Opportunity South:Conference & Business Expo
Join us at Exhibition Park for Opportunity South, October 13 and 14, as we lead into Small Business Week.
This is a two day business conference focusing on promoting and growing business in Southern Alberta
The Opportunity South Conference will feature:
Thursday, October 13
8:00 a.m. Welcome & Opening Remarks
Rachael Harder, Member of Parliament, Lethbridge
Chris Spearman, Mayor, City of Lethbridge
Harry Gross, President, Lethbridge Chamber of Commerce
8:30 a.m. Todd Hirsch
The Boiling Frog Dilemma
Presented by: ATB Financial
9:15 a.m. Industry Panel Discussion
10:00 a.m. Networking Break
Explore the Business-to-Business Expo
10:30 a.m. ASYMA Solutions
Change Manangement Made Easier
10:45 a.m. Industry Panel Discussion
11:30 a.m. 100 Mile Lunch
Keynote: Carlo Dade, Canada West Foundation
TPP Plan B
Presented by: Potato Growers of Alberta, Gouw Quality Onions & Municipal District of Taber
1:00 p.m. Jim Allworth, RBC Dominion Securities
Thinking About What Comes Next
Presented by: RBC Financial & RBC Dominion Securities
1:45 p.m. Industry Panel Discussion
2:30 p.m. Dr. Paula Burns, Lethbridge College
Applied Research and Innovation: Accelerating Economic Growth
Presented by: Lethbridge College
3:00 p.m. Networking Break
Networking Challenge in the Business-to-Business Expo
3:45 p.m. Industry Panel Discussion
4:30 p.m. Avail CPA
4 Ways to Grow Your Business
4:45 p.m. Alex Singbeil, City of Lethbridge
Commercial Waste & Recycling
5:15 p.m. - 7:30 p.m Generations of Leadership Networking Mixer
Presented by: Select People Solutions & Teamwork Training Ltd.
Friday, October 14
8:00 a.m. Ramit Kar, UBER
8:45 a.m. Dr. Mike Mahon, University of Lethbridge
Lethbridge as a Destination
Presented by: University of Lethbridge
9:15 a.m. Karen Whiteman, Alberta's Promise
Inspiring Partnership: Corporate Philanthropy and You
9:45 a.m. Networking Break
Explore the Business-to-Business Expo
10:30 a.m. Trevor Lewington, EDL
Intelligent Communities & Business
Presented by: Economic Development Lethbridge
11:00 a.m. Yellow Pages Group
Mobile & Digital Marketing
11:15 a.m. MNP LLP
What Makes a Fraudster Tick?
11:30 a.m. Expedia
Travel & Technology
12:00 p.m. Lunch
Minister Shannon Phillips
Energy & Tourism Working Together
Minister Deron Bilous
12:45 p.m. Manjit Minhas, Dragons Den & Minhas Breweries
Presented by: Stringam LLP
2:00 p.m. Beers & Business
Meet & Greet and Networking Mixer in the Business-to-Business Expo
(One day ticket $150)
Attend the Opportunity South Conference & Business Expo
• One ticket for all conference events including keynote
speakers and meals
Table of Eight $1,800
Attend the Opportunity South Conference & Business Expo
with eight delegates
• Eight tickets for all conference events including keynote
speakers and meals
(One day ticket $100)
Attend the Opportunity South Conference & Business Expo
• One ticket for all conference events including keynote
speakers and meals
If you have a product or service that you sell to business owners or employees you need to be a part of the Expo!
Throughout the Opportunity South Business Conference the business-to-business expo will give you the opportunity to showcase your goods and services to up to 500 business leaders and potential customers in a vibrant environment, highly motivated toward Southern Alberta business growth and opportunity.
Participation at Opportunity South Conference & Business
10×10 Booth at Opportunity South Business Expo
One ticket for all conference events including keynote speakers and meals
Additional attendees half price (up to three)
Opportunity to submit speaker proposal for the conference
Register online to become a vendor
Featured Speaker: Manjit Minhas
Manjit Minhas is 35 years old and was born and raised in Calgary, Alberta. This Petroleum Engineering student turned beer baroness is he newest Dragon on the hit TV show Dragons Den on CBC in its 10 season.
