Leeds Grenville
Economic Development eNews | October 11, 2016
Business Profile
Above feature photo: From left, Manufacturing Director David Leonard, Steve Chisamore, Andrea Fulford, Taylor Dumbleton, Christine Morton and Nick Bush are shown in one of the electrode production areas.

Above: Medtronic quality supervisor Josie Bekkedam tests an Extravasation Detection Patch used in chemotheraphy treatment.

A view of one of the electrode manufacturing lines.
Medtronic to manufacture nearly a billion medical devices this year 
GANANOQUE - Tucked away on a quiet side street is a thriving medical device manufacturing operation called Medtronic.  

Formerly Covidien, Medtronic is a major employer in Leeds Grenville. The Gananoque site has a long history dating back over 100 years to 1909 when it opened as Staebler and Baker Ltd, a medical paper products producer started by two Queen's University professors. The original production location was in the cottage known as 'Napoleon's Hat' on Hay Island in the St. Lawrence River near the Gananoque shore.

Today, at its 106,000-square-foot facility on Herbert Street not far from the town's commercial core, Medtronic manufactures monitoring and diagnostic medical devices. These include electrocardiogram (ECG) electrodes, Automated External Defibrillator (AED) pads, pre-wired electrodes and fetal scalp electrodes. 

This year the facility is on track to manufacture nearly a billion medical devices, increasing its volume by more than 1,000% compared to production levels 20 years ago.

Medtronic also manufactures obstetrical belts and straps, catheters and infant care products, such as splints. The location has manufacturing, laboratory, warehousing and support space.

"We are a little-known, large-scale manufacturer of numerous important, life-saving medical devices that improve the lives of millions of people worldwide right here in Gananoque," says Site Manufacturing Director David Leonard. 

"Our workforce has increased from 175 employees two decades ago to over 400 currently. We are actively recruiting for various positions to support our continuing growth." says David.

Medtronic customers are physicians, hospitals and healthcare systems in Canada and around the world. Medtronic is a global company that operates in 160 countries with 53,000 medical device patents, including 84 in Canada. Several patent devices are manufactured at the local site. It is considered a leader in medical technology, services and solutions.

Learn more about Medtronic on their website.
Celebrating Business
Billings Automotive earns business award
FORTHTON - Billings Automotive Sales & Service is the 2016 recipient of the Elizabethtown-Kitley Business of the Year Award.

Billings was among five businesses nominated and recognized for providing services in the township. Also nominated were Choley's Fitness and Wellness Training Centre, Heritage Cycle Works, Miracle Maids and Pastry King's Princess. The luncheon was held at the Cedar Valley Golf and Country Club on October 6th. 

"It's been a journey and there have been many ups and downs," Dean Billing said in an interview, adding he would do it all over again. Good customer relations is a must.

"I really believe in old fashioned service and talking to people. We help as many people as we can," he said.

Just before the ice storm of 1998 struck the region, Dean had moved from Ottawa with his family to start his own business. He had only been open about a month when faced with an extended period of no heat or electricity. Dean forged ahead and today his business is known for its fast and friendly service. He credits employee Mike Capper with helping build the business from 3 to 8 bays in just under 20 years. Customers from the early days have remained loyal with their children and grandchildren becoming Billings clients as well.

Dean is also a supporter of local sports teams, from young children to adults, and donates time and funding to palliative care, firefighter and police services.

Learn more about Billings Automotive on their website, visit their Facebook page, call 613-342-4000 or send them an email. They are located on County Road 2 at Lyn Road.
Photo above: Dean Billings, owner of Billings Automotive, is flanked by Mayor Jim Pickard, left, and Economic Development Committee Chair Dave Miles after receiving the award. 

Economic Development Summit

Networking at the 2015 Summit.
Registration now open for Summit
It's time to register for the upcoming 8th Annual Leeds Grenville Economic Development Summit.

