HootSuite Article in USA Today

I was really lucky recently to interview Ryan Holmes, the CEO of HootSuite, for an article in USA Today. The story ran late last week.

The Vancouver social media management company this summer raised $165 million in VC funding, the largest raise ever in Canada. The article looks at how the four-year-old company now plans to continue its spectacular growth.

What I found interesting about HootSuite is that it is developing the discipline needed to become a publicly traded company. It reports quarterly financial statements. All its statements have the rigors of a public company’s releases.

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Profile: Nicole LeBlanc’s Multi-Tasking

While Nicole LeBlanc’s main job is finance director at the New Brunswick Innovation Foundation, the accountant does not limit herself to counting beans.

LeBlanc’s other duties range from providing financial and business advice to the region’s startups to volunteering on a pilot program that is introducing coding to young children.

Countries such as China and Estonia are making it a priority

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FoodTender Expanding After Launch36

For the past few years, Andre Pellerin and Andre LeBlanc have watched their friends in the restaurant industry get squeezed by rising food costs. This year, they started a business to help out restaurant owners.

The two Moncton food services execs have started FoodTender Solutions, an online marketplace on which restaurateurs can buy food supplies. The two Andres launched the company in August in New Brunswick and P.E.I. and have about 75 customers, comprising restaurants and suppliers.

“Thirty-five or 40 cents out of every dollar that restaurants spend is on food costs, and those costs

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Nautel To Buy Sonar Company C-Tech

Nautel Ltd., the Hackett’s Cove, N.S., maker of radio and television transmitters, agreed Wednesday to buy the business and assets of Marport C-tech Ltd., a Cornwall, Ont.-based maker of engineered sonar solutions.

The buyer said in a statement that the terms of the deal, which is subject to court approval, would not be released.

Opened in 1969 as a maker of radio transmitters, Nautel has been on a roll lately. The company has branched into television transmitters, and won its first orders in September. It also won a transformative contract for digital AM radio transmitters with All

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Accelerator To Help Social Entrepreneurs

In this time of rising social concerns, social entrepreneurs – those who want to found a business that meets a social, economic or environmental need and turns a profit – are growing in number. To help them, New Brunswick’s Pond-Deshpande Centre (PDC) has launched a social enterprise accelerator program called B 4 Change.

Starting today, B 4 Change is taking eight companies – six from New Brunswick and two from Nova Scotia – and giving them the kind of training and mentoring usually available to companies that focus primarily on profitability.

“We’re trying to foster the development of

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Helping Men Find Fashion Online

To put it mildly, Atlantic Canada has never been known as a hotbed of men’s fashion. But that’s not stopping Thomas Rankin and Tomek Niewiarowski from developing a tech company that will help men to effortlessly improve their wardrobe.

The two Halifax entrepreneurs will soon launch private trials of Dash Hudson, an online marketplace in which men can not only buy clothes but also consult with stylists on the best possible look.

Sitting in a coffee shop on Friday, they burst out laughing when it was mentioned that they’ve based their business in a sartorial no man’s land.

“I grew up on

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Welcoming in New Entrepreneurs

As the startups formed in the past few years begin to mature, it’s reassuring to know there are still events, competitions and other institutions that are bringing new companies into existence.

The Launch36 DemoDay in Saint John last week demonstrated clearly that the bar is rising for Atlantic Canadian startups. What was impressive two years ago is now commonplace, and that means it’s sometimes difficult for newer or weaker participants to get notice.

Fortunately, events like Pitch101 and Startup Weekend are encouraging new entrepreneurs to step forward, pitch an idea and receive

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Profile: Mark Kennedy and Celtx

It seemed counterintuitive to start his own Internet venture when the dotcom business he’d been working for collapsed in the crash of 2000, but Mark Kennedy has always followed his passions.

The St. John’s entrepreneur had already co-founded a legal practice, worked as a high school chemistry teacher and laboured in the oil field service industry when he decided his future lay with the

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Sequence to Analyze Genetic Data

Tyler Wish and Chris Gardner, two members of the bustling St. John’s startup community, are teaming up to form Sequence Bioinformatics, a new company dedicated to analyzing genetic data for the prevention of diseases.

The pair of entrepreneurs said in an interview in St. John’s recently that the company is in the discovery phase. But they have already made considerable headway, licensing a genetic dataset and making contact with an analytics partner.

“Sequence is an early-stage medical technology company that is aiming to develop tests that help with the detection, prevention and

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Launch36 To Expand to Newfoundland

Launch36, the regional tech accelerator, plans to branch out to Newfoundland and Labrador in 2014 as part of its goal to build at least one billion-dollar ICT company in Atlantic Canada.

The accelerator operated by PropelICT graduated its third cohort Tuesday night at the New Brunswick Innov8 awards in Saint John. Launch36 has graduated companies from the three Maritime provinces and wants to nurture Newfoundland companies so it will become a truly regional enterprise. Three members of Startup St. John's attended the Launch36 DemoDay and other events in Saint John this week.

“What we’ve

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