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So what do you know about Ottawa, a sleepy logging town? far from it..

March 25, 2010

When international cleantech companies consider expansion to North America, the typical choices are New York, Boston, Washington and San Jose. The City of Ottawa, Canada’s Creative Economy Capital, is working to change that perception in 2010 with an endorsement from Richard Florida, Martin Prosperity Institute Director and author of the international best seller Who’s Your City? Florida rates Ottawa as the “Best Overall” city in Canada on a “Creative Class Index” based on the 3Ts of economic development – Technology, Talent and Tolerance – and 22 places higher than New York, 2 places higher than Boston, 4 places higher than Washington and 1 place higher than San Jose.

Further, a Knowledge-based Industry Survey released last week by the Ottawa Centre for Research and Innovation (OCRI) shows Ottawa’s fledgling cleantech sector is the strongest of any of the city’s 13 unique technology clusters. The number of cleantech companies is up from 103 companies to 114 as of December 31, 2009, an increase of 10.7 per cent over the previous year, and the number of Ottawa’s cleantech employees is up from 2,050 to 2,567, an increase of 25.2 per cent.

With 78,000 employees in its 1,850-company technology sector, Ottawa is Canada’s national capital city and is also home to a recession-buffering public sector. As the country’s fourth-largest city with a population of 900,000, Ottawa’s predominant languages are English and French, but many others are spoken on the streets. About 25 per cent of the city’s residents are born in other countries, and more than 20 per cent of residents are visible minorities. Ottawa’s natural environment is another important part of its identity. The city has 850 parks that contribute to Ottawa’s green character, and many are home to some 45 major arts and cultural festivals that take place throughout the year.


Happy Saint Patrick’s Day: a great Welsh Holiday!

March 17, 2010

Yes, you read that right. Here at CeltiConnect we are notably Welsh leaning, and we are convinced by the history, and the scholars of note that Patrick was a Welshman! The full story was written by CeltiConnect co-founder Phil Wyman for the Boston Examiner.

So, happy Saint Patrick’s Day and tip a pint for the Welsh this year, and remember that this Irish saint was a Welshman who went to Ireland to preach the Gospel in a foreign land.

CeltiConnect establishes in Canada.. well kind of..

March 17, 2010

Following days of shifting through plenty of websites to form a Canadian branch of CeltiConnect, Gareth Gwyn Jones decided to go back to basics and talk to folks at Revenu Quebec in person. A great service and advise was had, and was recommended to start a Sole Proprietorship under my name; at some point we’ll register CeltiConnect

CeltiConnect hits the press

March 16, 2010

Gareth Gwyn Jones, CeltiConnect co-founder and VP for Canada, recently co-organized a St.David’s Day reception at the British High Commission in Ottawa. Gareth’s goal was ensure that a good selection of folks attended from a wide variety of industries and organizations – he succeeded and also managed to have the Speaker of the House of Commons to attend The Honourable Peter Miliken MP. Around 110 people attended. supported by supplying two bottles of Penderyn Welsh Whisky, guests to the evening were greeted with a sample and Andrew Rastapkevicius of the Liford Wine agency and Penderyn’s distributor in Ontario gave an overview of Penderyn.

High Commissioner Anthony Cary welcomed the guests and reminisced about his connections with Wales.

Professor Paul Birt, Chair of the Celtic Studies at the University of Ottawa addressed the crowd by giving an overview of St.David and its relevance to the Welsh around the globe.

Reporters from the Embassy Magazine also attended and featured the evening in their paper; see below under parties and St.David’s Day.

Welsh Bagpipes to North America

March 15, 2010

CeltiConnect co-founder Phil Wyman met with John Evans (who in typical Welsh fashion is known as John Glenydd, because the address of his house in Llanfihangel-ar-Arth is “Glenydd”). John is one of the few active Welsh Bagpipe makers, if not the only one currently working in Wales. These beautiful tradition bagpipes are much quieter than big Highland war pipes – you know the ones I mean, those pipes which have to played a quarter of a mile away in order to be at a comfortable volume. We think John Glenydd’s pipes could end up being a hit among bagpipers in the US who would enjoy sitting down to an acoustic session in an Irish pub, and be able to fit in with the guitar players and fiddlers.

Phil caught John talking about making his pipes on video. It was a sneak video. John did not realize Phil was taking the video till afterward. He would have been too nervous to say these things so comfortably if he knew the camera was on. So in the end John was happy we caught him on tape. Here’s John at his best. We will be helping John get his Welsh pipes into the hands of North American pipers.

NERAX brings British Ales to New England

March 12, 2010

40 different cask ales from the UK will be offered at this year’s New England Real Ale Exhibition in Somerville, MA.  The event held at the Dilboy VFW Hall in Porter Square will ave 45 American cask ales, and 40 from the UK.  This year 7 different beer and cider brewers from Wales will be represented.  Interested in knowing more, or perhaps even volunteering to help out?  Go to the NERAX site.  Maybe we’ll see you there.

Commercial Market Recovery: a sign of comeback or no?

March 11, 2010

Talk of the end of the recession typically begins as soon as the recession begins.  Of the signs which mark the true end real estate prices are a strong indicator, but are they a fool proof indicator?

This story found at WalesOnline speaks to that issue.

“With the effects of the recession still being felt across the economy, King Sturge’s South Wales Report 2010, which was unveiled at Cardiff’s Swalec Stadium yesterday, says that the wider recovery will be hampered by government cutbacks, rising unemployment and stagflation.

The report describes the commercial property investment market recovery in 2009 as “extraordinary”, but adds: “How much further can capital values rise knowing that the underlying occupational market remains extremely weak?””

Go to WalesOnline for the full story

CeltiConnect Goes to Wales

March 4, 2010

CeltiConnect just returned from a trip through Wales.  We met with biotech companies; travel agencies; breweries; university leaders in business, social media, and life sciences; the Welsh North American Business Council; the Gwynedd Business Network; a television studio; software developers; and a bagpipe maker.  That does not exhaust the list of business people we met.

Now we are working on providing the assistance needed to move businesses forward in their goals for growth.