eleven-x Leads the Way in Canadian Smart City Connectivity

The last few months have been busy for Accelerator Centre client, eleven -x. The network operator, who launched Canada’s first carrier-grade low power wide area network built for IoT, has started a pilot project with the Region of Waterloo which is a North American first, expanded their network across Canada, and increased their role in the LoRa Alliance™.

Founded in 2014, the eleven-x network, built on  LoRaWAN™ open standard technology, offers private businesses, manufacturers, and public institutions the ability to connect to “things” remotely and collect data from them via inexpensive, low power devices.

In 2015, they joined the Accelerator Centre in order to leverage the mentoring and resources available to startups to help their business grow. “We came to the Accelerator Centre for the mentorship opportunities. We had a lot of great ideas in the beginning, but there wasn’t necessarily a market fit. The mentors helped us through that,” explains CEO and Co-founder Ryan Hickey.

New IoT Projects

A recent development with the Region of Waterloo will result in Canada’s first Smart City Water Monitoring project utilizing the LoRaWAN network. Currently, the Region collects data on its water supply through a manual series of data collections from over 700 wells. The delays in data collection limits the ability for the Region to make decisions on it’s important water supply. The implementation of low-cost monitoring devices connected to the eleven-x network allows for real-time data and automated event-driven alerts that have the potential to save time and money and provide better quality services to residents.

Expanded Network

As a response to the increasing demand for Smart City programs nationwide, eleven-x announced this week the expansion of their network to 22 markets covering 60% of Canada’s population. “Our coast-to-coast network expansion supports Smart City programs, enabling application and low-cost device connectivity to take IoT to another level and reinforces our leadership position. The list projects we are involved in continues to grow alongside the numerous organizations across Canada looking to reduce costs, increase productivity and enhance their service offerings.” says Chairman and Co-Founder Dan Mathers.

Leading the Way 

As leaders in the Canadian IoT space, eleven-x has also expanded their role within the LoRa Alliance, a global association of some of the world’s top companies which provides open standard technology for secure, low-cost, low power IoT connectivity,. The transition to the Contributor Member level will allow the Alliance to leverage eleven-x’s expertise to further innovation in the global IoT space.

The worldwide IoT market is expected to continue growing rapidly and is estimated to be valued at more than $10B by 2023. As the market expands, eleven-x will continue to innovate and lead the way in Canadian IoT connectivity solutions.

Media Release: The Accelerator Centre Announces Cohort 6 of their AC JumpStart Program

June 15, 2017

Waterloo Ontario – The Accelerator Centre is pleased to announce Cohort 6 of the AC JumpStart program. The program provides each recipient $30,000 in seed funding and $10,000 of mentorship.

56 Studios

Brothers DePaul

Eagle Vision Systems Inc.

EMAGIN Clean Technologies Inc.

Finservices Inc

Healthy Pets

Jobbee Technologies Corp

Load Army

NanoCnet

Oko Social

Quali Robotics

RascalTech

Serenity Bioworks Inc.

Site Safety Solutions Inc. REBAR Safety

Teal Software

The Hockey Pro

Traffic Is Currency

Vena Medical

Visa Run Inc. (Trade Name: Sherpa)

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About AC JumpStart

AC JumpStart is funded by FedDev Ontario and delivered in partnership with Conestoga College, Wilfrid Laurier University and the University of Waterloo.

The AC JumpStart program began in January 2015, with three cohorts of companies participating in the program in 2015, and two cohorts annually in subsequent years. Each cohort receives funding and mentorship over a 12-month period. Over the four year term, the program will support 180 companies. 

About the Accelerator Centre

Our world-renowned, four phase accelerator program was developed based on our proven methods and best practices from accelerators and incubators around the world. The program, combined with our proven mentorship model, gives you the resources and guidance you need to grow all areas of your business, get your product to market faster, increase sales, and scale.

For more information visit www.acceleratorcentre.com. 

About FedDev Ontario

FedDev Ontario delivers programs and services to help create, retain and grow businesses, cultivate partnerships and build strong communities. The Agency’s programming is designed to support a strong southern Ontario economy and position the region to compete globally.

For more information visit www.FedDevOntario.gc.ca.

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For more information contact:
Tabatha Laverty
Community Manager
tlaverty@acceleratorcentre.com

Are you the right person to lead your startup?

