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Global Ventures Magazine Jan/Feb 2011


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In January 2009, Saskatchewan Trade and Export Partnership (STEP) introduced Global Ventures, a bi-monthly publication designed to carry a message both on behalf of and to the business community at a provincial, national, and international level. For STEP, this publication is an appropriate medium to relay very timely messaging to both the local business community as well as the network of international contacts that this organization has developed over the past twelve years. STEP has a proven track record of building local and international relationships that are vital to the success of exporters.

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Global Ventures Magazine Jan/Feb 2011

  1. 1. GLOBALVENTURES VOLUME THREE ISSUE ONE • JANUARY/FEBRUARY 2011A STEP PUBLICATION HIGHLIGHTING SASKATCHEWAN BUSINESS CAMELINA OILSEED: FROM ANCIENT TIMES TO FLYING HIGH Seedtec-Terramax highlights the many benefits of camelina oil seed. SPACE AGE AGRICULTURE Agtron Enterprises Inc. is bringing technology to farms worldwide. WIND ENERGY GOES VERTICAL VBINE’s vertical axis wind turbine is taking the world of green energy by storm. THAILAND IS THE LAND OF SMILES FOR BUSINESS This tropical paradise could mean opportunity for Saskatchewan business.
  2. 2. We are committed to lookafter the air, water and landsurrounding our operations.Positive energy forthe environment
  3. 3. GLOBALVENTURES is the official bi-monthly publication of Saskatchewan Trade and Export Partnership (STEP). Submissions to GLOBALVENTURES are welcomed.The Editor reserves the right to edit for clarity and length.Please contact the Editor for copy submission deadlines. inside VOLUME THREE ISSUE ONE JANUARY/FEBRUARY 2011 PUBLISHERS Saskatchewan Trade and Export Partnership (STEP) cover 10 Thailand is the Land Regina Office: P Box 1787 .O. of Smiles for business 320 - 1801 Hamilton Street, Regina, SK S4P 3C6 As global food producers, Saskatchewan Regina 306.787.9210 / Toll Free: 1.877.313.7244 and Thailand share elements in their Toll Free: 1.888.XPORTSK economies, but when dealing with the Saskatoon Office: Land of Smiles cultural sensitivities 400 - 402 21st Street East, Saskatoon, SK S7K 0C3 must be considered. Saskatoon 306.933.6551 / Toll Free: 1.877.313.7244 Toll Free: 1.888.XPORTSK Concept Media . features 2629 Angus Boulevard, Regina, SK S4T 2A6 12 Camelina Oilseed: 306.545.6099 / From Ancient Times EDITOR to Flying High Pat Rediger BENCHMARK PUBLIC RELATIONS INC. At the department store cosmetics desk, 306.522.9326 / ASSOCIATE EDITOR in the fuel tanks of jets overhead, or on ourLindsay Thorimbert BENCHMARK PUBLIC RELATIONS INC. plates as Omega-3 and Omega-6 meat, eggs 306.522-0903 / and dairy, camelina oil seed is finding CONTRIBUTORS applications in diverse industries. Karlen Herauf Pat Rediger 14 Space Age Agriculture Barbara Woolsey A lot can change in 30 years. Bill Baker Lindsay Thorimbert of Agtron Enterprises knows this as well STEP as anyone. His products keep farmers on the cutting edge of technology, maximizing DESIGN their profit margins. Bob Anderson CONCEPT MEDIA 16 Wind Energy PRODUCTION goes Vertical Lorelle Anderson CONCEPT MEDIA With a smartly designed wind turbine, VBINE Energy is poised to break into the international green energy market and SALES transform how energy is drawn from Bob Harvey CONCEPT MEDIA the wind. 1.306.591.6430 PRINTING Western Litho Printers Ltd. / Regina, SK, Canada BIZ notes 4 Message from the DISTRIBUTION President and CEO Prairie Advertising Ltd. / Regina, SK, Canada A global turnaround in 2011. Publication Mail Agreement #41786012 6 Where in the Return undeliverable mail to Circulation Department, 2629 Angus Boulevard, Regina, SK S4T 2A6. World is STEP? Upcoming international trade events. ON THE COVER A waterfront market in Bankok, Thailand. 22 Enhancing Chinese Business, Opportunities in Education, and much more. 26 Staff Profile Heather Swan: A World of Possibility at STEP. PRINTED IN CANADA JANUARY/FEBRUARY 2011 • GLOBALVENTURES 3
  4. 4. Message from the President & CEO Another remarkable year for Saskatchewan Exports!W e have just completed an in- of our economy is that we continue to why, and how we can. teresting year for Saskatche- have strength in multiple unrelated sec- The January - March quarter represents wan exporters that has mixed tors that will allow us to manage through the last quarter in our corporate fiscalresults. When you consider the chal- whatever the challenges may be. year and we are aggressively working inlenges of 2009, Saskatchewan’s exports What about your company and your multiple sectors. I encourage you to re-this year will likely end up around $24B plans for 2011? I once had an old friend view the “Where in the World is STEP”which is an impressive increase over who told me his business plan was to sell article in this issue as there may be a mis-2009 which was $21B but no where close his products for as much as he could get, sion that you would like to learn moreto 2008 which was $31B. These num- for as long as he could, and to as many about.bers represent international exports and people as he could. He is still a good One of the noted missions is a multi-when you tag our interprovincial exports friend but he is not in business anymore. sectoral mission planned for India andinto the equation with an additional 50%; Does your business plan speak to signifi- Bangladesh. This is actually a combina-our exports continue to be remarkable cant changes in marketing and promo- tion of three separate missions with nu-when considering the global recovery. tion or is your focus on cutting costs and merous city stops and by far the largest I mentioned the results are mixed and improving efficiency or more? mission ever planned by obvious example would be compar- The most successful companies I know We are expecting a large contingent toing the manufacturing (agricultural ma- look for a crossover or a convergence of attend for multiple reasons but the mostchinery) industry to the pulse industry uncommon events. One obvious example important reason is because Saskatch-(peas and lentils). The 2008 - 2009 export would be baby boomers retiring and buy- ewan is the largest Canadian exporter toyears were hard on the manufacturing ing investment properties in the South- these two countries. This is not by acci-sector in countries such as Russia and ern USA with our currency at par. These dent and our growth potential is expo-Kazakhstan where business has not re- two events are more historic than they nential. Therefore, we need to be therecovered from the financial crisis and now are common. What is happening in your and we need to be bold. Please visit ourfaces a crisis over drought. Correspond- company and within your sector that website for moreingly, the pulse industry has weathered speaks to this convergence where oppor- details. Now may be the right time forthe storm very well and gross exports tunities to reap significant rewards exist? you to consider where your company,and prices have maintained, and in some In the New Year, we will be sending convergence, and India will all intersect.cases, even risen when managing global our Annual Membership Survey that willcurrency fluctuation. speak to this convergence and we will The bottom line is that Saskatchewan also ask you to contemplate on the yearis doing well but we can not take any- that was as well as the year that will be.thing for granted. It is our expectation This year, we will utilize an electronicthat 2011, interpreting that the global format to gather the survey information Lionel Labelle, President & CEOrebound will continue, will gain traction and you will be notified of the process Saskatchewan Trade andand we will show another significant in advance. Again, I ask you to take the Export Partnership (STEP)increase that will not return us to 2008 time to respond as we can not serve youlevels but we will be close. The beauty better unless you tell us the what, where,4 GLOBALVENTURES •JANUARY/FEBRUARY 2011
