Our Speakers

January 20, 2020 at Metro Toronto Convention Centre, Toronto, Canada

Business Expo 2020


Founder –  Leverage Consulting Inc.

For more than 20 years, I’ve been actively training/consulting/ public speaking in both the Academic and Corporate world – it’s an addiction! Simultaneously, I’ve held Sales Leadership roles generating record-setting performances over and over! I share key insights but more importantly, implementable strategies to increase your influence and ensure your ideas (product, service or process) win every time. I’ve been blessed to be a part of so many ‘lightbulb-moments’ that generated greater influence and created better outcomes. 

Several years ago, the sales organization I was leading was unable to adopt a better decision when deliberating direction for the next marketing cycle. I couldn’t shake the question, “Why doesn’t the best idea always win?” That set off a journey in which I learned to Calculate Calibrate and Communicate my message, enabling me to Outperform, Outpace and Overcome even the whales in the industries I’ve worked in. You’ll quickly learn, just as I did, effectively communicating experiences and VPS will convert your ideas into winning ideas.


Business Expo

Adam Vaughan

Parliamentary Secretary for Housing and Urban Affairs

Adam Vaughan has been elected to the House of Commons three times and has also served two terms as a Toronto City Councillor. He currently represents the downtown riding of Spadina-Fort York.


At the Federal level as the Parliamentary Secretary for Housing and Urban Affairs, Mr. Vaughan has played a key role in developing Canada’s first ever National Housing Strategy. On February 1, 2017 Mr. Vaughan was appointed to chair an Advisory Committee on Homelessness that recommended restructuring Canada’s approach to fighting homelessness. From December 2015 to February 2017, Mr. Vaughan served as the Prime Minister’s Parliamentary Secretary for Intergovernmental Affairs, helping to restore the Federal Government’s role in city building.


As a municipal politician, Mr. Vaughan helped reform the city’s approach to housing and led the revitalization, construction and repair of public housing, including spearheading the rebuild of Alexandra Park. He was also on the Boards of the Toronto Arts Council, The Art Gallery of Ontario and the Harbourfront Centre for the Arts. Mr. Vaughan also served on Toronto’s Police Services Board.


As the local MP for Spadina-Fort York, Mr. Vaughan has secured significant funding for waterfront revitalization, OCAD University as well as significant new investments in transit for the riding. As MP he has continued to provide leadership on housing in the city by restoring operating agreements for Co-ops, building new affordable housing and ensuring existing TCHC stock is repaired. Mr. Vaughan has also played a key role in the government’s innovation agenda, ensuring that local tech firms receive the support they need to succeed in Toronto.

Canadian SME

Hon. Victor Fedeli

Minister of Economic Development, Job Creation and TradeChair of Cabinet

Vic Fedeli was born and raised in North Bay. His grandparents chose to come to Ontario from Italy with ambitions of a far better life and more opportunity for their young families.

In his 20s he opened Fedeli Advertising, the first ad agency north of Toronto. As a young entrepreneur, he developed the company into a global agency doing work all over the world, from their base in Northern Ontario. One of the proudest moments of his business career was when Fedeli Advertising was named 34th in the Top 50 Best Places to Work in Canada.

Business Expo 2020

Minister Prabmeet Sarkaria Bio

Associate Minister of Small Business and Red Tape Reduction MPP, Brampton South

Prabmeet Sarkaria has the honour of representing his community as the Member of Provincial Parliament for Brampton South and serving the people of Ontario as the Associate Minister of Small Business and Red Tape Reduction.  

Before answering the call to public service, Prabmeet worked as a corporate and commercial Associate at Miller Thomson LLP.  He earned his law degree from the University of Windsor as well as a Bachelor of Business Administration from Wilfrid Laurier University, where he majored in Finance.  Prior to his legal career, he worked at TD Securities. 

Passionate about community, Prabmeet is an active volunteer. He served on the City of Brampton’s Property Standards Committee as well as the Board of Directors for Hockey for Humanity and KarmaGrow. He is an avid sports fan who enjoys playing and watching hockey, basketball, baseball, and football.  If you ever have the opportunity to visit his office, it will be impossible to forget who won the 2019 NBA Championship.  


Prab entered public service in order to be a strong advocate for hardworking families in Brampton South and all across the province he loves—and is committed to giving voice to the concerns of the everyday people he is humbled to serve.


James Meddings

President of the Federal  Economic Development Agency for Southern Ontario (FedDev Ontario)

James Meddings was appointed President of the Federal Economic Development Agency for Southern Ontario (FedDev Ontario) on October 31, 2016.

