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From May 17th to 21st, I was privileged to represent, along with two other members of the "Central Alberta: Access Prosperity" team, our region at an Internation Business-to-Business conference in Kanas City, Missouri, called "Futurallia". While we missed the Joplin tornado by a day, our time at the conference was definitely a whirlwind of activity.
I'm not sure of the total tally, but with visitors to our booth, spontaneous networking opportunities and our 32 scheduled 30 minute meetings, the Access Prosperity Team covered a lot of ground. There were 630 businesses in attendance from over 35 countries, which made for a great cultural as well as business opportunity. Two Central Alberta businesses went with us, and both reported very positive connections. After the first morning, in fact, one of our business owners told me that after only two meetings, had she gone home then, the trip would have been worth it. That's what we like to hear!
For our "Turning Keys to Opportunity" project, which is the new phase we've moved into in our Foreign Direct Investment (FDI) initiative, we met with international companies from agri-food & agri-processing, transportation and manufacturing who are interested in expanding into Western Canada. There are so many innovative ideas out there; I met with companies from France, the U.S., Morocco, Burkina-Faso and Belgium that are hungry for growth. Although the U.S. economy does still appear relaatively depressed, the Futurallia Kansas City organizers went all out to showcase the resilience of their industries and the beauty of their community.
We've made tentative plans to attend the second "Centrallia" conference, slated for October 2012 in Winnipeg. Consider joining us! Meanwhile we're working fastidiously on follow up with the connections we made in Missouri. I'll keep you posted on progress.
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Chamber Christmas Open House
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January 16, 2014
Brian Kruger - Goverment of Alberta, Employment Standards Red Deer Lodge & Conference Centre ...