Zaptap To Close Funding in Days

Fredericton-based Zaptap is on the threshold of closing a round of funding as it prepares for the North American launch of its system by a handful of luxury product makers this autumn.

Headed by founder and CEO Yan Simard, Zaptap’s software allows consumers to ``zap’’ a product label in a store with their smartphones, and immediately receive information on the product such as technical specifications, warranty information, etc. The system allows a retailer or maker of a consumer product to design and produce a label, control the information it delivers to consumers, and track the

Continue Reading

The Critical Importance of Exits

My latest column for Progress Magazine looks into the myths and realities of exits, arguing that they are good for the economy and society. Some economic development experts tend to wonder why government should back startups when the likely outcome is they sell out and the jobs vanish. This article points out correctly that often the companies and the employees remain in the area after an exit. More important, the investment capital base expends and other people are encouraged to start knowledge-based businesses.

I'd encourage everyone to jump over to Progress and give it a read, as this

Continue Reading

NB Accelerators Heading to Boston

The tech community in New Brunswick has organized a bus tour of the tech world in the Boston area from May 22 to 24 with the aim of exposing entrepreneurs to people, processes and capital in the second-largest tech centre in the U.S.

The tour is sponsored by the Moncton Cybersocial Committee, Propel ICT, the McKenzie Accelerator at McKenzie College and Speilo, the Moncton-based maker of gaming cabinets, equipment and software.

“The purpose of the trip is to help develop relationships and linkages with other companies and suppliers for export and development, and to inspire and motivate

Continue Reading

Adfinitum to Attend NY Accelerator

Adfinitum, the St. John’s-based advertising data bank, has learned that it is one of six companies invited to participate in the Canadian Technology Accelerator, or CTA, program in New York this summer.

The CTA is a three-month program organized by the Canadian Consulate in New York that will help six Canadian tech startups learn from the digital industries that have clustered in the largest U.S. city. The program offers communal office space for all the qualifying entrepreneurs, introductions to potential mentors and investors,  and support from the Trade Commissioner Service.

Continue Reading

OneLobby Gearing Up for NY Pitch

Two weeks from today, Jordan Smith will be in New York to present his startup OneLobby at the Plannertech conference, a leading event for conference organizers.

OneLobby is a young tech company based in Halifax that provides a social platform for attendees of large conferences, helping them to make meaningful connections with other attendees and presenters before, during and after the conference.

Having launched the company last year, Smith’s social media platform has already been used by six different events, and the feedback from the conference and participants has been great, he

Continue Reading

Multiple Winners in Cleantech Open

Mather Carscallen’s SABRTech Inc. won gold in Innovacorp’s CleanTech Open last week, but I’d like to unofficially award silver and bronze medals to the Atlantic provinces and Innovacorp.

The entire region (I was tempted to say Nova Scotia but prefer to take a regional view) is a winner because this international competition has developed stronger links with scientists, environmentalists, and, most importantly, sources of finance around the world. And it wouldn’t have happened if Innovacorp didn’t have imagination and courage.

A few years ago, the Nova Scotia government decided that

Continue Reading

3 Regional Startups Make Top 25

Three Maritime companies – GoInstant, TitanFile and VidCruiter -- that have yet to see their second birthday have been named to Branham Group Inc.’s list of Top 25 Canadian Up and Coming ICT Companies.

Ottawa-based Branham is a strategic consulting firm focused on technology, and it ranks hundreds of Canadian ICT companies, including 25 young companies that are ascending.

Listing its top newcomers alphabetically, it highlighted: GoInstant, the Halifax startup that allows users on different computers to work on one-another’s screens; TitanFile, the Dartmouth-based collaboration and

Continue Reading

Crowdfunding for the Arts

When country rock band The Divorcees launched their latest album Four Chapters at the East Coast Music Awards in their home town of Moncton this month, one partner they could have thanked was the crowdfunding site Kickstarter

 The band, which had previously won ECMAs, used the site to raise about $9,500, which they needed to complete the album.  After they finished touring last summer, they realized they hadn’t quite made enough money for their next project and then they heard about the crowdfunding site. It ended up helping them. 

“We’re really proud of the album and we were happy to

Continue Reading

Carscallen Wins Cleantech Open

Innovacorp has scoured the globe for the best cleantech startup anywhere and found it was located in its own back yard -- in a Dalhousie University lab.

Halifax-based SABRTech Inc. has won the $300,000 first prize in Cleantech Open, a competition open to green technology companies from around the world as long as they agree to establish their business in Nova Scotia.

SABRTech, formerly known as Marine Arctic and Antarctic Technologies, is developing a system to reduce the cost of developing biofuel from algae. Headed by Dalhousie PhD candidate Mather Carscallen, the company is

Continue Reading

New Direction for Eastern Maine

A few weeks ago, I found myself in a coastal area rich in universities and colleges, bursting with ambition, and actively trying to draw back residents who had moved away and improve an income level well below the national average.

Sound familiar? No, I wasn’t in Atlantic Canada but rather in an office in downtown Bangor, Maine, listening to the principals of Mobilize Eastern Maine outline their impressive plans to revitalize their region’s economy.

Maine has a bipolar economy. Most of its residents live in the affluent southern area, and census figures show that the disparity between

Continue Reading