe – President, Vancouver Electric Vehicle Association

Dr. Bruce Sharpe got his Ph.D. in Mathematics from UBC in 1984. He spent the early part of his career focused on machine learning and data science before those terms even existed. Dr. Sharpe purchased his first Tesla Model S in 2013, then upgraded to a newer model in 2015, specifically for the autopilot features. He and his wife Dale have driven over 100,000 km in the car since then, much of it in autopilot mode. His enthusiasm for electric vehicles led him to join the Vancouver Electric Vehicle Association, where he serves as president.

Donald Wong, BASc, MEng, PEng – Founder and CEO of Moovee Innovations Inc.

Donald Wong is the Founder and CEO of Moovee Innovations Inc. Since 2012, Donald has led an expert team performing R&D and prototyping for an autonomous connected electric (ACE) mobility solution suite. In 2015, Donald led his team to field trial the Moovee autonomous vehicle platform on the UBC campus, through the Transport Canada vehicular connectedness testbed. In 2016, Donald joined multiple Smart City initiatives to showcase the Moovee Automated Transport system in cities across the globe. Most recently, he has signed a MOU with the City of Squamish, BC, to field trial the system there. Donald holds a master’s degree in electronics engineering from Carlton University and a degree in Electrical Engineering from UBC.

Keane Gruending – Communications Manager for the Renewable Cities program at the SFU Morris J. Wosk Centre for Dialogue

Keane has a major interest in zero-emissions urban mobility and multimodal transport. He regularly advocates for people-centered urban design, cycling, shared mobility, and transit.
At the SFU Morris J. Wosk Centre for Dialogue, he regularly convenes events, including solutions-focused workshops, panels and public engagements. Previous stops for Keane include: the Victoria Car Share Co-operative (now Modo); the UN Environmental Program’s Regional Office for North America; and the University of Saskatchewan’s Office of Sustainability. He holds a M.Sc. from the University of East Anglia and a B. Comm. from the Edwards School of Business.

Click here to register. Please visit our event website www.acgbcevents.com to learn more about ACG’s signature event happening on April 10, 2018.

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