Paul Desbiens, President, FIP Associates
Mr. Desbiens has more than three decades of experience in the field of international trade and investment promotion. After a successful career with the Canadian Department of Foreign Affairs and International Trade (DFAIT), Mr. Desbiens founded FIP Associates in August 2006, a company specialized in investment promotion, research and training. The company's clients include Investment Promotion Agencies (IPAs) at the national and sub-national levels and their personnel abroad.
In his last assignment at DFAIT, Mr. Desbiens was Director of Partnerships at the Invest in Canada Bureau and he had the responsibility to manage relations between his organization and the Greater FDI partnership at the Federal, Provincial, Territorial and Municipal levels. He also had the responsibility for investment training and in that capacity, he conceived and implemented the first successful investment promotion training program for Canadian diplomats. This initiative was widely acclaimed and it continues to this day.
Today Mr. Desbiens continues to build on his expertise in this field by researching the best practices in investment promotion training around the globe, including those proposed by the World Bank (MIGA-FIAS), UNCTAD (United Nations Conference on Trade and Development), and WIPA ((World Association of Investment Promotion Agencies).
Mr. Desbiens was Commercial Counsellor at the Canadian Embassy in Brussels from 1998-2003 and he was Deputy Consul General and Senior Trade Commissioner in Boston from 1994-1998. He also served as Trade Commissioner in Melbourne, Australia, Algiers and Buffalo. His career included directorships in the US Bureau and Trade Communications of DFAIT in Ottawa.
George Woods, Associate, FIP Associates
George brings to the company some thirty years of experience as a commercial banker and policy advisor with Canadian government on both business finance and inward investment promotion.
Through recent assignments in developing economies, Mr. Woods has enhanced his expertise on investment climate issues and the impact of government policies and regulatory regimes on investment flows. With FIP Associates, Mr. Woods focuses on improving the capacity of clients to conduct investment climate assessments and develop appropriate policy responses designed to improve their ability to increase inward foreign investment in priority sectors.
Louis Boisvert, Associate, FIP Associates
Louis joined FIP Associates in November 2008. His private sector career started as financial analyst with Arthur Anderson & Co. in Chicago and he continued as economist at Bank of Montreal. Later on Mr. Boisvert moved to a public service career in the Canadian Trade Commissioner Service where he promoted Canada's economic interests abroad through international trade and inward investment promotion.
Louis managed business promotion teams in Ottawa and abroad in London, Tokyo, Seoul, Santiago and he was heading the Canadian Consulate in Raleigh-Durham, North Carolina. During his last assignment, Louis was Director Investment Services at the Invest in Canada Bureau, Department of Foreign Affairs and International Trade which plays a pivotal role for the management of the network of investment promotion professionals at Canadian missions abroad and those at Regional Offices across the country and other government departments.
Louis brings with him a solid background on foreign investment promotion including a solid field experience. He is fluent in French, English and an advanced knowledge of Japanese.
JoAnne Roy-Foster, Agro-Food Associate
JoAnne worked at Agriculture and Agri-Food Canada from 1992-2011 and she knows the Canadian industry inside out. Her experience includes relationships with the companies as well as policy developments surrounding this important sector of the Canadian economy. JoAnne was involved with different promotions of Canadian fish and food at several international events. She also has a good knowledge of the fish sector having been part of the management team at the Ottawa based Pelican Fishery from 1984-92.
FIP ASSOCIATES SECTOR SPECIALIST TEAM
With the addition of renowned Canadian industry sector specialists to its team, FIP Associates is now equipped to move into lead generation and prospect management in Canada. This includes sector assessment and value proposition development on behalf of foreign investment promotion agencies, the production of sector based SWOT analysis, benchmarking analysis of the client country companies. In Canada the process includes developing databases for the purpose of creating lead generation campaigns and this activity also incorporates the holding of webinars with the Canadian industry with the view of promoting the client country as an investment destination.
KEITH MEREDITH, President, Aeroinsight
Keith formed his own consulting firm in 1991 and he is recognised as one of the top aerospace
consultants in Canada. The company specialises in market assessments, business development services
and technology planning. This translates into the following activities:
- Market studies and analyses; air transport, business and general aviation, military markets, MRO and modification services
- Marketing and business plans
- Proposal management and writing
- Aircraft type selection studies
Customers include a range of large, medium and small Canadian aviation companies, investors, the
Canadian government and provincial and international governments. Aeroinsight’s non-Canadian
customers have included government agencies from places that include Mexico, Wales, the State of
Washington, the Netherlands and Hiroshima Japan. He has also recently provided remote business
development advice to a start-up aerospace services company located in Medellin, Colombia.
Prior to this, Keith worked for Canadair (1978-1988) which became Bombardier Aerospace in 1986. Keith
also worked for Airbus Industrie in France, from 1976-78.
Keith attends each edition of the Paris Air Show and the Farnborough Air Show in the UK. He knows
most of the players in the industry in Canada which makes him a perfect candidate to identify and recruit
prospects for foreign clients.
JERRY SUYAVONG, Manager for his consulting firm
Jerry has a very solid automotive industry background. He recently completed an assignment in Thailand as Executive Director and General Country Manager for Magna International Thailand. Magna is by far Canada’s largest auto parts company and one of the largest in the World. Jerry also worked as General Manager of Operations at the Summit Group, a Thailand based auto-parts company.
Jerry recently returned to Canada to manage and consolidate his own consulting firm. Jerry developed an intimate knowledge of the Canadian automotive industry in two previous assignments. He was Project Manager at the Automotive Industry Branch at the Federal Department Industry Canada and he also worked as Director Policy at the Canadian Auto Parts Manufacturer’s Association (APMA). Therefore Jerry is very well equipped to help foreign Investment Promotion Agencies (IPAs) develop investment attraction campaigns in Canada.
Life Sciences Sector
- More than two decades of life sciences industry development-related work through Industry Canada ( 1989-2005) and private-sector consulting
- Strong knowledge of Canadian life science industry and research infrastructure
- Identification and analysis of foreign-based investment targets
- Conceptualised and developed communication/marketing materials to promote the Canadian industry and attract investment and partnerships
- Linda is a proven manager with excellent interpersonal skills
- Languages: English, French and basic Spanish
- Linda is not shy in contacting executives of Canadian firms at all levels which bodes well for recruiting Canadian investment prospects for potential foreign clients.
Alan Milstein, CPA, CA, CMC, President, Milstein & Co Consulting Inc.
Apparel and Textiles Sector
Alan has over 24 years of experience consulting to the textile, apparel and retail sectors. He founded
Milstein & Co Consulting Inc in 2004, which quickly established itself as arguably the leading strategy
consultancy for Canadian apparel suppliers amongst industry executives, trade associations and
Alan has consulted directly with several hundred companies in the sector in virtually all parts of the
country and has repeatedly been a guest speaker for apparel associations and events in all the major
Canadian markets. Among his many achievements, Alan has authored a multitude of labour market,
global value chain and economic studies on the textile, apparel and retail industries on behalf of the
Governments of Canada and Quebec. These studies have been used to help formulate sector policy for
governments & industry associations as well as to provide strategic information to companies. While he
continues to complete high profile projects across the country, of particular interest is perhaps his
strategic work for companies on behalf of the Apparel Human Resources Council which was profiled in a
highly favourable case study prepared by the Conference Board of Canada in May 2008 entitled “On the
Cutting Edge: Strengthening Management Competencies and Business Success in the Apparel Industry”.