James served as Assistant Deputy Minister of Policy and Strategic Direction at Western Economic Diversification from 2011- 2016 and Vice President, Individual Learning and later Vice President, Organizational Leadership at the Canada School of Public Service from 2006 to 2011.

In his 28 years of federal public service Mr. Meddings has also held positions as Director General, Policy and Corporate Affairs, at the Meteorological Service of Canada; Director General, Parliamentary and Corporate Affairs, Human Resources Development Canada; Policy Analyst at the Privy Council Office, and Advisor to the Chief Commissioner, at the Canadian Human Rights Commission.

Prior to joining the federal public service, Mr. Meddings taught economics and political science in public and private schools in the United Kingdom and Canada.

Mr. Meddings has a Bachelor of Arts (Honours) in Economic and Social Studies from the University of East Anglia; a Post Graduate Certificate in Education from the University of Birmingham; and, a Masters in Public Policy and Public Administration from Concordia University.

He is married and lives in Almonte, Ontario with his wife Susie Quackenbush and their four children: Sam, Harry, Max and Georgia.

Business Expo 2020

Colin McIsaac

Executive Director And General Manager At Lenovo Canada

As Lenovo’s General  Manager of Canada, Colin is responsible for sales, operations, culture, strategy and customer satisfaction of the region. He has overall P&L responsibility for Commercial, SMB and Consumer products through all major routes to market. Colin’s 23 years of experience spans multiple roles, opportunities, and experiences in the technology business. He has held numerous key leadership positions in both Canada and the US at both Lenovo and IBM. He is passionate about driving broad market engagement and has a strong desire to help enable the customer journey to successful business outcomes. Colin has a Bachelor of Commerce degree from the University of Toronto, Canada and sits on the Board of the Information Technology Association of Canada (ITAC) and First Robotics Canada.

Carmine Cinerari

President at Sharp Electronics of Canada Ltd.

Carmine Cinerari is President of Sharp Electronics of Canada Ltd. and guides the vision and strategic direction of the company’s operations in Canada.  His appointment as President in April 2008 made him the youngest president appointed to any Sharp global subsidiary.

Carmine began his career at Sharp Canada more than 23 years ago as a Product Manager for the company’s audio visual products.  Since then, he has held progressively senior positions including Vice President of Consumer Products where he launched Sharp’s flagship AQUOS LCD TVs into the Canadian market.  Prior to Sharp, Carmine held various positions of increasing responsibility in both wholesale and retail consumer electronics.

Carmine has steered the company successfully through a number of strategic shifts in business domains, operating models, and corporate strategy.  His hands-on, collaborative approach has fostered a culture of teamwork, customer focus and valued business partner relationships.

Carmine attended Centennial College of Applied Arts and Technology and completed Global Business Leadership studies through IMD in Lausanne, Switzerland and Japan.  Carmine lives in Markham with his wife and two sons.

CanadianSME Business Expo

Menelaos (Manny) Argiropoulos

Chief, SME Stakeholder Engagement, Public Services and Procurement Canada (PSPC) – Office of Small and Medium Enterprises (OSME) – Ontario Region

Mr. Menelaos (Manny) Argiropoulos has been working for Public Services and Procurement Canada, Ontario Region since 1991. He has held various positions, ranging from Real Estate Advisor to Geomatics Project Manager and is currently the Chief, SME Stakeholder Engagement with the Office of Small and Medium Enterprises (OSME) in Ontario Region. Mr. Argiropoulos is responsible for supplier outreach and engagement for OSME. He also delivers seminars that assist and inform suppliers on how to do business with the Government of Canada, how to navigate the federal procurement system and how to utilize www.buyandsell.gc.ca , the federal procurement website.

CanadianSME Business Expo

Laurence Cooke

Founder, Chief Executive Officer

Laurence drives the vision to offer CBDC to central banks, and leads the overall strategy and direction of nanopay to deliver scalable payment and liquidity solutions to banks and businesses. Laurence is responsible for raising capital, managing investor relations, and taking the business to new heights.

Prior to founding nanopay, Laurence worked with WIND Canada and was Vice President of Wireless at Shaw Communications Inc. He was also Chief Operating Officer of Bell Mobility and Bell Distribution Inc (BDI), where he was responsible for all of Bell Mobility’s operations and led a team of 9,000 employees. At BDI, Laurence was responsible for all retail for Bell Canada. Prior to joining Bell, Laurence was a senior executive in Accenture’s London Strategy Practice. Laurence co-founded two wireless data businesses in Europe, Melodeo, Inc. and Xtempus.

