Community Support & Recovery Plan

Supporting our Business Community

On May 5, City Council approved a Community Support and Recovery Plan (CSRP), that includes immediate relief for taxpayers and a recovery fund to address the pandemic’s short- and long-term financial impact on all sectors of the community. It includes:

• Deferring 2020 utility and property tax deadlines for all property types to Sept. 30;

• Designating $5-million to implement a response plan with both short- and long-term support for businesses, residents and non-profits;

• Seeking federal and provincial stimulus funding for City capital projects to promote economic recovery; and

• Additional measures to be included

Supporting our Business Community

On May 5, City Council approved a Community Support and Recovery Plan (CSRP), that includes immediate relief for taxpayers and a recovery fund to address the pandemic’s short- and long-term financial impact on all sectors of the community. It includes:

• Deferring 2020 utility and property tax deadlines for all property types to Sept. 30;

• Designating $5-million to implement a response plan with both short- and long-term support for businesses, residents and non-profits;

• Seeking federal and provincial stimulus funding for City capital projects to promote economic recovery; and

• Additional measures to be included in the 2021 budget.

City staff are now moving forward with refining the CSRP and a host of ideas are being considered, including targeted grants, reduced or waived City fees, technology investments and marketing to support local businesses. Staff plan to present specific CSRP recommendations to Council in late May.

Business Supports

We have more than 7,000 businesses in Coquitlam, ranging from home-based operations to large enterprises with hundreds of employees. The City recognizes that this is a very challenging time for many of our local businesses as they face the impacts and the uncertainty of the current public health crisis.

From the start of the COVID-19 pandemic, Coquitlam’s Economic Development team has been reaching out to local business stakeholders and researching how best to support our community’s business sector. Over the coming weeks and months, City staff will continue to work with other levels of government, as well as business support organizations and other industry stakeholders, to help identify and inform our next steps.

This page has been developed to provide ongoing updates and information resources to Coquitlam’s business community. This will include opportunities for input, links to government and industry assistance programs, and a Q&A forum to get answers to your questions.

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  • Coquitlam plans dense, vibrant new downtown core - Real Estate News Exchange

    14 days ago

    July 21, 2020

    Coquitlam is embarking on a major urban planning mission that will take decades to realize: the transformation of 1970s suburban strip malls and parking lots into a rich, diverse and walkable urban core.

    Coquitlam’s city centre doesn’t have historical neighbourhoods, like Vancouver’s Gastown, with its cobblestone streets. It doesn’t even have an old warehouse section for hip conversion, such as Portland’s Pearl District.

    However, it does have the benefit of a breathtaking mountain backdrop and forested trails — so the city could create a unique urban core within 15 minutes access of mountain biking.

    “You can take some of the recreational opportunities you get in North and West Vancouver and put it together with the urban amenities of downtown Vancouver, and you have the best of both worlds,” said Andrew Merrill, director development services, City of Coquitlam. “It’s building a downtown from scratch.”

    The idea is to create a self-sufficient urban core, with new residential and office districts, and an entertainment district extending south from Lincoln SkyTrain station.

    It means incorporating all the attributes of good city-making as an antidote to the vehicle-centric, highly un-walkable infrastructure that once ruled suburban areas.

    “We don’t have that historical urban fabric, so we have to introduce a bunch of new streets to break up the large blocks and put in dense urban streets so there is a more robust grid,” said Merrill, a city planner by trade. “Walking down the side of Lougheed Highway is not fun.

    “Robson Street or Water Street in Gastown is appealing because there is lots of visual interest and there is texture in terms of the storefronts — we’re trying to replicate that, but in a new way.”

    Rapid transit opens up Coquitlam

    The undertaking started decades ago, back when Coquitlam was “just forest and mobile home parks,” said Merrill.

    However, it wasn’t until rapid transit arrived to the area that the plan truly gained momentum. The expansion of the Millennial SkyTrain line into Coquitlam, which opened in 2016, was an instant game-changer for the city and a major draw for developers.

    Within months of the province announcing the new line, the city completed its transit-oriented development strategy. It set about updating the neighbourhood plans — including the complex plan for the new city centre.

    That plan is now wrapping up, a three-year process that had gone through several rounds of public engagement and analysis. It goes before council in September and once officially approved, development can begin.

    It will be a massive master plan in community design, with an emphasis on employment. Already, thousands of units of residential housing are in the pipeline, but the future will not be a sea of residential towers.

    Two business districts have been mapped out and the city has created incentives for stand-alone office buildings. It doubled the minimum employment-generating floor space requirement from a 0.5 floor area ratio (FAR) to a FAR of 1.0.

    “Our downtown needs to be a complete community and have that range of jobs and shops and services and other community amenities,” said Merrill.

    “Most office space we get now is second or third floor on mixed-use condo buildings, which can work for some businesses, but it doesn’t work for all of them.”