  5. 5. STEPBOARD CHAIR Board of Directors Dale Lemke Andrew TraversShannon Jakes President & CEO Chief Executive OfficerSenior Manager Display Systems International Inc. Prairie West TerminalCIBC Commercial Banking Greg Larson Kevin DowVICE-CHAIR CEO PresidentTim Wiens Schulte Industries Ltd. The Larson Group of CompaniesPresident & CEOO & T Farms Alanna Koch Greg Menzies Deputy MinisterIMMEDIATE PAST CHAIR President & CEO Saskatcheawn Ministry ofMurray Daku Wigmore AgricultureVice PresidentHitachi Canadian Industries Ltd. Sandra Purdy Chris Dekker President CEONgee Cau Prairie Berries Inc. Enterprise SaskatchewanChief Executive OfficerMarketel Paul Degelman Doug Moen Sales & Marketing Manager Deputy Minister to the PremierCory Furman Degelman Industries Ltd. Executive Council andPartner Office of the PremierMacPherson Leslie & Tyerman LLP JANUARY/FEBRUARY 2011 • GLOBALVENTURES 5
  6. 6. Where in the World is STEP? JANUARY Virtual Trade Mission - Chile FITTskills International Western Canadian Crop - Mining Sector Trade Training Date: January 18, 2011 Date: January 18, 20, 25, 27, 2011 Production Show As an added service delivery for mem- Location: Regina, Saskatchewan Date: January 10 - 13, 2011 bers, STEP will host a Virtual Trade Saskatchewan Trade and Export Partner- Location: Saskatoon, SK Mission with a focus on products and ship offers FITTskills International TradeThe Western Canadian Crop Production services for the mining industry. Due to Training, unique international tradeShow has become Western Canada’s pre- increased demand and rapid expansion, training, formed from an expressed inter-mier grain industry showcase by present- buyers are looking for equipment, com- est by Saskatchewan companies to makeing information to producers on the latest puter technology, consulting services, international trade training, services, and products. STEP products/services in this sector. The Vir- Please note the new delivery methodwill actively promote the show to attract tual Trade Mission option provides par- with evening classes now offered for theincoming business people involved in the ticipants with an opportunity to meet following training module:purchase and distribution of seed, crops, qualified buyers from the comfort ofand agricultural equipment from markets their home/office computer. Global Businessaround the world. Environment Contact: Dan Maynard, Technology & Contact: Tim Marshall, Registration Deadline: January 7, 2011 Marketing Trade Specialist Senior Director, Asia-Africa Contact: Blair Hudyma, Telephone: (306) 787-2222 Telephone: (306) 787-2191 Programs & Training Specialist Telephone: (306) 787-3223 GLOBALVENTURES •JANUARY/FEBRUARY 2011
  7. 7. Trade Development Mission Energy, Utility, and Business Luncheon - - Central Europe Environmental Conference Saskatchewan Trade and Date: January 24 - February 3, 2011 Date: January 31 - February 2, 2011 Export Partnership (STEP) Locations: Czech Republic and Hungary Location: Phoenix, AZAs part of the continuing development STEP is recruiting members to attend the & Saskatchewan Youngof Saskatchewan’s agriculture machin- 14th Annual Energy, Utility and Environ- Professionals andery sector in Europe, a trade mission is mental Conference which will bring to- Entrepreneurs (SYPE)planned to European Union countries. gether utility, industry, and government Date: February 9, 2011Following on the successful visit to Po- representatives to discuss critical topics, Location: Saskatoon, Saskatchewanland and Hungary in 2009, STEP’s man- exchange ideas, and inspire future inno- STEP has partnered with SYPE to host aufacturing team will visit the markets vation in energy and its impact on the business luncheon and presentation fo-where recent development from the environment. The trade mission will also cusing on “Where, What, and How Much2010 WCFPS have netted additional in- allow participants to showcase products Saskatchewan Companies Export.” STEPterest and partner developments. and services to over 3000 senior dele- staff from the Exporter Readiness Pro- Contact: Rob Ziola, gates from the United States and Canada. gram will provide an overview pertaining Senior Director, Manufacturing Contact: David Froh, Trade Specialist, to why exporting is important for enter- Telephone: (306) 933-6557 Technology, Services & Resources prises of all sizes and areas of focus when Telephone: (306) 787-7928 researching new foreign target markets. Contact: Jeff Fang, Export Development Analyst BC Foodservice Expo 2011 FEBRUARY Telephone: (306) 787-9687 Date: January 30 - 31, 2011 Location: Vancouver, BC Education and Training,STEP is now recruiting member compa- Rural Development BioFach Organic Trade Shownies to participate in the BC Foodservice & Agriculture, Date: February 16 - 19, 2011Expo 2011. The event is Western Cana- Environment Mission Location: Nuremberg, Germanyda’s largest hospitality trade-only show Date: February 7 - 11, 2011 STEP will lead a trade mission to the Bio-representing the province’s $10 billion Location: Washington, DC Fach Organic Trade Show, the world’srestaurant and food service industry. The The mission, delivered by STEP as part of largest organic trade fair. Over 2000event offers an excellent opportunity for the Canadian Private Sector Liaison Offi- exhibitors from over 60 countries willmembers to showcase products to buy- cer (PSLO) Network, will focus on sectors attend. The event will be of interest toers in the food service, restaurant, and including Education and Training, Ru- organic and natural products producers,institutional trade sectors. ral Development & Agriculture, and the processors of raw materials, convenience Contact: Jordan Gaw, Environment. Scheduled meetings will foods, grains, seeds, pulses, herbs, spices, Trade Specialist, Agri-value include The World Bank, Inter-American health food suppliers, consumer goods, Telephone: (306) 787-7940 Development Bank, Millennium Chal- and industry associations. BioFach pro- lenge Corporation and the Asian Devel- vides a positive venue for the industry to opment Bank. examine market figures/developments, Contact: Angela Wasylynka, trends and strategies. STEP will be in- Executive Director - Export Services volved with a group display at the show, Telephone: (306) 787-3972 arranging meetings with buyers, and rep- resenting non-attending members. Two ways to get it done, faster. Harvest Faster Increase combine capacity 306.296.2297 Turn your John Deere • by up to 20 percent. haying windrower into a high-efficiency swather. Grain Belt Header JANUARY/FEBRUARY 2011 • GLOBALVENTURES 7
