Tech Start-ups Supported by Cloud Tech

By: Lee Rickwood

July 15, 2016

Canadian technology start-ups and early stage companies in the ICT (Information, Communications and Technology) sector have access to business support, information and mentorship through a new high-tech platform that’s powered in the cloud.

It’s one of the latest developments in a growing network of supports for tech start-ups, including new physical and virtual environments to help entrepreneurs working in technology.

Start-ups and small businesses are often the real creators in many sectors and markets around the world, bringing new jobs, innovative business practices, inventive spin-offs and more into play. Canada is no different, and its largest city is home to some 4,000 active tech start-ups looking to make a real contribution to the local economy.

ryerson digital media zone

The DMZ at Ryerson University offers tech support and facilities to qualified tech start-ups.

Any number of business incubators and tech start-up accelerators operate in and around Toronto to assist such small tech companies, with Ryerson’s Digital Media Zone, Communitech at UWaterloo, the MaRS Discovery District, OneEleven and Startup Canada among them.

MaRS, Communitech and others have even opened up facilities to help Canadian tech start-ups get started in the U.S., with the opening of Canada House in Silicon Valley and Communitech NYC in the Big Apple.

communitech in tannery building

The Tannery Building in Kitchener, ON is home to several tech companies and a support group for tech start-ups, called Communitech.

(Montreal, by the way, is hosting a #startup festival for aspiring company founders, business innovators and veteran entrepreneurs from around the world all this week.)

Along with the physical locations, a new virtual destination has launched from Canada to help entrepreneurs and tech start-ups no matter where they’re based: locally, nationally or internationally.

TechPORTFOLIO is a new social-media Web portal where editorial content and data analysis are combined to profile companies, entrepreneurs, government policies and investment trends that can contribute to technology businesses and their economic success.

TechPORTFOLIO will be a new kind of publication that incorporates data, social media and technology into its operating model and ongoing publishing,” Leigh Doyle, TechPORTFOLIO Managing Editor, announced.

TechPORTFOLIO web-capture

TechPORTFOLIO provides coverage, data analysis, and profiles of start-up ecosystems as they emerge locally, nationally and internationally.

Its content about tech and start-up ecosystems delves deeply into subjects in ways that are only made possible by the underlying technology, Doyle added. IBM is a big part of the launch of TechPORTFOLIO; its cloud-based services and cognitive technologies are widely implemented at the portal.

“IBM Cloud is the leading platform for data-driven cloud and analytics that enables organizations to meet market demands and open doors to more responsive and innovative ways of doing business,” Nevil Knupp, VP of Cloud, IBM Canada, explained. “By providing the best cloud and cognitive technologies, we are helping TechPORTFOLIO connect to the developer and start-up audience and transform the way news is delivered.”

Cognitive technologies such as those used in small business and enterprise-wise applications enable computer systems to learn and follow instructions from other machines and other data, not just programming code. They make way for Natural Language Processing (NLP) -­- a computer’s ability to read and generate text with a certain depth of meaning and stylistic flourish through software analysis and sheer horsepower — as well as advanced speech recognition.

IBM also recently announced a new partnership with Bell Business Markets to expand the cloud computing services available through Bell Business Cloud. It intends to give businesses across Canada access to the IBM Cloud via a secure, high-speed private connection from Bell, and new ways customers can adopt and build out their hybrid clouds.

“The Canadian start-up space is thriving and supporting a culture of innovation with organizations, like TechPORTFOLIO, allows IBM to contribute to a thriving tech environment that can strengthen Canada’s position as an ideal place to research and develop new technologies,” added Lila Adamec, Program Director, Developer Ecosystem & Startups, IBM Canada.



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