    Large sites incorporated into planning

    High Park in Coquitlam is shown in this artist’s conception. (Courtesy City of Coquitlam)

    What differentiates Coquitlam’s city centre from past community planning is the large multi-acre, multi-phase sites which are part of the plan. It’s a far different process than building out a community with typically smaller developments.

    About half a dozen large commercial property owners have invested in the plan, and the two biggest involve major Canadian real estate investors QuadReal and Morguard.

    QuadReal has partnered with Langley-based developer Marcon to build 10 towers, including rental towers and one office tower, on a Chrysler dealership site on Lougheed Highway.

    Morguard is the long-time owner of Coquitlam Centre shopping mall, a 60-acre site that will be redeveloped to include office and residential towers, retail, hotels, parks and public plazas.

    “They have a long-term interest. So, they want to do both buildings and streetscapes and public spaces that are of high quality,” said Merrill.

    Both have submitted rezoning applications. Morguard has a rezoning application in for its Phase 1, which will see the redevelopment of a couple of parking lots and a vacant Sears store.

    “We have seen some of those big pension funds or REITs headquartered back in Toronto — they are coming out here and partnering with a local developer to get their foot in this market,” added Merrill.

    “These are historically big shopping plazas, from 10 to 60 acres for Coquitlam Centre. So when I think about the development potential, it’s huge.”

    Growth explosion coming to Coquitlam

    Coquitlam as a whole is poised for a growth explosion.

    On the residential side alone, the number of dwelling units under application in the last two years has doubled. Currently, 45,000 dwelling units across the city are in some form of application or enquiry, according to Merrill.

    He estimated two-thirds or three-quarters of development in the pipeline is happening around the transit-oriented districts near SkyTrain stations.

    Outside the city centre, large-scale development is also happening in Burke Mountain, in northeast Coquitlam, where the city owns more than 100 acres of developable land.

    As neighbourhood plans were completed over the years, the city started selling off serviced, pre-zoned sites through public tender to developers, most of them townhouse sites, according to Curtis Scott, manager, land development, City of Coquitlam.

    The master plan for that area includes a 39-acre village that will include a community centre, about 120,000 square feet of storefront retail and possibly four-to-six storey mid-rise apartment buildings.

    The city is still in the early stage of building roads and servicing sites, so the details are still in the works.

    The idea is to offer housing options other than the usual detached houses, which can cost around $1.5 million — out of reach for many.

    City streamlines process for development

    For developers, the streamlined process of acquiring pre-zoned land is a major savings in time. Last year, the city sold nine acres to developer Mosaic for townhouse developments.

    Mosaic is busy with several townhouse projects in Coquitlam, as are developers Townline and Polygon.

    “We own a lot of land, so it’s a lot of master planning and we help focus on large-scale neighbourhood development and community building,” said Scott. “We just bring lands to developers to construct. And because they are pre-zoned and serviced, they are what we call ‘turnkey’ development sites.

    “So developers can come in with their development application and sometimes they are under construction within a year or so. It moves quickly.”

    Once SkyTrain continues to expand with a proposed Broadway subway extension to the University of B.C., that will generate even more growth in Coquitlam, said Merrill. Nature-loving students won’t have to live in pricey, congested Vancouver.

    “We need a more diverse range of home prices and tenures and types of housing, because eventually Coquitlam will be a one-hour SkyTrain ride from UBC,” said Merrill. “It will be this big east-west connection across the whole Burrard peninsula.”

  • Online digital marketing training to help people, businesses succeed - Government of B.C.

    14 days ago

    July 21, 2020

    Alacrity Canada is now accepting applications for a new virtual Digital Marketing Bootcamp that will support people and businesses as they move online during the COVID-19 pandemic.

    “The COVID-19 pandemic has caused businesses to adjust how they operate, with digital commerce becoming more common for businesses of all sizes,” said Michelle Mungall, Minister of Jobs, Economic Development and Competitiveness. “The Digital Marketing Bootcamp will help meet businesses’ needs and give people the training they need to find a job in this in-demand field.”

    The Digital Marketing Bootcamp was developed in partnership with the B.C. government and Alacrity Canada. This online course is based on a pilot program that took place in late 2019 and early 2020. Almost 45 people participated in the pilot program, with a job placement rate of 85%.

    “Tech is in everything we do. We’ve heard from people and businesses that it is vitally important to invest in tech to grow a skilled workforce that is ready to meet the demands of a market that has shifted online,” said Melanie Mark, Minister of Advanced Education, Skills and Training. “Now more than ever, small businesses and not-for-profits need the tools to be able to market themselves and be responsive to the impacts of COVID-19. This program will give people the knowledge and experience they need to support their business or start a new career in digital marketing.”

    The bootcamp will provide participants with a foundation in digital marketing, including search engine optimization (SEO), paid advertising, analytics, content marketing and more. With this knowledge, they will have the opportunity to work in a range of digital marketing positions that are important for businesses that sell online. These skills will also benefit small- and medium-sized businesses that are expanding their sales strategies to include a larger online presence.