CanadianSME Business Expo

Rick Moore

Founder & CEO

Group of One Executive Training Systems Inc.

Rick Moore is Canada’s Authority on Strategic Growth and Value Creation for Business Owners, working exclusively with Business Owners who want to sell their business for maximum value.Rick brings over three decades of extensive experience in financing, advising, buying and selling businesses that are highly irresistible to buyers.Rick is the author of the book  Scale-Up to Sell


Small Business Canada

Charles Regan

CEO of Nerds on Site

Charlie is an owner and CEO (Capability Expansion Orchestrator) of a number of reasonably interesting and growing enterprises – Nerds On Site, Tactical Marketing Solutions, The Coffee Office, One Extra Guy, BeanCounters On Site, Architecttura, Augusta Business Coaching, among others. He’s also works closely with several more Canadian and American based companies.He is a founding Executive Board Member for the Central Business District of Detroit and the Greater Detroit and Windsor Japan-America Society. Charlie guest lectured for a number of years at the University of Windsor as part of their Co-op M.B.A. program, as well as the University of Michigan.

CanadianSME Business Expo

Miki Velemirovich

President- Cargo

Miki Velemirovich is the President of Cargo, a full-service marketing and advertising agency that specializes in helping big brands market to small businesses. Cargo is an expert in the Business to Small Business space coining the term B2SB Marketing®. Prior to joining Cargo, Miki spent 20 years with big brands like IBM and Mercedes-Benz, in a variety of sales and marketing roles, so he knows how to build strategies that drive results and move the needle. And this same experience enables him to understand the pain points of big brands trying to market to small businesses: while leading marketing for the commercial vehicle division of Mercedes-Benz, he spent countless hours understanding the motivations, behaviours and the drivers of small business owners in order to reach them more successfully. Now, his quest persists – to continue to build the Business to Small Business Expertise and help big brands be more successful in reaching this highly emotional target.

CanadianSME Business Expo

Jeff Dawley

President and Founder
Cybersecurity Compliance Corp.

In 2018, Jeff co-founded Cybersecurity Compliance Corp. to address a communication gap in the
cybersecurity space. The Cybersecurity Pulse TM solution provides board members and non-IT executives
with a complete view of their cybersecurity environment, while equipping IT professionals with a
framework-based assessment and roadmap for future improvements.

Before devoting his career to helping SMEs better understand their cybersecurity environment Jeff
worked in finance and technology across a broad spectrum of Canadian and international organizations.
Over 25 years Jeff has benefited from exploring many industries including financial services, mining,
information processing, manufacturing and professional services. His career has seen him operate as a
CFO for 10 years with both publicly listed and private companies, as well as 5 years as a CTO/CIO,
responsible for all aspects of information management and technology.

Canadian SME Business Expo

Tahira Bharmal

Co-Founder & Chief Strategy Officer with Mentors Consult

Tahira Bharmal is a Canadian, born in Kenya with South Asian heritage. She is the Co-Founder & Chief Strategy Officer with Mentors Consult, a training & development agency inspiring growth mindset communities. She specifically works with leadership teams on: diversity inclusion; leading with authenticity; overcoming personal limiting beliefs & fears to be stronger, empowered leaders; &  leading without bias. 
Tahira is a Certified Coach Practitioner and Certified Group Coach.  She graduated from the University of Ottawa with BA Honours (Cum Laude) in Mass Communication. She also has a Diploma with Distinction from the London School of Journalism in Journalism & News Writing. 
She has been a part of the corporate world for 10 years, with experience in Business Development & Marketing. Tahira is an advocate for positive change in gender issues, parenting, education, and personal growth. 
CanadianSME Business Expo

Richard Toker

Branderos Account Director/Project Manager/Educator

Richard is a Toronto based marketing consultant, educator and facilitator. Since launching Rich Content in 2008, Richard has developed and managed numerous marketing programs including branding, integrated and digital marketing, content and on-boarding programs for a variety of clients, and has worked to develop and nurture marketing management and leadership skills amongst emergent marketing professionals and facilitated creative problem solving and group dialogue at a diverse range of organizations including Amex, BDC, CAA, CARA, CBC, Canada Post, Tangerine and Public Health Ontario. Prior to starting his own practice Richard was a Marketing Director at Rogers Communications and also spent 20 years honing his solution-focused skills in the advertising business.

