CCI launches new bureau to help Atlantic innovators scale-up globally

March 26, 2024

Today, leaders of the Council of Canadian Innovators (CCI), a national member-based business association led by the CEOs of Canada's fastest-growing companies, hosted a conversation about innovation in Atlantic Canada to mark the formal launch of our efforts to grow and drive better economic outcomes on the east coast. 

CCI has opened a bureau in Atlantic Canada to support our growing membership out east and support current members across Canada who are interested in better navigating the region. 

Jim Balsillie, Co-Founder and Chairman of CCI and retired Chairman and Co-CEO of BlackBerry, participated in a conversation with Lori Weir, CEO of Saint John, NB's Four Eyes Financial, and Craig Rowe, CEO of St. John's, NL's ClearRisk. They discussed the opportunities for economic prosperity in the 21st century knowledge-based economy, as well as the current shortcomings of government policy.

Established in 2015 by Canadian CEOs, CCI represents and works with over 150 Canadian headquartered, high-growth technology companies. Our members are the CEOs, founders, and top senior executives behind some of Canada’s most successful ‘scale-up’ companies. 

With bureaus and boots already on the ground in Ottawa, B.C, Alberta and the prairies, Ontario, and Quebec, ensuring governments out east work with their homegrown innovators is integral to our mission of ensuring all Canadian technology companies have wind at their backs as they scale-up globally. 

"CCI's mission has always been focused on actively shaping Canadian public policy on innovation, to drive better results for homegrown Canadian technology companies. The formula for success is simple: Innovators need access to talent, capital and customers," said CCI President Benjamin Bergen. "Moreover, government policymakers need to understand the unique economic dynamics of the intangible economy, which is driven by assets like intellectual property and data."

CEOs join CCI to actively shape Canadian public policy on innovation and connect with a national network of like-minded CEOs focused on building global businesses in Canada. At the national and provincial levels, CCI advocates for economic strategies that increase access to talent, capital and customers for homegrown firms, and policies that expand your freedom-to-operate on the global stage through modern marketplace frameworks. We provide essential support to our members as they navigate government, media, capital markets, and global regulations during their expansion efforts.

In a fireside chat with Atlantic business leaders, Jim Balsillie emphasized the importance of freedom-to-operate strategies and the need for policymakers to take an active and strategic approach to innovation policy in order for Canadian firms to compete globally, as he has previously discussed at length in The National Post.

"Atlantic Canada is home to many incredible innovation leaders, including Lori and Craig who helped guide the conversation today at CCI's Atlantic Launch & Learn event. This region has a rich tradition of ingenuity and entrepreneurship that is still alive and well today," said Benjamin Bergen. "By linking arm-in-arm and advocating for better public policies across the region to support local scale-ups, there is significant untapped potential for growth in Atlantic Canada."

Atlantic companies interested in joining of the Council of Canadian Innovators must be headquartered in Canada and be on a trajectory of rapid scale and growth. To inquire about Atlantic membership, contact Karen Moores, CCI's Senior Advisor for the Atlantic Region.

Media Contact

James McLeod, Director of Communications


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