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29th June 2011

WEConnect Canada Partners Take Canadian Businesswomen To Las Vegas

WEConnect CanadaWEConnect Canada, in conjunction with the Department of Foreign Affairs & International Trade (DFAIT), has taken over 100 Canadian women business owners to the Women’s Business Enterprise National Council (WBENC)’s 2011 National Conference & Business Fair, “The Opportunity Connection.” These women owned businesses represent all provinces and include many nationally recognized award winners who have a focus on expanding their customer base and extending market reach to corporations looking to diversify their supplier base.

“Supplier diversity is the proactive business process of sourcing products and services from previously under-used suppliers. Trade missions like this one increase the visibility and profile of our certified women-owned businesses to some of the biggest corporate players on the planet,” says Mary Anderson, executive director, WEConnect Canada. “These women entrepreneurs would not normally have such ready access to a large corporation’s supply chain.” An estimated 97% of large multinationals have supplier diversity programs.

WEConnect Canada is the certification body for women-owned businesses. It certifies firms that are at least 51% owned, managed and controlled by women and connects them with the growing global demand from corporations and the public sector for diverse and innovative suppliers.

“Certification assures corporations that they are doing business with recognized diverse suppliers and is the first step for these businesses to make important contacts, which will help open doors to international business opportunities,”  explains Anderson. “WEConnect Canada not only delivers internationally-recognized certification, but offers training and education to help women business owners successfully bid on procurement contracts.”

WBENC’s annual conference and business fair, June 21-23, 2011 boasts more than 3,000 partici­pants and nearly 350 exhibitors. The trade mission to WBNEC will provide Canadian women-owned business enterprises with access to leading corporations practicing supplier diversity.  During their time at WBENC, members of the delegation will meet with corporate procurement representatives and women business owners from across North America. There will also be networking and educational opportunities.

“You have to be at WBENC to network,” says Stephanie McLarty, president, REefficient Inc. and a past WBENC delegate. “This is the place to get introductions and resources and it increases the possibility of opportunities.”

The trade mission is also supported by provincial governments through regional women business enterprise centres across Canada.

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29th June 2011

D-Box Set To Rumble In New York

D-BoxD-BOX Technologies Inc. has signed its first agreement with Zurich Cinemas to equip the Rotterdam Square Cinema 7 in Schenectady, New York with 21 D-BOX MFX Seats.

Zurich’s Rotterdam Square Cinema 7 is the first location in New York State to offer the immersive motion technology that completely transforms the movie experience with theatre seats that pitch, roll and heave in perfect sync with all the onscreen action.

“Following one of the company’s most successful years to-date, interest from new theatre exhibitors, both foreign and domestic, remains strong and we are very pleased to announce a first location in the New York area,” said CEO of D-BOX Technologies, Claude Mc Master.

On July 15, Zurich Cinemas will introduce D-BOX with the release of the highly anticipated franchise finale, Harry Potter and the Deathly Hallows: Part 2.

“Committed to creating a first-rate experience using the most cutting-edge technologies, Zurich is thrilled to be the first in the area to feature D-BOX motion technology,” said President of Zurich Cinemas, Conrad Zurich. “We’re presenting a completely new way to experience movies and expect the D-BOX tickets to be extremely popular.”

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29th June 2011

Entrepreneurs in Action 2.0

SFU’s Beedie School of Business invite you to participate in an open house event for start-up companies and small to medium sized enterprises (under 100 employees) seeking to connect with talented MBA and BBA students. Whether you are seeking a part-time bookkeeper, market research support or a high level strategic planning consultant, you are invited to participate in this low-cost event. As an added value, students from the School or Engineering, School of Computer Science and Faculty of Communication, Art and Technology will also be in attendance.

Entrepreneurs In Action 2.0 takes place on the evening of July 20th, with tickets available now for $25.00 per company. Space for this session is limited and pre-registration is required. This event will be held at 500 Granville Street, Vancouver.

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29th June 2011

Report Says Social Media Overrated as Retail Information Sources

kubasprimediaRetailers who focus on getting their product and services messages out on Facebook and Twitter are probably spending time and effort in the wrong area, according to data sourced from KubasPrimedia’s Major Market Retail Report (MMRR) study – a survey of over 1,500 consumers on their retail shopping habits and store preferences.

“Social media, like Twitter and Facebook, has been heavily hyped in advertising and promotion circles,” said Ed Strapagiel, Executive Vice President of KubasPrimedia. “MMRR shows that retailers and product manufacturers who are relying on social media to sway consumer purchase decisions may be misguided.”

“When consumers are researching a purchase online, over 70% visit retailer and product manufacturer websites. Only about 25% turn to social media sites or blogs for product or shopping information,” said Strapagiel.

KubasPrimedia has been conducting retail analysis for over 15 years. MMRR, based on surveys of Canadians in Vancouver, Edmonton, Calgary, Toronto, Ottawa, and Montreal, examined shopping behaviour in 33 product categories at 147 retailers to determine competitive retail metrics, such as market coverage, shopping levels, drawing power, loyalty, and retailer performance scores.

MMRR found that that 77% of Canadian consumers “often” or “sometimes” visit retailer websites and 71% visit manufacturer websites to get information about upcoming purchases. Only 27% use social media and just 23% use blogs. Comparison-shopping, such as pricing a specific item, is the most popular online retail-related activity, with 76% of consumers doing so “often” or “sometimes”. Comparison shopping activity is high across all demographic groups.