Manjit is the co-founder and co-owner of the Minhas Breweries and Distillery. She started her companies at the ripe age of 19 in Alberta, when she launched her beer in Alberta with her partner and brother, Ravinder Minhas. Together, they gave the big boys a run for their money, thereby becoming the first successful company to enter the Canadian beer industry in many decades. Currently, she has over 90 brands of beers, spirits, liqueurs and wines. Her products are sold in Ontario, Alberta, Saskatchewan , Manitoba and British Columbia, as well as 43 states throughout the USA and 16 other countries in Europe, Asia and South America.
Over the last few years, wherever Manjit and Ravinder have entered the marketplace, and especially in Canada, they have single headedly caused a huge stir in the marketplace. To date, her companies have sold over 6 billion pints of beer! Many beer drinkers in Canada and USA have welcomed her style of beer as a tasty alternative to the higher priced mediocre beers that dominate the market place.
Manjit takes Social Responsibility very seriously. Manjit Minhas is the 1st brewer in Canada to voluntarily put a Management Warning on all her beer cans. The Management Warning on the cans reads ” MANAGEMENT WARNING: Please do not drink and drive – ever. Expectant mothers should avoid drinking alcoholic products. Enjoy this product responsibly – Respect yourself and others”. She recently put this on all her products because she believes as a responsible brewer and citizen of this country, it is important she does her part to educate Canadians.
Manjit has also recently created a special 48 can pack of beers for COSTCO which has the least amount of packaging materials compared to any other product in Canada or USA. It uses no plastic hi-cone rings and needs least amount of box material. This product alone will save millions of pounds of packaging materials ending up in the already over-filled landfills. Similarly, Manjit has sold millions of cases of other brands of her beers with minimum packaging materials using sound engineering principles in protecting the environment.
Manjit believes that effective use of science and engineering can do a lot of good in people’s lives. She has used her engineering background in producing beer using least amount of cleaning and water treatment chemicals, gas, electricity and water. Canadian and American consumers suffering from the Celiac disease have also been beneficiary of her innovative method of making best tasting Gluten Free beer from Sorghum and sold at half the price of the competition.
Manjit and her brother purchased the 2nd oldest brewery in the United States in 2006 and renamed it “Minhas Craft Brewery”. Being in their mid 20s, purchase of this Brewery officially made them the Youngest Brewery Owners in The World. Their brewery is now the 10th largest in North America. From this brewery, world quality beers are shipped across the USA, to Canada and overseas to 16 different countries such as Japan, UK, Brazil and Korea.
Manjit and Ravinder opened a new brewery in Calgary in June 2012 – the Minhas Micro Brewery. This facility makes unique and specialty beers such as the Lazy Mutt Alberta Wheat Beer and Gluten Free beer.
In 2012, they also opened the Minhas Micro Distillery which distills and bottles premium spirits and liqueurs such as Platinum 10 times distilled Vodka, Blumers Moonshine, Maya Horchata and Chinook Rye Whisky.
In late 2008, Manjit co-wrote a book on her remarkable story, business philosophies and the history of the brewery she bought. The hardcover 108 page glossy book is titled “Brewing Up a Damn Good Story”.
Last year Manjit’s companies had revenues in excess of $155 million.
