As president of the Venture Kamloops Board of Directors it gives me great pleasure to present to you our 2019 Annual Report. By several measures, the past year was a record one for our organization. Staff worked with more Kamloops businesses than ever before and realized success from new programs like VK Accelerate. As well as working with local businesses, staff continued to expand the reach of the organization’s Business Attraction efforts through the VK Inside Track program and the Balance campaign.
In 2019, Venture Kamloops launched the first year of the Board’s new 5-year strategic plan. The plan is focused on four dimensions: Key Result Areas of Economic Building Blocks, Sector Growth, Strategic Partners, and Organizational Excellence. Among the most notable changes to the new strategic plan of the Venture Kamloops Board is the inclusion of a new Key Result Area – Economic Building Blocks. The plan states:
In order for Venture Kamloops to continue to be relevant and to ensure that there are competitive advantages for Kamloops businesses and industry, it is imperative that we continue to ensure that the various economic building blocks we have are kept current with respect to both information and analytic tools. We also need to continue to develop our attraction tools to develop not only state-of-the-art approaches but also those that are unique and provide Kamloops with advantages to potential new businesses and industry.
The Building Blocks apply to four core economic development principles: Business Retention & Expansion, Business Attraction, Information & Resources and Workforce Capacity. These building blocks are critical to the plan, as they form the basis for which staff will deliver economic development services to the business community.
In addition to the new strategic plan, Venture Kamloops entered into a new 4-year service agreement with the City of Kamloops that took effect on January 1, 2020. I am very pleased with the collaborative nature of the relationship between the two organizations. This agreement in particular synchronizes the alignment of the economic development goals of the Venture Kamloops Board and City Council.
2019 saw the retirement of 5 Board members. We all want to thank Peter Aylen, Lorianna Bennett, Dr. Richard Brownlee, Dave Chyzowski and John Zubak for their time and dedication to the Board. We offer our thanks and welcome to Ryan Liebe of Triton Environmental, Brant Hasanen of Edward Jones Financial, Cecil Cheveldave of Heron Advisory Ltd., Lana Dueck of BMO, Jason Paige of Acres Construction and Matt Dundas from Valley First as new Board members.
Early this year our Board met to review its plan after its first year of implementation. The clear consensus was that the plan was successfully driving the organizations vision to be “facilitators of an economically sustainable, diverse and thriving community.” On behalf of the Board, I thank the Venture Kamloops staff for their hard work in 2019 and look forward to more successes in 2020.
- Tom Dickinson, VK President
The number of people employed in Kamloops is estimated at nearly 49,000 and is projected to increase to nearly 51,000 by 2022.