  8. 8. Contact: Jennifer Evancio, tions where participants can either take and represent non-attending members inDirector, Trade Development, Agri-Value part in all or in a portion of the planned the environmental sector. Telephone: (306) 787-7945 events. These countries regions present Contact: David Froh, Trade Specialist, remarkable growth opportunities for Sas- Technology, Services & Resources katchewan. Plan to be involved. Telephone: (306) 787-7928 Market Development Contact: Brad Michnik, Executive Mission - Secondary Director, Trade DevelopmentValue-Added Wood Products Telephone (306) 933-6555 CONEXPO - CONAGG Date: March 22 - 26, 2011 Date: February 23 - 25, 2011 Tim Marshall, Location: Las Vegas, NV Location: Minneapolis, MN Senior Director, Asia - Africa CONEXPO - CONAGG, arranged by theSTEP’s manufacturing team will lead a Telephone: (306) 787-2191 Association of Equipment Manufactur-market development mission with sec- ers (AEM), is the international gatheringondary value-added wood producers.The mission will expose Saskatchewan place for the construction industry. Theproducers to potential export opportuni- Natural Products event showcases the latest equipment,ties in Minnesota while gaining an under- Expo West 2011 products, services, and technologiesstanding of the market, understanding Date: March 10 - 13, 2011 while attracting over 2,000 exhibitors.the level of competition, meeting poten- Location: Anaheim, CA STEP will participate with an outdoor dis-tial dealers, distributors, and wholesal- STEP is recruiting member companies to play at the event and expects to have aers. The mission will include an industry participate in the Natural Products Expo number of members session, attendance at a build- West (NPE) Trade Show. The event is the Contact: Rob Ziola,ing products tradeshow as well as one- USA’s largest natural products trade show Senior Director, Manufacturingon-one matchmaking meetings. with over 30,000 retailers, manufactur- Telephone: (306) 933-6557 Contact: Stacey Sauer, ers, industry members, exhibitors and Trade Specialist, Manufacturing media in attendance. The mission will Telephone: (306) 933-5239 include tours, seminars, and workshops with SupplyExpo occurring in conjunc- tion to the NPE and relevant to the raw MARCH materials component of the industry. Contact: Jordan Gaw,Trade Development Mission Trade Specialist, Agri-Value - India and Bangladesh Telephone: (306) 787-7940 Date: March 6 - 20, 2011 Locations: Bangladesh, IndiaThe trade mission may be the largest Americana 2011STEP has ever planned and managed. Date: March 22 - 24, 2011The missions are defined into two sec- Location: Montreal, PQtors including the pulse industry as well STEP’s Technology & Professional Ser-as a multi-sectoral focus around business vices team will attend Americana 2011to business meetings, the emerging bio- and organize a business developmenteconomy and investment attraction. Each mission that will involve a group displaymission will have multiple city destina- at the trade show, meetings with buyers, Young’s Equipment Inc. is your authorized CASE IH Dealer carrying the full line of Case Agricultural Equipment, including Case High Clearance Sprayers. We also represent other quality equipment manufacturers, including Bourgault, Apache Sprayers and Versatile Tractors. Young’s Equipment Inc. is proud to be recognized as the Farm Equipment Magazine 2009 Dealership of the Year! Assiniboia Moose Jaw Regina Windthorst Weyburn www.youngsequipment.com8 GLOBALVENTURES •JANUARY/FEBRUARY 2011
  10. 10. Thailand is the Land of Smiles for business W ith a population of over nine export potential for the province is pres-BY BARBARA WOOLSEY million, Bangkok is quickly be- ently in agriculture -- particularly food coming the production hub of ingredients, pulses and livestock genet- Barbara Woolsey: Southeast Asia. Positioned conveniently in ics such as dairy and pigs, said Ron Hoff- STEP Journalism Fellow the heart of the region, Thailand is more mann, Canada’s ambassador to Thailand. Barbara Woolsey is the first recipient than just a dream vacation spot – the In 2009 alone, Canadian exports of ag- of STEP’s University of Regina Journalism country also boasts a strong transport in- ri-food products to Thailand accounted Fellowship. As a result she spent a three- frastructure, efficient labour market and for $112 million. Major exports included month term writing for the Bangkok a sophisticated economy with developed wheat, oil seeds, soybeans and potatoes. Post in Thailand beginning in September clusters across the value chain. “With its expanding competitiveness, 2010. The Bangkok Post is Thailand’s Other major centres such as Hong Saskatchewan agri-food and livestock in- leading English language daily, recog- Kong, Beijing and Tokyo are only a short- dustries have good potential in the Thai nized across Southeast Asia for it strong haul flight away, but there are also plenty market,” said Hoffmann, who is also the business, social and political reporting. of opportunities for Saskatchewan busi- ambassador to Laos, Cambodia and Bur- Woolsey is in her third year studying nesses to be successful in the “Land of ma. “Saskatchewan’s cutting-edge agri- journalism, with a minor in political sci- Smiles.” cultural biotechnology is well positioned ence. She is the Op-Ed editor at the Caril- Both Canada and Thailand are major to forge innovation and academic link- lon, the U of R’s student newspaper, and global food producers, so the greatest ages with Thailand.” her work has been syndicated to other university publications in Canada. In 2009, STEP committed to a funding arrangement where one journalism stu- dent every year would be given the oppor- tunity to travel internationally to develop their craft. Successful applicants for the scholar- ship must be enrolled in the Bachelor of Arts in Journalism or Bachelor of Journal- ism program, maintain an average over 75 per cent, have 30 credit hours toward their degree and submit an 800 to 1,000 word essay explaining how the scholar- ship will advance their journalism studies. Keith Crosby working on the Udon Thani project (Photo credit Keith Crosby)10 GLOBALVENTURES •JANUARY/FEBRUARY 2011
  11. 11. dealing politely and with respect is cru- has been waiting for a mining licence cial. Never lose your temper or raise your since 2003. voice and when meeting new acquain- Political tension and bureaucratic red tances do so by waiing – placing the tape are what has kept the multi-million palms together in a prayer-like motion dollar project on hold, he said. while slightly bowing. Using the honor- “It’s legitimate to fear doing business in ific “Khun” (pronounced koon) followed Thailand because of the political unrest,” by the first name when addressing both Crosby said. “There is a constant change of men and women is also a nice touch. ministers, about every six months, which Thai people are known for being loyal is difficult. It’s truly affected this project. and keeping their word, so the signing of Every time the government changes ... we a contract is the true beginning of a solid have to re-educate the ministers. So you collaboration. However, these relation- can’t get ahead. It’s been a real problem ships need to be developed over a long ever since I’ve been here and I don’t see period of time -- sometimes years, before how that’s going to improve. anything is written in legal ink. “It’s very unfortunate that the mining “There’s no question you need pa- licence has been held back for so long. tience,” said