Your weekly round up of BizNews from throughout Greater Victoria
September 2, 2020
Home-tests for COVID
Tuesday, Health Canada changed its position on the efficacy of home testing for COVID and are now reviewing approval for this option.

Described as "similar to home pregnancy tests" prototypes exist in research labs, but concerns remain high that people may use the test incorrectly or misinterpret the results. Much like a pregnancy test, the home test does not negate the need for medical follow-up.

"In response to the evolution of the pandemic, Health Canada is now considering applications for home testing devices for screening purposes," said Cole Davidson, spokesperson for the Minister of Health said in a statement.

This is positive news for health experts who have long argued that frequent, accessible testing would provide a positive results in keeping the sick at home and beating the pandemic.

The federal government has also secured deals this week for up to 114 million doses of potential COVID-19 vaccines from Novovax and Johnson & Johnson. The government has hedged its bets for public health by also signing agreements for another 76 million vaccines from Pfizer and Moderna, with a final agreement with Oxford University's AstraZeneca vaccine pending. Ottawa's final goal is production of the vaccine in Canada.
Ocean explorers turn eco-warriors
One of this year's Business Award finalists - Maple Leaf Adventures - is one of the co-leads on a project to shine-up the phrase, Canada's pristine wilderness.

“When it became clear we would not be able to operate under normal circumstances this summer and had to cancel a sold-out season, we turned our attention to the environment to give back to the coast that sustains us,” says Kevin Smith, CEO of Maple Leaf Adventures and co-lead on the project.

Working collaboratively with other small ship tour operators, local first nations, provincial scientists and with funding from the provincial government the project became a reality. The massive cleanup of up to 1,000 km of coastal beaches along the Great Bear Rainforest, is projected to take 100 tonnes of marine waste out of the eco-system over the next few weeks. Kudos to the 175 people from the surrounding first nations and tour companies, involved in this #BCCoastalCleanup.

Learn more about Maple Leaf Adventures, during the CHEK broadcast of this year's Business Awards on Sept 19th at 6 p.m.
Maple Leaf Adventures: Member since 2017
New Orders for Naden Drill Shed
The stamp of marching feet has been drilled into the Naden Drill Shed since it was put up in 1941 as part of the WWII efforts on the base at CFB Esquimalt.

As part of the ongoing infrastructure projects that CFB Esquimalt is undertaking the shed is being upgraded to a Junior Ranks Training Accommodation building. The new, multi-storey facility will include a 200-bed capacity. The existing shed, pictured here, was demolished and the site decontaminated earlier this year.

The project will bring between $100 million to $249 million in spending to the region. Construction is targeted for 2022-23 with completion by 2026-27.
CFB Esquimalt: Member since 1979
Big, green and beautiful
More exciting things are being planned for the working harbour. The Ralmax Group is investing in a forward-thinking storage facility run by Trio Ready-Mix.

Working with Synergy Sustainability, the new plant with silo will "set a standard for low-impact concrete production" changing delivery methods from truck to barge and providing a more efficient footprint using fewer resources. An application has been made to the City of Victoria for a variance for the 31-metre silo.

In addition to the environmental advantage the design for the silo includes cladding and changing lights in order to enhance the shoreline views. Ian Maxwell has a long-term vision that industry can and should contribute to the overall beauty of our shoreline.

Ralmax Group of Companies: member since 2011

Synergy Sustainability: member since 2017
Drawing of the proposed
new silo.
Getting you back to business
Cue the cameras and roll out the red carpet!

Watch the 2020 Greater Victoria Business Awards live on CHEK Saturday, September 19 at 6 p.m. The program recognizes members in 14 different award categories. Click here to see the 2020 finalists!

Join in the celebration and dine-in with special award menu options from Chamber members House of Boateng, Toque CateringTruffles Catering and Food for Thought Catering. Thank you for choosing to support Chamber members.
What opportunities are there for businesses to innovate during a pandemic?

There is no doubt the last few months have been some of the most challenging for businesses in our community. 

