AGM 2023: Cap-Acadie Chamber of Commerce is synonymous with progress

CAP-ACADIE, NB, June 25, 2023 – The Cap-Acadie Chamber of Commerce held its Annual General Meeting on June 22, bringing together 21 members from all sectors. The theme of this year’s AGM was “Innovation”, and the meeting set the course for the future of the Chamber in the region.

A BOARD OF DIRECTORS FOCUSED ON CONTINUITY

As usual, the Board of Directors of the Cap-Acadie Chamber of Commerce is renewed every year. Chairwoman Natalie Cormier is proud to begin a new term as president of the organization.

“Together, we’re ready to take on the challenges and opportunities facing our business community. We will have many opportunities to seize in the coming year. I’m honoured to be working alongside this dynamic and committed team. I’m also convinced that we will continue to vigorously defend the interests of our members and foster sustainable economic growth in our region,” enthusiastically states Natalie Cormier, Chair of the Board of Directors.

She will be joined by Marie-Line Beauregard-Gallant (Beauregard) as Vice-President, Ulrich Saukel (Studio Vent d’est) as Secretary and Louis Léger (Moncton Fish Market) as Treasurer.

In addition, seven other directors were elected unopposed: Gilles Bélanger (Bélanger Electric), Simon Dupuis (Dupuis Glass), Courtney Wilson (Happy Hour Club), Hector Doiron (Logis-Tech-Homes), Lise G. Boudreau (Restaurant À la dune), Angèle Losier (CAFi) and Mathieu Maillet (Dupuis Glass).

Managing the growth of both the organization and the region will be an important issue for the Board in the coming year. Cormier is convinced that her dearest dream could come true in the next few years.

“To have a team of five full-time employees! Let’s dream big, but it’s possible in the next few years. In the meantime, members must continue to believe in their Chamber and continue to invest their time and energy in it,” she asserts.

A MEMBERSHIP TARIFF BETTER ADAPTED TO THE REALITY

The professionalization of the Cap-Acadie Chamber of Commerce since 2020 has enabled the Board of Directors to review the value on investment that Chamber members receive each year in exchange for their annual dues. Following the production of a research report conducted with the support of Future Link/Lien d’avenir, the findings were striking.

“We realized that not increasing our membership rates, even in small doses, could have a major impact on the organization’s day-to-day operations. So we went through the exercise of completely reviewing our fees,” explains Natalie Cormier. “The cost of living is rising everywhere, even for non-profit organizations like us.

According to the research report, the proposed rates catch up with inflation over the past 25 years, as the Cap-Acadie Chamber of Commerce prepares to celebrate its 30th anniversary next year.

All members voted in favor of the new rate scale, which starts at $100 for a registered non-profit organization and goes up to $550 for a business with 101 or more employees. The scale is comparable to what is already in place elsewhere in the province. The new scale is already available online at cccacadie.ca/en/membership2023.

A FAIRLY STABLE FINANCIAL SITUATION

After a profit of $8,630 in 2020-2021, and a deficit of $4,523 in 2021-2022, the Cap-Acadie Chamber of Commerce is facing a second deficit estimated at $6,798 for the 2022-2023 fiscal year. Both deficit periods can be explained by massive investment, notably with the organization’s strategic plan, the creation of a website, and the renewal of its brand image.

“However, it’s worth noting the major growth in the organization’s revenues. For an organization that was generating close to $35,000 in 2020-2021 and is now generating $165,000, that’s a strong growth of 371%,” explains Anthony Azard, the organization’s Chief Executive Officer. “With a healthy reserve in the accounts, we can absolutely afford these key investments to ensure the organization’s growth in the short, medium, and long term.”

Revenue growth is not about to stop now. The search for new projects with various financial backers will enable the Cap-Acadie Chamber of Commerce to equip itself with greater permanence to oversee the operations and projects the organization undertakes daily.

In addition, the administration is aiming for a surplus during the 2023-2024 fiscal year, although it is far too early to predict with certainty the results at the end of the year.

