KAST Startup Basics

Entrepreneurs: Great Programs to Help You Achieve Your Business Goals in 2019

KAST Startup Basics

Startups and entrepreneurs are making big gains throughout the Kootenays. If you have a business or idea, here are some valuable programs to help you get the support you need to join them!

If you’ve got a new business or a great idea you’re working to bring to market from here in the Kootenays there is a lot of support out there to help you make it happen!

We believe that entrepreneurs create significant community and economic benefit, and programs such as these are fundamental to helping pave the road to growth and success.

Startup Basics offers targeted skills coaching and individualized action plans developed by experienced Executives-in-Residence and supported by industry experts.

If you are an early-stage entrepreneur and need to learn more about business and startup fundamentals you may be a great fit for the Startup Basics Program.

Entrepreneurship can seem a daunting road for those new to the journey. The Startup Basics Program helps minimize the fear by providing the tools to get started, get validated, and get to market.

This program brings skill progression and light-touch mentorship to help early-stage entrepreneurs structure and curate their ideas. All startups and growth stage companies start at the idea stage and nurturing in this phase of the process is an essential service in a productive ecosystem.

This program will serve you best if you’re already in the early stages of your business, armed with an idea or are seriously considering how you’re going to build your company.

BC Venture Acceleration Program helps entrepreneurs accelerate their growth.

The BC Venture Acceleration Program is a paid, structured venture growth program designed to guide, coach, and grow ambitious early-stage technology entrepreneurs, effectively growing their technology ventures.

The program helps entrepreneurs accelerate the process of defining a proven business model based on a set methodology and set of best practices for growing technology companies. It is delivered by a team of Entrepreneurs in Residence (EIRs) and supported by a province-wide network of partners and entrepreneurs.

The goal is to drive economic development and job creation in the province of BC by accelerating the commercialization of technology, resulting in the rapid growth of technology ventures.

Is your company already showing some revenue and investment potential? The RevUp program may be for you!

The RevUp program allows founders and CEOs, as well as their management teams, receive hands-on assistance from a team of experienced Entrepreneurs-in-Residence (EIRs), “been there, done it” technology and business professionals.

The ideal RevUp clients is a company that is 1. growing; and 2. creating a new technology product in sectors such as Clean technology, Agricultural technology, Life Sciences, Information & Communications (software) or Advanced Manufacturing.

KAST delivers the RevUp program with support from the National Research Council’s Industrial Research Assistance Program (NRC-IRAP) and Accelerate Okanagan. KAST is a member of the BC Acceleration Network (BCAN) of 12 technology accelerators, from which we can pull EIR expertise to meet your growing company’s specific needs.

Entrepreneurs in Residence EIRs are experienced and knowledgeable professionals. Businesses in the program are assigned a team of EIRs who become their primary advisor and coach. EIRs can source the specific talent sets your company needs via a combination of supplementary EIRs, subsidized consulting talent and subsidized targeted staffing.

#BCTECH Summit 2019

Attend #BCTECH Summit 2019 – With Support from CBT!

#BCTECH Summit 2019

#BCTECH Summit 2019 March 11th – 13th, 2019, Vancouver, B.C. Gather with the best in BC (and beyond!) tech & innovation!

If you haven’t yet been to the #BCTECHSummit, Western Canada’s annual innovation event, it’s a must if you or your business is involved in any manner of science, technology, and/or innovation. Take advantage of this great opportunity from Columbia Basin Trust, offering valuable financial support to attend #BCTECH Summit 2019.

CBT is sending 50 Basin-based tech companies to attend #BCTECHSummit, by offering up to $1,000 to offset expenses.

WHO CAN APPLY?

To be eligible to receive the Trust funds, you must:

  1. be a registered for-profit business;
  2. be a technology business or technology-enabled business;
  3. be based in Columbia Basin Trust’s region, see map here;
  4. have been in business at least one year; and
  5. have limited financial resources to attend the event.

ELIGIBLE EXPENSES

Selected businesses will be required to submit a statement of impact along with an expense form and accompanying documentation after the #BCTECHSummit to be reimbursed up to a maximum of $1,000 for the following eligible expenses:

  1. #BCTECHSummit registration fees;
  2. Accommodation;
  3. Airfare (receipt and boarding pass required);
  4. Car rental, taxi, or public transit; and
  5. Mileage (reimbursed at $0.54 per kilometre).

