Export awards celebrate Ontario success in global markets

Archived Release

Export awards celebrate Ontario success in global markets

TORONTO, May 17 /CNW/ - Ontario Minister of Economic Development and Trade Bob Runciman this evening recognized the province's top small and medium- sized exporters for their outstanding achievements in job creation and international market success. The 3rd annual Ontario Global Traders Awards provincial ceremony attracted approximately 500 guests from across Ontario, including mayors, MPPs, entrepreneurs and award nominees.

Recipients of provincial awards included:
Leadership Award:
- Joseph Ouellette, President, Acrolab Ltd. (Windsor)
Innovation Award:
- Vistar Telecommunications (Ottawa)
Market Expansion Award - Service:
- the Pressure Pipe Inspection Company (Mississauga)
Market Expansion Award - Product:
- Medtronic of Canada Ltd. (Mississauga)
Partnership Award:
- Wabi Iron & Steel Corp. (New Liskeard)
- Eagle Crusher Company Inc. (Galion, Ohio)
Student Achievement Award:
- Ricardo de Lima (St. Catharines),
Studied at Niagara College of Applied Arts and Technology

"Three years ago, our government's lead trade agency -- Ontario Exports Inc. -- issued a challenge to Ontario exporters to recognize that there are markets for their products beyond Canada and the United States," said Runciman. "The challenge was to tap into international markets, which had been largely unexplored by Ontario companies. I am proud that they accepted this challenge and were highly successful in making significant gains world-wide."
Judges reviewed nearly 240 nominations this year. Nominees reported exports had a major impact on job creation. Collectively, the nominees said total employment in their companies jumped 23 per cent over the previous year, from some 7,000 jobs to 8,600 jobs in 1999-2000. Export sales among nominees climbed even more dramatically, from 54 per cent two years ago, to 64 per cent last year. Overall, exports generate the equivalent of more than 50 per cent of Ontario's Gross Domestic Product and sustain 1.6 million jobs in Ontario.
"These results are phenomenal," said Runciman. "They speak well for the strength of our economy, and they underline the role that exports play in creating jobs and maintaining our quality of life."
"The Bank of Montreal is very happy to be a part of these awards and to sponsor the prestigious Partnership Award," said Pam Robertson, Executive Vice President - Ontario Division. "As founding award partner with Ontario Exports Inc., our emphasis has always been to create solid partnerships with small to medium-sized businesses and then help them realize their long-term international business goals. Our award winners make it clear that Ontario companies can compete with the best in the world, and succeed," she said.
Award winners were finalists from regional competitions held in northern, central, eastern and southwestern Ontario. Judging panels represented leading business organizations and executives who reviewed nominations and chose winners.
The awards are sponsored by the Government of Ontario's lead trade agency -- Ontario Exports Inc. and Bank of Montreal, as well as their Partners in Trade: Deloitte & Touche, Canadian Commercial Corporation, Export Development Corporation, the Institute of Chartered Accountants of Ontario, United Parcel Service Canada Ltd., PROFIT, Canadian Business, Business Sense and Le Lien Economique.

Note to news and business editors: Background information on award
recipients and the Ontario Global Traders Awards program is attached.

For more information, and to view a comprehensive list and photos
of all regional award winners, as well as lists of previous years'
winners, visit the Ontario Exports Inc. Web site:


Innovation Award

Vistar Telecommunications
Ottawa, Ontario
With a focus on new and emerging mobile, wireless technologies, Vistar Telecommunications is a world leader in the design, development and manufacturing of specialized wide-area wireless data products and services. For example, at the heart of the company's GlobalWave system is Vistar's MT2000 modem, which is not only one of the smallest satellite data terminals in the world, but also the most advanced integration between the Global Positioning Satellite (GPS) and communications. Despite its size, the MT2000 is extremely powerful and has a patented power management system with an industry-leading three-year battery life. Export sales have quadrupled over the past two years, and Vistar anticipates exponential market growth with further system enhancements focusing on two-way messaging services and applications for the mass automotive market.

Market Expansion - Service

the Pressure Pipe Inspection Company Ltd.
Mississauga, Ontario
The Pressure Pipe Inspection Company performs non-destructive testing of large diameter concrete water supply pipes using a patented electromagnetic system. PPIC's inspections often result in rehabilitation rather than replacement, saving water authorities and power plants millions of dollars. The company exports 60 per cent of its services to the U.S. and 40 per cent to North Africa. Since 1998, the company has grown from one to 28 employees and export revenues have grown by more than 5600 per cent.

Market Expansion Award - Product

Medtronic of Canada Ltd.
Mississauga, Ontario
Medtronic of Canada is the only manufacturer of implantable loop recorders used to diagnose unexplained fainting. The device, called Reveal, records electrocardiograms that can be read by physicians. Outstanding worldwide acceptance has resulted in its use in more than 1,500 medical centres. The company exports to Hong Kong, the U.S., Europe, Mexico, Latin America, Japan and Australia, and since 1997 has grown from 80 to 119 employees. Medtronic aims to become a world leader in its field.