Manjit has been nominated and has won several business industry awards. A few of them are listed below:
- Top 100 Women Entrepreneurs in Canada
- “Top Growth Entrepreneur” award, PROFIT magazine in Toronto
- Ranked #6 in the “Top 50 Fastest Growing Companies” by Alberta Venture Magazine
- Alberta Chamber of Commerce Marketing Award
- Young Achiever Award from the Indo-Canada Chamber of Commerce
- Compelling Calgarian Award given by the Calgary Herald
- Alberta Centennial Medallion
- “Up and Coming CEO” from The National Post
- Canada’s Women Executive Network Top 100 Women Entrepreneurs
- Calgary’s Top 40 Under 40
- Business in Calgary’s Leader of Tomorrow
- India Abroad’s “The Power List” Award
- Famous 5 Foundation Leader Award
- Global TV Woman of Vision Award
- Ernst and Young Entrepreneur of The Year Finalist
- Chatelaine Magazine’s Top Entrepreneur Woman of The Year
- The Sikh Centennial Foundation Award 2014
- Canadian Business Icon Award
Manjit and her story has been featured in many publications such as Macleans Magazine, Canadian Business Magazine, Alberta Venture Magazine, The National Post, The Globe & Mail, The Calgary Herald, The Edmonton Journal, The Toronto Star, The Toronto Sun, The Winnipeg Free Press, Bar & Beverage Magazine, Anokhi Vibe, etc. She has also been featured on TV in programs such as the CBC National News with Peter Mansbridge, CBC Venture, Money Wise, Careers TV, and many other news programs across the country. Outside of Canada, her story has also received lot of attention such as USA and India.
Manjit is born and raised in Calgary and still calls it home with her husband and they have two young daughters.
Featured Speaker: Jim Allworth
Thinking About What Comes Next.
A look at where the global economy is headed and what that means for the Canadian economy and for financial markets.
Jim Allworth has been in the investment business for forty-eight years, as both a research analyst and portfolio strategist.
Through four decades at RBC Dominion Securities, and before that Pemberton Securities, Jim has developed investment policy for the firm and translated that into solutions for individual clients.
He is vice-chair of the RBC Capital Markets Investment Strategy Committee and Co-Chair of RBC’s Global Portfolio Advisory Committee, which provide direction on the outlook for financial markets for the firm, its advisors and clients. In his career, Jim has made hundreds of presentations on investing to advisors and clients throughout North America and Europe.
Raised in Toronto, Jim has lived in Vancouver for the past forty years with his wife Rojeanne.
In his fourth presentation to Probus Vancouver, entitled “Thinking About What Comes Next”, Jim will talk about key changes in the economic, interest rate and investment environment over the next few years, and what shifts investors should make in their thinking to cope with changing circumstances.
Featured Speaker: Todd Hirsch
Todd Hirsch is ATB Financial’s Chief Economist.
For over 20 years, Todd has worked as an economist at numerous organizations including the Canadian Pacific Railway, the Canada West Foundation and the Bank of Canada. For almost a decade, Todd taught economics at the University of Calgary. He released his first book, The Boiling Frog Dilemma: Saving Canada from Economic Decline in 2012.
Todd provides economic commentary for many Canadian media outlets and is a regular columnist for the Globe and Mail. He currently serves on the University of Calgary Board of Governors and is the chair of the Calgary Arts Academy. Todd recently received the University of Alberta’s Alumni Honour Award.
Todd holds a BA Honours in Economics from the U of A and an MA in Economics from the University of Calgary.
To receive Todd’s daily economic updates via email, subscribe to ATB Financial’s daily economic update, The Owl.
The Boiling Frog Dilemma
This book, co-authored by my long-standing friend and ATB Financial colleague Robert Roach, answers one question: WHAT CREATES WEALTH?
The answer to that may be surprising. Economic wealth isn’t created by oil and gas molecules in the ground, nor by an auto assembly plant. It isn’t created by tax credits or subsidies. It isn’t even created by economic development programs.
Wealth starts with one thing: an idea.
The Boiling Frog Dilemma argues that Canada in the 21st century is at risk of falling behind internationally. We need to seriously “up our game” in terms of creativity, innovation, risk taking, entrepreneurialism, cosmopolitanism, community, and re-thinking environmental stewardship–or risk becoming economically irrelevant on the global stage.
Featured Speaker: Ramit Kar (UBER)
Ramit Kar is General Manager – Alberta for Uber, a technology company that is reinventing urban transportation and the way people and things move.
By seamlessly connecting riders to drivers through an elegant smartphone app, Uber is making cities more accessible, innovating new possibilities for riders and creating new business for drivers in over 400 metros across the world.