Keith Crosby, manager of If this project could go ahead, it wouldAmbassador Ron Hoffmann speaking at the mean thousands of direct jobs and ser- the technical and engineering depart- Canadian Trade Mission to Thailand ment of the formerly Canadian and now vice-related appointments in the poorest Biofuels such as ethanol, biodiesel Thai-owned Asia Pacific Potash Corpora- province of the country.”and biogas could also be future areas tion (APPC). “But it’s just like going to any While Thailand’s large domestic andof collaboration, since Saskatchewan is Asian country. It’s a matter of building export market has unlimited potentialCanada’s largest source of agricultural confidence and gaining trust between for foreign investment, it’s important tobiomass. the parties. But once you have that trust, make efforts to understand the culture, “These industries are in their infancy it’s an entirely different experience.” learn the language and find the perfectin Thailand,” said Hoffman. “But as one Crosby is a geological engineer special- Thai representative for your businessof only five major net food exporters in izing in potash mining and development. abroad.the world, the sector is poised to grow. After working in Esterhazy for around “(There are) continuing problems with[It could] be an area of possible future eight years, he left in 1993 to begin an corruption and a need to overhaul thecooperation between Thailand and Sas- exploration project in the Udon Thani educational system in order to maintainkatchewan.” province of north-east Thailand. APPC competitiveness and encourage innova- While most of the country’s labour has since discovered the country’s first tion,” said Hoffmann. “But in general theforce works in the agricultural sector, economic deposit of potash and what fundamentals for doing business in Thai-Thailand’s goods and services exports Crosby calls one of the best undeveloped land are excellent. It’s a great place to doaccount for an increasing value of $105 deposits in the world, but the company business.”billion annually. Other opportunities forSaskatchewan businesses could possiblyinclude clean energy and student recruit-ment. “The Thai government has long be-lieved in an open, laissez-faire economy.Foreign investment is welcome and vari-ous incentives are granted to attract for-eign investment,” said Hoffmann. “But ifyou are to succeed in doing business inThailand, you have to be committed tobuilding relationships, often on a verypersonal level.” While the country is known for beingaffectionate and welcoming to visitors,trust can take quite a while to develop in Former minister of trade Stockwell Day, HE Mr. Kiat Sitthiamorn, Presidenta business setting. The culture has great of the Thailand Trade Representative Office with Hoffmann (both photos courtesyinfluence on professional relationships – of Embassy of Canada in Bangkok) JANUARY/FEBRUARY 2011 • GLOBALVENTURES 11
  12. 12. Camelina Oilseed:From Ancient Times to Flying High BY KARLEN HERAUF F arming has no doubt become a modern science. Despite unpre- dictable factors such as weather and insects, producers are capable of do- ing more and more each year to control crop yields and quality, and to get their products to market. Producers cannot do it alone, though. It takes years of research and develop- ment to fine-tune crops that are resistant to drought, cold, insects and disease; to perfect seeding and harvesting methods; and to provide organized and efficient handling systems. Seedtec-Terramax provides both exten- sive research and development and an efficient handling system to assist with the integration of new grains and spe- ciality crops into the market. The com- pany identifies, locates and organizes the collection of large quantities of grain for both domestic and overseas markets. Seedtec-Terramax also aims to enhance the economic sustainability of agriculture through the introduction of new variet- ies and crop kinds. One of these crops is called camelina. An oilseed similar to canola, camelina is agronomically suitable to farmers for several reasons. First, it can be handled with conven- tional equipment, so it does not require major initial investment. It is drought and cold tolerant so it can be planted at different times of the year and will grow well in a climate like Saskatchewan’s. Seedtec-Terramax has had success fall planting camelina for harvest the follow- ing year; it is also found to be a fast-grow- ing crop, able to produce yield within 80 to 90 days when spring planted. This is beneficial when faced with a wet spring because camelina can be planted in June for a regular September harvest.12 GLOBALVENTURES •JANUARY/FEBRUARY 2011
  13. 13. Furthermore, camelina has low disease are considered essential fatty acids be- Companies are committing to the use ofsusceptibility so it does not require fun- cause the body needs them, but cannot bio-fuels to help achieve environmentalgicides to the same degree that canola produce them. Camelina meal, a high goals, and governments are beginningdoes, nor does it require insecticides as protein by-product of the oil, can be fed to form legislation for required percentdoes canola. Saving on fungicides and in- to animals to create Omega 3 meat, dairy bio-fuel component for flights enteringsecticides helps maintain the already low and egg products. the country.cost of camelina production. Camelina oil is also high in Vitamin E, a “Camelina is being looked at strongly Not only is camelina economical to natural antioxidant that helps reduce cell for jet fuel because its freezing point isproduce, Hugh Campbell of Seedtec-Ter- damage and prevent conditions including very low compared to most other veg-ramax anticipates it will be very profit- heart disease and cancer. etable oils,” says Campbell, who believesable for farmers. He says there are two Vitamin E also has many skincare ben- that demand for camelina oil in the alter-major markets where demand for cam- efits, including protection from ultravio- native fuel market could soon outgrowelina products will grow in the upcoming let light, pollution, and other elements, supply.years. reduction of fine lines and wrinkles, and Whether Saskatchewan-grown cam- As a new product filed with no objec- maintenance of the skin’s natural mois- elina seed is being used for gel capsulestions and subject to approval for human ture balance; it is therefore likely that in Belgium, cooking oil in Canada, or jetconsumption on a case-by-case basis by camelina oil will find its way into a variety fuel in Europe, Campbell’s primary con-Health Canada, Campbell notes, “Cam- of cosmetic and skincare products. cern is that producers are properly com-elina has many of the same qualities and The use of camelina oil for human con- pensated for their efforts.benefits of canola, and then some.” sumption is not surprising, as ancient Ro- “We want to ensure that grain farm- Camelina is also being strongly pur- mans reportedly grew and processed the ing remains an economically sustainablesued as the on-farm, field-scale photo- oilseed for food and skincare until the industry in Saskatchewan. It doesn’tsynthetic factory and backbone to pro- 14th or 15th century. However, Campbell matter if camelina is used for consump-duce industrial polymers and specialized anticipates a second, more modern, use tion or industry purposes, as long as it isoils through genetic modification. This for camelina. bought at a fair price that allows agricul-has major economic and developmental The alternative bio-fuel market is ture to keep thriving in Saskatchewan.”potential. growing in response to global demands Camelina oil is high in unsaturated for reduced pollution, resource con-fatty acids Omega 3 and Omega 6, which sumption, and corporate responsibility. Farm Management | Crop Production Products | Processing | Export Marketing | Foods Wigmore feeds the world through the business of farming. With over 100 years of farming history in Saskatchewan, Wigmore Farms works with farmers to help grow, farm, process and export all their products. 306-757-3005 Master of International Trade Move to Change “I found the online Master of International Trade (MIT) program to be an excellent way to prepare graduate students for the world of international trade, both domestically and internationally.” Chad SwanCe, MIT Graduate aPPLY nOw For more information about the MIT program, visit: www. JANUARY/FEBRUARY 2011 • GLOBALVENTURES 13
