More training for new entrepreneurs, better access to local statistics, and more major business events are all in the mix if the new president of the Surrey Board of Trade (SBOT) has his way.
Bijoy Samuel will be inducted as the new president of the board later this month, but he took some time Thursday to outline his vision for The Leader.
“I’m excited about what lies ahead,” Samuel said. “Working with a very talented board, dynamic CEO, dedicated staff, striving to be more relevant to the business community… how can (businesses) use the Surrey Board of Trade in their day-to-day business operations?”
Samuel, the general manager of RedFM radio station, wants to spend the next year making the SBOT more “relevant” to the business community.
He said important information, such a statistics – particularly local figures – can be extremely hard to obtain for businesses.
Hopefully, the SBOT can gather them more efficiently and make them available to members, he said.
“The board of trade will be resourceful and as a business starts here, we have a business centre that starts here as well,” Samuel said. “We will work with local universities to carry out research, so that market intelligence will help new businesses come into Surrey as well.”
There are challenges that lie ahead, he noted.
“We want the provincial government to support the film industry,” he said. “When you look at tax credits, there’s a 10-per-cent difference between Ontario and us.”
He also wants to create at least two major business events in Surrey.
“These are business-related events that would be motivational and inspiring,” Samuel said. “On a day-to-day basis, running a business is not easy; it has its challenges, it has its sacrifices.”
He wants to see two significant events featuring business people from the TV series Dragon’s Den.
“Bring that in, to motivate the business person,” he suggested.
Samuel will be inducted at the 49th Annual General Meeting and President’s Dinner on June 20 at Eaglequest Golf Course from 5:30 to 9:30 p.m.
Leader publisher Jim Mihaly is the outgoing president.
Gerard Bremault, CEO, Centre for Child Development will be inducted as the first vice-president.
The following people were acclaimed to the SBOT Board of Directors: Steven Mo, Parm Sidhu, Steven Stew, David O’Sullivan, and Ann Marie Walsh.
The annual nomination process also resulted in the following being re-elected to the board:
• Shelley Besse, Jane Hawkins, Jason Maynes, Lawyer, Hamilton, John Kearns, and Shayne Williams.
To attend the SBOT AGM and dinner, register online at www.businessinsurrey.com or call 604-581-7130.