Local small business owners will have a chance to learn about the state of the economy in the north. Yellowknife is getting a visit from the President and CEO of the Business Development Bank of Canada Michael Denham.
The BDC is a federal crown corporation owned by the Government of Canada. The BDC mandate is to help create and develop Canadian businesses.
Here in the north, Denham says Yellowknife has seen an increase in tourism businesses. He’s noticed more interest in developing the industry.
“A lot of our clients are part of the tourism sector and are benefiting from the collective efforts underway to remake the sector viable and make sure Yellowknife sits prominently on the global map of interesting, accessible tourist destinations.”
Denham says one of the growing concerns for Canadian businesses is a lack of labour force. He argues it’s a chronic issue across the country.
“We just did some research on this topic a couple weeks ago and of the clients we’ve surveyed, well over 40% indicate that labour shortages are affecting their ability to grow and take their business in the prefered direction. So it’s an issue that’s coast to coast.”
Two other topics Denham is looking to discuss are productivity and the use of technology. He says both are essential to business success.
“Because at the end of the day, in order to grow, in order for entrepreneurs to maximize their profitability in what they can keep, in order to expand into a new market, unless you’re really productive all those things are hard.”
Denham will be at the Yellowknife Chamber of Commerce lunch at noon Friday. There, he will also hear first hand from local small business owners what affects their businesses in the north.