My oh my, do we ever have a lot to share with you. Ottawa sure has lacked its traditional sunny weather recently, but that hasn’t stopped Ottawa’s economy from heating up! And the timing couldn’t be better, as Ottawa was named Canada’s top tech hub and Canada’s Best Place to Live (again). People have caught on: the nation’s capital is THE place to be. Here’s how Ottawa’s ecosystem has helped drive the economy forward since the start of 2017.
Invest Ottawa Announces New CEO
In early February, Invest Ottawa was thrilled to announce the newest member of our organization, Michael Tremblay, as President and CEO.
Mr. Tremblay brings more than 30 years of executive leadership experience with multinational corporations to Invest Ottawa and our stakeholders. Within the capacity of CEO, and guided by a mission to make Ottawa the best place in Canada to start and grow a business, Michael will work closely with employees, partners, and investors to catalyse the growth and success of local entrepreneurs and firms and our regional economy.
“I am honoured to join Invest Ottawa as President and CEO, and work with our stakeholders to help realize our economic development objectives, and chart a new innovation future for our region,” says Tremblay.
Now enclosing on his 6 months of tenure with IO, Michael has helped lead the evolution of our organization in many ways. Take a look at what we’ve been up to since January (there’s been A LOT!).
Bayview Yards Announces Eight Founding Sponsors
June 23rd was a monumental day at 7 Bayview Road, where over 240 members of our innovation community gathered in anticipation of Bayview Yards’ big announcement. The guest list included His Worship Jim Watson, Mayor of Ottawa; the Honourable Bob Chiarelli, Minister of Infrastructure, Government of Ontario; the Honourable Yasir Naqvi, Attorney General of Ontario; David McGuinty, MP for Ottawa South; and Dr. Frank Rybicki, Professor and Chair of Radiology at the University of Ottawa and Chief of Medical Imaging at The Ottawa Hospital. It was 9:30 am when Steve West, Chair of the Board of Bayview Yards and David Ritonja, Chair of the Board of Invest Ottawa, revealed Bayview Yards’ eight founding sponsors who collectively injected $1.3 million into Ottawa’s one-stop acceleration shop! This sponsorship is a commitment from Ottawa industry and academic leaders to the city’s innovation economy, fueling growth and providing critical investment and technology to Bayview Yards, and, in many cases, Invest Ottawa.
To see photo collections, video footage, and to learn more CLICK HERE!
In March, Invest Ottawa and Lighthouse Labs were ecstatic to bring HTML150, a free learn-to-code event, to Ottawa. With thanks to our community partners, sponsors, mentors, and volunteers who helped make the event possible, 150 people were able to learn basic coding skills and create their very own landing page! A major win in our books!
For every year that we’ve ignited AccelerateOTT, it’s grown in size. In 2015, we welcomed over 300 attendees, in 2016, we welcomed 400 attendees, and for our fifth time running AccelerateOTT, we welcomed nearly 500 attendees this May! In addition, Eamonn Carey, Managing Director of TechStars, met with many of our local startups to see how he can help them grow to the next level. This speaks volumes to the entrepreneurial fire that’s burning up in the nation’s capital. Our sincere gratitude goes out to our all-star line up of speakers, sponsors, partners, and of course attendees for allowing us to continue claiming: This was the best one yet!
#HustleShuttle and Startupfest
This July, Invest Ottawa and 30 entrepreneurs, mentors, students and startups from across our city boarded the #HustleShuttle and headed to Montreal for Startupfest! On the two-hour road trip, startups were invited to take the mic for the annual #HustleShuttle pitch competition. They practiced their pitch ‘Dragons Den’ style and received constructive feedback from advisors and fellow entrepreneurs alike. While at the festival, IO repped the 613 by showcasing the good fortune of living, working and growing a business in the nation’s capital.
Sad to see you go, but proud watching you leave.
