Transforming the construction industry through leadership and innovation

Mechanical & Electrical Contractors Innovation Forum


April 4–5, 2019
Toronto, Canada


Join an exclusive round table of forward-thinking Mechanical & Electrical contracting executives as we lay a foundation of innovation and disrupt the construction industry.


This groundbreaking, inaugural event brings together progressive, like-minded senior executives from some of the largest mechanical and electrical contractors in North America.  We’ve invited leaders, such as CEOs, COOs, and CIOs, who are open-minded and eager to explore ways to improve their organizations and contribute to our industry through innovation.

Together, we’ll examine the threats and opportunities our industry faces, learn from world-class innovators, and enjoy some downtime in Toronto.

It is our hope that the event also serves as a catalyst, creating a community of peers that evolves beyond the forum itself.

Hosted by Canada’s leading Mechanical and Electrical contractor, Modern Niagara, the M&E Innovation Forum features best-selling author Salim Ismail, and facilitator Michael Leadbetter of The Pivot Factory.


  • Learn from the experience of your peers on the success and pitfalls they’ve experienced through transformation and innovation
  • Expand your knowledge of disruption and what it means to our industry with Salim Ismail, author of Exponential Organizations
  • Examine the strategies CEOs across industries are implementing to develop systemic innovation practices in an interactive workshop with Pivot Factory
  • Meet other industry leaders and forge invaluable connections with people who share your vision
  • Explore the possibility of fostering a community of like-minded innovators for future discussions and events.


Day 1 (Full Day)


8:00am Breakfast
8:30am Welcome and Introductions
Michael Leadbetter & Brad McAninch
Exponential Organizations and Disruption (Salim Ismail)
Modern Niagara and Pivot Factory have partnered to bring exponential thinking and processes to the mechanical and electrical contractor marketplace. Pivot Factory will kick off the round table with an overview of exponential technologies and the cross-industry disruption they’re causing. Carefully crafted exercises will help each participant start to highlight what this change means to their organization and the mechanical and electrical contracting industry.
5:00pm Daily wrap up
Brad McAninch
7:00pm SOLD OUT – NHL game in an Executive Suite (Dinner served in the suite.)


Day 2 (1/2 Day)


8:00am Breakfast
8:30am Opening comments and review of Day 1
Michael Leadbetter & Brad McAninch
Disruption Exercise
Michael Leadbetter
Open discussion of next steps
Creation of an Innovation Community — Objectives, desired outcomes, cadence

Lunch and departures
Optional afternoon private tour: Toronto’s Sidewalk Labs:

Sidewalk Toronto is a joint effort by Waterfront Toronto and Alphabet’s Sidewalk Labs to create a new kind of mixed-use, complete community on Toronto’s Eastern Waterfront.  It combines forward-thinking urban design and new digital technology to create people-centred neighbourhoods that achieve precedent-setting levels of sustainability, affordability, mobility, and economic opportunity.


*Agenda is subject to change


Brad McAninch

Brad McAninch, CEO of Modern Niagara, is a Professional Engineer who has worked in the construction industry since his career began in 1997. Brad entered the industry as a Mechanical Project Engineer with Rudolph and Sletten, prior to joining Modern Niagara in Toronto in 2001. In 2004 Brad was promoted to the position of President, Modern Niagara Ottawa, and subsequently Executive Vice President of Modern Niagara Group before being named CEO in 2016.

During his tenure with Modern Niagara, Brad has contributed to the Group’s consistent growth and profitability. Brad oversaw expansion into Saskatchewan (2011) and British Columbia (2016) and led the teams that completed the acquisitions of Breneck Technical Services (2013), and both Industrial Electrical Contractors Ltd. and Keith Plumbing & Heating (2016).

Modern Niagara has family history for Brad.  His father, John McAninch, became the company’s first CEO in 1997 until his retirement in 2004.

Brad lives in Ottawa with his wife and three daughters, and stays healthy with golf, hockey, and skiing.

Salim Ismail

Salim Ismail is the co-founder of both ExO Works, an exponential change consulting organization, and ExO Lever, an ecosystem of advisors. He is a sought-after speaker, award-winning author, strategist and entrepreneur based in Silicon Valley. He travels extensively addressing myriad topics, including breakthrough technologies and their impact on a variety of industries and society in general.

