Invest Nova Scotia executive chair Tom Hickey resigns two weeks after consolidation

Nova Scotia flag
Invest Nova Scotia was the result of Innovacorp and NSBI’s merger.

Tom Hickey, the executive chair of the newly formed Invest Nova Scotia, has stepped down from his role just after two weeks since his appointment.

Nova Scotia Premier Tim Houston said that Hickey handed in his resignation on Wednesday, noting that the Minister and Department of Economic Development will lead Invest Nova Scotia during this time of transition.

In an interview with CBC, Economic Development Minister Susan Corkum-Greek said Hickey’s decision to leave his position at Invest Nova Scotia was based on reevaluating his own business deals and an acquisition that he is currently finalizing.

“Public service, in all of its forms, requires great sacrifice from those who take on the challenge,” Houston’s statement reads. “I appreciate Hickey’s candour in assessing his capacity to make the sacrifices necessary to provide the level of attention that Invest Nova Scotia requires.”

Invest Nova Scotia was the result of an amalgamation between Innovacorp and Nova Scotia Business Inc. as part of a broader strategy by the provincial government to bring together five economic development and infrastructure organizations.

Established in 1995, Innovacorp was an early stage venture capital firm that focuses on helping to scale tech startups based in the province. Its target industries include information technology, cleantech, life sciences, and ocean tech.

NSBI was the province’s economic development agency that provides business development services such as the Export Development Program, which aims to support businesses looking to increase sales outside of Nova Scotia, adopt technology, and improve competitiveness.

RELATED: Nova Scotia government consolidates Innovacorp, Nova Scotia Business Inc

Build Nova Scotia is the other organization to come out of the set of consolidations, and is meant to replace Nova Scotia Lands and take over the work that has been done by Develop Nova Scotia. Build Nova Scotia will also absorb Harbourside Commercial Park in Sydney.

The recruitment process for finding an Invest Nova Scotia CEO will begin this summer, according to the provincial government. Once Invest Nova Scotia is in place, the CEO will report directly to the government through the Minister of Economic Development.

The two executive chair roles, which included Hickey as well as Wayne Crowley, were created after the amalgamation to replace Invest Nova Scotia and Build Nova Scotia’s board of directors.

Hickey is a long-time entrepreneur, having started around 19 companies and invested in more than 30 startups. His main focus for business ventures has been international projects in the oil, gas, and construction industries. Currently, Hickey is the CEO of Atlantic Road Construction & Paving.

Featured image from Flickr.

Charlize Alcaraz

Charlize Alcaraz

Charlize Alcaraz is a journalism student at Ryerson University and a staff writer for BetaKit. Follow her on Twitter @charlizealcaraz

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