Before joining Uber, Mr. Kar was a Senior Engagement Manager with McKinsey & Company, a consultant with Canada’s largest Venture Capital firms and and investor and operator several start-ups.
He has a BSc in Computer Science from the University of Calgary and an MBA from the Richard Ivey School of Business.
Karen Whiteman: Inspiring Partnerships
Director, Partnerships & Community Engagement, Alberta’s Promise
Karen works closely with businesses and communities across Alberta to forge amazing partnerships for kids.
From her roots in rural Alberta to her many years spent in non-profit management and teaching, Karen has a passion for helping connect givers and doers for good.
She served as the Executive Connector for Social Venture Partners (SVP) before joining Alberta’s Promise in 2015 to expand the benefits of corporate social responsibility province-wide.
Karen’s talents and connections help businesses big and small do good and give back to support meaningful community initiatives for youth and families.
Janene Moch: What Makes a Fraudster Tick
Janene Moch, CPA, CA, CMA, DIFA, is a Partner in MNP’s Assurance Services group in Lethbridge.
Janene specializes in helping professionals, including doctors, veterinarians, dentists and lawyers, as well as ownermanagers of small businesses, proactively manage their operations and plan for the future.
Her services include corporate compliance, personal compliance and tax planning at all stages of the business cycle, from start-up to owner transition, shut-down or retirement.
Drawing on more than 20 years of experience, Janene customizes solutions, ensuring that clients see measurable results. She also works with clients one-on-one to provide a range of forensic services, including fraud prevention and internal control consulting, litigation support, fraud investigations and fraud risk assessments.
In addition to developing customized plans to avoid loss due to fraud, Janene helps resolve conflicts, working with legal counsel and, when required, with the authorities. Janene also assists clients with contract dispute resolution, loss quantification and regulatory compliance as well as guides income and matrimonial property calculations.
Janene is a Chartered Professional Accountant (CPA) and Chartered Accountant (CA), qualifying in 2000, and she received the Chartered Management Accountant (CMA) designation in 1996. In 2001, she earned the Diploma in Investigative and Forensic Accounting (DIFA). She currently serves as the treasurer of the Lethbridge Therapeutic Riding Association, as well as the Alberta Paint Horse Club.
Trevor Lewington: Building an Intelligent Community
Trevor Lewington is the Chief Executive Officer for Economic Development Lethbridge.
Trevor is proud to work with a talented team that develops and delivers on initiatives to promote Lethbridge as an excellent place to live, work, visit, invest and do business.
With over 15 years of executive management experience in the food processing industry, in addition to living the trials and tribulations of small business owner combined with roles in the public sector, Trevor strives to provide a broad based perspective which will enhance initiatives that drive continued economic growth in southern Alberta.
Trevor holds a Bachelor of Commerce with a major in Human Resource Management, completed a Change Leadership Certificate with Cornell University and is a Certified Human Resources Professional through the Human Resources Institute of Alberta.
Trevor is also a Certified Logistics Professional through the Canadian Institute of Traffic and Transportation. Trevor serves as the Deputy Mayor in the Village of Stirling and sits on the Board of Directors for the Ridge Country Housing Authority, Intelligent Community Forum – Canada as well as the Dominican Starfish Foundation.
Dr. Mike Mahon: Destination Project
Dr. Michael J. (Mike) Mahon was installed as the President and Vice-Chancellor of the University of Lethbridge in 2010 and reappointed for a second term beginning July 1, 2015.
As the sixth President and Vice-Chancellor of the University of Lethbridge, Dr. Mahon is committed to building a comprehensive, destination university in western Canada. During his first term, Dr. Mahon introduced “Destination 2020”, the University of Lethbridge Strategic Plan. Under this plan, Dr. Mahon initiated the “Destination Project”, a monumental construction project whereby he was successful in securing a $248 Million investment from the Government of Alberta. Other significant efforts in Mahon’s first term include new initiatives to further connect the university to both local and international communities, including First Nation Metis and Inuit (FNMI) communities.
