Montréal, December 12, 2014 – On behalf of the Board of Directors, Mrs. Dominique Anglade, President and CEO of Montréal International (MI), is pleased to announce the appointment of Mr. L. Jacques Ménard, Chairman of BMO Nesbitt Burns and President of BMO Financial Group, Québec, as Chairman of the Board of Directors of MontréaI International. On hand for the announcement today were the Honourable Tony Clement, President of the Treasury Board of Canada, Mr. Jacques Daoust, Québec Minister of the Economy, Innovation and Exports, the Honourable Denis Coderre, Mayor of Montréal and President of the Communauté métropolitaine de Montréal, and Mr. Jean Laurin, President and Chief Executive Officer of NKF Devencore.“We are extremely pleased to welcome L. Jacques Ménard as Chairman of the Board of Montréal International, an organization whose mission is to promote Greater Montréal’s economic development and enhance its international status. Mr. Ménard is a passionate ambassador of the community, always engaged to boost the development and especially the economy so it can reach its full potential,” said Ms. Anglade, President and CEO of Montréal International. “With support from our partners, we will turn Greater Montréal into one of North America’s brightest stars in the 21st century,” she added.
“We welcome the appointment of L. Jacques Ménard as Chairman of a board comprised of representatives from the business community and three levels of government, with a strong commitment to revitalizing Greater Montréal,” declared Mr. Jean Laurin, President and Chief Executive Officer of NKF Devencore and member of the Board of Directors of Montréal International. “We believe in the importance of getting all of the metropolitan region’s and Québec’s economic players on board working together to grow our collective wealth, which will be beneficial for all of Québec,” he added.
“We are delighted to welcome the appointment of L. Jacques Ménard as Chairman of the Board of Montréal International. The Government of Canada is proud to support the arrival of such a visionary in a key Montréal economic development agency. Mr. Ménard is a true business and community leader who has ambitious plans to make Greater Montréal shine across the world,” said the Honourable Tony Clement, President of the Treasury Board of Canada.
“Montréal has what it takes to attract investment projects and to prosper. The metropolitan region’s considerable assets, especially the diversity of its economic and industrial fabric, are the driving forces behind the Québec economy. Mr. Ménard’s experience and talent, combined with Montréal’s vitality, will no doubt contribute to Québec’s and Montréal’s international success. This appointment fills me with optimism,” said Minister Jacques Daoust.
“Montréal International is a leading player in the economic development strategy of our metropolis. With Mr. L. Jacques Ménard as the Chairman of its Board of Directors, I am convinced that MI will reach new heights. Mr. Ménard is a passionate and a rallying leader; he has the attention of decision makers at the political, business and community level, “said the mayor of Montréal and President of the Communauté métropolitaine de Montréal, Mr. Denis Coderre.
Mr. Ménard is happy to join Montréal International, a renowned organization that plays a key role in the development of Greater Montréal. “Montréal International is our region at its best. It’s hundreds of partners, municipalities, governments and businesses joining forces to shine a global spotlight on Greater Montréal,” said Mr. Ménard, President of BMO Financial Group, Québec, and newly appointed Chairman of the Board of Directors of Montréal International. “Every year, Montréal International attracts foreign investments, jobs and talent to the region. What we have here is a state-of-the-art development agency that helps put Greater Montréal on the map and generate wealth for the region. Today, we want to send the message that we will have more audacity,” he added.
An impressive background
As Chairman of BMO Nesbitt Burns and President of BMO Financial Group, Québec, Mr. Ménard has built a successful career in the securities and financial services business. While contributing significantly to business development in the province, Mr. Ménard is also greatly involved in the community.
Mr. Ménard is currently a director of WestJet, Claridge Inc., Stingray Digital, the Montréal Symphony Orchestra, the Montréal Alouettes, the Gairdner Foundation, the Macdonald Stewart Foundation, the Mobilys Foundation and FIRST Robotics Québec. He is also Chairman of Youth Fusion. Mr. Ménard is a past Chairman of Hydro-Québec, the Investment Dealers Association of Canada and the Task Force on the Sustainability of the Québec Health Care and Social Services System.
He was promoted to Companion of the Order of Canada, the highest level of the Order of Canada and this country’s highest public distinction. He is also an Officer of the Order of Québec.
In 2014 Mr. Ménard worked with The Boston Consulting Group to initiate a major study and program called I see mtl and aimed at revitalizing the city. The movement led to an event held on November 17, where participants discussed close to 120 specific projects to jump-start Montréal’s economy. Montréal International introduced two key projects intended to increase the proportion of university graduates among Montrealers (Graduates Help Build Our Future) and mobilize ambassadors of Greater Montréal around the world (Greater Montréal Ambassadors Network).
Greater Montréal awarded top spot for its FDI strategy
The announcement of Mr. Ménard’s appointment as Chairman of the Board of Directors of Montréal International came at the same time as fDi Magazine (Financial Times Group) released the results of its “Global Cities of the Future 2014/15” study. Montréal topped the list for best foreign direct investment (FDI) strategy among North American cities, ahead of Atlanta, Calgary, Los Angeles, Miami, Toronto, and Vancouver.
“I am pleased to see that our strategy for attracting foreign direct investments is considered one of the best in the Americas, where competition among regions is more fierce than ever. The sector approach we developed a few years ago by focusing on key growth industries such as aerospace, information technology and life sciences, is really paying off and making Greater Montréal more attractive to foreign investors,” said Mr. Coderre.
Created in 1996, Montréal International (MI) is the result of a private-public partnership. Its mission is to contribute to the economic development of Greater Montréal and enhance its international status. Its mandates include attracting foreign direct investments, international organizations and international strategic workers as well as promoting the competitive and international environment of Greater Montréal. Montréal International—a non-profit organization—is funded by the private sector, the governments of Canada and Québec, the Communauté métropolitaine de Montréal (Montréal Metropolitan Community) and the City of Montréal.
Since its creation, Montréal International has helped to attract $10.6 billion in foreign direct investments to Greater Montréal. From these investments, 52,000 jobs have been created or maintained. To date, MI’s activities have also allowed almost half of some 60 international organizations to establish themselves in the city and attract and retain more than 9,000 international strategic workers.