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Atlantic Trade and Investment Growth Strategy (ATIGS) ICT RFP for the Provision of Consulting Services

Sunday, December 17, 2017

The Government of Canada and the four provincial governments in Atlantic Canada have developed a new Atlantic Trade and Investment Growth Strategy (ATIGS) that is designed to support the region's long term growth by increasing the global competitiveness of the region and its firms.

Under the ATIGS, the provincial and federal governments are committed to unprecedented collaboration and coordination to develop and implement joint trade and investment initiatives that are coordinated, firm-focused, and build on the region's sector capabilities and capacity.

Opportunities for export growth continue to emerge for Atlantic companies in areas such as knowledge-based, value-added and resource sectors. Under ATIGS, Atlantic Sector Export Teams have been created to focus on export plan development and implementation activities to help Atlantic businesses seize and maximize export growth opportunities.

Consisting of government and sector stakeholders, the Teams will be tasked with developing and implementing long-term, evidence-based sector export development plans that contribute to the achievement of ATIGS targets.

Background

The ICT sector in Atlantic Canada is comprised of approximately 1,100 companies. Almost half of the ITC companies provide products and services related to enterprise software solutions. Telecommunications, big data and analytics, digital media, videogaming and educational technology are also important subsector of the ICT industry in Atlantic Canada.

While most ICT businesses are small, some of the region's businesses have had success in terms of being purchased or amalgamated with other larger players engaged in social media, IT security, apps, etc.

The newly formed ICT Atlantic Sector Export Team met in Halifax in June 2017. The Team is comprised of representatives from NATI, ACOA, the 4 Atlantic Canadian Provinces, Global Affairs Canada, Venn, TechImpact and Digital NS. During the face to face meeting, members discussed the development of an Atlantic Sector Export Strategy/Plan for the ICT industry, and the gathering of information on the industry in Atlantic Canada.

Since that meeting, information from each province's ICT industries was gathered and more is expected to be collected in the coming months. The Team has already collected information on the number of companies in Atlantic Canada, the number of companies in each sub-sectors, the total number of employees, the estimated total sales, the percentage of companies exporting outside of Canada, the current export markets, and some markets of interest.  Other information on company preparedness was gathered.

Some companies have indicated that market preparedness was a significant impediment to growing export sales. Companies have also indicated the need for pre market entry information on IP protection, visa requirements for cross border work, taxation and regulatory requirements. They also request information on how to optimally penetrate international jurisdictions, sales training including pitch, opening/closing sales deals; in market intelligence, etc.

During the June 2017 meeting in Halifax, the Team expressed the need to identify key markets that offer significant opportunities for the key vertical subsectors within the ICT sector. Team members, market specialists and industry in their effort to be hyper- focused, will identify 3 high-value markets of interest for export.

Click here for the RFP document. Please note that the deadline is October 12, 2017.