    “I signed up for the Digital Marketing Bootcamp to sharpen my skills and learn about the latest industry trends,” said Gordon Paterson, SEO specialist. “I enjoyed the course content and curriculum led by the experienced facilitators. The weekly mentors and guest speakers added a real-world element to an already insightful course packed with valuable industry insight. I completed the course feeling well-equipped to excel in my new job as director of marketing at a local tech startup.”

    There are up to 500 spaces available in the Digital Marketing Bootcamp. The bootcamp is open to businesses and employed and unemployed British Columbians, with priority given to employers and individuals impacted by COVID-19.

    Registration is open until July 31, 2020, with the course starting on Aug. 4, 2020. The course will run for six weeks. To register, visit: www.alacritycanada.com/learn

    The Digital Market Bootcamp is one way that the B.C. government is making sure people and businesses have the support they need to restart and rebuild an economy that works for everyone.

    Quotes:

    Richard Egli, managing director, Alacrity Canada —

    “The Alacrity Digital Marketing Bootcamp was created to help students hit the ground running in careers as digital marketers and to help businesses scale their online presence. Graduates of our pilot programs have gone on to start their own digital agencies, expanded their businesses’ online sales, and have leveraged their new skills to support their communities. We’re looking forward to witnessing how this new virtual program will help individuals and businesses across B.C. with economic recovery.”

    Lorri Fehr, CEO, Columbia Lake Technology Centre —

    “Alacrity’s Digital Marketing Bootcamp was the perfect program for our small community of Canal Flats and the Columbia Valley. Not only did the course equip our students with a valuable skill set to help them excel in their careers and business endeavours, it also sparked collaboration, friendship and a strong sense of community among everyone involved.”

    Learn More:

    To register for the Digital Marketing Bootcamp, ask questions or get more information on possible financial support, visit Alacrity Canada: www.alacritycanada.com/learn

  • Coquitlam Shoppers Will Shop Locally – With Safety Measures

    14 days ago

    July 21, 2020

    Coquitlam residents are willing to spend their money locally if they feel safe doing so, according to a new survey.

    About a third of local residents are shopping locally more than before, based on a survey the City conducted in the last two weeks of June to gauge consumer confidence and find out what measures may be required as shopping, in-person dining and travelling begin to re-open.

    Survey respondents pointed to crowds and lineups as top concerns, and most wanted to see physical distancing, cleaning and other measures to feel comfortable visiting in person. More than 1,200 people provided their feedback, most of them Coquitlam residents who either took part in the public survey or are part of the City’s Viewpoint online survey panel.

    Survey Highlights

    The data is being shared with local businesses to help them make informed decisions about how they may need to adapt their operations to meet the needs of their customers.

    According to those surveyed, the pandemic has significantly changed local shopping patterns, with more than three-quarters saying they are shopping less in general. When they do shop, many are taking advantage of physically distant options. About 53 per cent are shopping online more and 28 per cent are ordering more delivery.

    The good news for local businesses is that 30 per cent say they are shopping local more than usual.

    When it comes to visiting businesses or attractions in person, the biggest concerns are crowds (68 per cent), long line-ups to enter (67 per cent), fear of catching COVID-19 (56 per cent), and long line-ups to pay (43 per cent). About a quarter of respondents disliked the inconvenience of physical distancing and 17 per cent mentioned costs.

    Comfort levels varied depending on the activity. Most people feel very or somewhat comfortable visiting parks (83 per cent), buying from a food truck at a park (62 per cent) or visiting local retail businesses in person (57 per cent). About 44 per cent feel very or somewhat comfortable visiting local hair/nail salons or other personal service providers, and about 38 per cent dining in restaurants or pubs.

    The vast majority of respondents said that to make them feel safe visiting in person, businesses need to ensure distance between patrons (84 per cent), limit the number of patrons (82 per cent), conduct regular anti-viral cleaning throughout the day (82 per cent) and install physical distancing equipment such as Plexiglas barriers (79 per cent). There was also high support for customers using hand sanitizer as they enter (78 per cent), staff wearing face masks or shields (71 per cent), and customers wearing face masks (56 per cent).

    Other highlights:

    ·About 60 to 70 per cent would be willing to pay five to 10 per cent more at grocery stores and restaurants to help cover the costs of safety measures – particularly if there was a service attached, such as delivery. About 35 to 45 per cent supported this concept at clothing, electronics and household goods stores.

    ·About 54 per cent will be staying in the Tri-Cities for their vacation, with about half planning day trips around the region or overnight trips in B.C.

    ·Most people commonly rely on store websites (77 per cent) or Google (64 per cent) for store hours and operations during the pandemic.