Join our Chamber CEO Bruce Williams, along with Anita Pawluk of RaceRocks 3D, Dr. Richard Gale, Director of Camosun Innovates at Camosun College and Rasool Rayani of Heart Pharmacy, as they break down how businesses can find opportunity through innovation during the pandemic and beyond.
Wed., Sept. 23 | 5-6pm
Join us for the fourth-annual joint mixer with the Greater Victoria, Saanich Peninsula, WestShore, Sooke Region and Esquimalt chambers!
In this seminar, Denise will examine some of the key areas that employers need to think about as we head into a new season of COVID.
Take your business to the next level!
Apply for the Trade Accelerator Program today (partial bursaries available for a limited time, for qualifying companies).

New trade agreements and a competitive Canadian dollar make it an ideal time to extend your company's reach through the export of goods and services.

The Trade Accelerator Program is designed to help SMEs TAP into their full export potential. It has a proven track record helping participants get results.
Just six months after graduating the program:

• On average, export revenue increased by 28%

• Participants forecast their export sales to grow 47% over the next 5 years

Deadline to apply for the fall session is Sept. 30, 2020.

Have questions? Call TAP B.C. Team on 604-640-5491 or email
Chamber job board
If you're an employer looking for your next great hire, make sure to post your career opportunities on the Chamber job board.

The job board is an exclusive benefit of Chamber membership.

If you have any difficulty posting, email

We will get back to you within one business day. We know how important hiring the right person can be.

All jobs posted to our job board have been vetted by a member of The Chamber team.
Current Job Listings:
Labour Day long weekend
As September begins, enjoy the upcoming hot weather and take a moment to unwind before the summer ends.
Make the most of your Labour Day weekend by supporting your fellow Chamber members.

Take a photo of yourself completing the Patio Checklist, and tag us with @victoriachamber and #YYJPatioChecklist for a chance to be featured on our social media channels. Stay safe and support local.
The Chamber will be closed on Monday, Sept. 7.
Members Around Town
The upper crust

Crust Bakery has opened their new location at Uptown Shopping Centre. Located in Town Plaza, the storefront features Crust favorites such as sweet and savory finger food, fresh bread and delicious pastries. Online delivery is also available, which includes freshly baked cakes.

Crust Bakery: member since 2016
Shape Property Management – Uptown: member since 1983
Inner Harbour Giveaway

The Inner Harbour Giveaway, a collaborative initiative involving numerous businesses in the Inner Harbour, will be giving a $350 prize pack to a lucky winner. Prizes from Chamber members include:

An Annual membership + signed limited edition print of “Cardinal & Snowberries” from the The Bateman Foundation Gallery of Nature: member since 2013
$50 gift card to Canoe Brewpub: member since 1998
$55 high-tea certificate to The Pendray Inn & Tea House at the Huntingdon Manor Hotel: member since 1981
Follow the instructions here to enter this giveaway.
Blackapple giveaway

Looking for a phone upgrade? Blackapple Cellular is giving away a $200 giftcard and surprise products from their new location in the City of Langford. Simply like @blackapplecell’s recent Instagram photo, and tag your friends to enter until September 7.

Blackapple Cellular: member since 2019

City of Langford: member since 2019
Royal BC Museum acquires IMAX

The Royal BC Museum has purchased IMAX Victoria for $3.8 million. The purchase, which was aided with funding through a government grant, will allow the museum to modernize the site and create more educational opportunities for visitors.
Royal BC Museum: member since 1994
IMAX Victoria: member since 1998
Virtual open house

Camosun College will be hosting a virtual open house on Thursday, Sept. 3 to showcase how Microsoft Office programs will be taught this fall. Interactive classrooms offer students the opportunity to learn from anywhere, and this free session will allow participants to ask questions on how online lessons will be integrated in the coming semester.
Camosun College: member since 1981
Classic Boat Festival tour

Although the Victoria Classic Boat Festival was cancelled due to COVID this year, The Maritime Museum of BC will be featuring a Collections Tour this Thursday. The tour, which will be hosted on Facebook Live, will give attendees the unique opportunity to learn about marine artifacts. Photos and videos will also be posted throughout the weekend celebrating the Classic Boat Festival from previous years.
Maritime Museum of BC: member since 1989
Is your business implementing new strategies or innovative ways of connecting with consumers?

Welcome to our newest members!