  14. 14. Space Age Agriculture Agtron Enterprises Inc. brings technology to farms worldwideS askatchewan is renowned for its be easy to use and reliable, and I think agricultural sector and agricul- BY KARLEN HERAUF I can do better,’ and that was really the ture-based products, but people beginning of Agtron Enterprises.”not involved in the industry often know electronics – that increase opportunities Like many sectors, agriculture has ben-little about the expertise and resources for efficient grain farming,” says Baker. efited from the electronics revolution ofrequired to run a successful farming op- the last several decades. Precision farm- “Our mission is to create user-friendlyeration. The long process from seeding technology that will improve the profit- ing, a systematic approach to farmingto harvest can feel even longer for grain ability of our customers.” based on in-field variability, utilizes GPSproducers if they do not have reliable andefficient technology, and that is where Growing up on a farm in Saskatchewan, and GIS, as well as a variety of monitors,Bill Baker, founder and president of Ag- Baker remembers the first electronically- controls and sensors.tron Enterprises Inc., knows his company equipped combine his father ever bought. Baker feels that it is essential to knowcan help. “He treated it like a bomb that might precisely what is going on with your seed- “Agtron develops and manufactures ag- blow up at any moment,” he recalls. “I ing equipment. For example, he says thericultural electronics – specifically air drill remember thinking, ‘These things should air drill’s control system may be showing14 GLOBALVENTURES •JANUARY/FEBRUARY 2011
  15. 15. a rate calculated from meter shaft revo-lutions, but if the actual rate is lower orhigher, then your air drill investment isn’tworth a thing. Agtron technology verifiesthat the equipment does what it shouldbe doing. Seed flow rate monitors produced byAgtron help farmers who map and ana-lyze field data ensure the data recordedis correct. Agtron’s focus is on air drill electron-ics. The company produces complete airdrill control systems using the latest ISO-BUS technology. ISOBUS is the new stan-dard for electronic communication in Ag-riculture, which ensures inter-operationat every step of the precision farmingprocess, from scouting to planning, ap-plication to resulting data analysis. “Wewant our customers to be as efficient aspossible throughout the entire grain pro-duction process.” Says Baker. Baker personally attends tradeshows,visiting with farmers and manufactur-ers alike. “We rely on personal involve-ment and consultation with customersto determine what’s important to them,”notes Baker. He believes that by doing in- ture and his company have experienced. new equipment with the latest research and development, manu- He has had to learn professional manage- Perhaps the connection with humblefacturing and servicing, Agtron is more ment techniques from the ground up, roots is one reason for Agtron’s dedi-accountable for their products and more and Agtron has evolved as a business in cated effort to establish a positive rela-flexible to the needs of their customers. order to keep up with the changing na- tionship with each individual customer.Agtron tracks its products from pre-pro- ture of agriculture. Like agricultural technology, Agtron En-duction phases all the way to farmers’ “As we continue to grow, one of the terprises Inc. has come a long way. Thefields. challenges we face is that of commu- 16,000 foot state-of-the-art industrial fa- In order to develop user-friendly prod- nicating the value and benefits of our cility Agtron now calls home is a far cryucts, Agtron researchers combine en- products,” reports Baker. “However, the from the basement where it was estab-gineering and technological expertise prospect of working on advanced farms lished in 1982.with practical farming experience. They with farmers who are very tuned in to “I’m very proud of our local roots,manufacture and test each component of technology is exciting for me.” but I’m also proud and excited to haveeach piece of equipment on site before Baker’s favourite days on the job take become a participant and leader in thedistributing it to one of more than 100 him back to his farming roots. He enjoys global agriculture electronics industry.”dealers in Canada and the United States. site visits, spending time with producers, Agtron also is well established in Eu- and experiencing first hand a lot of brandropean and Australian markets. With adivision already established in the CzechRepublic, Baker says he has learned a lotabout international business practices,communication, and cultural sensitivity. “Every country is different, so we havehad to learn from some mistakes we’vemade and make sure we’re prepared toget our message across.” Baker marvels at the changes Agricul- JANUARY/FEBRUARY 2011 • GLOBALVENTURES 15
  16. 16. Wind Energy goes Vertical After spending the past five years per- erator that can be retrofitted to encirclefecting their ground-breaking wind tur- any cylindrical-shaped structure. As windbine and building their name within the is caught in the VAWT’s rotor blades, agreen energy industry, Saskatchewan’s wheel of current-inducing magnets isown VBINE Energy is now perched on the rotated around stationary coils, and theedge of a sales boom and ready to take resulting changing magnetic fields createthe global market by storm. an electrical current. This electricity can Barry Ireland, President and CEO of then either be used directly or stored inVBINE Energy, launched the company in a battery pack.2005 after coming up with the idea for VBINE Energy’s VAWT has many othera vertical axis wind turbine (VAWT) that advantages: its light and compact designcould take advantage of the unobstructed means it can be easily mounted and, be-wind energy found at the top of commu- cause it has no drive shaft and the topnication towers and similar structures. does not rotate, other equipment can Unlike horizontal access wind turbines, be placed above it, making it extremelyVBINE’s VAWT is a ring-shaped power gen- BY TRILBY HENDERSON versatile and accessible; it is more cost- efficient than a conventional wind power system; it is high performing, able to take wind from any direction and produce up to five kilowatts in peak conditions; and the turbine also has very little environ- mental impact as it operates quietly even at full speed and its small size minimizes wildlife interference. These advantages combine to make VBINE’s VAWT a perfect green energy alternative for the communications in- dustry, particularly as individuals living in remote areas, such as northern Canada, demand better access to communica- tions services. “When you get into remote areas, there is no power grid so the communi- cation tower is entirely powered by die- sel or propane and its very expensive,”16 GLOBALVENTURES •JANUARY/FEBRUARY 2011
