Sudbury’s first full-service immigration and recruitment agency held its grand opening celebration on Thursday, Jan. 16.
For some time, IVEY Group has been providing recruitment, immigration, and settlement services to a variety of businesses and individuals in Northern Ontario. The celebration marked the official establishment of their headquarters downtown in the Old City Hall building on Cedar Street.
IVEY was founded in 2018 by Anthony Lawley, a Registered Canadian Immigration Consultant and Human Resources Specialist, and Antonio Lopez an international recruiter and engineer originally from Mexico.
Both recognized the growing severe shortage of skilled workers in Northern Ontario and combined their unique skill sets to create a full-service agency that meets the need of Northern employers and immigrant workers and their families.
"We have roots here in Northern Ontario, most of our team is from here in Sudbury so we understood the shortage of workers and labourers that is here and we wanted to be part of this initiative," said Lopez.
Recruitment efforts take place in a variety of countries primarily in Latin America, North Africa and Eastern and Western Europe and all workers and highly vetted prior to arriving in Canada. Once here, many take advantage of the temporary living quarters available to them in the Old City Hall just above IVEY’s offices.
IVEY Group is focused on the recruitment of workers from industries such as mining, forestry and manufacturing among others.
"Those are the top three industries we serve, but we also have the odd referal for things like high-end chefs," said Lopez, who explained that there can be challenges for people looking to come to Canada for work.
"We want to connect these workers with reputable companies. There's a lot of scammers out there and risks for people coming here because they work with the wrong people. It's important to work with a legitimate person, it's important to be well-informed. There was a case of Mexican workers in Barrie where they had at least 20 of them living in one house in poor conditions, so it's important to be informed and to rely on information from official websites like the Canadian government's website."
IVEY will also be working with international students and assisting them in getting post-graduate work permits, permanent residency or even full citizenship.
"There's also people who are looking to invest here, so they're trying to come from outside of Canada and buy businesses or start a business in Canada and we assist them too in that to help bring more investment to the city," said Lopez.
The grand opening festivities were attended by some of these new workers and members of the community, including Mayor Bigger, Sudbury MP Paul Lefebvre and a variety of local business owners.
IVEY Group is available Monday to Friday from 8:30 a.m. to 5 p.m. for phone or in-person inquiries.