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Consulting firm to help Sidney build bridge to future prosperity

Council approves Vancouver-based Lions Gate Consulting to create economic development strategy
Vancouver-based company Lions Gate Consulting has received the contract to develop Sidney’s economic development strategy. (Black Press Media file photo)

A Vancouver-based company with experience in Greater Victoria will develop Sidney’s economic development strategy. Council on Monday unanimously approved Lions Gate Consulting to do the job.

The selection follows a council decision in March approving the use of $60,000 from the town’s safe restart grant to develop such a strategy, an idea that first emerged in late 2020.

Coun. Terri O’Keeffe called the choice of Lion’s Gate “an excellent recommendation,” adding she liked the strategies it developed for the Township of Esquimalt and the cities of Nanaimo and Powell River, among others. The company has also worked with communities across B.C., Alberta and Atlantic Canada, as well as the B.C. provincial government.

O’Keeffe also praised the company’s proposed community engagement, performance measurement framework and timeline, with the company expected to deliver its final report by mid-May 2022. The company’s total fees and expenses before GST is $48,795.

According to the company’s bid submission, it stated that it will draw on a range of quantitative and qualitative sources, conduct a SWOT (strengths, weaknesses, opportunities and threats) analysis, consult widely through focus groups, interviews and surveys, and hold various workshops before drafting a five-year-implementation plan.

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“Our team members are economists who specialize in economic, industry and cluster analysis of those industries that are underpinning the regional economic base,” reads the bid. “We have closely studied the dynamics and performance of major industries like forestry, agriculture, tourism, transportation and knowledge sectors and fully understand what they need to succeed, from infrastructure and labour to business climate and capital. Through our impact assessment work, we know how and why investment flows to businesses in these industries, and why their success usually means community success.”

Sidney is developing its economic development strategy in partnership with the South Island Prosperity Partnership, which also had a hand in choosing the consultant.

Sidney chose Lions Gate Consulting ahead of three other bids, two of which (Urban Systems and Sirius Strategic Solutions) are based in Victoria. U.K.-based Public First also submitted a bid.

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