A wide-ranging group of Canadian high-tech developers is heading to the U.S. with hopes of entering the fast lane to market success.
The Canadian hardware, software and health tech companies are joining the Canadian Technology Accelerator in Boston, where they share physical space and business resources designed to help them grow and scale their unique product and service offerings: providing cannabis products or office workstations, enhancing meetings or identifying cancers.
In fact, products already available from one of the companies, called Smartpods, could help all the other companies be more effective, efficient, productive and healthy.
The Moncton, New Brunswick-based company offers smart desks and interactive workstations created to reduce fatigue and even injuries suffered by workers who are “chained to the desk”.
Anyone who spends a lot of time at a computer terminal (or any long-term, sit-down job) is at risk of body strain or repetitive tissue injury. So company president Léon DesRoches (he holds degrees in kinesiology and physiotherapy) worked to develop a smart and healthy alternative to traditional desks and workspaces.
Smartpod workstations can intelligently and automatically move up and down, left and right, at predetermined times that can improve whole body health without disrupting an employee’s productivity. Smartpods also have safety monitoring and customizable software that tracks and analyzes factors related to the user’s health, wellness, and diet.
The company plans to incorporate other health-related analytic tools as it develops new product features and functions in the future.
Another potential productivity boost for almost any company comes from Montreal-based Ideation6, another firm heading to Boston.
It has developed a cloud-based collaborative software platform for idea-storming and team-building activities. The idea is to let business users develop their ideas and insights by sharing text, videos, photos, hyperlinks, and document tiles among far-flung staffers, customers, suppliers and more.
All six companies on the current trip to Boston will be part of a four-month program, based in the Cambridge Innovation Center close to the MIT campus.
They all have access to the Canadian Entrepreneurs in New England network of established high-tech business and development leaders. Each entrepreneur is matched with a Canadian C-level executive from another global technology and life science company, as well as successful entrepreneurs, venture capitalists, and angel investors.
Sherbrooke, Quebec-based BioIntelligence, a company that designs and commercializes intelligent monitoring instruments, want to extend its reach across multiple target sectors, and the support received in Boston will be key to those plans.
The company created an intelligent monitoring system that can perform both scientific and financial analysis of bioprocesses in real-time. It measures how well cell cultures and fermentations are progressing when used to develop biopharmaceutics and biocosmetics, for example. The monitoring system can also be used environmentally, to measure the efficacy of water treatment and food processing activities.
Efficiency in medical diagnosis is, of course, a very important part of health care and treatment. Toronto-based Pathcore says it can transform cancer diagnostics into an automated, predictable and cost-effective process with its algorithm-based image analysis tools.
Pathcore’s advanced digital pathology software is described by founder and CEO Dan Hosseinzadeh as a kind of “digital cockpit”.
Practitioners can climb in and analyze medical imaging and clinical data no matter where they – or the info – are located, using browser-based Web platforms and other connected tools to speed up improved diagnoses.
Such diagnoses may include treatment to reduce or eliminate symptoms or side effects such as pain, nausea or inflammation.
Montreal-based Hyasynth Bio, which produces cannabinoids for that very purpose, also uses analytical horsepower to develop its medicinal offerings. The company says its computational and analytical tools help identify natural molecules or special biological derivatives that are now part of more than half of the current drugs on the market and used in treating most diseases.
Sometimes, medical treatment is more physical and chemical, such as with broken bones and hard tissue repairs.
A Halifax-based company, Covina Biomedical, is developing a real first, using a glass-based bone cement for the repair of vertebral fractures. Using collaborative research approaches, and in partnership with end users, an injectable biomaterial for hard tissue repair has been developed by the company. It says its treatment approach can be much less invasive than previous methods, meaning patients get out and about much sooner.
Launched in 2013, this particular CTA international entrepreneurial development program connects Canadian companies to U.S. clients, strategic partners, investors and global Canadian executives to accelerate their business.