Montreal’s​ Economic Diversity

“When you talk about the advancement of Montreal as a city economically, one of the things that differentiates us is that we are very broadly based in terms of the economic drivers. It’s always interesting to grab a headline with AI, it’s always interesting to grab a headline with biotech, whatever the particular industry may be, what’s really interesting is that there are an incredible diversity of industries both within Montreal and dans les banlieues.

So what you have is a broader base, and why they’re attracted to Montreal is for those things that make Montreal unique. We are an extraordinarily diverse city, we are extraordinarily open city for the most part, most of the time, but at the same time, we are business driven by entrepreneurs who understand the necessity to take risks. And you mix all that together, and you get a different kind of a structure, you get a different kind of a driver, you get a different kind of an engine that makes this city tick, and boy does it tick.”

Victor Levee recently filmed this video with Make It Montreal, a storytelling platform geared towards Montreal’s business community and produced by local content strategy house Cat Around Films. The full set of clips can be found on Make It Montreal’s YouTube channel.

Planned Giving

“One of the more interesting aspects of what I do is I will often talk to my clients about something that’s called planned giving, which is essentially using the tool of a life insurance policy to provide funds for an institution, a not for profit institution, in the name of a family or in the name of an individual, but driven by that person’s belief in the organization that they’re supporting, regardless of the ethnicity.

It is the importance that, again, the Montrealer recognizes in making sure that there’s continuity, make sure that there’s always a place, that there’s always a hospital, that there’s always a senior citizens home bed, that there’s always a place for the blind to be able to be properly taken care of and coached. These are things that are really interesting in Montreal, because although it’s prevalent in Canada, the Montrealer gives it heart. And it’s not done so that someone’s name can be on a pavilion, it’s done ’cause people really wanna do it.

And there are certain structures that have to be set up naturally, you need to work with the right professionals in order to properly position it. But at the end of the day, planned giving is about making sure that the things that help us evolve as a society are still there, and it is usually part of an overall financial plan, but it’s a huge part of planning and the continuity of our city.”

Victor Levee recently filmed this video with Make It Montreal, a storytelling platform geared towards Montreal’s business community and produced by local content strategy house Cat Around Films. The full set of clips can be found on Make It Montreal’s YouTube channel.

Pushing Through Our Growing Pains

“I think one of the things that makes Montreal so great, I know one of the things that makes Montreal so great is the fact that if you come here with entrepreneurial drive and a spirit and a commitment to wanna get the job done, you can flourish probably better than in any other city in Canada, and the reason why I say probably better is because you’ve gotta work hard, just like you have to work hard anywhere else.

But the people that are successful here go beyond just working hard, they embrace the character of the city, they embrace the spirit of the people in this city, and they adapt accordingly. So the entrepreneurial spirit is alive and well, it is extremely diverse, and it is growing and flourishing.

Along the way there’s growing pains, everybody has growing pains, it’s a part of life. But the things that are being done in this city, the annoying things like infrastructure, which is something that, since it hasn’t been taken of in about 150 years, is due.

But the truth is that the infrastructure that we’re building out now is going to create a massive economic base that is solid, long term, and sustainable at all levels. It’s not narrowly focused like it used to be.”

Victor Levee recently filmed this video with Make It Montreal, a storytelling platform geared towards Montreal’s business community and produced by local content strategy house Cat Around Films. The full set of clips can be found on Make It Montreal’s YouTube channel.

Montreal’s Support For Small Businesses

“When you talk about building a business, you can talk about it at different levels. Why do people come to Montreal as opposed to other cities in Canada, or other cities in North America? It’s not just about the cost of doing business. I think that overall, the infrastructure in Montreal and in Quebec is set up so that small and medium businesses, les PME are supported. “When you talk about building a business, you can talk about it at different levels. Why do people come to Montreal as opposed to other cities in Canada, or other cities in North America? It’s not just about the cost of doing business. I think that overall, the infrastructure in Montreal and in Quebec is set up so that small and medium businesses, les PME are supported.

Of course, everyone can complain about anything at any time, but in the big picture, the reason why you come to Montreal is because of course you can make money, of course you can build a business, but you can also go to any one of 2,000 restaurants and have a great meal, you can experience that in a broad ethnic diversity, you can go an hour out of Montreal and be in the wilderness if you’re so inclined to be completely eaten by mosquitoes. You can do so many things in this city, it brings so much to the table, that maybe one or two or three or four or five percent profitability is worth it to get that kind of a quality of life.”

Victor Levee recently filmed this video with Make It Montreal, a storytelling platform geared towards Montreal’s business community and produced by local content strategy house Cat Around Films. The full set of clips can be found on Make It Montreal’s YouTube channel.

Ensuring Business Continuity

“One specific aspect of what I do is work with entrepreneurs who are concerned about business continuity. Business continuity is simply the ability to accurately, properly, and objectively understand the importance of putting programs into place that will allow their businesses to continue.

That being said, if you use a numbers example of a business that’s worth $10 million and you have two partners, well, at the end of the day, if one of those partners dies, there’s five million dollars of money that needs to walk into the company in order for the shares to be bought out.

That’s a very simplistic example, but it’s much more than just that, because the partners are taken care of, they’ve recognized their responsibilities to each other, but what they don’t think about, and what I ask them to think about is the fact that that same dollars that are being generated are also providing them with the necessary funding so that that business can continue for the 10, 20, 30, 40, 50 people that work there. The implications of this are huge, much bigger than the very central focus, which is a buy-sell agreement, and funding that buy-sell agreement. That’s a privilege that I hold very dear, because I’m able to talk to people at that level, I’m making them understand what really matters when they take a courageous step like that.”

Victor Levee recently filmed this video with Make It Montreal, a storytelling platform geared towards Montreal’s business community and produced by local content strategy house Cat Around Films. The full set of clips can be found on Make It Montreal’s YouTube channel.