Our Partners

FPInnovations is among the world’s largest private, non-profit research centres working in forest research. The organization helps the Canadian forest industry to develop pathbreaking solutions based on the unique attributes of Canada’s forest resources, favouring a sustainable development approach and taking full advantage of the industry’s considerable scientific, technological and commercial capital.

To achieve this, FPInnovations has created a business model like no other in the world, a model that allows it to respond efficiently to the needs of its members in the private sector, and of its partners in research, academic, and federal and provincial government circles.

Based on the principle of collaborative research, this model combines strategic research alliances, products and services, along with licensing and joint venture agreements when taking the needs of members and customers into consideration. Projects defined under this model will be transformed into deliverables and value propositions through the work of 18 research departments linked with no fewer than eight university research networks.

These teams centre their activities around 11 research programs and two areas of focus, which are described in more detail here.

This is a model that goes beyond traditional R&D. With a market-first focus, it incorporates the NABC (Needs, Approach, Benefits, Competition) system developed by SRI International, adapted to the specific characteristics of the Canadian forest industry and economy.

By making the connection between R&D on one hand and industry needs on the other, FPInnovations helps the Canadian forest industry to envision new possibilities for the future.

For more information visit www.fpinnovations.ca, or contact FP Innovations at info@fpinnovations.ca.



The Manitoba Print Industry Association Inc. (MPIA) is a non-profit industry-based organization created to attract and retain individuals into the printing industry in Manitoba.

The MPIA has partnered with the Province of Manitoba to focus on extending collaborative human resource development and training initiatives.

By working with employers and educational partners we are expanding the print industry training opportunities available in Manitoba.

For more information visit www.mpia.ca or contact Barry Miller at bmiller@mpia.ca


MITT provides certificate, post-graduate, and diploma-level technical training for career-oriented post-secondary and secondary students in four clusters of specialization: business and information technology, health care, human services, and skilled trades.

A hallmark of MITT’s approach is its deep collaboration with industry. Together, they identify skills gaps—both technical and soft—develop curriculum to meet them, and create work practicum opportunities that help students build connections with prospective employers while they learn.

The learning environment at MITT supports students’ academic, professional, and personal success: industry veteran instructors teach, mentor, and serve as industry connection points; and teams of staff ensure the campus community is safe and inviting and that students have access to the information and resources they need to excel in their programs and successfully bridge from the classroom to a career.

MITT is a leading provider of continuing education opportunities through its Lifelong Learning Institute, and offers several unique pathway programs for adult and language learners.




Phil Ginter Business Solutions, Inc. provides support, advice and training in Continuous Improvement development and implementation.  

Phil offers 35+ years of diversified experience in building and leading teams to achieve profitable turnaround of existing manufacturing operations.  He offers his skilled knowledge and abilities to provide and implement innovative and creative solutions that provide the manufacturing industry with long-term competitive advantages.


XONITEK is a boutique consulting firm dedicated to helping companies in their pursuit of achieving Operational Excellence.

Our Passion: We help snap your vision of the future into focus and augment your know-how to make that vision a reality.  As Stewards of your strategy, we know from experience that what works in one locale cannot be directly copied to another. Rather, best practices and capability must be replicated with due regard for variations in local cultures, infrastructure and environments.

“Operational Excellence is when the efforts throughout the organization are in a state of alignment for achieving its strategies and where the corporate culture is committed to the continuous and deliberate improvement of company performance AND the circumstances of those who work there –  to pursue ‘Operational Excellence by Design’ and not by coincidence.” 
– Joseph F Paris Jr; Chairman, XONITEK Group of Companies

For more information visit http://www.xonitek.com, or contact Xonitek at contact info@xonitek.com.


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 Practical Business Improvement

With over 30 years experience in Continuous Improvement, specializing in Lean Methodologies, P.B.I. brings a practical approach to the application of Lean. We have experience in working in Manufacturing, Electronics, Hospitality, Food, and the Oil and Gas sectors. Our goal is to help build internal capability, to allow business`s to become self sufficient in their Improvement journey. Coaching of senior leaders and staff is a key strength of P.B.I.


MasterKey helps businesses help themselves by applying LEAN Thinking, a culture changing methodology aimed at creating customer value by eliminating waste through continuous improvement of processes and engagement of employees at all levels.

MasterKey has partnered with clients in telecommunications, aerospace, information technology, healthcare, energy, manufacturing and distribution, call centers, not for profit and government organizations. MasterKey prides itself in adapting LEAN Thinking from “manufacturing” industries to “service” industries, as well as “non-manufacturing” processes including sales and customer service. 

MasterKey helps clients achieve the value of LEAN Thinking by deploying Duha’s Operating System on site.

For more information visit www.master-key.ca, or contact Murray Grant at m.grant@master-key.ca.


LeanSHIFT is a Business Improvement Company grounded in LEAN thinking, process improvement, and performance innovation. 

LeanSHIFT is operated by two senior partners, Don Keatch and Murray Grant, with over 60 years of executive experience. We integrate our broad and deep experience with “best in class” strategic partnerships to help clients move to “world class caliber” by delivering superior customer value and continuously eliminating inefficiencies.

LeanSHIFT provides LEAN transformation, coaching, and training services that integrate LEAN thinking with “best in class” business improvement methodologies, enabling clients to expand their capacity by “doing more with less”. 

Our philosophy is to help clients “improve the foundation for growth and efficiency”. Our desire is to help clients achieve a “World Class” reputation. 

Please contact Don Keatch at dkeatch@leanshift.ca for more information. 


The CEW is passionate about helping people improve their lives through learning in workplaces, communities and educational settings.

The CEW wants to make a difference by helping people change their behaviours, learn new skills, and bridge learning gaps. They believe in the integration of adult learning practices and principles with emerging technologies. The CEW advocates for all workers by validating strengths and addressing gaps in learning and performance.

The CEW, along with their partners in industry, education and government create relevant and “real life” digital learning materials.  Through a rigorous research and development process, the CEW seeks out new ways of engaging a diverse workforce to change the way they learn.

For more information visit www.cewca.org, or contact the Center for Education for Work at cewca@cewca.org.


The Canadian Manufacturers & Exporters (CME) is Canada’s largest trade and industry association, and the voice of manufacturing and global business in Canada.

Founded in 1871, CME represents more than 10,000 leading companies nationwide, and – through various initiatives, including the establishment of the Canadian Manufacturing Coalition– touches more than 100,000 companies from coast to coast, engaged in manufacturing, international trade, and service-related industries. More than 85 per cent of their members are small and medium-sized enterprises.

The CME aims to  help Canadian manufacturers and exporters compete and win in domestic and global markets by leveraging the leadership, expertise, connections, and the strengths of their membership.

For more information visit www.cme-mec.ca.


The Shingo Prize is named after Japanese industrial engineer Shigeo Shingo. Dr. Shingo distinguished himself as one of the world’s thought leaders in concepts, management systems and improvement techniques that have become known as the Toyota Business System. Dr. Shingo received his honorary Doctorate of Management from Utah State University in 1988, the year the prize was initiated.

The mission of The Shingo Prize is to create excellence in organizations through the application of universally accepted principles of operational excellence, alignment of management systems, and the wise application of improvement techniques across the entire organizational enterprise. This is done by teaching correct principles and new paradigms that accelerate the flow of value, align and empower people, and transform organizational culture. 

For more information visit www.shingoprize.org, or contact Mickey Hunt at mickey.hunt@usu.edu.