CanCham Strategy for 2018 as of October 15, 2017 (Draft)

The following is a strategy proposal to provide members with an idea of the activities the CanCham plans to undertake in 2018. It is subject to review and modification. Member input is welcome.

The CanCham will continue with its objectives as stated in its website at http://cancham.lv/about-cancham/objectives. The emphasis is on “actively promoting the business interests of its members”.

The CanCham will concentrate on the following regions in order of priority: Latvia, Canada, Taiwan and other regions where our members operate such as Central Asia and Northern Europe.

The CanCham will work closely with the Canadian Embassy in Latvia and the Latvian Embassy in Canada, and will cooperate with other organizations to promote its objectives, including (in priority order), the Canada Eurasia Russia Business Association (CERBA), ventureLab, the Taipei Mission in Riga, the Finnish Chamber of Commerce in Latvia, Norwegian Chamber of Commerce in Latvia.

Activities in order of priority:

 
1 Helping members find clients
 

The Partnering for Profit (PfP) program was introduced in January, 2016.

The main objective of PfP is to develop business opportunities for members through networking with other members. This gives the other members a chance to sell additional products and services to their clients thereby providing additional income for themselves. It also has the effect of increasing the seller’s sales force.  

As part of the PfP program, the following actions are to be undertaken:

a.  Sell Sheets: Members will be encouraged to prepare a “sell sheet” which provides basic information about their services and their company. Sell sheets will be posted in http://cancham.lv/services.

b.  Work Groups: Work groups by business category (eg. export, healthcare, construction related services, business support services, and tourism & recreation) were established in 2017

Each work group has a leader who will coordinate activities. Work groups are business units whose objective is to promote themselves through the CanCham. Note that the CanCham is not a commercial organization, hence the work groups and member companies are expected to deal with inquiries and profit from the business generated for themselves.

A review of the activities of work group leaders is to be undertaken in order to optimize their contribution. This is a top priority. How and when work group members meet and/or communicate will be decided by the individual work groups.

c.  Client search through work groups:  Each work group will identify priority client groups of interest to them and where they are from.

Each work group will establish the marketing approach most appropriate to themselves. This could include direct mailing, social media, working with embassies (local and foreign), using web site(s) (CanCham / member), preparing printed materials, participating in local trade shows, etc.

2 Events

Events will be scheduled for Mondays, when possible.

Six major events will be organized in 2018. The following are amongst potential participants to be invited: H.E. Alain Hausser (Canadian Ambassador to Latvia), H.E. Kārlis Eihenbaums (Latvian Ambassador to Canada), Vaira Vīķe-Freiberga, Artis Pabriks (re CETA), Krišjānis Kariņš (re energy). Member suggestions will be requested.

Three focus group meetings (a new feature) will be introduced. Members of particular groups (ie construction related services, export, medical services) will be invited to present at the event, and invitations will be sent to the general public to attend.

Three expert seminars will be introduced with the objective of organizing three of these. These would be 2 to 4 hour seminars offered to members and friends by a member who sponsors the seminar. Topics could include accounting, printing, project management, medical services.

One-on-one meetings are to be introduced with the aim of having members meet other members and develop a better understanding of what each offers and/or requires. A policy and procedure on how this should work will be set up by the Board.

Business after hours events will be promoted. airBaltic has already indicted a willingness to participate.

Three PfP orientation sessions will be scheduled.

Canada Day will be celebrated on Sunday, July 1st, and the Canadian Thanksgiving on Monday, October 8th.

The AGM is expected to be on Monday, October 1st.  

 
3 Business Missions

A Canadian business mission from Canada (Toronto/Montreal) will be organized Thursday, March 29th to Sunday, April 8th 2018 to visit the CanCham and potential partners in Latvia by the CanCham and Peter Czinkan of the CAA (Canadian Automibile Association – Travel Agency).

A mission of CanCham members to Canada is also under consideration.

 
4 Canadian Armed Forces

The CanCham will endeavour to network with Canadian Armed Forces personnel by

  • providing social and cultural activities for Canadian personnel,
  • seeking business opportunities connected to the NATO deployment.
 
5 Governance 

The Governance program was launched in September, 2016 with the intention of helping members deal with troublesome government laws, regulations and/or practices, or at least try to do something to change them.

The Governance Work Group headed by Guna Skangale will finalize practical details related to how this work group will operate. CanCham will send out a notice asking members to participate the work group.

The Governance Council headed by Ilvars Petersons will periodically review the work of and review the involvement of other organizations in the CanCham initiative.

 
6 Recruitment

The CanCham recognizes the importance of quality membership and members who will support CanCham objectives and programs. In order to spread the word, the CanCham has initiated a rewards program for individuals recruiting new members for the CanCham. Our objective for 2018 is 100 members. We currently have 89.

The CanCham uses a membership application form in its web site to facilitate new member registrations http://cancham.lv/about-cancham/application.

The CanCham initiated a program in 2017 to attract Canadian companies to the CanCham which was supported by a reception in Canada in September, 2017. This is in cooperation with Sam Davidovich, the CanCham Canadian Board member. The objective is to develop strategic partnerships between Canadian companies and CanCham members.

 
7 Trade shows

The CanCham will aim to participate in at least one trade show in Canada and one in Latvia with the intent of promoting its members.

8  Activity Review:
 
Dr Kārlis Sarkans proposal at the AGM to form a sub-committee to ascertain what members wish to receive from the CanCham and to explore the fee issue and additional sources of revenue, and volunteered to chair this sub-committee. Sunny Motwany, Kully Singh and Henrik Mjoman indicated that they were prepared to participate in this sub-committee. Other members are invited to participate and share their views.