  17. 17. terested in putting up one or more of our turbines as a show of their solidar- ity with green energy and reducing their carbon footprint.” Siman said VBINE Energy is working on a contract with an American company to supply turbines for all of the federal buildings in the United States. If they are successful, this order alone could result in several million dollars in sales. VBINE also recently selected a European com- pany to distribute their product and will be filling a $47 million order in their area over the next three years. “Those are all very big contracts, and its just the tip of the iceberg,” he said. Ireland said the company plans to open a large manufacturing facility in Winkler, Manitoba in 2011, in an effort to consolidate the manufacturing pro-said Ireland. “If they can throw a turbine While the cheaper cost of power avail- cess under one roof. Once this is done,on their tower and cut their costs by 75 able in urban and most rural locations they expect to produce about 300 unitsto 90 per cent, it pays for itself really rap- eliminates the financial benefit of install- per month.idly and it’s a win-win situation.” ing a wind turbine in these areas, Siman The new facility will also lead to a Many of the design considerations said the environmental benefits of the major increase in staff, from the 18 em-VBINE has undertaken were done with product, alone, are a considerable selling ployees they have today to around 100the communications industry in mind. feature. “Many companies that we’re in people.For example, VBINE’s turbines operate negotiations with right now – large retail As a young company, Ireland saidat a very low RPM, meaning they do not chains, large restaurant chains – they’re VBINE Energy has benefited greatly fromcreate vibrations that may interfere with very interested even if there is no eco- the Saskatchewan Trade and Export Part-the communication towers’ RF waves, nomic case,” he said. “They are very in- nership’s (STEP) services and programs.while still producing power. They arealso constructed to last a minimum of15 years and have an expected lifespanof 30 years, with little to no maintenancerequired. “We’ve built an extremely du-rable product,” Ireland said. VBINE Energy currently has four pat-ents on their technology, with a fifth pat-ent in progress. By patenting their tech-nology, Dwight Siman, VBINE’s Directorof Sales, said the company has essen-tially eliminated the potential for directcompetition when it comes to supplyingthe telecommunications industry, givingthem virtual ownership of that market. Siman said many of the characteristicsthat make the turbine suitable for thecommunications industry also make it afantastic fit for urban settings where theycan be installed on top of buildings andother structures without having any no-ticeably negative impact on the public. JANUARY/FEBRUARY 2011 • GLOBALVENTURES 17
  18. 18. “They’ve put us in contact with somevery good people both in the investmentand manufacturing end, and we’re actu-ally working with some of those people,”he said. Joining STEP on trade missions and attrade shows, and being able to set upone-on-one meetings through the orga-nization’s network has been invaluableto the company when it comes to mak-ing connections and building their repu-tation, said Siman. For example, duringa recent trade mission, STEP enabledVBINE to meet with every level of gov-ernment necessary to gain approval todo business in Peru, all within a span ofonly three days, he said. With ingenuity, perseverance and ded-ication to perfecting their product, alongwith a little help from STEP, VBINE En-ergy has not only set the stage for theirown burgeoning success, but also con-tributed to a stronger future for greenenergy technology.With the Employee Investment Program… “I feel as though my actions have a direct effect on the success of the company.” – Andy Baessler, Pilot, West Wind Aviation Andy Baessler has participated in the Employee Investment Program since joining West Wind Aviation in 2005. As a participant of Enterprise Saskatchewan’s Employee Investment Program, you’re an owner. Not only will you have the opportunity to share in your company’s success, you also get a 20% provincial and 15% federal tax credit on the first $5,000 invested. Now you’re ready for take off! To learn more, visit or call 306-384-5817.18 GLOBALVENTURES •JANUARY/FEBRUARY 2011
  19. 19. …the Sky is the Limit “Being a part of the program has had a tremendous impact on how employees—as owners—view their day-to-day involvement.” – Chris Tabler, Vice President, West Wind Aviation West Wind Aviation has offered the Employee Investment Program since 1994.The Employee Investment Program is a great way to raise money for yourbusiness and build a better workforce. When employees invest in your company,their commitment and productivity increases—which is good, because everybody needs a co-pilotthey can count on. To learn more, visit or call 306-384-5817. JANUARY/FEBRUARY 2011 • GLOBALVENTURES 19
  20. 20. Saskatchewan companies join STEP for the value we bring: If you sell • Market Intelligence outside • Trade Development Saskatchewan, • Finance and Logistics Solutions • International Projects we can improve your bottom line Whether you sell to Manitoba, Montana or Mongolia, consider the value STEP membership can bring. Information and memberships: 1-888-XPORTSK (1-888-976-7875) GLOBALVENTURES •JANUARY/FEBRUARY 2011
  21. 21. Export Readiness Program T he Program works with Saskatch- STEP staff work directly with your com- HOW DOES THE ewan companies to arm them pany to go through an analysis and the PROGRAM WORK? with the knowledge, resources, planning process. For further informa- What Our Members Say and tools that will enable them to build tion, visit “The guidance I have received export capacity. STEP works one-on-one Call STEP Staff - Export Development from STEP has been impressive. The with companies as they look to take their Analysts Stephen Norgate or Jeff Fang at organization is a huge resource and products and services beyond the bor- 1 888 xportsk (976 7875). offers useful services for companies by ders of Saskatchewan. The program is helping them transition from selling designed to benefit a company with an locally to globally”. exportable product or service and has Saskatchewan Manufacturing Firm. the motivation to develop the skills to sell into a foreign market. WHY SHOULD I CONSIDER EXPORTING?s Say • Increase sales ConneCting SaSkat Chewan BuSineSS with the worldrom STEP has been impby quality and success of Influenced resurce and offers useful sive. your product es servictransition from selling locally to • Reach new market shares ufacturing Firm Increase Exports • Lower your costs New suppliers Exporter Better buying power with suppliers Readiness • Gain competitive advantage Program • Reduce business risk HOW WILL THIS SERVICE BENEFIT MY COMPANY? • Work with qualified STEP professionals • Opportunity to meet new contacts • Access to comprehensive export planning guide • Enhance your skill set Saskatoon Office ARE THE ELIGIBILITY WHAT #400 - 402 21st Street REQUIREMENTS? East Saskatoon, SK Canad a S7K 0C3 • Must be based in Saskatchewan Telephone: 306.933.65 • Must have an exportable 51 Fax: 306.933.6556 product/ Must have the desire to learn • exporting • Not currently exporting or n: 1.888.XPORTSK (97 exporting on a reactive basis 6.7875)Canada a Saskatchewan Canada JANUARY/FEBRUARY 2011 • GLOBALVENTURES 21