CanadianSME Business Expo

Joel Sears

Branderos Creative Director/Copywriter/Educator

For more than three decades, Joel has worked as a copywriter, creative director, strategist, coach and educator. His focus is on the development of key strategic insights that lead to powerful copy platforms. After spending a career working with blue-chip clients like GM and IBM, Joel now concentrates on helping small and medium-sized businesses market themselves through his agency, Branderos. Joel has also become an advocate for more powerful writing in the workplace, as a coach and educator. Never complacent, Joel believes that the last few years have produced his best work and most insightful strategies.

CanadianSME Business Expo

Margo Crawford ​

President & CEO – Business Sherpa Group

Margo Crawford is the President, CEO and founder of the Business Sherpa Group; an Ottawa based management
consulting firm specializing in providing embedded business services to small and mid-sized enterprises in the
areas of Human Resources, Talent Solutions, Finance, Strategy, Governance, Marketing & Communications and
Family Business. At Business Sherpa Group, Margo and her team of more than 75 associates and 20 employees have been involved with over 300 companies throughout North America (profit and not-for-profit) from formation stage through to sale.

She was a co-founder of Meriton Networks and was instrumental in building a company with locations around the world, and raising over $75M in equity financing and related M&A transactions. Margo has been an HR and
Business Operations leader in technology companies as well as the public and NFP sectors for the past 25 years.

Business Expo 2020

Claudio Rojas

Chief Executive Officer – National Angel Capital Organization

Claudio has held the roles of founder, managing director, board member, steering committee member and advisor to several prominent organizations helping to advance Canada’s vibrant innovation ecosystem. He brings over 14 years of experience in finance, law, and business, along with a long-term entrepreneurial mindset and thought leadership on founder-run companies.

He holds an MBA from the Ivey Business School, Juris Doctor from the Faculty of Law at Western University, has achieved all three levels of the CFA examinations, is a practitioner member of the European Corporate Governance Institute, and is a lawyer member of the Bar of Ontario, Canada.

Business Expo

Sarah Hopen


Sarah Hopen is a Certified Professional Bookkeeper, Xero Advisor & Local Ambassador with over 15 years’ experience working with businesses, professionals, and not-for-profit organizations. She is skilled in developing effective bookkeeping solutions that maximize resources and provide the most useful information for managers. Sarah is a mother of three girls, a competitive dressage rider and avid arts lover.

Business Expo 2020

Leon Goren

President & CEO, PEO Leadership; Toronto Chair Tiger 21

Leon Goren believes in purposeful leadership – the type that requires us to challenge the status quo, anticipate the future and be confident enough to step outside of our comfort zone to inspire and help those around us excel.

His 25 years of leadership experience underscores his unique impact on the way leaders lead, learn and live, and his ability to understand their needs and challenges.

As the owner and CEO of Presidents of Enterprising Organizations (PEO), Leon is dedicated to building communities of knowledgeable and respected business leaders by developing opportunities for shared insights and experience. PEO, under the leadership of Leon Goren, is recognized as a premier executive leadership advisory community that positively influences the way leaders lead, learn and live.

Leon is also Toronto Chair of TIGER 21, where he leverages his experience to develop exceptional leaders working with high net worth individuals and families.



Managing Director of Bibby Financial Services Canada. 

Ahmad has held a range of senior executive positions throughout the UK, the Middle East and Asia, supporting SMEs, mid-market and global corporate businesses. Most recently, Ahmad held the role of Specialist Director for BFS UK, where he led Trade Finance, Export Finance, Construction Finance, and Recruitment Finance divisions. Bibby Financial Services Canada (BFS) is a leading provider of funding for small and mid-sized businesses.

Susan St. Amand

Founder and President of Sirius Financial Services in Ottawa

Susan St. Amand is the Founder and President of Sirius Financial Services in Ottawa, Ontario, Canada. She specializes in continuity planning for Families with wealth, including strategic risk management. Her strong technical skills and expert knowledge of financial instruments and Governance make her uniquely skilled. These achievements have led Susan to be named one of the top 50 women in Canada’s life insurance industry and the recipient of the 2015 J.G. Taylor Award by The Institute for Advanced Financial Education.

Susan’s firm is built on trust and mutual respect between client and professional advisor. She works with multi-generational families and their team of advisors to integrate their values and successfully transfer assets from one generation to the next. Susan’s integrity, passion, ‘big picture’ view, intense listening skills, comprehensive approach, technical skills and knowledge position her at the top of her field.

Susan is Chair of the board for the Ottawa Community Foundation, Director on the National Board of the Family Enterprise Xchange, Co-chair of the Institute of Corporate Directors (ICD) Ottawa Chapter, Past Chair of the Board of the Ottawa International Airport Authority, and one of twenty founders of the Women for Mental Health campaign associated with the Royal Ottawa Centre for Mental Health.