    Almost 94 per cent of the 1,235 survey respondents said they were Coquitlam residents. The majority of other respondents were Tri-Cities residents. Ages of survey respondents ranged from teenagers to seniors, with 29 per cent falling between the ages of 16 and 44 and the balance distributed equally among those 45 years or older. More than 60 per cent of respondents identified as women.

    An infographic summary and full detailed results, further broken down by age, gender and neighbourhood, can be viewed on the City’s Business Support Portal at www.letstalkcoquitlam.ca/business.

    Supporting the Local Economy

    The consumer survey is part of the City’s efforts to support the local economy during the pandemic. Other initiatives have included:

    • Changes to practices and regulations to cut red tape for businesses, including more online services and relaxed regulations for using outdoor space;
    • Participation in the Tri-Cities #SupportLocal initiative;
    • A survey to identify local business challenges and needs;
    • In-person outreach to share the opportunities and resources available through the City’s economic development action plan and multi-sector Community Support and Recovery Plan;
    • Creation of a Business Support Portal with comprehensive information about opportunities and resources at www.letstalkcoquitlam.ca/business; and
    • Promotion of local businesses during the City’s online summer events including Canada Day and the Summer Concert Series.

    More economic development support initiatives will continue to roll out in the coming weeks and months.

    Join Viewpoint to Have Your Say

    Viewpoint, Coquitlam’s online survey community, is a convenient way to learn about and provide anonymous feedback on City issues, plans and services. Participation can be customized to areas of interest, and all answers are confidential. For information, visit www.coquitlam.ca/viewpoint.

  • More New Patios Coming to Coquitlam

    14 days ago

    COQUITLAM, B.C., July 20, 2020 – There will soon be more patios to enjoy this summer in Coquitlam as the City is expanding the new program to help businesses set up temporary patios and outdoor spaces on public property.

    As part of its efforts to support business recovery from the pandemic, in June the City adopted a simple, expedited process that enabled Coquitlam businesses to quickly and easily expand their patio and business spaces outdoors on their own property.

    Council has now approved the second phase of the program, which allows construction of patios and outdoor spaces on City rights-of-way including sidewalks and parking stalls, where it is safe and practical to do so.

    The potential for these new spaces ranges from a simple patio space such as a few bistro chairs and tables, to a more elaborate parklet-style spaces with platforms, planter boxes, lights and other features.

    Full details on the expanded program are available at www.coquitlam.ca/patios, including information on the application process for businesses.

    The City is also considering a future third phase of the program, which could potentially include special events and activations on City-controlled property such as parklets, street closures and temporary markets.

    New Patios on Private Property

    Following the initial announcement of the program on private property in June, several businesses set up temporary patios. This includes:

    A list of these and other patios is available at www.visitcoquitlam.ca/eat-drink.

    A Flexible Approach to Support Businesses

    The outdoor space expansion program is an example of the flexible, reasonable approach Coquitlam is taking to adapt bylaws and policies during the pandemic. To support businesses, the City has been considering ways to streamline and relax regulations that do not negatively affect public health or community wellbeing.

    For example, earlier this year the City introduced the use of digital signatures, and temporarily changed its development fee structures to allow developers to defer most of the costs of providing City services (such as water and sewer) on their sites to later in the application process.

    Support for businesses is also being provided through the COVID-19 Economic Development Response and Recovery Action Plan and the City’s related multi-sector Community Support and Recovery Plan. A summary of business supports and resources is available through a new portal at www.letstalkcoquitlam.ca/business .

    Join Coquitlam’s Efforts to #SupportLocal

    The City of Coquitlam has joined the Tri-Cities #SupportLocal campaign to assist local businesses, many of which are struggling at this time. Coquitlam strongly encourages residents to #SupportLocal for their shopping and meals; view business listings at www.wegotthistricities.com and www.visitcoquitlam.ca for a directory of 150+ Coquitlam restaurants offering takeout and delivery.

    The City has also posted a video at www.youtube.com/cityofcoquitlam to inspire the community to #SupportLocal.

    Supporting Our Community During the Pandemic

    The City of Coquitlam is here to help, with these resources:

    • Visit www.coquitlam.ca/csrp to learn about the City’s Community Support and Recovery Plan, which is providing immediate and long-term support for the non-profit sector, businesses and residents;
    • Visit www.coquitlam.ca/spirit for a free library of activities for all ages, including fitness, arts and culture, outdoor activities and ways to connect with your community; and
    • Visit www.coquitlam.ca/covid19 for updates on City services and initiatives and COVID-19 health resources.

    Coquitlam residents and businesses are also encouraged to follow the City of Coquitlam on social media (Facebook, Instagram and Twitter) and download the CoquitlamConnect mobile app for up-to-date City information. Links are available at www.coquitlam.ca/connect.

