The question of how to grow your business beyond its current size can be a problem for even the most successful companies and entrepreneurs. What works in the steady day-to-day operation doesn't necessarily provide leaders with the tools to tackle the challenges associated with a high-growth strategy. Helping businesses in the Atlantic Canadian region with those tools needed to expand, grow, and develop is at the heart of the University of New Brunswick's J. Herbert Smith Centre for Technology Management and Entrepreneurship (TME) Scale Up Atlantic Canada Program. Measurand was part of the program's first official cohort in Atlantic Canada, along with 12 others from the region. The cohort celebrated their graduation from the program on September 5, 2019.
Front row left to right: Charles Gervais, Doug Jenkins, Lisa Robichaud, Rosalyn Hyslop, Saar Fabrikant, Terry Kelson. Back row left to right: Blair Hyslop, Kevin Stover, Yan Simmard, Bruce Gourley, Jim Fitt, Zach Everett.
Participants met monthly over the last six months to engage in a mix of peer-to-peer collaboration, classroom learning, and workshops focused on the three C's of growth—customers, capacity, and cash.
“It’s the first program of its kind in Canada. It’s inspiring to witness all of the new growth in the 13 companies, which we think bodes extremely well for future economic growth in the area, ” said Dr. Daniel Isenberg, professor, Babson College, creator of Scale Up. According to a press release issued by the University of New Brunswick, "total revenues for the entire cohort increased by approximately 26 percent. Additionally, over 60 new employees were hired."
The Scale Up program, which was founded by Dr. Daniel Isenberg, has been delivered in several countries including, United States, Columbia, Denmark, Panama, Brazil, and Scotland, but not in Canada.
Lisa Robichaud, Measurand's controller said that the opportunity for peer-to-peer collaboration between businesses in the region has been one of the most beneficial aspects of the program. As a concrete example, she explained that when Measurand was looking to recruit overseas that another company provided valuable advice on navigating the process.
"They gave us the name of a consultant that we could use—who we did hire—and as well as some really great tips on where we might get stuck," Robichaud said. "Having peers to navigate some of these challenges is beneficial."
Robichaud said she believes the program helps build on the ambition and drive within the region's business leaders.
"Atlantic Canadians are humble but they're also entrepreneurs by nature. Whether you're a farmer, fisherman or jeweler, those are all businesses. There is quite an ecosystem of entrepreneurship," Robichaud said. "I think it's just building on the existing ecosystem and expanding it to another level."
The inaugural Scale Up Atlantic Canada cohort list:
Learn more about Measurand.