Business Expo

Derek Luke

Ceo at Muse®by Interaxon Inc.

Derek Luke brings more than two decades of experience in executive leadership at multinational corporations, including Blackberry and Seagate, to his role at Muse®. Drawing from his years of experience in the highly competitive technology industry, Derek has helped strengthen Muse®’s execution across design, development, sales and marketing to position the company for aggressive growth and success.

Prior to joining Muse®, Derek served as EVP and COO for Sustainable Development Technology Canada (SDTC), a $1.5B non-for-profit Canadian Government Fund with a portfolio of 245+ cleantech companies. At Blackberry, Derek served as senior vice president of Manufacturing Excellence, Supply Chain Quality and Global Repair Services.

Today, Derek is passionate about equal opportunity and equal pay in the STEM landscape — something he has worked hard to integrate into the company’s corporate culture. He is a true believer in creating a workplace that breeds innovation, creativity and collaboration. He brings his knowledge of connecting design, development, manufacturing, supply chain, government relations, sales and marketing to the team.

Business Expo

Randall Smallbone

CEO and President of Astron Connect

Randy is the CEO of Smallbone Consulting, specializing in strategic planning, business advisory, and financial restructuring.

In addition, he is a Board Member of the Burlington Chamber of Commerce, Board Member of the Burlington Economic Development Corporation Inc., Board Member and Chairman of the Audit Committee of TSX listed Hanwei Energy Services Inc., Advisory Board Member of Pneu-Hyd Industries Ltd and a Board Member of the National Youth Orchestra of Canada.

Rebecca Pang

Senior Director, U.S. Strategy at RBC

Rebecca Pang is the senior director of U.S Strategy for RBC where she drives the development of strategic planning and investment initiatives for traditional and emerging U.S. banking sectors. Her prior experience including leading data analytics and M&A at CIBC. She earned her bachelor of business administration from the Chinese University of Hong Kong, received her MBA from Stanford University, and later earned her Chartered Financial Analyst FA and Chartered Business Valuators designations.

CanadianSME Business Expo

Maria Locker

Founder & CEO – Mompreneur

Maria grew up in the world of retail business, as one of four children to her entrepreneurial parents; her family has owned and operated La Rose Bakery in her hometown of Milton, Ontario since she was 2 years old. Maria earned her BA from The University of Guelph in 2002 with a focus on Languages and International Business, and her B.Ed. from Lake head University in 2004.

Matt Tyrer

Matthew Tyrer

Technology Evangelist Commvault

Matt Tyrer is the Ottawa-based Senior Manager, Solutions Marketing for the Americas for data protection leader Commvault. Matt is an IT industry veteran with nearly 20 years of experience, including the past 10 with Commvault. He has worked with teams from around the world to build and implement data management and protection solutions for customers of all sizes. A self-described geek, Matt understands the importance of Han shooting first, why being “shiny” is a good thing, that boxes are excellent camouflage, and why one should always be afraid when it’s Buffy’s birthday. Beyond this, he loves to travel (sometimes with his family), plays golf (poorly), tries to find time for the dusty PS4 (rarely does), and always finds time for his family.

Invest Ottawa

Mike Tremblay

CEO Of Invest Ottawa

Mr. Tremblay brings more than 30 years of executive leadership experience with multinational corporations to Invest Ottawa and its stakeholders, most recently from Microsoft Canada where he served as Vice President, Public Services for over a decade. As part of this Fortune 100 company, he led and drove the growth of public sector business; collaborated extensively with employees, partners and customers; and contributed to Microsoft’s Canadian leadership team.

Prior to joining Microsoft, he served as a Senior Vice President with SAP Canada and Fujitsu Consulting, and as a Vice President with JDS Uniphase, EDS Systemhouse and Digital Equipment Corporation. An Ottawa native, Mr. Tremblay is also deeply engaged in the community, contributing to the Algonquin College Board of Governors and Foundation Board for more than 13 years, and audit and advocacy committees with the Children’s Hospital of Eastern Ontario for the last six years.

Business Expo 2020

Monica Kretschmer

Founder & CEO – Universal Womens Network

Monica Kretschmer is the founder and CEO of Canadian Business Chicks, Women of Inspiration Awards, and SupportHER. She is also founder of The Nest Foundation.

Monica is a native Calgarian, and entrepreneur at heart, with a passion for building authentic connections and empowering women. She embraces life with courage, confidence, commitment and integrity. Monica’s mission is to inspire women to lead with a purpose and prosper in business and life.