HOW TO APPLY?

The application for the #BCTECHSummit travel bursary is online.

  1. Click here to access the application.
  2. Once your application is complete click ‘Submit’.
  3. You will receive a confirmation email that your application has been received once you have clicked ‘Submit’.

DEADLINE TO APPLY

Midnight on February 4, 2019

Stay tuned for details regarding a fun #BCTECH Summit get-together – networking, mingling, connecting – for Koots attendees!

 

#BCTECH Summit Last chance to apply for the Investment Showcase

Last Chance to Apply for the Investment Showcase at #BCTECH Summit 2019

#BCTECH Summit Last chance to apply for the Investment Showcase

The #BCTECHSummit Investment Showcase connects B.C.’s most promising startups with leading investors from around the world.

Pitching Applications close today! (Dec 11 at 11:59pm PST).

Highlights from 2018:

  • 50 startups pitched in diverse sectors like HealthTech, CleanTech, IoT, AR/VR, and Gaming.
  • 150+ global and local investors attended, representing more than $200 billion.
  • 77% of those investors booked follow-up meetings with pitching companies.
Apply today if you are one of B.C.’s top growth-oriented startups seeking seed or series A funding.

Wanted for 2019: Leading Investors and Growth-Oriented Startups

  • Investors: Meet innovative technology companies with a global market, strong traction and impressive teams—chosen by a selection committee made up of VCs, angel investors and industry experts.
  • Startups: If you are one of B.C.’s top growth-oriented startups seeking Seed or Series A funding, then apply today to participate in either the Roundtable Series or Funding Pitches.

Why and How to Participate: Get Funding, Expertise and Exposure

  • Seed Funding Roundtable Series: Startups seeking seed capital of under $3 million are invited to participate in the Seed Funding Roundtable Series. The Series will give founders direct access to investors, where they will have the opportunity to gain critical feedback and expertise, and of course, pitch their product.
  • Series A Funding Pitches: Startups seeking capital of $3 million or more are invited to participate in the Series A Funding Pitches, 5-minute investment pitches, which are followed by a 5-minute Q&A session and extended networking.
  • Leverage Media Attention: The #BCTECHSummit attracts local, national and international media. In 2018, 125 accredited media showed up to break news and tell the stories of the technologies and industries of the future. This is your opportunity to leverage the attention that the #BCTECHSummit commands and position your company for growth.
West Kootenay Cities Win Grant to Develop Smart Transportation

West Kootenay Cities Win Grant to Develop Smart Transportation

West Kootenay Cities Win Grant to Develop Smart Transportation

Castlegar, Nelson, Trail and Rossland have been awarded $40,000 for Smart Cities project

A joint development bid between the cities of Castlegar, Nelson, Rossland and Trail has been awarded $40,000 by the provincial government.

The grant from the Smart Communities pilot program will help fund the development of a transportation app from Martech Smart Solutions that will show users real-time travel data, including road safety issues, closures, wait times and natural disasters, as well as ride-share options for the West Kootenay.

The Smart Kootenays proposal also calls for the opening of virtual communication hubs at libraries and airports.

“Smart technology can place useful information at people’s fingertips to make our neighbourhoods safer and our lives more efficient,” said Bruce Ralston, B.C. Minister of Jobs, Trade and Technology.

“Small communities should not be left apart from innovation, and our government is taking action to ensure smart solutions are developed around the province to help make life better for everyone.”

The joint federal-provincial project required in-kind or in-cash funding from local governments or regional trusts of up to 20 per cent of the individual grant total as part of the application process.

“Our rural region will work together to measurably improve travel decision-making, road safety, and digital access by decreasing accidents, reducing transportation-related greenhouse gas emissions, and building the capacity of all residents to adopt digital technologies,” said the Smart Kootenays grant application.

Other grants were awarded to the District of Logan Lake ($38,650), Port Alberni ($28,800), and Prince Rupert ($22,120).

Grant applications were required to meet the definition of a smart community, address a local need, include consultation with residents and be completed within one year.