At Invest Ottawa we have the incredible opportunity to work with entrepreneurs from across our region. Every day, local startups in our Incite Incubator work tirelessly to build their businesses. In 2017, we’ve had to say “see you soon” to two long-standing (awesome) Invest Ottawa clients: Signority & FarmLead. Both organizations graduated from the Incite Incubator and have since opened their own offices in Ottawa! Exciting times ahead!
Additional congratulations go to FarmLead who left the incubator on an exceptionally high note having just announced Series A funding of $6.5 million USD!
So far, 2017 has welcomed some major funding announcements for a number of Invest Ottawa clients. We thought we’d share a few:
- Assent Compliance announces Series B financing of $40 million from Greenspring Associates, a leading American Venture Capital firm
- Klipfolio Raising $12 Million CDN to Further Boost Growth
- Twelve Barrels is now being sold in LCBO
- MindBridge raises $4.3 million with goal to IPO within five years
Welcome to Ottawa! Over the last few months, we’ve accepted four companies into our soft landing program:
- Eazylang, a startup from France
- European Cyber Resilience Research Network (ECRRN), a startup from the Netherlands
- Commerce Decisions, a startup from England, and
- Accedian, a startup from Montreal
These companies are able to trial the Ottawa market while leveraging our team’s network and expertise.
We’ve opened our doors to the world! Since January, our Investment and Trade team has welcomed over 20 delegations to Ottawa, including delegates from Ireland, China, Germany, Czech Republic, and more. These visits foster collaboration within the six high-growth knowledge-based industries (KBI) that we serve and further support our relationships with these countries. In addition to these visits, our team has worked diligently to help facilitate 276 jobs and 59 companies to grow globally.
Want to learn more about what they do and how they can help? Check out our Why Ottawa page!
Work in Ottawa is a recruitment campaign that promotes the endless opportunities in the nation’s capital for top talent in the technology sector. In January of this year, Invest Ottawa kicked the campaign into high gear with the launch of WorkinOttawa.ca and the job board. By February the campaign was expanded into 5 targeted US regions, and since, has slowly been introduced to additional international markets. The success of #workinottawa has been “off the charts”! In less than a year, over 3 million people have interacted with the ads and thousands have signed-up to be notified of jobs available in Ottawa – and these numbers are growing daily.
As a part of the campaign, IO has been interviewing members of the Ottawa tech hub who moved to the capital city to pursue their career. Hear first-hand from Graham, Kaushi, & Niket on why they chose to #workinottawa.
Invest Ottawa has worked closely with the Centre of Excellence in Next Generation Networks (CENGN) since its inception and applauded when the Government of Ontario decided to invest $63 million in the centre. This major funding announcement underscores Ottawa’s leadership in next generation networks – a big win for Canada’s Top Tech Hub!
Queen’s Park Mission
In March, Invest Ottawa’s CEO, Michael Tremblay, and Director of Investment and Trade, Blair Patacairk, attended Mayor Jim Watson and Sir Terry Matthews, of Wesley Clover International, led a delegation to Queen’s Park. The delegation was made up of key Ottawa leaders and included Ontario’s Premier Kathleen Wynne. At the top of their agenda: the fields of autonomous vehicles and next generation networks.
Read more here:
Invest Ottawa, the Kanata BIA, the City of Ottawa and our many partners are proud to support the researchers, technology developers and companies that have made Ottawa Canada’s AV Capital. To showcase those who are making autonomous vehicles a reality (such as QNX, Ford, and many other innovative companies), we have introduced www.ottawaavcluster.com. Through this platform, we look forward keeping you updated on all exciting news on Ottawa’s AV cluster, and welcome your questions, comments, and feedback! You can connect with us at [email protected]ottawaavcluster.com.
Connect with us
Want more where this came from? To keep tabs on what’s happening, especially in Ottawa’s tech and entrepreneurship ecosystems, follow us on social media and register for weekly or bi-weekly newsletters. Check us out on Twitter, Facebook, or LinkedIn and click here to sign-up. We look forward to connecting with you!
Hint: we also have IO hashtags: #WorkinOttawa, #WhyOttawa, #MadeinOttCity, and #OttawaINC