State of the Strait Business Update Sets a Positive Tone for Business Investment

State of the Strait Business Update Sets a Positive Tone for Business Investment

March 13, 2019

The Strait Area Chamber of Commerce hosted its annual State of the Strait Business Update event on March 13th at the Port Hawkesbury Civic Centre.  The event attracted over 140 of the region’s business and community leaders to hear about activities in three key sectors of the economy; the Creative Economy, Industry, and a focus on New Investments.


A presentation on the Creative Island concept by the Cape Breton Partnership laid the foundation for an informative Creative Economy panel; highlights of which included an update from renowned indigenous artist, Jay Bell Redbird from the Friends United Cultural Centre, and Sara Rankin of Mabou – her company (Sara Rankin Creative Co.) was recently recognized by Design Drizzle Digital Magazine as one of the top ten logo design firms world-wide!


Kicking off the Industry panel, NSCC provided insight into their industry-related programming. Additional updates on heavy industry developments in the region were provided on Pieridae Energy’s Goldboro LNG project and on Anaconda’s Gold Mining project – both of which have recently announced significant steps forward.


The New Investments panel highlighted projects in Richmond, Victoria, and Inverness Counties. Presentations on the Arichat Façade and Streetscape program and from the innovative Cabot Shores Wilderness Resort and Retreat were well received, with the final update coming from the brand new project in Margaree to develop a Cape Breton Cultural Experience – a significant development that will capitalize on the incredible natural assets of the region.


The event concluded with a heartfelt keynote from Fabian Henry, founder of Marijuana for Trauma, Veterans for Healing, and Breton CannaPharms.  Fabian’s story is built on his passion to help soldiers transitioning from service to civilian life, particularly those suffering from mental illnesses like post-traumatic stress (PTSD). His purchase of lands in Chimney Corner, Egypt Falls, and most recently the former call centre building in Port Hawkesbury are part of his overall plan to develop Cape Breton as a healing destination for veterans across Canada and will employ up to 70 people in the region.


Amanda Mombourquette, Executive Director of the Strait Area Chamber, noted, “the State of the Strait Business Update event is an opportunity for businesses across the region to share successes of the past year, and to look to their future. It’s part of the Chamber’s efforts to ensure that these positive developments are communicated and showcased – it sets the tone for the region’s business climate over the course of the upcoming year.”


The event was hosted by Richie Mann, President of the Strait Area Chamber, and Vice President of Marketing and Government Relations for Melford International Terminal and Melford Atlantic Gateway. “Significant private investment continues to be driving the economy in the Strait Area, demonstrating that business confidence is high and opportunities exist here for new investment. Every presenter highlighted how cooperation and collaboration has been key to the success of their efforts, and that speaks volumes about the capacity of this region to work together and grow,” explained Mr. Mann.


For more information on upcoming Chamber activities, visit, follow us on social media, or contact the Strait Area Chamber office at 902-625-1588, or email


The Strait Area Chamber of Commerce 2019 State of the Strait Annual Business Update event was sponsored by Port Hawkesbury Paper, East Coast Credit Union, Nova Scotia Business Inc., Grant Thornton, Richmond County, Cape Breton Partnership, Cape Breton Regional Enterprise Network, Eastern Strait Regional Enterprise Network, NovaStream and our Media Sponsor, 1015 The Hawk.

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