    Media contact

    Kathleen Vincent
    Public Information Officer
    Emergency Operations Centre
    City of Coquitlam
    604-218-1319
    media@coquitlam.ca

  • Government of Canada supports innovative manufacturing businesses - Government of Canada

    18 days ago

    July 16, 2020

    The manufacturing industry is a significant contributor to Quebec’s economic growth, in addition to providing many jobs. The negative impacts of COVID-19 are being felt across many sectors in the economy, and the manufacturing sector has not been spared. Innovation and the integration of new technologies are proving to be key assets to enable SMEs in this industry to remain competitive and to enhance their productivity. By automating their processes, they are transforming how they operate, placing themselves in a better position to face the current situation related to the health crisis.

    These SMEs need support, as the investments in monetary, material and human resources needed to make this shift are often considerable, and some fear it would imperil their financial health.

    Innovation and automation serving business

    The Government of Canada firmly believes that the vitality of an economy is founded on innovation, the creation of value-added products and the development of efficient processes. That is why, for many years now, it has been supporting innovation within businesses and encouraging the acquisition of digital skills.

    Today, the Minister of Economic Development and Official Languages, the Honourable Mélanie Joly, accompanied by the Honourable Jean-Yves Duclos, Member of Parliament for Québec and President of the Treasury Board, took the opportunity during a visit to Valmec to announce financial assistance totalling close to $21 million for 45 projects that have emerged across Quebec.

    These contributions have enabled businesses to acquire and install new digital production equipment and integrate new tools with a view to modernizing their operations.

    The growth of the manufacturing sector is essential for the Quebec economy, and competitiveness is the main issue facing manufacturers, who are confronted with a series of challenges such as productivity delays, labour shortages and funding. Moreover, with current physical distancing measures, the number of workers per square foot has had to be reduced in recent months. Establishing smart factories by investing in technology, automation and robotization is proving to be a key solution, particularly to enhance productivity and reduce human intervention and operating costs, as well as to facilitate the development of new markets.

    Additional information on the projects and financial support is provided in a related backgrounder.

    Quotes

    “We are working with innovative manufacturers to give them the tools they need to develop novel technologies and processes, to the benefit of workers across Quebec’s regions. Thanks to CED’s support, they can leverage innovation, a veritable economic engine and pillar of growth, to stimulate local economies and create good jobs in their regions. Our manufacturing businesses are thus in a better position to face the slowdown caused by COVID-19.”

    The Honourable Mélanie Joly, Member of Parliament for Ahuntsic-Cartierville, Minister of Economic Development and Official Languages and Minister responsible for CED

    “Support for businesses leveraging innovation to grow, prosper and create good jobs is at the heart of the Government of Canada’s action. Here in Québec, like across the entire country, these businesses can count on us to boost their development and better equip them to face the current crisis.”

    The Honourable Jean-Yves Duclos, Member of Parliament for Québec and President of the Treasury Board

  • Government of Canada to invest $8.3 million in western Canadian women entrepreneurs - Government of Canada

    18 days ago

    July 15, 2020

    Canadian women entrepreneurs are contributing to the economic success of our communities. At the same time, they have unique and systemic hurdles to overcome when starting and growing a business, and have been severely affected by the COVID-19 pandemic. For example, many of the sectors where women entrepreneurs tend to operate like retail, accommodation and food services, have been disproportionately impacted by COVID-19.

    To help remedy this situation, Terry Duguid, Parliamentary Secretary to the Minister of Economic Development and Official Languages (Western Economic Diversification Canada), today announced $8.3 million through the Regional Relief and Recovery Fund to support the Women’s Enterprise Initiative (WEI) organizations across Western Canada. PS Duguid made the announcement on behalf of the Honourable Mélanie Joly, Minister of Economic Development and Official Languages and Minister responsible for Western Economic Diversification Canada (WD).

    The Women’s Enterprise Centre in British Columbia, Alberta Women Entrepreneurs, Women Entrepreneurs of Saskatchewan, and the Women’s Enterprise Centre of Manitoba will each receive $2 million in additional loan funds for women entrepreneurs. In addition, $300,000 in operating funding will be divided equally among the four WEIs to meet the increased demand for advisory services and business supports.

    Targeted support for women entrepreneurs in Western Canada

    These organizations will use the funds to assist Canadian women-owned businesses unable to access larger federal relief funding programs by providing them with immediate liquidity to face COVID-19-related challenges. WEI organizations have extensive experience working with women entrepreneurs, assisting them to overcome barriers and challenges in building their businesses. They also have a proven track record in providing loans and after-care services to women entrepreneurs to ensure their long-term success.

    Supporting businesses during this unprecedented time of crisis is an integral part of Canada’s COVID-19 Economic Response Plan. These businesses are the backbone of our economy—they provide good jobs that support families across the country. By supporting employers today, Canada will be in a stronger position as we come out of this crisis.

    Quotes

    “Women entrepreneurs and women-owned businesses are facing unique challenges in Canada and across the West. I’m pleased the Government of Canada is able to provide these supports so they can continue operating and building Canada's economic future. Women entrepreneurs want to go back to building their businesses, and we will be there to help them build back better.

