ECONOMIC UPDATE: Nanaimo business community has new digital tool

NANAIMO – Townsquared allows businesses to collaborate in private social network.

By Sasha Angus

The Nanaimo and region business community has an exciting new digital tool at its disposal: the business-focused social platform Townsquared. This impressive online network improves business-to-business communication and acts as conduit for new business partnerships within the Nanaimo region. Townsquared allows businesses to collaborate with each other about their activities and events. They can also use the network to ask for advice about the industry, products, marketing strategies, and other concerns. The platform can also be used to form partnerships with other companies in the area.

As a private and encrypted network, only those owners, managers and employees who represent local businesses are permitted to utilize Townsquared Nanaimo. This includes any business located north of the Nanaimo Airport and south of Nanoose, including Gabriola Island. This is the first time that Townsquared has been established in a community outside of the United States.

The service had its official launch in the Nanaimo region on July 21 and within 10 days had already reached a membership of more than 100, representing 90 community businesses. This means that not only is Nanaimo the first international location utilizing this platform, but also that Nanaimo has officially outpaced all other communities in adoption of Townsquared.

Nipul Patel, co-founder of the San Francisco-based service, remarked that they have “never experienced an uptake like this before,” and was interested to learn what sets Nanaimo apart in order to improve future launch efforts.

The success of the Townsquared Nanaimo launch can be greatly attributed to the strong partnerships and co-operative nature shared among the various community organizations: Nanaimo Economic Development Corporation, Greater Nanaimo Chamber of Commerce, Innovation Island, Downtown Nanaimo Business Improvement Association and Community Futures Central Island.

With a promising future in the world of online business networking, we at the NEDC are proud to have played a key role in securing the Nanaimo region as the first community outside of the U.S. to embrace Townsquared.

To learn more and to sign up, go to

On Aug. 14 at 10 a.m., an online video chat with Kim Smythe, chamber CEO, Patel and myself will discuss how businesses can benefit most from Townsquared. This discussion, via Google+ Hangouts, will stream live at

Sasha Angus is CEO of Nanaimo Economic Development Corporation.