  22. 22. Opportunity BIZ Notes northern governance and development our initiatives at this critical time in the issues since 2008. The Centre’s Director, development of Saskatchewan’s North.” through Dr. Greg Poelzer, is excited about the in- troduction of the MNGD and the overall “I’m certain that educational opportu- nities like the Masters program will build Education for support the Centre is receiving. upon the knowledge and expertise ofN “This funding allows us to carry out northerners and lead to innovative solu- ew education opportunities a number of initiatives that would have tions to the issues that confront them ev- northern Saskatchewan residents remained only ideas if not for the Gov- ery day,” remarked Chief Guy Lonechild were announced at the University ernment of Saskatchewan” said Poelzer. of the Federation of Saskatchewan Indianof Saskatchewan on Friday, Nov. 12, 2010. “We’re thrilled to receive this support for Nations (FSIN). The Honourable Rob Norris, Ministerof Advanced Education, Employment, andImmigration announced that the Govern-ment of Saskatchewan was investing$250,000 to make available a new Mas-ters in Northern Governance and Devel-opment (MNGD) program. The program isthe first of its kind in North America andallows residents of northern Saskatche-wan to remain in their communities whileearning their degree. The program is to be delivered bythe International Centre for NorthernGovernance and Development (ICNGD),located at the University of Saskatch-ewan. The ICNGD, which also delivers aB.A. in Northern Studies as well as con-ducts community-based research in theprovince’s North, has been focused on Lionel LaBelle, President and CEO, Saskatchewan Trade and Export Partnership (STEP) and Richard Choi, Managing Director, Saskatchewan Shanghai Office. Encouraging Business Relations - China and Saskatchewan S askatchewan has a new man in Choi has been spending his initial China as part of its commitment weeks researching Saskatchewan and its to the New West Partnership in- unique aspects that can be promoted in volving Alberta and British Columbia. China. He will be working with his net- Richard Choi will be encouraging busi- work of corporate and government con- ness relationships between China and tacts in China to promote Saskatchewan Saskatchewan through the new Sas- businesses throughout the country. katchewan office in Shanghai. A graduate of McGill University in Mon- “Saskatchewan is not well known to treal, Choi has served as a trade com- Chinese businesspeople,” said Choi, missioner at the Canadian Consulate in who began his new posting at the begin- Shanghai and was the executive director ning of November. “It is an untapped re- of the Canadian Chamber of Commerce source. We need to tap into that.” in Shanghai.22 GLOBALVENTURES •JANUARY/FEBRUARY 2011
  23. 23. For companies looking to export intoChina or expand their operations, Choi investments in Saskatchewan. He added the Chinese are familiar with the mining STEP Staffsuggested that they discuss their needswith local STEP staff. Choi will then work and agricultural aspects of the provincial economy, but he will be helping to iden- Memberwith STEP to address their needs, wheth-er it is setting up meetings, looking for tify new opportunities. “The Chinese culture is different than Earnsthe best promotional opportunities, oridentifying market opportunities. Saskatchewan. Business in China tends to be very personal,” explains Choi. “Busi- International As well as helping exporters, Choi willbe helping Chinese businesspeople make ness is really the end result of a personal relationship.” Designation Canadian Processor Scoops International Business AwardC anadian-owned Best Cooking the women’s grandfather, the company Pulses Inc. picked up an interna- processes dried peas (split and whole) tional award recognizing excel- and a range of BEST pea flours and pealence among women-owned businesses. fibre at plants in Manitoba and Saskatch- The company was winner of the ‘Done ewan. Products are sold throughout theDeal’ in the ‘International’ category. world into the food, bakery, and meat The award was presented by WECon- processing industries, as well as to sev-nect Canada at the Second Annual WE- eral leading pet food manufacturers. TheConnect Canada national conference in company recently introduced Yumpeez™,Toronto from Nov. 8 to 10, 2010. W E - a roasted split pea snack.Connect Canada is a non-profit organiza- “We are honoured to receive thistion that connects women-owned busi- award,” said Margaret Hughes, VP Salesnesses with the growing global, corporate and Marketing. “It marks our success in Land public sector demand for diverse introducing Manitoba and Saskatchewan ionel LaBelle, President & CEO,and innovative suppliers. It certifies and pulse products to food and pet food in- Saskatchewan Trade and Exportpromotes firms that are at least 51 per dustries in North America and around the Partnership (STEP) is pleased tocent owned, managed and controlled by world.” announce that Nathan Rhodes, Marketwomen. According to Trudy Heal, President, “It Intelligence Specialist, Manufacturing Best Cooking Pulses, Inc. has been ac- is significant that Canadian women owned has attained his designation of Certifiedtive in the international pulse trade since businesses now qualify for Supplier Diver- International Trade Professional (CITP).1936. Sisters Trudy Heal and Margaret sity programs in the US. We’re just one This is the only professional tradeHughes own and operate the business year into the program and we anticipate designation of its kind and is earned bytogether with Mike Gallais. Started by more done deals.” completing courses and meeting stan- dards and requirements set by the Forum for International Trade Training (FITT) - Canada´s international trade training and professional certification authority. Congratulations Nathan from the STEP Board of Directors, Management, and Staff on this milestone in your profes- sional career. Nathan joins many STEP colleagues who are previous recipients of this designation. STEP - Connecting Saskatchewan Business With the World. JANUARY/FEBRUARY 2011 • GLOBALVENTURES 23
