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February 2017                     Volume 2: Issue 2
Valley REN Voice
We believe that by working together
we will find greater opportunities to create a more prosperous region.
Unlocking Opportunities
Welcome to our February newsletter. I am pleased to announce the Valley REN has engaged Group ATN Consulting Inc. to survey local businesses and report on opportunities to improve the business climate in our region. We’ll be inviting businesses and chambers to take part in the survey.

Please share your ideas for how we can create a more prosperous region. And follow Opportunities Now! @ValleyREN as we share opportunities for business growth in the Annapolis Valley.

Cheers,
Kelly R.M. Ells, CEO
 

Better Together: Our Partnership Forum

In January the Valley REN hosted a partnership forum for business associations in our region. This was a chance for us all to share our visions and find new opportunities to work together. Ten groups made short presentations to spark discussion. Municipal staff engaged in economic development were also there.

The 10 groups were Glooscap VenturesAcadia Entrepreneurship Centre / Rural Innovation CentreFusion Annapolis ValleyWolfville Business Development CorporationKentville Development Corporation LtdValley Business Leaders InitiativeSip Chat Connect Business NetworkingAvon Chamber of CommerceAnnapolis Valley Chamber of Commerce, and the Valley Regional Enterprise Network.

The Valley REN thanks the staff and volunteer board members from these groups, plus the municipal staff, for investing their time in this forum. We all agreed it should be repeated, with a wider circle of participants.

“Meet & Greets” in the Community

It was a pleasure to host three “meet & greet” events throughout the Valley REN region in February – in Middleton, Windsor and Kentville. Thanks to the business owners and managers who joined us, and to the elected officials and staff from our partner municipalities who welcomed us. We invite you to stay in contact with us and make your ideas and concerns known to us.

Sector Table Workshop: Report

In December, the Valley REN hosted a workshop in Kentville with more than 60 people representing five key sectors in the Annapolis Valley: agriculture, tourism, information and communications technologies (ICT), manufacturing and sustainable energy.

Our facilitator, Common Good Solutions, led the five “sector tables” in a SWOT analysis. The big issues facing Valley businesses were human resources, engagement with post-secondary institutions and youth, regional marketing, and communication and collaboration across sectors and within each sector.

We
ve combined key points from each group with suggestions for how the Valley REN can help the business community grow these sectors.

View highlights from all sector tables here.
View the full report here.
What is the Valley REN?
Who we are:
The Valley REN was incorporated in March 2014 under the Municipal Government Act. We have a mandate to be the catalyst for economic development in the Valley region. Our partners in the Valley REN are Glooscap First Nation, the municipalities of the County of Kings and the District of West Hants, and the Towns of Berwick, Kentville, Middleton, Windsor and Wolfville. We are jointly funded by our regional partners and the Province of Nova Scotia. Our volunteer Board of Directors, drawn  from the private sector, delivers a wealth of experience in business and economic leadership. A Liaison and Oversight committee – representing regional partners and the province – ensures public accountability.


Our mission:
To guide and navigate regional economic development, while providing support to businesses; operating as a connector among economic development partners; supporting business growth and retention; and providing leadership on economic priorities.

Our vision:
“Communities working together to create a prosperous region.”
 
Our guiding values:
Community  |  Integrity  |  Respect  |  Excellence  |  Trust
How can the Valley REN help you?
We make connections for businesses and potential investors, while supporting the development of key economic sectors in the Annapolis Valley region. 

Making business connections

We can connect you with people and resources to grow your business, build relationships and unlock new opportunities. Through our BusinessNow suite of services, we provide one-on-one support and effective referrals to a network of business resources. We also bring the collective concerns of business to municipal and provincial governments and share critical insights into the regional business climate.

Please contact James Schofield,
Economic Development Officer 
Ph: 1 (902) 698-9192 jschofield@valleyren.ca

Developing strategic sectors in the Valley

We are working with the business community in five strategic sectors to support collaboration and development.

Please contact Emily Konrath, Economic Development Officer 
Ph: 1 (902) 670-0542 ekonrath@valleyren.ca

Catch up on our newsletters and blog

January 2017 Valley REN Voice
December 2016 Valley REN Voice
November 2016 Valley REN Voice
October 2016 Valley REN Voice
Read our blog here.
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Questions? Suggestions? Send us a message.
Copyright © 2017 Valley Regional Enterprise Network
35 Webster St., Suite 102 | Kentville, Nova Scotia B4N 1H4 | 1 (902) 670-2287
valleyren.ca | krmells@valleyren.ca

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Valley Regional Enterprise Network · 35 Webster St. · Suite 102 · Kentville, NS B4N 1H4 · Canada

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