In a unique collaboration, the Central Okanagan Economic Development Commission and Tourism Kelowna recently welcomed 11 trade and investment representatives from countries worldwide, including Singapore, China, Japan, Korea, India, Germany and the United States, to Kelowna.The targeted one-day tour was planned to introduce the group to our region's key economic sectors and to the strategy behind the OKGo campaign

Trade and Investment Rep FAM

To start the day, the group had an opportunity to connect with key community leaders at a networking breakfast hosted at the Kelowna Yacht Club. The group then toured the Kelowna Innovation Centre, learning how it serves as the hub of technology, entrepreneurship, and creativity in Kelowna. Accelerate Okanagan demonstrated how their services help businesses start and scale and further detailed some local success stories. To hear firsthand from one of those success stories, the group visited Pela to hear about their products, the markets they work in, and how they support garbage reduction in Kelowna and throughout North America. 

From there, we introduced our guests to Kelowna's viticulture sector. Taylor Whelan, the winemaker at CedarCreek Estate Winery, explained how the Okanagan is a leading region in organic wine production, which is possible in part because of the low precipitation.  He also went into further detail on how the winery uses various ag-tech products in its viticulture practices. The group was then treated to a fabulous wine-paired lunch where they could experience Kelowna’s authentic hospitality and see firsthand how we can elevate business events by incorporating memorable off-site experiences.

To demonstrate how Kelowna’s post-secondary institutions impact the future talent pipeline and provide vital support to local industry, the group first visited the UBCO CleanTech Hub, where they heard from the administration, faculty, and students about some of the research projects taking place. Okanagan College then explained how their programs directly support the talent pipeline for KF Aerospace, which was the group's next stop. 

The group learned about KF Aerospace's world-class legacy project, the KF Centre for Excellence. The guests thoroughly enjoyed learning about the company’s international reach and were keen to discuss potential collaborations.

KF Centre for Excellence - Trade FAM
KF Centre for Excellence

Offering these trade and investment representatives an opportunity to connect directly with local industry and academia was very impactful.  As partners on the OKGo campaign, COEDC and Tourism Kelowna deeply understand the importance of promoting a sustainable and collaborative business ecosystem. We appreciate opportunities such as this to welcome guests to our community to show them firsthand what that looks like. 

If you have further questions about the OKGo campaign or this initiative, please contact me at