Better Business Bureau Integrates U.S. and Canadian Operations

Aug 16, 2011, 14:58 ET from Council of Better Business Bureaus

Program combines North American operations for more seamless consumer experience, improved cross-border dispute resolution

ARLINGTON, Va., Aug. 16, 2011 /PRNewswire-USNewswire/ -- The Council of Better Business Bureaus (CBBB) has integrated operations in the United States and Canada, marking the way for an improved customer experience for those who purchase goods and services across the border. The CBBB Board of Directors voted earlier this month on the integration plan, which became effective today. The CBBB is the international headquarters of the BBB system and the governing body that licenses local BBBs and provides support services to increase their effectiveness.

"The U.S. and Canada remain each other's largest trading partners," noted Stephen A. Cox, President and CEO of CBBB. "We share the world's longest undefended border, and our citizens cross the border 200 million times a year. Every day more than $1 billion in goods, services and investments are exchanged between our two nations. We are really one North American marketplace, and the BBB system now reflects that. Not only will it be easier for consumers to check out businesses in either country, it will be simpler for them to file a complaint or resolve a dispute."

"Given the advances in technology and the globalization of services, it no longer makes sense to maintain two separate systems," said M. Jean Lemyre, chair of the Canadian Council of Better Business Bureaus (CCBBB). "The vast majority of consumers initially contact BBB through the Internet. Aligning BBB services into one integrated system will be more efficient for businesses in Canada, and will ensure that consumers continue to receive the high quality of services they've come to expect from BBB."

For nearly 100 years, BBB has helped consumers make smarter buying decisions. More than 400,000 businesses meet the organization's rigorous standards and are BBB Accredited. In addition, BBB maintains information on more than 4 million businesses, and every year helps millions of consumers through free business reviews, consumer tips, fraud alerts, dispute resolution, and consumer advocacy. 1.1 million complaints to BBB were resolved in 2010.

There are 23 standards that local organizations must meet in order to use the BBB name and logo, and to receive services from CBBB. As part of the integration, boundaries were realigned in four Canadian service areas to combine some operations, reducing the total number of local BBBs from 120 to 116 (10 in Canada, 106 in the U.S.).

About BBB
As the leader in advancing marketplace trust, Better Business Bureau is an unbiased non-profit organization that sets and upholds high standards for fair and honest business behavior. Every year, more than 87 million consumers rely on BBB Business Reviews and BBB Wise Giving Reports® to help them find trustworthy businesses and charities across North America. Visit for more information.  

SOURCE Council of Better Business Bureaus