  24. 24. STEP Market Access Program STEP Member BenefitAre you interested in penetrating new markets? What Members Say - Market Access Program STEP Market Access ProgramAre you looking to access a new consumer base in a  great assistance at this time in business where companies “Aforeign nation? should not be cutting their marketing costs. I think it will provide long term benefits to those who take advantage of it.”Would financial assistance make your goals possible? STEP Member Technology Firm  “Our company needs to build an awareness of our products andThe STEP Market Access Program is for you!! their health benefits. Marketing an unknown product takes yearsThe STEP Market Access Program (MAP) is a funding program of promotion to get potential companies interested. Withoutdesigned to support the interprovincial and international financial support of the program, we would not have been ablemarketing efforts of STEP Regular Members. to fund this awareness of our product.” STEP Member Agri-value FirmFunds are provided to assist eligible companies to enter new  is very important that Saskatchewan companies have a “Itmarkets or those entering into a new market sector or market “continued” presence at major events. The STEP Market Accesssegment outside of Saskatchewan. Program facilitates a cost effective way for companies to reach several global regions at one single venue.” STEP Member Technology Firm Chewan BuSineSS ConneCting SaSkatworld STEP Market Access - Program Details with the Financial assistance may be provided to STEP regular members that are: Funding to increase • Exhibiting in a trade show or trade event or trade mission your exports in a new export market outside of Saskatchewan. Market Access • Participating and/or exhibiting in STEP-led trade missions, Program trade event, or trade shows. Reimbursement of up to 50% of eligible costs may be contributed to: • Travel cost to market from Saskatchewan - return economy airfare or mileage for up to two (2) applicant representatives. • Accommodations - for up to two (2) applicant representatives. • Companies exhibiting at trade shows are eligible for trade show registration fees and/or booth space rental costs. • Translation of the company’s marketing materials - brochures/product listings for the specific trade event. Applications must be received at least 45 days in advance of the trade event. It is recommended that member companies apply early for applicable events that prior to March 31, 2011. For further details on eligibility and the applications process, please visit the STEP website at Saskatchewan Canada 17/09/10 8:16 AM24 GLOBALVENTURES •JANUARY/FEBRUARY 2011
  25. 25. 306.525.8796www.westernlitho.ca300 Dewdney Avenue, Regina, SK S4N 0E8tf: 1.877.475.4846f: 306.565.2525 5,000 10,000 250BROCHURES FLYERS BUSINESS CARDS80lb Text Glossy Paper 60lb Text Glossy Paper 100lb Cover Glossy PaperFull Colour Both Sides Full Colour One Side Full Colour 8.5” x 11” Folded 8.5” x 11” 3.5” x 2” $750 $895 $65 MAY/JUNE 2010 27 JANUARY/FEBRUARY 2011 • GLOBALVENTURES 25
  26. 26. Staff Profile: HEATHER SWAN: A World of Possibility at STEPH eather Swan likes to use the “At STEP we tailor our services to , words “nimble and reactive” each of our members,” said Swan, to describe STEP . BY LINDSAY THORIMBERT “and for that to happen, members STEP is both nimble and reac- need to know the services that aretive in the way it reacts to the ever- work together to deliver the best ser- available to them.”changing needs of its members. vice possible to members. Industry In line with this effort, Swan ex-Serving more than 400 companies drives our decision making based on plained that STEP recently un-in Saskatchewan, STEP customizes its needs.” derwent a major rebranding in itsits service delivery to each member. The knowledge that her work communications efforts. “We didSTEP is also nimble in the opportu- helps business and industry flourish the roll-out of our new materials innities it offers to its staff. in Saskatchewan gives Swan a great September of 2010,” she said. The Since starting work with STEP 12 deal of satisfaction. “The exposure updated marketing materials wereyears ago, Swan has filled many to these companies that have such introduced alongside the STEProles in the organization. She is a huge impact on Saskatchewan’s Trade Conference “Taking Saskatch-proud to say that she has had the economy is another reason I’ve con- ewan’s Best to the World”. The re-opportunity to work in more than tinued to work at STEP she said. ,” design was the result of a collabora-one of STEP’s pillar services, includ- “These businesses take chanc- tive approach with the perspectivesing Trade Development, Market In- es and put themselves out on a of staff, the Board of Directors, andtelligence and Corporate Services. limb. The benefits they bring to our partners considered and incorpo- “I sell that flexibility and diversity communities, and their ability to rated into the redesign and messag-as one of the strengths of the or- strengthen the economic well-being ing. The communications reviewganization,” she said of the ability of the province is tremendous.” and updated marketing documentsto move around within STEP and Currently Swan manages commu- complement other communicationsthe opportunities that she has been nications projects at STEP serving , tools which have been introducedpresented with. “I’ve been with the the interests of both internal and ex- by the organization. These ele-same employer for 12 years, and ternal clients. The organization pro- ments fit into a package communi-I’ve had a great variety of jobs. This motes its products and services to cating STEP’s value to current andflexibility has allowed me to move members, partners, and stakehold- potential members, while creatingacross several of the service deliv- ers through marketing strategies and marketing opportunities for STEPery areas in the organization while communications materials. Swan’s members.developing professionally in impor- position is key to getting STEP’s Swan was first introduced to STEPtant ways.” message out. She assists STEP em- when she was working in a com- This focus on promoting from ployees market their services to ex- munications position with anotherwithin the organization gives STEP ternal customers and stakeholders, provincial business organization. Atthe strength that comes with ex- but she also facilitates the commu- that time, STEP had only recentlyperience. To her current position nications efforts of these custom- been established and representa-as Manager of Corporate Services ers and shareholders. “This position tives were visiting other organiza-and Communications, Swan brings allows me to work with all of these tions and businesses to explain the12 years of STEP experience and a partners to make sure our messag- services STEP offered. It was duringnumber of different perspectives ing is consistent and that the value the presentation that Swan began tofrom inside the organization, as of membership is evident,” she ex- consider an opportunity within thewell as past employment experi- plained. organization. “That sparked my in-ence from before her arrival at STEP . Recently, STEP has witnessed terest in the organization and I knewShe attributes the opportunities for growing membership numbers and then that I had a keen interest to bemovement within STEP to its orga- Swan is pleased to see the effort and part of STEP” she said, adding thatnizational structure. resources that have been put into STEP’s business model, the man- “It’s a very, very positive work en- this area are paying off. However, date to increase Saskatchewan’svironment,” she said, “and there is a with a growing membership, she exports to existing markets, and ateam atmosphere that is refreshing. sees an increased need to commu- clear focus on export is what droveSTEP staff are extremely motivated, nicate the benefits and services that that decision.results and customer-driven, and come with membership.26 GLOBALVENTURES •JANUARY/FEBRUARY 2011
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