Appnovation Technologies, ranked by Profit Magazine on its 2016 Profit 500 list as one of Canada’s fastest growing IT companies, has seen great success in the province of New Brunswick. It has positioned itself quite nicely by making key decisions that not only have it ready for growth, but poised for long-term success.
Opportunities NB (ONB) spoke with Arnold Leung, President and CEO, to discuss the success his company has seen from investing in New Brunswick.
ONB: Your business model is centered on building web and intranet applications using proven open source software applications for clients. Before we get into specifics of doing business in New Brunswick, let’s talk about some of those clients.
Leung: Our clients range in size. We work with startups, governments at all levels, non-profits, and multinationals. Some of our more well-known clients include American Express, Sesame Street, Reebok, the U.S. Department of Defense, World Wildlife Fund (WWF), Canadian Cancer Society, Google, and General Electric.
ONB: You are a growing company. How many employees do you have?
Leung: Currently we have 170 employees located around the world. I am pleased to say that New Brunswick is one of our newest locations, and we look forward to growing the employee base here.
ONB: What made the company choose New Brunswick for expansion when you already have established offices in Vancouver, Montreal, the UK, and Hong Kong?
Leung: I was looking for the right geographic location that could provide the necessary sales and marketing to support the other offices. New Brunswick is strategically located in the middle of the two time zones to perfectly support the North American west coast and the UK simultaneously. It works perfectly for us.
When it was time to expand to accommodate the various time zones, we started researching where the best location would be in Canada. It wasn’t long before we met up with ONB and had a site visit. We liked what we saw and did some further research on the labour market and the skill sets available. That research validated our assumptions and we made our decision to go with New Brunswick based on that research, and the site visit.
ONB: Is there anything about New Brunswick you feel your fellow CEOs outside this province should know?
Leung: There are a number of things that set New Brunswick apart.
1. Time Zone – It makes a significant difference when you have an 8-hour time difference between your head office and your UK office. Having operations in New Brunswick provides more overlap between the offices to effectively support our sales and marketing efforts. We see this as a significant strategic advantage.
2. Labour Force – In terms of recruiting and finding the right human resources, our experience has been great. We already have a good core team in place and are planning on continuing to expand.
3. Ease of Doing Business – As part of our research, we wanted a location that would be easy to establish; New Brunswick has proven to meet this model. We had support from all levels of government to make the New Brunswick office a success. This makes a difference for entrepreneurs. We don’t want to get bogged down in complications. We are about creating and doing business.
4. Bilingualism – We also have an office in Montreal, so having bilingual employees is another great asset.
ONB: As you have learned through research, New Brunswick has a vibrant IT ecosystem, how will you leverage that moving forward?
Leung: I have learned that New Brunswick has a great culture — a culture that embraces collaboration and sharing of information and ideas. I look forward to being a part of that. There are just so many people with great experience that we can leverage. From the education system all the way up to successful entrepreneurs it is a great ecosystem.
Looking for the same strategic advantages Appnovation has seen in New Brunswick? Connect with an ONB Business Development Executive at the button below.
Learn more at Appnovation.com