IBM Client Innovation Centre to open in Calgary
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250 jobs planned for skills in AI, hybrid cloud, 5G and security
IBM Canada announced an IBM Client Innovation Centre (CIC) for Western Canada, with plans to create 250 new jobs in Calgary and helping to invigorate the city’s technology sector, diversify the economy, and fast track cross-industry digital transformation and application modernization. The CIC will have a focus on sustainability, delivering consulting services and technologies like 5G, artificial intelligence, hybrid cloud and blockchain, helping to elevate Alberta’s position as a centre for energy transformation.
Sustainability challenges impact some of Canada’s most important economic engines; in fact, according to a recent study from IBM, 83% of CEOs believe sustainability investments will improve their business results in the next five years. Through the Western Canada CIC, IBM will help organizations accelerate their environmental and social goals to create a long-lasting impact for their communities, employees, customers and investors in five key areas: climate risk management, infrastructure and operations, supply chain, electrification, energy and emissions management, and sustainability strategies.
IBM is working with Invest Alberta, Calgary Economic Development and Opportunity Calgary Investment Fund (OCIF) to establish the CIC.
“The new IBM Client Innovation Centre will play an important role in contributing to Alberta’s economic growth through job creation and the engagement of local expertise. It will accelerate innovation in sustainable practices and advance the position of Alberta as a hub for energy transformation,” said Dave McCann, president of IBM Canada. “IBM has a long and established presence in the province and we are excited to expand our capability in Calgary in support of our clients in Western Canada.”
Tech sector already accelerating at a rapid pace
The creation of the CIC aligns with shared objectives of the Province and City of Calgary to create jobs, improve workforce skills training, and further grow the tech sector, which has already been accelerating at a rapid pace. According to a report from Calgary Economic Development and IDC Canada, Alberta’s spending on digital transformation is expected to surpass $20B by 2024, of which Calgary businesses will account for nearly $7.5 billion. This represents an average growth of 13% across all industries.
“This investment shows once more that Alberta has the economic momentum to continue to move Albertans forward,” says Alberta Premier Jason Kenney. “We have worked closely with IBM over the past year to make this investment possible, and are thrilled to see this happen, adding even more momentum to Alberta’s rapidly growing tech sector.”
Calgary’s growth as a Western Canada tech hub, plus its skilled and diverse workforce, were fundamental reasons for its selection as the headquarters for the new IBM CIC.
Additional opportunities for job-seekers
“The expansion of IBM in the downtown core is yet another signal of confidence in our city’s growing tech sector,” said Calgary Mayor Jyoti Gondek. “As Calgary’s reputation for innovation grows, more companies like IBM are recognizing the value Calgary offers including the ability for their people to have a rewarding career and great life here. It also underscores the importance of continuing to invest in tech scale-up efforts, essential to attracting more growth to our city.”
“IBM’s expansion to Calgary is a welcome addition to the growing tech sector in the city. This new Client Innovation Centre not only represents additional opportunities for job-seekers, it is further evidence of the maturation of technology and innovation in Alberta. Alberta is proving, once again, that we are a destination of choice for business.” Doug Schweitzer, Minister of Jobs, Economy and Innovation, Alberta
Roles in the Calgary-based centre will include application developers, business and transformation analysts, testers and project managers and more, all of which are in demand by Canadian businesses.
“ATCO knows that transforming our energy systems requires both world-class expertise and local technical talent,” said Sarah Shortreed, ATCO’s Executive Vice President & Chief Technology Officer. “That’s why we’re investing in systems to support the workforce of the future and looking forward to IBM’s Client Innovation Centre bringing new levels of collaboration and skills to help Alberta companies partner and prosper.”
The CIC will assume a portion of the 25,000 square feet office IBM currently holds in the Beltline area of downtown Calgary as a collaboration hub for IBM, clients and partners.