Dr. Mahon is the current Chair of the Council of Western Canadian University Presidents, Chair of Canadian Interuniversity Sport (CIS), and active on the Board of Directors with Universities Canada. In 2014, Dr. Mahon was invited to a round table discussion hosted by Prime Minister Stephen Harper to address aboriginal education. That same year, he was also appointed to the Alberta Innovation Council by the Premier of Alberta. He has several other standing provincial and national commitments related to post-secondary education and has served on a number of Boards including the Alberta Economic Development Authority, the Canadian Olympic Committee, and the Coaching Association of Canada. Dr. Mahon is the recipient of the Queen’s Diamond Jubilee Medal and an honorary member of the Kainai Chieftanship of the Blood Tribe in Southern Alberta.
Dr. Mahon holds a PhD in Education from the University of North Carolina at Chapel Hill, an MSc in Physical Education from the University of Alberta and a Bachelor of Physical Education from the University of Manitoba. Born and raised in Winnipeg, Manitoba, Dr. Mahon began his academic career at the University of Manitoba in the Faculty of Physical Education and Recreation Studies in 1987. His current research is in the field of disability studies and sport for development.
George Virtue & Jeff Clarke: Grow Your Business
George Virtue, CPA, CA – Managing Partner
George is the Managing Partner for our firm and is responsible for leading the strategic planning process. George joined the firm in 1980, and has been the firm’s Managing Partner since 1999. In this role, George has led the firm to the achievement of continuous growth and exceptional customer service in an environment where our people love to come to work.
As Managing Partner of Avail CPA, George devotes two thirds of his work time in the roles of leadership, strategic planning, management, business development, mentoring and coaching. George spends the remaining third of his work time with a small number of larger clients and with selected clients, primarily advising on strategic, organizational and profitability improvement.
Jeff Clarke, CPA, CA – Partner
At Avail since 1995; partner since 2007 Jeff articled with Avail CPA commencing 1995, he was awarded his CA designation in 1997, and has been a partner with the firm since 2007. Jeff devotes his work time in the role of business advisor for small & medium sized businesses. This includes advising on strategic, organizational and profitability improvement, focusing on business improvement initiatives, and strategic planning sessions.
Dr. Paula Burns: Applied Research and Innovation: Accelerating Economic Growth
Dr. Burns will present an overview of the role of applied research and innovation at Lethbridge College and how it benefits students and our region, particularly as a catalyst for economic growth, sustainability and social development in southern Alberta.
Her presentation will touch on applied research’s critical role in bringing industry, government and academia together, working collaboratively to solve real-world challenges with immediate practical applications.
Dr. Burns’ bio:
Dr. Paula Burns, the 8th president and CEO of Lethbridge College, is a collaborative leader who invests her commitment, passion and energy to advance education and to support and create a safe and respectful learning environment for all students and staff. Paula is a life-long learner and appreciates the many opportunities she has to interact with students at the college.
At Lethbridge College, Dr. Burns has engaged the internal and external community in collaboratively determining the college’s direction as it heads into its sixth decade (and beyond). Her visionary leadership has helped to create a new mission and vision and identify four strategic priorities: academic transformation, collaborative partnerships, resource innovation and people development. As a result of this direction there are several new initiatives happening across campus, including the building of a new trades and technologies facility, the establishment of the Cor Van Raay Southern Alberta Agribusiness program and a partnership with the University of Lethbridge.
Locally, Dr. Burns is active in the community through her work as President of the Board of Economic Development Lethbridge and she enjoys supporting the Lethbridge Symphony, local theatre and local sports teams including the Lethbridge Bulls and the Lethbridge Hurricanes. She works at a provincial and national level to lead and transform education through serving as an executive member on the Council of Post-Secondary Presidents of Alberta as well as on the President’s Leadership Network with Colleges and Institutes Canada. Paula was a member of the Colleges and Institutes Canada’s Indigenous Education Committee who launched the Indigenous Education Protocol for Colleges and Institutes in 2015.
