Knowledge-based economy ignites Atlantic Canada

Keynote speakers to share their expertise at forum

MONCTON, NB – March 16th, 2012 – Several keynote speakers will share their expertise with entrepreneurs and economic development stakeholders during the Forum Connect Atlantic: Ignite the Knowledge that will take place April 18-19 in Dieppe, NB.

Among these guest speakers will be Richard Fahey, senior vice-president of strategic development at the Canadian Federation of Independent Business, Jay Nicholson, associate vice-president of personal credit sales at TD Bank and France Noreau, vice-president of technology at Mouvement Desjardins

At a press conference this morning, Allister Surette, president and vice-chancellor of Université Sainte-Anne, announced the forum’s program and highlighted the important sponsorship of Acadie Média at the Web 3.0 sponsorship level

The forum will be presented jointly by the four Atlantic Canadian RDÉEs and is coordinated by RDÉE Prince Edward Island.


The forum will emphasize sharing and hands-on learning. During workshops and roundtables, entrepreneurs and business people from the region will share their best practices as well as the solutions to the challenges they faced throughout their careers. RDÉE Atlantic economic development officers will assist the expert facilitators during the training sessions and provide a continued service to the entrepreneurs after the forum. This forum is unique in its type because it offers tangible and measurable solutions to the challenges identified in the 2011 survey.

The forum will begin on the evening of April 18th, with a reception and a banquet. Richard Fahey from CFIB will get the participants warmed up with a presentation on Technology Tools for SME: a growth opportunity. On April 19th, participants will gear up for an entire day of learning and training. In the morning, Mr. Jay Nicholson from TD Bank will light the fuse by depicting the global economy and the challenges faced by small and medium enterprises (SME). Mrs. France Noreau from Mouvement Desjardins will turn to the future and discuss the importance of keeping pace with advancements in technology.

Participants will then be invited to attend hands-on training sessions on various themes related to modern information technologies such as using cloud computing (“Icloud”) and social networking. They will also have the opportunity to attend roundtables where entrepreneurs will discuss their best practices in regards to human resources management and marketing. A second wave of sessions will take place in the afternoon. It will allow participants to further explore the skills acquired in the morning with continuing hands-on training sessions as well as a session about product commercializing. The roundtables will discuss recent market trends and competitive intelligence.


The organizing committee also announced at the press conference the launch of two contests targeting young entrepreneurs. The participants at the forum will have the opportunity to meet the next generation of entrepreneurs, who will have the chance to present their new business ideas. The entire program and the registration forms for the forum are available at

“A conquest, of any type, cannot happen without significant financial support. The same goes for Igniting the Knowledge in our region,” explains Allister Surette, president and vice-chancellor of Université Sainte-Anne. “This is why we are very happy to have among our sponsors a company such as Acadie Média which has been able to adapt to the modern ways of communications through the use of modern information technologies.”

« Acadie Média has invested considerably in innovation over the past years. We’re happy to associate ourselves with an event like this. We hope that by sharing our experience and expertise with other participants that we’ll be able to encourage innovation in Atlantic Canada, » said André Wilson, director of marketing and innovation for Acadie Média and executive director of CapAcadie inc.

The forum includes other main sponsors that not only provide a significant financial support to the project but also a concrete experience of today’s market in various sectors. Knowledge economy fuels on the expertise of all and it peaks when it is shared. The commitment of sponsors like Mindsweep Inc., Atlantic RDÉEs, CDÉNÉ, the Corporation de développement économique de la Ville de Dieppe, the Centre for innovation and productivity, la Chambre de commerce française au Canada, le Collège communautaire du Nouveau-Brunswick, Radio-Canada and Ernest & Young is essential to the success of the forum.


Connect Atlantic is aUniversité Sainte-Anne initiative funded by the Atlantic Canada Opportunities Agency and implemented by the four Atlantic RDÉEs under the direction of RDÉE PEI. The project, whose mission is to improve competitiveness and enrich Atlantic francophone businesses in knowledge economy, consists of three components: the business survey; the forum; and the creation of practical tools for businesses and local stakeholders.  Visit for the latest news regarding the project.


CUTLINE : Announcing details fo the Connect Atlantic Forum during a  press conference this morning were, from left, Francis Thériault, project manager; André Wilson, director of marketing and innovation of Acadie Média and executive director of CapAcadie inc.; Allister Surette, president and vice-chancellor of the Université Sainte-Anne; Yves Bourgeois, director of the Centre for innovation and productivity.

For more information:
Clémence Lihrmann
Communications officer
(902) 266 6890