“Given consumer behaviour, a company’s website is still by far the top online priority for retailers,” said Strapagiel. “Retailers that pursue other digital marketing avenues risk taking resources away from where they’re most needed”.

While services like Facebook, Twitter, and WordPress are free, they are not cheap, says Strapagiel, “Utilizing social media properly and effectively requires time, money, and talent. Retailers have to focus on what will provide the best return on investment considering where their customers are turning to for information.” Read the rest of this entry »

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29th June 2011

Blackline Delivers Savvy Solution for Surveillance Market

blackline gpsCalgary’s Blackline GPS Corp. has begun delivery of the new Javelin™ Covert Tracker, a purpose-built GPS tracking device for professional surveillance and loss prevention markets in North America.

In a sector where software and hardware solutions often come from two separate companies, Blackline’s complete end-to-end technology – delivered by its internal multidisciplinary research & development team – is a key differentiator that enables the company to respond to specific customer requirements with highly-tailored solutions.

“Javelin was built from the ground up for investigators and police services. Unlike competing products, that are often modified consumer trackers, Javelin is a true professional grade covert tracker with features like device removal detection and track-on-motion,” says Cody Slater, CEO and Chairman for Blackline. “Police forces are accustomed to paying upwards of $2,000 for tracking products whereas Javelin’s price point is less than $700.”

“Our new platform’s modular hardware and firmware architecture enables us to efficiently bring new products to market with reduced engineering timelines.” indicates Barry Moore, Head of Research & Development. He further adds “Javelin addresses critical customer feedback, including a custom waterproof case, dual neodymium magnets with 240 pounds of mounting force, a new Ultimate Sense® 2 GPS internal antenna with improved tracking of weak satellite signals, and a large 6000 mAh battery.”

Javelin provides more than 4 times the battery capacity of the existing Entourage PS portable security product. Coupled with advanced power management features, Javelin enables users to choose between an aggressive 3-week tracking profile through to multi-month operation for long-term surveillance applications.

As of the date of this release our initial production run of Javelin has been oversold and the company is currently increasing its production capacity to accommodate demand.

Blackline will be showcasing Javelin at the National Technical Investigators Association (NATIA) trade show in Tampa, Florida on July 16th – 22nd. NATIA is composed of over 3,000 law enforcement and intelligence personnel who provide the technical operations, surveillance activities, and scientific support for hundreds of federal, state, local law enforcement and related agencies across the United States, Canada and the United Kingdom.

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29th June 2011

New Shopping Search Engine Promises Simple Search

Product LairThe Product Lair is a new idea in shopping search engines. What makes it different is the fact that there are no advertisements, pop-ups, bogus or irrelevant materials of any kind on the site. Combine that with the ability to search for products, coupons, discounts and sales, etc. and you get an incredibly concise, easy to use shopping experience. There is one goal and one goal only, to help shoppers find the products/services and prices they’re looking for.

The site boasts a powerful, yet easy to use, product search engine which is complimented by the ability to find special deals including:

  • coupons and coupon codes
  • product discounts
  • sale items
  • seasonal deals
  • special offers
  • items that qualify for free shipping
  • sweepstakes entries

Plus, the site ensures that only active deals are listed. No need to wade through expired or out-of-date offers.

The person behind this product search engine is software designer Ted Neustaedter of Sooke, BC. When asked by one colleague why not simply use one of the existing tools on the internet, Ted’s reply was: “Simply put, shopping online is painful enough without having to wade through a lot of advertising, pop-ups and other junk to find what you want. I built a simple, easy to use tool that I think a lot of people out there will appreciate.”

It’s also important to note that the site is completely free and allows users to maintain complete anonymity, with no strings attached. You won’t be asked to enter your email address, or sign up for anything whatsoever. It’s a philosophy that the creator feels will make it much more appealing to the majority of internet users.

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29th June 2011

DesignThinkers Meet This November In Toronto

RGD OntarioAt the 12th annual DesignThinkers Conference, the industry’s leading visual communicators connect to discuss how design builds relationships between organizations, products and people. Presented by the Association of Registered Graphic Designers of  Ontario (RGD), DesignThinkers takes place November 2-3 in Toronto.

“The pace of change around the world continues to accelerate, but it is our ability as graphic designers to imagine and implement what is new, innovative and meaningful that sustains us,” says Lionel Gadoury R.G.D., President of RGD. “DesignThinkers 2011 is fuel for creative minds, igniting inspirations and blasting us forward to explore emerging trends.”

This year’s diverse speaker lineup includes:

  • Deborah Adler (NY) – Clients include Johnson & Johnson and Target
  • Principals and partners of Chermayeff & Geismar
  • Steve Edge (London) – Clients include Cartier and Dior
  • Stanley Hainsworth (Seattle) – Former Creative Director, Starbucks
  • Jessica Hische (NY) – Clients include Barnes & Noble and Kellogg’s
  • Rei Inamoto (San Francisco) – Clients include Nike, Xbox and Visa
  • Chip Kidd (NY) – Book designer and best-selling author
  • George Lois (NY) – Campaigns include “I Want My MTV”
  • Patrick Mitchell (Rockport) – Former Creative Director of Fast Company and O Magazine
  • Richard Morrison (London) – Titles designer for Batman and A Fish Called Wanda
  • William Poundstone (NY) – Author of “The Myth of Fair Value”
  • Robert Wong (NY) – Executive Creative Director at Google Creative
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