JEDI’s New Aboriginal Business Accelerator Program Begins

JEDI’s Aboriginal Business Accelerator Program Launch

JEDI’s Aboriginal Business Accelerator Program Launch

Aboriginal entrepreneurs in New Brunswick will benefit from JEDI’s new Aboriginal Business Accelerator Program.

The program started on Jan 22, 2016 and is designed to help the businesses in the program take advantage of opportunities in the multi-billion dollar National Shipbuilding Procurement Strategy (NSPS).

“The JEDI Aboriginal Business Accelerator Program is very exciting,” says Alex Dedam, President of the Joint Economic Development Initiative. “This 10-week business skills development and mentorship program will help high potential entrepreneurs become better positioned to fully benefit from the federal shipbuilding program and related supply chain opportunities.”

The JEDI Aboriginal Business Accelerator Program will provide weekly training and mentorship to a cohort of 5 Aboriginal entrepreneurs from across New Brunswick in key business areas such as:

  • Positioning a business for success;
  • Business development and sales;
  • Negotiation;
  • Proposal development;
  • Certification and regulatory requirements;
  • Financial management and raising capital;
  • Project management;
  • Human resource management.

Participants will also connect with key resources, learn from representatives of large defense firms and receive mentorship from both successful Aboriginal entrepreneurs and members of the New Brunswick Aerospace and Defense Association.

“The New Brunswick Aerospace and Defense Association and its participating members are excited to assist with this important initiative and look forward to providing solid guidance and advice in the mentorship portion of this effort”, says Peter Hess, Managing Director of the New Brunswick Aerospace and Defense Association.

The first cohort for the program will run from January 22 to March 25, 2016. A personalized business support plan and financial support will be provided to participants upon program completion.

The program is part of the New Brunswick Aboriginal Shipbuilding Engagement Strategy and is a result of a partnership between JEDI, the Government of Canada, the Government of New Brunswick, the Saint John River Valley Tribal Council, the North Shore Micmac Tribal Council, MAWIW, the New Brunswick Aboriginal Peoples Council, Irving Shipbuilding, the New Brunswick Aerospace and Defense Association, and the New Brunswick Building Trades Council. The business accelerator program is also supported by the Bank of Montreal.

The Strategy and Accelerator Program seeks to help bring business contract and career opportunities to Aboriginal people in New Brunswick from the approximately $30 billion NSPS program that will create new ships for the Canadian Coast Guard and Royal Canadian Navy.  Expertise will be required in:

  • Information and Communications Technology (IT)
  • Trades
  • Administration

For example, Irving Shipbuilding, routinely employs a variety of trades, including, but not limited to:

  • Pipefitters
  • Engine Fitters
  • Machinists
  • Welders
  • Electricians
  • Ironworkers
  • Spray Painters/Blasters
  • Labourers

There is also opportunity to find work and business contracts among smaller companies in New Brunswick that operate in areas such as IT, manufacturing, welding, machining and security.

If you are interested in learning more about Shipbuilding, please reach out to JEDI anytime and attend our upcoming JEDI Plenary on Feb. 10th in Fredericton. Register at