Big Blue + Big Data = Big Deal

IBM’s decision to establish an analytics centre in Halifax is a huge boost for the digital industry across the Atlantic region, because it will expand capacity, improve technical education and mesh with plans afoot in New Brunswick.

Premier Darrell Dexter announced Thursday the company that pioneered the personal computer would set up its only Canadian Global Delivery Centre in Halifax. The headlines stress around the creation of 500 jobs over eight years in exchange for a payroll rebate of as much as $12.2 million. The addition of 500 tech jobs will in time boost the size of the IT

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The White Cross, by H.P. MacKeen

My grandfather, artillery officer H.P. MacKeen, shown on the left, wrote this poem in Ypres in September 1917, two months before the Battle of Passchendaele.

The White Cross

It isn’t a medal or order,

It carries no ribbon or braid
But a token still
As on Calvary Hill
Of the greater sacrifice made.

It stands as a lonely sentinel
O’er the place where the hero sleeps
‘Neath a lowly
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Techlink Eyes 15 States, Greece in ‘13

Hoping to win contracts in 15 U.S. states as well as Greece and launch an Internet product in the next year, Sydney-based gaming machine maker Techlink  Entertainment is on a quest to raise $30 million in venture capital financing by the end of March.

CEO John Xidos said in an interview this week the company is now courting U.S. venture capital firms and expects little difficulty in raising the money, given Techlink’s prospects.

“We’re going to raise more with this new internet project – we’re going to raise about $30 million,” he said.

If the company reaches its target, it will be

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Interview Rocket Launches InterviewMe!

Interview Rocket, a Halifax startup that offers interview technology for recruiters and job-seekers, has launched a new free feature for its website to help people seeking jobs arrange interviews with prospective employers.

The company issued a press release today saying it has launched InterviewMe!, which allows the job seeker to ask recruiters for an interview rather than waiting for the company to call.

The company headed by CEO Craig Brown launched in February when its signature website, went live. Brown had done his homework before that, interviewing more

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Innovacorp Joins LightSail’s D Round

Joining the likes of Bill Gates and Peter Thiel, Innovacorp has invested in a California energy storage company that, among other projects, is building a storage facility near New Glasgow, N.S.

Berkeley-based LightSail Energy said in a  press release Monday night it had raised $37.3 million in its fourth round of venture capital fundraising. The group of investors includes Microsoft founder Gates, PayPal co-founder Thiel and the Nova Scotia innovation agency Innovacorp.

The statement did not reveal the valuation of the investment nor say how much Innovacorp was investing. Innovacorp

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Nicoll Pushes Plan for Region ETC

Halifax accountant James D. Nicoll is gathering support for a regional equity tax credit that doesn’t involve legislation from the four Atlantic Provinces.

Instead, he is asking the federal government to handle it.

“What we’re trying to do is create a unified incentive to get money into the innovative companies that are the growth engine of the region,” said Nicoll, the Vice-President Deals at PricewaterhouseCoopers in Halifax.

Here’s the problem: Each province now grants equity tax credits, or ETCs, usually worth 35 percent to individuals if they invest in private companies within

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Innovacorp Begins Hunt for New CEO

The hunt has officially begun for Innovacorp’s CEO.

The Nova Scotia innovation agency announced Friday that the provincial government has assigned Wilson Executive Search to find the successor to Clifford Gross, who left the position in February after holding it for about one year.

The new boss at 1801 Hollis Street will have considerable success to build on and will also inherit an agency that is at a bit of a crossroads. The success comes first from a successful exit, having earned an estimated 10 times its investment in a year when GoInstant of Halifax sold out to And

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Livelenz, Acadia Strike Partnership

As it seeks to raise $10 million in equity funding, Bedford, N.S.-based Livelenz Inc., has been selected to participate in two high-profile American programs and agreed to develop machine learning technology with Acadia University.

Livelenz, which develops real-time data analytics software for the quick service restaurant (QSR) and retail industry, issued a statement Friday saying that it is partnering with Acadia computer science experts explore using machine learning techniques, and predictive modeling, to increase the accuracy of restaurant sales forecasting.

Company President Greg

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AIW: Reflections on Arkansas

One of the interesting aspects of Invest Atlantic and MentorCamp in September was the prominent role played by tech experts from Arkansas of all places.

There’s no obvious link between our home in the North Atlantic and the landlocked southern state that produced Bill Clinton, Sam Walton and Levon Helm. But one similarity is the state is developing innovative businesses, and two of its representatives were delighted to come to Halifax to share ideas and experiences.

April Seggebruch, VP Finance & Operations of Merchant View LLC, of Fayetteville, and Jeff Amerine, Technology Licensing

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GMS Looking to U.S. Expansion

GMS Surface Tech, which produces green and odour-free surface cleaners, has received commitments of about $600,000 in a $700,000 second round of funding that it hopes will fund expansion in the U.S.


The company, which was started by chemistry professors at St. Francis Xavier University in Antigonish, N.S., is raising $400,000 in equity investment, mostly from outside the region, said Chief Marketing Officer Joe Menchefski in an interview. The company has secured $140,000 in support from NRC-IRAP and is hoping to finalize the remainder of the raise with the Atlantic Canada

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