    - The Honourable Mélanie Joly, MP for Ahuntsic-Cartierville, Minister of Economic Development and Official Languages and Minister responsible for Western Economic Diversification Canada

    “Western Canadian women entrepreneurs make incredible contributions to our economy and communities every day. Their economic empowerment is essential for a thriving economy and will be crucial for the economic recovery of western Canadian communities. With WD’s assistance and other Government of Canada supports women-led businesses will come back stronger than ever.”

    - Terry Duguid, Parliamentary Secretary to the Minister of Economic Development and Official Languages (Western Economic Diversification Canada) and to the Minister of Environment and Climate Change (Canada Water Agency)

    “The RRRF will assist in amplifying the supports provided by WESK (and other members of the Women’s Enterprise Initiative) to women entrepreneurs in our province. Women entrepreneurs leveraging the new loan fund can also utilize the wrap around services of WESK to address business recovery in a strategic fashion.”

    - Prabha Mitchell, Chief Executive Officer, Women Entrepreneurs Saskatchewan

  • Supporting innovation for a stronger economy - Government of Canada

    21 days ago

    July 14, 2020

    It is with the support of new technologies that entrepreneurs succeed in developing new products, improving production methods, deploying new marketing strategies and implementing new business processes. Businesses and organizations in all sectors need innovative solutions to stand out from the competition, improve their productivity and ensure sustainable growth.

    As one of the largest tech and research hubs in Canada, the Ottawa region is harnessing the transformative power of digital technology to support industries across the Canadian economy. These technologies support skilled jobs and economic growth, and allow the region to be more resilient in the face of COVID-19.

    Today, Karen McCrimmon, Member of Parliament for Kanata–Carleton, on behalf of the Honourable Mélanie Joly, Minister of Economic Development and Official Languages and Minister responsible for FedDev Ontario, announced a total FedDev Ontario investment of nearly $11.2 million to support the scale-up and growth of three leading tech firms in the region: Lytica Inc. (Lytica), Solace Corp. (Solace) and You.i TV.

    Lytica Inc. uses artificial intelligence (AI) to provide real-time market insights to help companies find competitive prices and suppliers for electronic components. With a $1.08-million contribution from FedDev Ontario, Lytica will transition its current web-based portal to a Software as a Service (SaaS) model, enabling customers to integrate Lytica’s pricing analysis tools into their existing procurement software. This shift to a more customized, on-demand service will increase the platform’s value and global presence, bringing its customer base to over 500 clients worldwide. Through this project, 16 skilled jobs will be created in the Ottawa region.

    Solace Corp. enables the smart, secure and efficient movement of data for large global banks, telecommunications providers, and gaming companies. With nearly 20 years of experience and more than 350 employees, its technology is an essential tool for large corporations with high volumes of data looking to connect across a wide range of platforms, Clouds, time zones and locations. Its recently launched PubSub+ event streaming and management platform will enable Solace to address new users through various new industries like automotive, manufacturing and healthcare. A $7-million contribution from FedDev Ontario will allow the company to promote its new software solution across new industries, significantly accelerating Solace’s growth. Through this investment, the company will secure its position as one of the first-to-market in this new category of modern technology and create 67 skilled jobs in the Ottawa region.

    You.i TV is a leading Canadian technology company that provides a video streaming development platform that helps the world's leading TV and media brands distribute content across multiple digital media devices (including mobile, set-top boxes, game consoles, smart TVs and streaming devices). With FedDev Ontario’s $3.1-million repayable contribution, You.i TV will adapt its products and expand its market reach to new segments organically and through partnerships. The company expects to double its revenues in the next three years by increasing its market development beyond North America and television and media market segments, resulting in a new global clientele. In addition, You.i TV will develop a world-class innovation space to foster engagement with local universities and customers to push new technology boundaries and develop local talent. The project will create 55 skilled jobs in the Ottawa region.

    The COVID-19 pandemic has highlighted the critical importance of technology and propelled new technological developments and trends. With workplaces and industries shifting online and the need for virtual solutions greater than ever, tech firms like these have managed to adapt their models to continue to service their clients, while finding opportunities for development and growth.

    With Government of Canada support, these three projects are expected to create over 140 skilled jobs across Ottawa, primarily in the fields of science, technology, engineering and math (STEM). Together, the projects will generate more than $28 million in total investment for the Ottawa Region and significantly increase regional supply chain spending.

