Canadian Consul General Yaffe, entrepreneur Gallardo to be keynotes at Bermuda industry forum in Toronto

  • Press Release
Canadian Consul General Yaffe, entrepreneur Gallardo to be keynotes at Bermuda industry forum in Toronto

Hamilton, Bermuda

Canadian Consul General Phyllis Yaffe and fintech entrepreneur Lucia Gallardo will be keynote guest speakers at a one-day, multi-industry forum in Toronto next month showcasing Bermuda’s business links and mutually beneficial relationship with Canada.

Yaffe, Canada’s Consul General for Bermuda based in New York, will take part in a kickoff “conversation” with Bermuda Premier David Burt at the Bermuda Executive Forum, to be held Wednesday, June 19 at The Ritz-Carlton Toronto. This is the sixth overseas forum—and the first in Canada—produced by the Bermuda Business Development Agency (BDA); previous events were in London, New York and Miami.

“We are delighted to welcome Consul General Yaffe to help us launch our inaugural Canadian forum, which will highlight our longstanding relationship with Canada, as well as current opportunities that continue to connect both our nations in both traditional and emerging industries,” said the BDA’s CEO Andy Burrows. “We look forward to meeting new colleagues in the Canadian market and building on Bermuda’s already strong strategic relationships.”

Keynote lunch speaker at the Toronto forum is Lucia Gallardo, Founder & CEO of Emerge, a blockchain-based startup that builds emerging-technology solutions to some of the world’s most pressing problems, including refugee resettlement, disaster relief, and food transparency. Honduran-born Gallardo’s presentation, “Future-Proofing Innovation,” describes how many new economy companies like hers are bringing together both profit and positive social impact in viable, sustainable, equitable models.

Yaffe has enjoyed a distinguished career in both the private and not-for-profit sectors. She served as chair of the board of Cineplex Entertainment and lead director of Torstar Corporation, and was a member of the boards of Lionsgate Entertainment and Blue Ant Media. A former board member of Astral Media, for many years she served as a senior officer and ultimately as CEO of Alliance Atlantis Communications, where she oversaw worldwide operations, including Canadian speciality-television channels, international TV distribution business, and the popular CSI franchise. A recipient of the Order of Canada, Yaffe received the Lifetime Achievement Award from Women in Film and Television. She was also inducted into the Canadian Association of Broadcasters Hall of Fame and has served as chair of the board of governors of Ryerson University, Women Against Multiple Sclerosis, and the Ontario Science Centre, and was on the board of the World Wildlife Fund.

Gallardo is a 2017 Venture for Canada Fellow, a 2018 RBC Future Launch Fellow, a 2018 Money 20/20 Rise Up Member, and a certified UN SDG Advocate. Most recently, she was nominated for MIT Technology Review’s Latin American Innovators under 35, the Royal Bank of Canada’s 2019 Women of Influence, and Acquisition International’s Influential Businesswoman Awards 2019.

Premier Burt will be joined by Finance Minister Curtis Dickinson and leading industry and regulatory executives taking part in panel discussions on global industry trends and opportunities for Bermuda-based businesses. Sessions include participants from more than 30 entities, among them, Aon, Appleby, Arch Ventures, ASW Law, AXA XL, the Association of Bermuda Insurers & Reinsurers (ABIR); Bennett Jones, the Bermuda Insurance Management Association (BIMA), Bermuda Monetary Authority (BMA), Bermuda Tourism Authority (BTA), Butterfield, ChainThat, Conyers, CryptoScan, Deloitte, Estera Services, Exponential Ventures, EY, Fasken, Insurance Bureau of Canada (IBC), MQ Services, Outlier Canada, PwC, Quest Management Services, RGAx, SALT Lending, and Shyft Network. “Bermuda is an exceptional jurisdiction from which to successfully expand Canadian business internationally,” noted panellist Duncan Card, a Senior Partner at Bennett Jones LLP in Toronto, who managed that Canadian law firm’s Bermuda office 2014–18. “With very close proximity to the east coast of North America, a highly beneficial tax agreement with Canada, and an extremely well-educated population, Bermuda has been the leading choice for many well-known Canadian businesses to locate the management of their global expansion.”

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