Monica is an inspirational speaker, visionary, master connector, and disruptor, with an abundance of energy, and passion for making a difference in the lives of others. She was given the title of 2013 Alberta Flood Hero by the Premier of Alberta, 2017 Women Build Ambassador, and Women of Influence nominee.

Business Expo

Nancy Wilson

Founder and CEO Canadian Women’s Chamber of Commerce

Nancy Wilson is the Founder and CEO of the Canadian Women’s Chamber of Commerce (CanWCC), which launched in January 2018. CanWCC is a national, not-for-profit organization that advocates for the economic priorities of women-owned businesses. It is the first (and only) Chamber of Commerce in Canada that represents the unique and diverse voices of women-identified entrepreneurs and business owners.

CanadianSME Business Expo

Wayne S Roberts

President & CEO – Blade Creative Branding Inc.

Characterized by the Globe and Mail as “an ad industry provocateur,” Wayne brings more than 25 years of award-winning experience in strategic branding, creative advertising and innovative online solutions to Blade’s clients.

He has “columned” for Canadian Business magazine, and been featured in the Globe and Mail, Marketing & Strategy magazines. He has been interviewed on Global TV and Radio Canada, commenting on modern branding issues.

As an educator and public speaker, Wayne has entertained and inspired audiences ranging from National Bank to McMaster University’s FORGE start-up incubator. His commitments to straight talk, creative collaborative and building friendly business relationships are the defining characteristic s of Blade Creative Branding, the agency he founded in 1991.

Business Expo 2020

Nunzio Presta

Founder & CEO of BizON

Nunzio Presta is an ex pro athlete turned entrepreneur. He is also the Founder & CEO at BizON, an online marketplace where people can buy, sell and grow businesses or franchises every day. He is a thought leader on digital marketing & entrepreneurship through acquisition and a mentor to many entrepreneurs, small business owners and franchise owners. Nunzio graduated from the Ted Rogers School of Management at Ryerson University with a Bachelor of Commerce. He is also a loving husband and a father who loves to cook!

Carmine Cinerari

President at Sharp Electronics of Canada Ltd.

Carmine Cinerari is President of Sharp Electronics of Canada Ltd. and guides the vision and strategic direction of the company’s operations in Canada.  His appointment as President in April 2008 made him the youngest president appointed to any Sharp global subsidiary.

Carmine began his career at Sharp Canada more than 23 years ago as a Product Manager for the company’s audio visual products.  Since then, he has held progressively senior positions including Vice President of Consumer Products where he launched Sharp’s flagship AQUOS LCD TVs into the Canadian market.  Prior to Sharp, Carmine held various positions of increasing responsibility in both wholesale and retail consumer electronics.

Carmine has steered the company successfully through a number of strategic shifts in business domains, operating models, and corporate strategy.  His hands-on, collaborative approach has fostered a culture of teamwork, customer focus and valued business partner relationships.

Carmine attended Centennial College of Applied Arts and Technology and completed Global Business Leadership studies through IMD in Lausanne, Switzerland and Japan.  Carmine lives in Markham with his wife and two sons.

Business Expo

Sanjay Malhotra

CTO & Co-Founder – Clearbridge Mobile

Mr. Malhotra is a leading expert in mobile and internet technologies building enterprise applications, having worked with a wide variety of toolsets including .Net Languages(C# and VB), HTML, Java, XML, WAP, web scripting, eCommerce, messaging, relational databases, Cognos and object-oriented development languages.

Mr. Malhotra also has extensive project management and solution delivery experience managing teams of developers and project leaders that have consistently delivered valuable solutions for Fortune 500 and mid-market corporations.

Specialties: Lots of hand on development experience with various technologies, MS Windows, Linux, and UNIX. Development languages include C++, VB, C#, JavaScript. Have worked extensively in the collaboration space namely with Groove Networks and Microsoft SharePoint.

Love to work with new technology including Tablet PC and wireless protocols.

Graduate from the University of Waterloo. Honours Bachelors of Mathematics in Computer Science.

Scott Michaels

Chief Strategist – Apply Digital

Chief Strategist, Scott Michaels, guides the strategic direction for all digital products at Apply to help clients to solve even the most difficult of challenges. Having created more than 150 products for his clients, Scott has developed a reputation for achieving remarkable ROIs that propel companies to new growth.

Scott has a love for all things mobile. He has been at the forefront of many digital revolutions–beings a part of the first iPhone launch, working closely with the New York Times to create the first native applications and helping ESPN in its mandate for mobile-first. Scott knows what it takes to make successful applications, especially when working in the vanguard of what is currently possible.

