This spring, Ag-West Bio and FEAD (Female Entrepreneurs in Agri-Food Development) had the privilege of co-hosting the Essentials for Business Excellence webinar series, a free educational initiative designed to cover essential business topics. The series aimed to equip entrepreneurs and business professionals with the knowledge and tools needed to navigate various aspects of business management. With 165 unique registrations and 155 live attendees, the series demonstrated a strong interest and engagement within our community.

Each session featured expert speakers who provided in-depth insights and practical advice, followed by interactive Q&A sessions that allowed participants to get their specific questions addressed. Here’s a recap of the insightful sessions we hosted:

April 4: Legal Essentials

Janelle Anderson and Avneet Nehel from Procido LLP kicked off the series with a session on legal essentials. They covered crucial topics such as understanding contracts, navigating regulatory requirements, and protecting intellectual property, providing participants with a solid legal foundation for their businesses.

April 18: Leveraging Government Grants

Melissa Corey from Mentor Works and Andrew Kudel from Infinity SRED Solutions shared strategies for leveraging government grants. They discussed how to identify suitable grants, craft compelling applications, and maximize funding opportunities to support business growth.

May 2: Navigating Human Resources and Governance

Gary Mearns from Morris Interactive led a session on human resources and governance, offering valuable insights into effective HR practices and governance structures. This session was particularly beneficial for businesses looking to strengthen their organizational framework and manage their teams more effectively.

May 16: Prepare for Financing

Genni Hibbert and Cole Howard from FCC provided guidance on preparing for financing. They discussed creating robust business plans, understanding different financing options, and what lenders look for in a financing application, ensuring participants were well-prepared to seek funding.

May 30: Investment Readiness

Steve Balaban from Mink Learning focused on investment readiness, offering tips on how to attract and secure investments. This session was invaluable for startups and growing businesses looking to scale and attract investor interest. Ag-West Bio will be hosting an in-person investment readiness and negotiation bootcamp with Steve Balaban in Saskatoon on December 3rd and 4th, 2024. Watch the Ag-West Bio events calendar for more information.

June 13: IP Strategies

Harm Deckers from HMD Consulting concluded the series with a session on intellectual property (IP) strategies. Attendees learned how to protect their innovations and leverage IP to gain a competitive edge in the market, a crucial aspect for many technology-driven businesses.

We are delighted to announce that the recordings and materials from the Essentials for Business Excellence webinar series will be available as a shared resource for members of both Ag-West Bio and FEAD. These resources will continue to provide value long after the live sessions, offering ongoing support and knowledge for our community of entrepreneurs and business professionals.

If you’re not yet a member of Ag-West Bio or FEAD, now is the perfect time to join and gain access to these valuable resources and more. Our organizations are dedicated to supporting your business growth and providing you with the tools and knowledge you need to succeed.


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Thank you to everyone who participated in the Essentials for Business Excellence webinar series. We look forward to continuing to support your business journey through our ongoing programs and resources. Stay tuned for more exciting events and opportunities!

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