Innovate BC Ignite Program

Innovate BC Ignite Program: Ignite Round 7

Innovate BC Ignite Program

Innovation doesn’t happen in a vacuum. It happens with ideas, insights, time — and money.

Innovate BC’s Ignite Program provides up to $300,000 to fund innovation projects in the areas of natural resources, applied science and/or engineering.

Teams made up of industry and academia come together to solve real-life business problems in a 3-year time frame. From helping get clean drinking water into third world countries to diagnosing eye diseases faster than ever before, Ignite is bringing technology to life in BC.

Program Eligibility

Focus area: Proposals must involve the areas of natural resources, applied science and/or engineering, and must outline the business problem you and your team is attacking.

Teams: Applicants must be a BC-based team comprised of two or more companies, organizations and academic researchers. All teams must include an academic member and an industry partner.

Matching funds: Projects must secure matching funds from industry or government sources at a ratio of 2:1 matching dollars to Ignite dollars.

Timing: Projects must plan to move a proposed innovation to market within a 3-year timeframe.

Key dates – Ignite Program Round 7:

  • Deadline to submit Letter of Intent (LOI) to Innovate BC: January 28, 2019
  • Deadline for invited applicants to submit a full proposal: April 8, 2019
  • Anticipated notice of decision: Late June 2019
  • Anticipated start of funding: July 2019

Your Application

Steps to apply:

  1. Read the Program Guidelines.
  2. Download an Application Form.
  3. Contact Innovate BC to discuss your project and apply via programs@innovatebc.ca

View past winning Ignite projects here.

 

Inspirational Latin Award i4C

i4C Innovation Centre in Trail, BC Nominated for Inspirational Latin Award

Inspirational Latin Award i4C

i4C Innovation Centre has been nominated for the 2018 Inspirational Latin Awards in the Innovation and Sustainability Category.

An initiative conceived two years ago to promote rural economic diversification in collaboration with existing traditional industry, i4C Innovation Centre is one of the fastest growing companies in the area and has been nominated for an Inspirational Latin Award in the category of Innovation and Sustainability.

Incorporated in April of 2017, i4C Innovation opened their doors in late May 24 that same year. Even before i4C had officially launched, it had already met major milestones, including securing the 46,000 sq ft state-of-the-art building across the Trail airport through an alliance with the Columbia Basin Trust; was awarded a $1M fund in a joint collaboration with the regional economic development office, Lower Columbia Initiatives Corp.; and established the first links to Latin America.

The initial goals for the first two years were easily surpassed within just the first year in operation. Instead of five full-time jobs, eleven were created; 17 of the 20 indirect employment opportunities were fulfilled; and, rather than relocating three growth stage companies, nine relocated from Canada and the United States as well as Brazil, Colombia, and Mexico. Even more impressive: blowing away the projected $1M VC fund in favour of $20M secured through an Alberta corporation to support i4C’s hub members.

ILA Nominee Pilar PortelaIn Latin America, i4C continues to evolve with representatives in Brazil, Chile, Colombia, Costa Rica and Mexico. Currently, it is negotiating a deal to open a large facility in Paraguay.

i4C Innovation Centre is one of the very few female-led and solely owned technology companies in Canada. Pilar Portela, an immigrant to Canada, has forged her way over the past 30 years proving that through dedication and collaboration, with the help of a clear business model, a sustainable and innovative organization can be achieved, even in a rural area such as Trail.

i4C Innovation proudly claims 75% of its employee roster as visible minorities, primarily Latin Americans, with over 5 languages spoken, including Spanish and Portuguese. 38% of the i4C employees are female, 13% have visible disabilities, 38% are over 50 years old and over 80% live rurally.

i4C Innovation is focused on growth and sustainability. Their technological advances in the Industry 4.0 era include the development of environmental, water and wastewater sensors, naturally air-cooled and controlled environments for their servers, and the development of analytics platforms aimed at solutions for complex industrial and municipal problems.

All these careful orchestrations allowed i4C to sell over $1.5M in the first year, allowing for a continued plan for additional growth in the year to follow as well as those to come.

Inspirational Latin Awards is a program of Latincouver. The Inspirational Latin Awards recognizes the outstanding achievements of individuals from the Latin American community in British Columbia.