Scott inspires others to do their best work. He is a mentor for the Disney Accelerator, as well as the Sprint Accelerator, powered by TechStars.


Business Expo

Jo-Anne MacDonald

CEO – ARAG Services Corporation

Jo-Anne joined ARAG, as CEO, in 2018 for the next phase of their development in Canada.

Over a decade in the insurance industry, she has worked from the Maritimes to Vancouver, for businesses such as First Canadian Title, Chicago Title Insurance Company and Verge Insurance Group, where she was Vice President of Sales & Marketing.

Jo-Anne has already developed a passion for the ARAG mission of ensuring that access to the justice system is affordable for all Canadians, regardless of their means.

“Whether you’re a small business just finding your feet or a family struggling to pay the bills, you should be able to assert your legal rights, regardless of your personal circumstances.”


Wendy Mayhew

Instigator, Author, Seniorpreneur

Wendy Mayhew has a long history of entrepreneurship in retail, e-commerce, business-to-business, products, and services. Now, she’s offering her wisdom and experience to new entrepreneurs.

An entrepreneur for the past twenty-five years, Wendy founded Business Launch Solutions because she truly enjoys the challenges involved in starting and growing new businesses. An initiative of Business Launch Solutions is Idea2Delivery – Real World Entrepreneur Training – a video series that helps entrepreneurs understand what is needed when starting a business.

Among Wendy’s entrepreneurial accomplishments are Mayhew & Associates (a full-service communications firm specializing in creative and cost-effective solutions to clients’ print and electronic publishing challenges), WellRounded Production House (specializing in developing promotional products and materials meeting the diverse needs of government, private and not-for-profit organizations), and Blasted Bottles (specializing in developing and etching one-of-a-kind designs onto gift bottles for unique keepsakes and unusual media for advertising.)

Wendy is a volunteer mentor with the Canadian Youth Business Foundation where she helps new businesses with their start-up. She volunteers with Junior Achievement by delivering the Business Basic Program to elementary schools in the Ottawa area, and shares her time and expertise with the Carleton University Entrepreneurship Association.

Omar Allam

Omar Allam

CEO & Founder 
Global Trade Practice Leader
Allam Advisory Group (AAG)

Omar Allam is an award-winning business development executive and former Canadian diplomat with a knack for and love of technology and international business. He brings 20 years of experience in tech, global business, non-profits, government, and consulting across the Americas, Europe, the Middle East, Africa (EMEA) and Asia-Pacific (APAC).


Omar is the CEO and founder of the Allam Advisory Group, a leading Canada-based global trade advisory consulting firm where he’s served companies around the world across a diverse set of industries, as well as institutions in the public and social sectors. Omar is also frequently retained as a strategic advisor with some of the world’s top consulting firms like McKinsey, BCG, and Oliver Wyman as well as major foundations and investment management firms where he advises clients on a range of global business strategy, transformation, and risk management matters. In addition, he served as a senior advisor with the World Bank in the technology and transportation practice.


Prior to founding AAG in 2014, Omar was a founding member, Senior Vice President and Partner with an Australian holding company, where he led Canadian operations and managed the global business of three 3 portfolio companies across different verticals, including technology (mobile, big data, IoT, SaaS), education, healthcare, energy, and financial services.

Prior to that, Omar served as a Canadian trade diplomat with Global Affairs Canada, where he was served in North America, India, and Africa. Earlier, during his tenure at Natural Resources Canada, he served as chief and manager of, international of relations, senior advisor for China & Asia-Pacific and was Canada’s liaison officer to the United Nations with responsibility for science, technology and innovation in Africa. 

Prior to joining the Canadian government, Omar was co-founder and Global Vice President with a family-owned, Canadian technology provider of geospatial software solutions.

He appears regularly on BNN, Bloomberg Markets, CBC News; has been profiled in the Ottawa Citizen, ProfitGuide, Ottawa Business Journal, and is published/quoted in The Globe & Mail, Macleans, The Wall Street Journal, Canadian Business, and Newsweek. 

Omar holds degrees in business, geography and environmental studies from Bishop’s University; an executive certificate in international negotiations and mediation from Carleton University and extensive foreign service and executive leadership training at the Canadian Foreign Service Institute and Canada School of Public Service.

Lina Khalifeh

Lina Khalifeh

Founder and owner of SheFighter

Lina Khalifeh is the founder and owner of SheFighter, the first Self-Defense studio for women-only started in the Middle East and expanded to more than 35 countries. SheFighter is designed to empower women physically, mentally and emotionally through Self-Defense training. SheFighter has been working to achieve gender equality through spreading awareness among students in schools and focusing on building their physical intelligence through sports, Martial Arts and Self-Defense. Founded in 2012, the studio has trained more than 18,000 women all over the globe.