Student Achievement Award

Ricardo de Lima, St. Catharines, Ontario
Niagara College of Applied Arts & Technology, Niagara-on-the-Lake,
Ricardo de Lima, a graduate of Niagara College in International Business Management, is fluent in Portuguese, Spanish and English. He was a perfect fit for Frontline Focus International, a market research and customer intelligence firm, when it launched into Brazil on behalf of a multinational client with many restaurants in that country. Frontline had to address all issues facing a foreign company. As Field Operations Manager, Ricardo organized a business trip, and in 10 days the executive team accomplished what normally would take two to three months. Frontline credits Ricardo's knowledge, superb interpersonal and negotiating skills, and flexibility for its outstanding success in Brazil.

Leadership Award

Joseph Ouellette
President, Acrolab Ltd., Windsor, Ontario
Firm in his belief that the world is one market, Joseph Ouellette, President of Acrolab Ltd., was solely responsible for putting the Canadian mould-making industry on the road to international competitiveness. Acting on his belief that the mould industry could and must compete internationally, Mr. Ouellette formed the Windsor Association of Mould Makers in 1981. Members learned how to be proactive international marketers, keep abreast of technological advancements and participate in mass marketing ventures. The Windsor Association has since become the Canadian Association with over two hundred member firms. In addition to being an active public speaker, Mr. Ouellette lends his export knowledge and experience to new entrepreneurs through the Chamber of Commerce's mentoring program. He has also been instrumental in the development of St. Clair College's three-year international trade program. Acrolab provides sales and engineering services in fifteen countries.

Partnership Award

Wabi Iron & Steel Corp.
New Liskeard, Ontario
Eagle Crusher Company Inc.
Galion, Ohio
Wabi Iron and Steel found that quality products have built-in cost advantages to its customers. In the business of manufacturing iron and steel components for machinery that must endure constant high impacts and abrasion, Wabi keeps ahead of the competition by improving its product with the systematic development and testing of new and better alloys. For the last five years, Wabi has partnered with Eagle Crusher Company, a leading manufacturer of impact crushing technology, to test and improve its new alloys in components developed exclusively for Eagle products. As a result, the products Wabi produces for its client consistently perform at significantly lower cost and have been able to compete in new market segments. The success of this partnership has given Wabi the profile it needs to open new markets.

Media Backgrounder
2000 Ontario Global Traders Awards

May, 2001

The Awards
The Ontario Global Traders Award celebrates outstanding exporting achievement by small and medium-sized enterprises, industry leaders and students. It was created by the Government of Ontario and its partners in trade in 1998 to recognize the important contribution exporters make to the Ontario economy.

Award categories
Six awards are presented in each of four regions across Ontario. Awards are presented for Leadership, Innovation, Marketing Expansion (two awards: Products and Services), Partnership and Student Achievement.

Who is eligible?
Small to medium-sized enterprises (SMEs) in business a minimum of three fiscal years, based in Ontario, with annual sales of up to $50 million and a maximum of 200 employees are eligible. Eligible enterprises must export to one or more countries and have export sales that are at least 15 per cent of total sales. Companies that contributed in a significant way to the export success of an Ontario-based SME can be recognized under the Partnership award category. Ontario residents under the age of 30, in full-time studies in international business or related fields in an Ontario college or university program are eligible for the Student Achievement Award.

About the Program
Companies or individuals may nominate themselves or be nominated by a trade association or customer. Nominations are evaluated by regional judging panels for the regional awards, representing leaders from business, education and economic development groups. A provincial panel selects provincial award recipients from the short-list of regional award winners.

March 22, 2001 Mississauga (Central Region)
March 28, 2001 Thunder Bay (Northern Region)
April 4, 2001 Brantford (Southwest Region)
April 11, 2001 Kingston (Eastern Region)
May 17, 2001 Toronto (Provincial Ceremony)

The Ontario Global Traders Awards are presented by Ontario Exports Inc. and Bank of Montreal. Award sponsors include: the Export Development Corporation; Deloitte & Touche; The Institute of Chartered Accountants of Ontario, Canadian Commercial Corporation and UPS Canada Ltd. Media sponsors include PROFIT; Canadian Business; Le Lien Economique and Business Sense. The awards also have the support of the Canadian Manufacturers and Exporters, the Young Entrepreneurs Association and the Ontario Chamber of Commerce.

For more information, call Ontario Exports Inc. toll free at
1-877-46TRADE or visit www.ontario-canada.com/export to learn
more about the program and the award ceremonies.

Disponible en fran├žais
For further information: Media contacts: Hal Vincent, Minister's Office, (416) 325-8779; Eric Shapiro, Communications & Public Affairs Branch, (416) 325-6698