Ismail founded ExO Works in 2016 to help transform global business by catapulting organizations into the world of exponential thinking. ExO Works delivers a 10-week program called the ExO Sprint that leapfrogs an organization’s mindset forward by two years.

Ismail has also been building Singularity University (SU) since 2010, initially as its founding executive director and currently as global ambassador. SU is based at NASA Ames Research Center in California, and is training a new generation of leaders to manage exponentially growing technologies. Ismail previously served as a vice president at Yahoo!, where he built and ran Brickhouse, its internal incubator. His last company, Angstro, was sold to Google in August 2010. He has founded or operated seven early-stage companies, including PubSub Concepts, which laid some of the foundation for the real-time web.

He has been featured in numerous media outlets, including the New York Times, Bloomberg BusinessWeek, Fortune, Wired and the BBC. He advises Fortune 500 executives and many world governments on the future of technology and is the bestselling author of Exponential Organizations.

Michael Leadbetter

Michael is the founder and CEO of Pivot Factory, an advisory services firm that uses specialized

innovation approaches to enable growth for its clients. Michael is the former CEO of ExO Works, Salim Ismail’s exponential organizations firm and was an advisor to Singularity University.

Michael previously spent 20+ years in corporate development roles with leading education/media brands: Euromoney Institutional Investor, Kaplan Inc and Pearson Inc. He has worked across multiple client industries including financial services, healthcare, education and real estate. His career has seen him based in Hong Kong and New York and conducting business through South East Asia, North and South America, Europe and the Middle East.

Michael is a regular speaker on disruption, exponential technologies, exponential organizations and innovation. He has spoken in recent years in Bangalore, Cartagena, Geneva, London, Rio de Janeiro, Silicon Valley and St Tropez.


About the Event

What is the time commitment?

The formal agenda is 1.5 days: 

Thursday, April 4: 8:30AM – 5PM and Friday, April 5:  8:30AM – 1PM

We also encourage you to attend the welcome reception on Wednesday evening from 6pm to 7:30pm at the top of the iconic CN Tower and private tour of Toronto Sidewalk Labs on Friday afternoon.

Who will be attending?

Progressive, like-minded senior executives from some of the largest mechanical and electrical contractors in North America will be in attendance.  We’ve invited CEOs, COOs, and CIOs, who are open-minded and eager to explore ways to improve their organizations and contribute to our industry through innovation.

Travel and Hotel

Where is the round table taking place?

The event is taking place at Deloitte’s Head Office, one of Toronto’s most innovative office spaces.  The address is: 8 Adelaide Street West, Third Floor, Toronto, Ontario

Can you recommend hotels close by?
Where is the closest airport?

Pearson International (YYZ) is the largest International airport with direct flights to and from most major US cities.

Billy Bishop (YTZ) is a smaller International airport, conveniently located in downtown Toronto that has direct flights to and from select US cities via Porter.

Registration and Contact

What is the cost to attend?

The cost for a ticket is $2,000USD. If other executives from your company will be joining you, you can register up to two additional executives at a cost of $1,000USD each.

What does my ticket cost include?

Your ticket covers the following:

  • Welcome reception with light refreshments and drinks
  • Participation in the keynote, workshop, and roundtable sessions
  • All meals from breakfast on Thursday to lunch on Friday (With the exception of dinner on Thursday because of sold out NHL Game)
  • Due to overwhelming response, the NHL Game is sold out:  Your ticket to the NHL game and dinner at the game
  • Private tour of Sidewalk Labs Toronto on Friday afternoon
  • In order to offset event costs, select partners will also be attending the keynote and networking events only.
How do I register?

Registration is by invitation only. If you have not received an invitation and would like to attend, please email with your name, title and company name and we will contact you within 24 hours.

Is there a dress code?

Dress for the event is business casual. Weather in Toronto is unpredictable at this time of year, so make sure to plan for all situations.

Are the tickets transferable?

If you would like to transfer your purchased ticket to another senior executive in your company, contact to arrange the transfer.

Who can I contact if I have questions?


Innovation Forum Chair





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