The Ontario Aerospace Council announced today it has selected the B2BeeMatch platform to facilitate networking, intelligence-sharing, benchmarking, and other business development activities for the organization’s members. Under the terms of the agreement, Red Dot Digital is creating a custom platform for the global aerospace industry, called Aero+B2BeeMatch, within its B2BeeMatch ecosystem. The move is expected to accelerate the digital transformation seen across multiple sectors, including aerospace, which has been disproportionately impacted by pandemic-related factors such as record declines in commercial aviation. Aero+B2BeeMatch is scheduled to launch December 2, 2021 and will be complementary for year one to current OAC members.
Canadian aerospace is a global industry leader. Canada is the only country that ranked in the top five across civil flight simulators, civil engines, and civil aircraft sub-segments in 2020, yet global competition continues to become ever fiercer. Moreover, small and medium enterprises (SMEs) often lack the connections to make the most of their advanced manufacturing and other world-class capabilities. Aero+B2BeeMatch will leverage artificial intelligence to match businesses with each other and promote networking across other industrial clusters, thus diversifying revenue streams and facilitating the cross-border offset requirements common to the aerospace and defence industry. SMEs benefiting from increased revenues and exports are expected to be more inclined to reinvest in R&D, leading to intellectual property generation, training and upskilling, job creation, and the adoption of new technologies.
“The COVID-19 pandemic has resulted in fundamental changes to how companies communicate and collaborate, especially at a distance. Adoption of digital technology is particularly critical for SMEs looking to grow and diversify through new business and new markets,” said Natasha Gagnon, senior manager at the OAC. “The Aero+B2BeeMatch platform will be a high-tech, low-cost, 24/7 business development tool to help our companies connect with new clients, collaborate with new partners, and cross-pollinate with other sectors across Canada and beyond.”
Canada is home to approximately 580 aerospace companies, and more than 70% of these are SMEs with fewer than 100 employees. In 2020, despite being faced with the pandemic-related shutdown of the travel industry, the Canadian aerospace industry contributed $22.3 billion to the GDP and exported over 75% of its products to 186 countries across six continents. With investments of $934M in research and development in 2020, aerospace boasts a five-times-higher R&D intensity than the Canadian manufacturing average. Significantly more aerospace firms cooperated on innovation activities with academia and government than the manufacturing average.
“We are excited to add the OAC to B2BeeMatch’s roster of international partners, and to welcome the Canadian aerospace sector as well as the international aerospace sector onto the B2BeeMatch platform,” said Karima-Catherine Goundiam, founder and CEO of Red Dot Digital and B2BeeMatch. “Aerospace is one of the world’s largest and most important industries, and we look forward to opening up opportunities for small and medium aerospace businesses to do business development and networking both within and outside their sector, in over 40 countries and in two languages.”
The OAC intends to concentrate its Aero+B2BeeMatch year-one efforts on onboarding a core group of SME members, with industry champions such as Aviya Aerospace Systems, Brotech Precision CNC, Composite Automation and Coordinate Industries helping to test and promote the platform. It is anticipated that all four Canadian aerospace clusters will join, representing the nation’s industry from coast to coast to coast. Years two through five will see expansion to thousands of users in aerospace and other industries located in the rest of North and South America, as well as Europe, the Asia-Pacific, Africa, and the Middle East.
Aero+B2BeeMatch is funded in part by Next Generation Manufacturing Canada (NGen), the industry-led non-profit organization leading Canada’s Advanced Manufacturing Supercluster.