    Quotes

    “These three advanced technology projects build on Ottawa’s history of tech research and innovation, and ensure that we keep pushing the boundaries to grow our regional economy. These companies are leaders in their industries and will not only strengthen our technology cluster, but will create over 140 quality skilled jobs across the Ottawa region.”
    — Karen McCrimmon, Member of Parliament for Kanata–Carleton

    “Across the country, technology is transforming traditional industries, business development and the way in which we collaborate. Helping companies innovate so that they may increase their competitiveness and create high-quality jobs has been at the heart of our priorities for many years. We support these successful Ontario SMEs that will be part of the solution to give back good jobs to Ontarians, contribute to the vitality of our local economies and, for some, fight the pandemic. As shown by today's announcement, we were there for them before the pandemic and we will continue to work together to find solutions and come back even stronger.”
    — The Honourable Mélanie Joly, Minister of Economic Development and Official Languages and Minister responsible for the Federal Economic Development Agency for Southern Ontario

    “Lytica provides comprehensive and trusted component pricing intelligence for the electronics industry. Working with leading electronics companies globally, we drive cost reduction, lower risk and save our clients millions in procurement costs. We are thrilled to be working with FedDev Ontario. Their support is a great help to Lytica as it enables us to accelerate the transition to a full SaaS business model and address an ever-growing global customer base.”
    — Martin Sendyk, President and CEO, Lytica

    “Solace enables organizations around the world to operate in real-time by moving data from business events like "order entered," "boarding pass scanned," and "product shipped" from where they occur to where they need to be—and with lightning speed. Operating in real-time is emerging as a critical requirement for digital transformation, and the event-streaming and management technology that Solace provides is part of what IT needs to achieve it. FedDev Ontario's support will be critical in helping Solace become a leader in this emerging global market. We are incredibly grateful for the expanded growth opportunity it will provide."
    — Mychelle Mollot, Chief Marketing Officer, Solace

    “As demand for streaming services and the proliferation of consumer devices surge worldwide, our mission has never been more important: help the world’s largest brands own the glass and deliver content everywhere. This investment will help fuel our expansion into new markets and verticals that will help our customers reach new viewers and subscribers, wherever they are watching.”
    — Jason Flick, CEO and Co-founder, You.i TV

  • B.C.’s strong fiscal response, economic foundation support people - Government of B.C.

    21 days ago

    July 14, 2020

    The COVID-19 pandemic will mark British Columbians' lifetimes in ways never thought possible, and the Province is investing in people, businesses and communities to see them through the pandemic and build back better.

    “B.C. has made extraordinary investments in people and businesses through B.C.’s COVID-19 Action Plan and we will continue to provide the supports people need as the pandemic and the economic impacts evolve,” said Carole James, Minister of Finance.

    The B.C. government has released an economic and fiscal update for 2020-21 to provide a summary of COVID-19 investments to date, as well as a scenario of revenue and deficit projections.

    Government has supported people and businesses with $6.26 billion in COVID-19 supports to date. That includes the $5 billion in supplementary spending for B.C.’s COVID-19 Action Plan supports, such as workers benefits, rent supplements, income and disability assistance supports and economic recovery funding. These are in addition to $1.26 billion in other tax and relief measures for people and businesses, including the one-time increase to the climate action tax credit and property tax reductions for businesses.

    With the pandemic response for British Columbians, and a significant revenue decline due to the pandemic, the Province’s total operating deficit for 2020-21 could be $12.5 billion, based on projections developed by the Ministry of Finance.

    “B.C.’s safe restart plan is creating signs of hope for our economy as consumer confidence increases. These results have only been possible because of our strong public health measures,” James said. “As we continue our work to create a strong recovery, we also have an opportunity to build a stronger B.C. that works for everyone in our province.”

    British Columbia has made progress flattening the curve because of its strong health policy and a commitment to help keep each other safe. The Province is building an economic recovery plan that puts people first, with input from British Columbians, businesses and community organizations – so everyone has a good job and a secure future.

    “The pandemic has exposed underlying gaps in our economy and society,” James said. “We have been reminded of the need for strong public services and supports, workplace safety and our collective responsibility to take care of each other, and I’m looking forward to putting people’s input into action as we move forward with the economic recovery of our province.”

    As part of the COVID-19 Action Plan, $1.5 billion has been earmarked for economic recovery measures to be announced in September.

  • Canada Supports Inclusive Growth Through Economic Recovery - Government of Canada

    25 days ago

    July 9, 2020

    The Government of Canada is committed to innovation and building a clean energy future. This commitment will be more important than ever as we begin to reopen the economy and plan our recovery from the COVID-19 crisis.

    The Honourable Seamus O’Regan, Canada’s Minister of Natural Resources, today participated in the International Energy Agency’s (IEA) Clean Energy Transitions Summit, the first IEA ministerial-level meeting entirely dedicated to the clean energy future. Minister O’Regan joined leaders from governments and industries around the world to discuss actions for sustainable recovery and clean energy technology innovation.

    Minister O’Regan led a ministerial session on inclusive growth, which focused on placing people and communities at the heart of economic recovery and the long-term transition to a clean energy future. In recognition of the unprecedented and extensive impacts of the COVID-19 pandemic, he highlighted the importance of taking action to support workers and create the conditions for a more inclusive workforce.