WHEN: Friday, November 18, 2016, 8:30 a.m. to 3 p.m.
WHERE: North Grenville Municipal Centre, Kemptville
COST: $25

The Leeds Grenville Economic Development Office, in partnership with Gord Brown, M.P., Steve Clark, M.P.P., the 1000 Islands Workforce Development Board and the 1000 Islands, Grenville and Valley Heartland Community Futures Development Corporations would like to invite you to a day focused on Economic Development and Leadership.

The Bill Thake Memorial Award for Economic Development Leadership will be presented following lunch.

Register here by November 11th.
Funding Opportunities
Collaborative Economic Development Projects (CEDP) funds available

Projects and activities in Leeds and Grenville are eligible for the new CEDP funding. A $6.3-million investment under the Eastern Ontario Development Program (EODP) was announced by the Federal Economic Development Agency for Southern Ontario (FedDev Ontario) in August to support the Collaborative Economic Development Program (CEDP).

The objective is to support projects that demonstrate benefits to multiple communities and promote broad-based collaborative economic development leading to a competitive and diversified economy while contributing to the successful development of business/job opportunities. The eligible activities fall into three main categories:
  1. Expansion of Economic Assets: Industry cluster development and expansion, labour market development, strategic planning and research studies.
  2. Business Development and Growth: new business development, training and mentoring, business start-ups; Existing business, including productivity enhancements, market diversification, innovation and product development, succession planning.
  3. Business Infrastructure: Business incubators, supply chain analysis and development. 
Learn more about the funding by contacting your local Community Development Corporation representativesIn this area they are:
  • 1000 Islands Community Development Corporation
  • Grenville Community Futures Development Corporation
  • Valley Heartland Community Futures Development Corporation
Applications will be accepted on an open, continuous basis subject to availability of funds and ending in December 2018. Applicants are notified of a decision within 6 weeks of submission. Applications go through the Northumberland Community Futures Development Corporation.
Workshops and Seminars
Launch Lab October dates

One-on-one mentorship, educational tools, access to market data, professional networks and support with funding applications are provided by the Regional Innovation Centre's Entrepreneurs in Residence (EIR) for those looking to start and/or grow a

WHEN: October 13 in North Grenville; October 27 in Prescott
WHERE: North Grenville Municipal Centre in Kemptville (Oct.13); Grenville Community Futures Development Corporation, 197 Water Street, Prescott (Oct. 27)
COST: Free 

By appointment only. Schedule a meeting via email or call 613-925-4275, ext. 23.
Fall Small Business workshop

A morning of workshops to celebrate Small Business Week 2016 will include a hot breakfast. There will be greetings from Gananoque and Leeds and the Thousand Islands mayors. Sessions include marketing on a limited budget, employment regulations, funding options and "Expanding your Business Beyond the Boundaries".

WHEN: Friday, October 14, 
8 a.m. to 12:30 p.m.
WHERE: Gananoque Inn, 550 Stone Street South, Gananoque
COST: Free

Registration is required by Friday, October 14. 

BR+E Alliance series

The upcoming Business Seminar Series and the Business Retention + Expansion Program will be launched at the 6th Annual BR+E reception. The keynote speaker is Janet Campbell, owner and founder of Mrs. McGarrigle's Fine Food Shop in Merrickville.

WHEN: Wednesday, October 26, 6-8:30 p.m.
WHERE: North Grenville Municipal Centre
COST: Free

Contact Teri Devine via emailor by calling 613-258-9569, ext. 115, if you have any questions. 

Leeds and Grenville Diversity Day Workshop

The Leeds & Grenville Immigration Partnership is welcoming employers, local government, immigrants, community members, schools, business and service providers to a half-day of discussion. 
The keynote speaker is Hindia Mohamoud, director of the Ottawa Immigration Partnership. There will be a panel discussion of local individuals sharing their experiences of creating inclusive spaces as well as a facilitated group discussion on how to make the community more inclusive for immigrants. 

WHEN: Wednesday, October 26, 8:30 a.m. to 1:30 p.m.
WHERE: Brockville Memorial Centre, 1 Magedoma Boulevard.
COST: Free (lunch provided)

Register by Wednesday, October 19th by contacting Loretta at the Employment and Education Centre via email or by calling 613-498-2111, ext. 261, and visit our Workshops and Seminars page.