Your weekly round up of BizNews from throughout Greater Victoria
August 18, 2021
Amazon warehouse confirmed for airport lands
An 115,000 square-foot Amazon distribution centre will be built on Victoria Airport Authority lands.

Construction on the centre will begin in September and is expected to be completed by fall of next year, according to a news release issued this morning. Amazon will use the facility as a "last mile" station to speed up delivery to customers.
Victoria Airport Authority: Member since 1981
Last chance to win a Helijet flight!
(oh yeah, and give us feedback)
Tell us what you need to succeed. In less than 10 minutes, you can share your thoughts on your Chamber membership by taking our Membership Matters Survey.

Help us help you!
Complete your survey by Friday, Aug. 19 and you could win round-trip flights to Vancouver for two from Helijet.
Greater Victoria a safe respite for tourism in BC
An influx of visitors to Greater Victoria is providing a healthy boost to businesses catering to tourists. BC's Interior is suffering from a prolonged wildfire season and a surge in COVID-19 cases. The unfavorable conditions there are suspected as one of the reasons for the increase in visitors to our region.

Downtown Victoria Business Association executive director Jeff Bray told CHEK News that retailers are seeing a trend of people who changed their vacation plans and are visiting Vancouver Island instead of the Okanagan.

Tourism statistics for July have not yet been released, but Chemistry Consulting's numbers from June show a healthy increase from 2020, though still far cry from June 2019.
Chemistry Consulting: Member since 2006
Downtown Victoria Business Association: Member since 2007
August Business Mixer (Online)
One of your last chances to log on from the comfort of your home and connect with businesses across Greater Victoria at The Chamber’s Virtual August Business Mixer.

Grow your connections and discover new opportunities as we conclude our Virtual Mixer series, moving back to in-person networking events starting in September.
Sponsored by:
Thurs., Aug. 19 | 5 - 6 PM
The Prodigy Group presents Bite-Size Connections

Get re-acquainted with emerging and established members of Greater Victoria's business community at the Prodigy Group's first in-person event this year.

Attendees will be able to sit in groups of six and mingle over personal appetizers. 
Sponsored by:
Thurs., Sept. 16 | 5 - 6 PM
Maple Room - Strathcona Hotel
Registration is limited so don't delay!

Safety protocols will be in place and Provincial Public Health Guidelines will be followed.
September Business Mixer
This vibrant, after hours business social event provides an excellent opportunity for members and prospective members to meet face-to-face, establishing or renewing valuable business relationships. Join us for an opportunity to connect with the Greater Victoria business community.

Attendance is limited, register now so you don't miss out.
Sponsored by:
Safety protocols will be in place and Provincial Public Health Guidelines will be followed.
Thurs., Sept. 23 | 5 - 6:30 PM
Max Furniture, 3460 Quadra St
Victoria, BC
Greater Victoria among BC's most vaccinated spots
With immunization rates in Greater Victoria among the highest in BC, it's not surprising there has been little outcry for vaccine mandates for local businesses. The Chamber's staff are 100% fully vaccinated and many of our members tell us they have had the same voluntary commitment from their employees.

Chamber CEO Bruce Williams told the Times Colonist that businesses play a leadership role in their communities and that includes finding ways to ensure the safety of staff and customers.

“I think it’s fair to say that most businesses put the health and safety of their employees as a paramount concern,” he said. “Everybody’s concerned about the economic side, but, realistically, if everybody’s healthy and in a good place so that they can continue to work and things function (that's how we move forward).”

Vaccine mandates are in place for federal workers, and there have been calls to make immunization mandatory for employees of the University of Victoria. And, last week, BC announced all health-care workers in care homes will need to be fully vaccinated by Oct. 12. Provincial health officer Dr. Bonnie Henry has said she believes businesses are within their rights to impose vaccine mandates.

“These are business decisions that they need to make in conjunction with their own labour lawyer advisers,” she said. “But I do think it is a perfectly valid thing.”
University of Victoria: Member since 1976
University of Victoria: Chamber Champion since 2020
Chamber welcomes newest team member!
Pavan Nirwan joins The Chamber with two decades of experience as a trusted strategic advisor, guiding stakeholders on government relations, business development, community and stakeholder engagement. Through her work in the public and private sector, Pavan has a proven record of establishing and maintaining relations with domestic and international governments and stakeholders.

As the Director of Stakeholder and Government Relations, Pavan looks forward to leading engagement and issues management with external stakeholders. These groups will include provincial, municipal, federal governments, community groups, and other partners. Pavan will also be working on the February 2022 launch of the Business Hall of Fame presented by RBC.

You can connect with Pavan at 250 360-3479 or [email protected].
Do you want to be on a Chamber committee?
The Chamber has a number of active and engaged committees that report to our Board of Directors. A key reason for the success of our board committees is the involvement of our Chamber members as volunteer committee members.

Each year, there are a few openings on our committees for new members. We are recruiting now for members who will be available starting on Jan. 1, 2022 for at least a two-year term. Here are our committees:
  • The Ambassador Committee
  • The Finance and Audit Committee
  • The Prodigy Group
  • The Public Policy and Advocacy Committee

The opportunity to apply for any of the above committees will be open until Oct. 15, 2021. At the end of the application period, the chair of the committee will be in contact by email or phone.
Gain exposure for your business with the new Member Portal
Promote your business for free as part of your Chamber Membership.