    Governments and industries alike have an opportunity to create more equitable and inclusive employment growth. Mobilizing the participation of traditionally underrepresented groups, including women, youth, racialized groups and Indigenous peoples, will be vital to the post-COVID-19 recovery and long-term economic growth.

    Minister O’Regan also announced that Canada is leading the development of a reporting framework under the Equal by 30 initiative that will enable signatories to track and report on the concrete actions they are taking to close the gender gap across the energy sector. Led by Natural Resources Canada, Equal by 30 is a global campaign under the international Clean Energy Education and Empowerment (C3E) Initiative, a joint effort by the Clean Energy Ministerial and the International Energy Agency to advance gender equality in the energy sector. To date, close to 150 organizations across the energy sector, including governments, companies and non-profit institutions, have taken the Equal by 30 pledge.

    The government remains committed to building a clean energy future that will not only support our natural resource sectors through this tough economic time but also grow the economy and create good jobs.

  • Historic COVID-19 Plan Provides Canadians With the Support They Need to Get Through the Economic Crisis - Government of Canada

    22 days ago

    July 8, 2020

    The COVID-19 crisis is the challenge of our generation. The Government of Canada has responded with rapid and broad-based emergency support measures to protect the health and economic well-being of Canadians.

    Today, Finance Minister Bill Morneau presented an economic and fiscal snapshot. The federal government has used its strong fiscal position to stabilize the economy and support Canadians by putting in place the largest economic aid package in generations.

    While the toll of COVID-19 on the broader economy in 2020 is expected to be the largest and most sudden economic contraction since the Great Depression, measures to flatten the pandemic curve in Canada are paying off, and efforts are underway across the country to safely and gradually reopen the Canadian economy. The actions and investments of governments across Canada to date have helped us get this far. But the road towards recovery remains long and uncertain. Today, and in the months to come, our economic health will largely depend on our public health.

    Canada’s COVID-19 Economic Response Plan is ensuring Canadians have the support they need to put food on the table and keep a roof over their head. Representing nearly 14 per cent of Canada’s gross domestic product (GDP), the Plan includes more than $230 billion in measures to protect the health and safety of Canadians and provide direct support to Canadians, businesses and other employers, and up to $85 billion in tax and customs duty payment deferrals to meet liquidity needs of businesses and Canadian families.

    With comparatively low levels of debt, the Government of Canada has the room to borrow and support the Canadian economy. In fact, even given Canada’s increased borrowing needs due to the COVID-19 response, public debt charges are expected to fall in 2020-21, as a result of historically low borrowing rates.

    Through responsible fiscal management, the government is building a bridge from an emergency to a safer place where we can build a more resilient economy for the future.

    The government will continue to ensure Canadians are supported through this crisis and stands ready to take additional actions to mitigate the impacts of the pandemic.

    Quotes

    “The COVID-19 pandemic has had a major impact on the social and economic well-being of Canadians in every part of the country. For many it has meant lost jobs, lost hours and lost wages. Our government has understood, from the moment this pandemic began, that it was our role to step in to support Canadians and stabilize the economy. Our investments have meant that Canadians and Canadian businesses, instead of drowning in debt and closing up shop, will be better positioned to get back at it. As economies gradually and safely reopen, we will continue to ensure that Canadians have access to the support they need.”

    - Bill Morneau, Minister of Finance

    Quick facts

    Today’s economic and fiscal snapshot noted that:

    • As businesses and many sectors of the economy closed or curtailed their activities as a result of the pandemic, the Canadian and global economies took a severe hit. In Canada, 5.5 million Canadians – 30per cent ofthe workforce – either lost their jobs or saw their hours significantly scaled back over March and April.
    • Private sector economists expect an annualized decline of over 40 per cent in Canada’s real GDP in the second quarter of this year. They expect the economy to contract by 6.8 per cent in 2020 as a whole, its sharpest drop since the Great Depression, before rebounding by 5.5 per cent in 2021.
    • There are now growing signs that the worst of the economic shock is behind the Canadian economy, as the gradual and safe reopening of the economy continues. The shape of Canada’s economic recovery is uncertain and highly dependent on public health.
    • The decisive and substantial support providedthrough the government’s economic response planhelped prevent further costly damage to the Canadian economy by replacing the more than $40 billion lost in labour income, preventing the contractionin real GDPto reach over 10 per cent in 2020 and the unemployment rate to rise by a further 2 percentage points.
    • The temporary measures implemented through the government’s economic response plan will have a significant impact on the federal deficit.Coupled with the severe deterioration in the economic outlook, these result in a projected deficit of $343.2 billion in 2020-21.
    • While this year’s deficit estimate is elevated, the government’s response is in line with the fiscal response deployed by other comparator countries.Coming out of the crisis, Canada is expected to maintain its low debt advantage among G7 countries. The government’s commitment to maintaining this advantage will help ensure that future generations are not burdened with COVID-19 related debt.