Additionally, Lina has worked in her family’s business in Jordan for four years as a marketing manager in manufacturing products in the educational field (white boards, black boards, electronic boards, etc.) and marketing those products internationally.

Lina was recognized by President Barack Obama during his speech at the White house in 2015 and was awarded the Economic Empowerment leadership award by Hillary Clinton and Vital Voices in Washington D.C. in 2018. Lina has also been awarded the ESPYS Stuart Scott Humanitarian ENSPIRE award presented by ESPN and UFC in Los Angeles, California in 2019 and spoke at the 2019 World Economic Forum in Davos.

Khalifeh’s business supports the following SDGs:

Goal 3: Good Health and Well-being

Goal 5: Gender Equality

Goal 17: Partnerships to achieve the Goal

“SheFighter is all about empowering women to stand strong in society to demand their rights. As you empower the body, the mind will be empowered. The problem with some cultures is that women themselves believe they don’t deserve those rights, which makes it a huge challenge to change the way they think about themselves and their rights. By teaching women and girls self-defense they will start feeling more confident, secure and healthy at the same time.”

Lina was selected as a 2019 WE Empower Awardee, 2018 Global Leadership Awards Honoree, a 2018 VV100 member, and a VV GROW Fellow multiple time

Business Expo

Silvia Pencak

President & CEO, WBE Canada

Silvia Pencak is the President of Women Business Enterprises Canada Council (WBE Canada) which bridges the gap between Canadian women-owned businesses and large corporate and government supply chains. Her passion for sustainable innovation and people improvement led to many successful initiatives across 4 continents. You can connect with Silvia on LinkedIn or Twitter – @SilviaPencak.

Business Expo

Alexis Black

Intellectual Property Advisor for the Canadian Intellectual Property Office

Alexis Black is an intellectual property advisor with the Canadian Intellectual Property Office. An Arts and Business graduate from Western University, Alexis has worked for two national law firms managing technology and intellectual property law marketing and business development portfolios. Prior to working for Canadian law firms, Alexis managed sponsorships and business partnerships for the Greater Kitchener Waterloo Chamber of Commerce.

Business Expo

Emiliano Introcaso

Export Help Advisor at EDC

Emiliano has close to two decades of experience working with manufacturers and exporters looking to increase their global growth by providing them with support and guidance in all things export.

His strategy not only focuses on navigating companies through the complexities of global supply chains, but also in the small details that can make or break an international trade transaction.

Emiliano is an Export Help Advisor at Export Development Canada (EDC) – edc.ca

Business Expo

Basit Saeed

CTO, Deloitte


Frank Bilotta

Tax Partner at SBLR LLP

T. 647.476.2378

[email protected]

With over fifteen years in public practice providing tax consulting services to owner-managed businesses and their shareholders, and seven years of previous experience in the Canada Revenue Agency (CRA) business audit division, Frank Bilotta brings a unique perspective to clients at SBLR.

Frank has advised privately-held enterprises and high net worth individuals in various industries, to ensure they minimize their tax exposure and enhance profits, as well as assisting them with CRA assessments and disputes, estate planning, commodity tax, and succession planning. 

Frank’s specialized knowledge and expertise in the area of owner-managed tax consulting is in high demand. He works closely with clients to identify opportunities for minimizing corporate and personal tax exposure, focusing on corporate reorganizations, estate planning, and representing clients on tax objections and appeals.

Specialist In:

Corporate Restructuring • Estate Tax Planning • Tax Minimization Planning • Owner Managed Businesses

Over 15 years experience



founder and CEO
Darn IT Group

IT Consultant – SMB
Skilled and experienced in I.T. technology. My technology skill-sets arrive from years in the following sectors – Banking, Educational, Retail. I’ve had many years working in front-end and back-end deployments for each of those sectors, working alongside Management and Directors.

Currently self-employed running consulting agency in my area. I target small to medium businesses who are looking for assistance with technology deployments, upgrades, additions to their I.T. infrastructure.

My greatest strength is my willingness and care to help people in need. I.T. is overwhelming as it is – my mantra is to educate. less

Business Expo

Please fill in the form below to inquire about speaking or presenting a workshop at the CanadianSME Business Expo 2020.


Phone: + 1 647 668 5785
2355 Derry Road E, Unit 27 Mississauga, ON L9T 5Z5