Next time you login to your Member Portal, click on “Exposure Opportunities and Deals”. From here you can click “Submit an Event to Calendar” and fill out the details of your upcoming event. After submitting, your event will need to be approved by a Chamber staff member. Once approved, it will be featured in our online community calendar available to the public here.

You can also click “Add a Special Offer” to create a coupon visible on The Chamber’s site. You have the option of making your offer visible to the public, or only to fellow Chamber members.

At this time, clicking “Stats on your Directory Listing” will only be visible for profile editors. Stay tuned as we continue to make updates and add new features!

If you have any questions about your new Membership Portal, please contact Thomas at [email protected]
Showcase your business at the 2021 Auction
Do you want your products and services featured in the auction? From gift cards to great local items and everything in-between, reach thousands of potential customers by donating a prize today. Keep an eye on our social media feed to see some of the incredible Auction items that will be featured this year.

This is a major fundraising event for The Chamber, with all proceeds supporting our work as the largest and most influential advocate for businesses in the region. Last year, we received nearly 8,000 visitors to our auction platform for a week of bidding on fabulous gifts.
As an event sponsor, Maximum Express, Courier, Freight and Logistics is offering donors complimentary delivery of their auction item to The Chamber Office.
Have questions? Please call (250) 383-7191 or email Alex at [email protected]
Chamber Chats with CEO Bruce Williams
Finding and Keeping Workers
Despite restrictions being lifted for restaurants, hotels, and other worksites most cannot function at full capacity due to the ongoing shortage of available workers.

Why is there a shortage, what is the impact of this, and what solutions are available to manage the situation? CEO Bruce Williams speaks with representatives of the hotel, hospitality, and construction/development sectors.

Featuring Samantha Scholefield of the BCRFA, Bill Lewis of the Magnolia Hotel & Spa, and Kathy Whitcher of the Urban Development Institute.
BCRFA: Member since 1996
Magnolia Hotel & Spa: Member since 1998
Urban Development Institute - Capital Region (UDI): Member since 2017
Special thanks to our series sponsor: Island Savings
Reach the right candidates with The Chamber’s job board

For an extra $45 USD per job posting, shoot your listing to the top of the job board and increase the amount of job-seekers that view your job offer.

Your job will also have a highlighted “FEATURED” badge and will be published to the Google Jobs Network.

You can also upgrade your previously-posted positions to ensure your job opening gets the most views over time.
Learn more about how to post on the job board and utilize featured posting here.

If you have any questions or need assistance uploading your job, please email [email protected]
Create an online strategy to drive global sales 
Discover, learn and create an integrated online strategy to drive your global sales.

100% of ICE graduates stated that they are better equipped for e-commerce following the workshop and would recommend ICE to other SME's.

Join us for this two-day interactive workshop:
  • September 7, 2021 — 9:00 a.m. - 12:30 p.m.
  • September 8, 2021 — 9:00 a.m. - 12:30 p.m.

Full Bursaries available to Chamber Members - email [email protected]
Member News
Research grants awarded to UVic

The University of Victoria has received $535,000 in grants for the investment in research infrastructure. Multiple projects are expected to gain funding, including research in improving solar energy, slowing the deterioration of the human body and more.

The grants come from the BC Knowledge Development Fund, which is distributing $25 million across the province.
University of Victoria: Member since 1976 
University of Victoria: Chamber Champion since 2020
Hybrid ferry arrives in Victoria

The fourth hybrid-electric ferry in BC Ferries’ fleet has arrived at Vancouver Island. After completing a transatlantic journey, lasting more than two months, the vessel joins three other Island Class ferries that offer quiet, energy efficient transport.

The ferry will service the Campbell River to Quadra Island route starting next year.
BC Ferry Services Inc: Member since 1983
Bocce and Brews

Canoe BrewPub will soon be the site of bocce courts, a games room and more. After the location was purchased by brewpub chain Craft Beer Market earlier this year, significant renovations were teased. Canoe BrewPub has now been approved for upgrades including a roofed upper patio, additional fire pits and space for activities.
Canoe BrewPub: Member since 1998
Supporting breast cancer research

October is breast cancer awareness month and the Breast Cancer Society of Canada is asking companies to display a ”Pin Your Pink” donation box at their business. These free boxes contain 250 pink ribbons, a compartment for cash donations and a QR code for digital donations. Businesses are encouraged to order their pin boxes by Aug. 31.

Breast Cancer Society of Canada: Member since 2019
Exploring Black history

The Royal BC Museum has unveiled a new pocket gallery exhibit.

Echoes Through the Black Continuum highlights contributions of black leaders throughout history through diverse art pieces. The exhibit is available for viewing until March 2022.
Royal BC Museum: Member since 1994
A walk in the park with Colwood

The City of Colwood is one step closer to receiving funding from Parks Canada. The National Urban Park program is allocating $130 million towards the development of urban parks across Canada, and Colwood has been shortlisted. Colwood announced that next steps will include consultation with local First Nations.

The City of Colwood: Member since 2020
Road to Recovery with Spinnakers

Spinnakers has been highlighted in CHEK News’ and Douglas Magazine’s Road to Recovery segment, a series of interviews with business owners as they discuss the challenges and opportunities of COVID-19. Discover how Paul Hadfield of Spinnakers pivoted his business to attract and retain hospitality workers. Watch the segment here.
Spinnakers: Member since 1990
Spinnakers: Chamber Champion since 2021
CHEK News: Member since 1990
CHEK News: Chamber Champion since 2020
Douglas Magazine: Member since 2004
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