Before coming to Lethbridge College in February 2013, Dr. Burns had served as Northern Alberta Institute of Technology’s Provost and Vice President Academic. She started on her educational path as a college student at Fanshawe College in London, Ont., and went on to earn a Bachelor of Science degree from the University of Waterloo in 1996. Later, she attended Central Michigan University, where she earned a Master of Arts in Education in 1999; the Ontario Institute for Studies in Education/University of Toronto, where she earned her PhD in 2005; and Royal Roads University, where she earned her Master of Business Administration with a specialization in leadership in 2010.
Dr. Burns looks forward to continuing to work with staff, students, alumni, community members, industry partners and government to support the work Lethbridge College is doing leading and transforming education in Alberta.
Carlo Dade: TPP Plan B
Carlo Dade is Director of the Centre on Trade and Investment Policy at the Canada West Foundation which focuses on increasing growth and profitability in western Canada's export economy including North American and pan-Pacific trade, infrastructure and competitiveness, and diaspora linkages to trade and investment. Previously he was a Senior Fellow in the University of Ottawa’s School of International Development and Global Studies and served as the Executive Director of the Canadian Foundation for the Americas (FOCAL) and Canadian chair of the bi-national Canada-Mexico Initiative. Mr. Dade is a frequent expert witness at parliament and media commentator on Canadian trade issues including the Trans-Pacific Partnership, the Pacific Alliance, trade agreements and the role of the private sector in international development. He is co-author with former Saskatchewan Deputy Minister for Transportation John Law of “Building on Advantage: Improving Canada’s Trade Infrastructure” and a lead voice on the need for intelligence to guide trade infrastructure planning and spending.
Mr. Dade is a member of the Mexican Council on Foreign Relations (COMEXI) and a Senior Associate at the Center for Strategic and International Studies (CSIS) in Washington D.C. He was a columnist for Canada’s foreign affairs news weekly Embassy newspaper writing on western Canadian perspectives on trade and international issues. Mr. Dade began his career in the Latin American and Caribbean region Technical Department at the World Bank in Washington, D.C. and subsequently ran Haiti/Dominican Republic/Caribbean operations for the Inter-American Foundation, a U.S. government foreign aid agency.
- http://www.huffingtonpost.ca/carlo-dade/trans-pacific-partnership_b_8242328.html (most recent)
- http://www.winnipegfreepress.com/opinion/analysis/canada-gets-competition-in-na-trade-303376431.html (WFP)
- http://www.theglobeandmail.com/globe-debate/is-this-canadas-latin-path-to-asia/article4592174/ (oldie but a goodie)
- http://www.embassynews.ca/opinion/2013/11/27/look-to-asia-to-solidify-north-america/44861 (i’d stress this one for vision, if only one send this)
- http://business.financialpost.com/fp-comment/let-commodities-lead-the-way (this is more for balance)
Alex Singbeil: Commercial Waste & Recycling
Alexander Singbeil, Waste Reduction Consultant, City of Lethbridge
Alex Singbeil is a guy who gets excited by finding solutions for turning waste into something better, or better still, eliminating the waste before it gets made. Lucky for him, he works with some of the best people in southern Alberta at doing just that.
A chance conversation last fall led Alex to Lethbridge in May to pursue a unique opportunity in the Canadian waste management industry, as the Waste Reduction Consultant for the City of Lethbridge responsible for implementing the city’s new Business Waste Reduction Strategy. The business sector represents over 75% of the waste generated in Lethbridge. Reducing this waste presents enormous opportunities for innovation and entrepreneurship. Lethbridge is a Canadian pioneer in this initiative.
Before chasing a dream job to Alberta, Alex worked with the City of Winnipeg in waste management and infrastructure delivery, bringing new or improved services to the residents of his home town. He has worked in consulting for agriculture, organic waste management R&D , food processing as well as in manufacturing, and started his career in the Athabasca oil sands.
Born and raised in central Winnipeg, Alex is a professional engineer and holds a B.Sc. in Mechanical Engineering.