THE CHAMBER OFFICIALLY CHANGES ITS NAME

Approval of the change to the organization’s legal name was given at the Annual General Meeting. Members voted unanimously to make the transition from “La Chambre de commerce Cap-Pelé/Beaubassin-est Chamber of Commerce Inc. to “Chambre de commerce Cap-Acadie Chamber of Commerce Inc.

It should be recalled that a change of corporate identity was required in August 2022, following the announcement of the name of the new municipal entity formed after the merger of Beaubassin-Est and Cap-Pelé: the Regional Town of Cap-Acadie. The process was already underway, following the strategic planning process that began a few months earlier.

The change in the organization’s legal name will be formalized once the changes have been authorized by Canada’s Department of Innovation, Science and Economic Development.

A YEAR OF GREAT VICTORIES

The Cap-Acadie Chamber of Commerce is proud of its ongoing commitment to its members and its determination to defend their interests.

Thanks to concerted discussions and efforts since 2021, the Chamber of Commerce has succeeded in significantly reducing the construction time for the Kouchibouguac River Bridge #1 (Robichaud Bridge), enabling better connectivity and smoother traffic flow in the region starting next fall.

The organization was recognized as a key partner in the development of economic and business development projects on the Cap-Acadie territory. This recognition testifies to the Chamber’s positive influence and commitment to the local community.

The Chamber of Commerce succeeded in keeping a portion of the Cap-Acadie territory within the provincial riding of Shediac-Cap-Acadie, thus preserving its identity and political representation.

The Chamber of Commerce has taken successful steps to establish a direct economic link with its sister town of Broussard, Louisiana, promoting trade between businesses on both sides of the border.

A LONG-STANDING MEMBER LEAVES THE BOARD OF DIRECTORS

After 10 years on the Board of Directors of the Cap-Acadie Chamber of Commerce, Gilles Cormier (Service d’estimations Gilles Cormier) has decided to step down. He emphasized his desire to make room for new people around the table.

“Gilles’ dedication to the Chamber of Commerce is simply remarkable. Without his ultimate support all these years, we wouldn’t have a Chamber that dreams of its own future and growth. It’s almost hard to imagine him leaving the Board table. However, it’s perfectly normal to think about leaving at some point,” says the Chairwoman.

“Having Gilles Cormier on our Board is a privilege and an honour. His wisdom and vast experience in both the business world and non-profit governance make him an impeccable candidate around the table. I will sincerely miss him, and wish him every success in his new endeavours.

Gilles Cormier will soon be officially recognized for his years of service on the Board of Directors.

THE FUTURE IS BIG… VERY BIG!

The future of the Cap-Acadie Chamber of Commerce looks bright and full of opportunities. Based on its recent victories and its commitment to its members, the Chamber is determined to pursue its role as an economic catalyst and advocate for the interests of local businesses.

It will continue to work closely with political decision-makers, regional partners and members of the business community to foster an environment conducive to growth and innovation. The focus will be on strengthening economic ties, both locally and internationally, exploring new business opportunities and adapting to technological developments.

The Cap-Acadie Chamber of Commerce is also committed to supporting local entrepreneurship, nurturing skills development and promoting inclusion and diversity within the business community. In addition, it will continue to invest directly in the success of its members, purchasing only their products and services in recognition of the fact that as many dollars as possible return to the community.

With a bold vision and unwavering determination, the Cap-Acadie Chamber of Commerce is establishing itself as a key player in the economic prosperity and sustainable development of the Cap-Acadie region.

The theme of the next Annual General Meeting will be Growth. The Cap-Acadie Chamber of Commerce is proud to announce the return of a guest speaker during the meeting. The next AGM will be held in June 2024 in the Grand-Barachois area of the Regional Town of Cap-Acadie.

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ABOUT US: Cap-Acadie Chamber of Commerce Inc. is a Part II Chamber of Commerce incorporated under the Board of Trade Act since 2006, and also incorporated under the Companies Act of New Brunswick since 1994. Its mission is to foster a unified network of dynamic, diversified members by providing them with opportunities to acquire the tools they need to succeed. With over 180 members, the Cap-Acadie Chamber of Commerce fosters the development and growth of its members.

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