In our last post, Common Attributes of Successful Startup Founders, we discussed the importance of curiosity, courage, patience, and resilience for startup founders. But we also believe that being a CEO of a startup requires a little something extra.

This is hard for a lot of entrepreneurs to accept, but the reality is, not every startup founder makes a good CEO – in fact, many don’t.

In the early days, founders manage all aspects of the business: product development, marketing, HR, finance, you name it! We call this type of CEO the Chief Everything Officer. But at some point the CEO must make the transition to a true Chief Executive Officer and the skills that helped you build your business might not be the right skills to help scale your business to global success.

Accelerator Centre mentor, Jackie Lauer builds conversations about leadership into her coaching with Accelerator Program clients early on. “Startup founders should think about their leadership team the same way they think about developing their product – there should be a strategy and a plan,” she explains. “Founders can hold leadership positions within an organization without being the CEO. A founder will always be a founder but what you need in a CEO might change overtime.”

Vidyard CEO, Michael Litt, recalls his founding team’s transition to an executive team.

“In our case, there were three people, so there was no CEO. There’s people who write code, and there are people who do everything else. As you grow, your needs for individuals in hyper-focused roles grow in certain areas, like sales, marketing, operations, and finance.

As we continued to bring people into our business, my role modified to manage the output to those people so that I could truly become a CEO. That allows you to become the chief our your executives, represent their interests to the board, and represent the boards interests back to them. When I think of a “true CEO”, I think of the importance on focusing in innovation, culture, does our business have enough money in our bank account to sustain itself.”

So what qualities do you actually need to be a true CEO?

Along with the attributes that make a good entrepreneur in general (remember our last post!), a good CEO is a systems thinker, interested in looking at the business as a whole. They are able to separate themselves from the love affair with the product and focus on growth, something technical founders usually find quite challenging.

Also, the CEO’s leadership is essential in developing your company’s culture. The CEO should embody the vision and values of the organization and has to be interested in leading people towards that vision.  

What to do if you decide you are not the choice

First, congrats! It takes a true leader to know when to play their strengths and when to look for support. Take some time to mentally process your decision and communicate it to your team.

Secondly, remember that organizational leadership should be a strategy. If you don’t have the right skills, experience, or network to be the CEO, make a list of the skills, experience and network you DO need.  

Finally, find a mentor or recruiting pro to help you find the right person. Take your time and don’t let outside factors influence your choice. Hiring a CEO is a challenge and you want to make sure you get it right!

About the Authors

Clinton Ball is the Director of Client Programs and Initiatives at the Accelerator Centre in Waterloo, Ontario.  As the co-founder of a small software company, Clinton can relate to those building out a technology company and is passionate about helping other entrepreneurs build and scale their companies. When he’s not designing or delivering Accelerator Centre Programming you can find Clinton reading up on the latest marketing, technology and entrepreneurship resources, exploring a new trail or coffee spot, or trying to get better at his swing on the golf course.

Tabatha Laverty is the Marketing and Community Manager at the Accelerator Centre. As a passionate storyteller and digital marketer, she has worked with entrepreneurs, not-for-profits, and public service agencies for 5 years – helping them develop content, share their stories, and build their brands. When she isn’t writing or meeting new entrepreneurs, you can find her spending time with her husband and 2 young children.

eleven-x and Region of Waterloo Partner for Canada’s First Smart City Water Monitoring Project Utilizing LoRaWAN™ Network

WATERLOO, ON – CANADA | May 31, 2017 – eleven-x™, operator of Canada’s first and only coast-to-coast LoRaWAN™ Low Power Wide Area Network, is pleased to announce a new Smart City development project with the Region of Waterloo.
The first IoT application of its kind in Canada, the Region of Waterloo and eleven-x are teaming up to test the real-time automated data collection from the Region’s water supply production and monitoring wells. eleven-x’s next generation network enables connectivity with low cost devices that could provide the Region with real-time communication of the status of key parameters for managing the Region’s primary water supply sources.

About 75% of the water supply for the Region is derived from groundwater through a system of 132 large production wells extracting water from local sand, gravel and rock aquifers. The Region automatically captures data from a network of 585 monitoring wells to assess any impacts and provide information to manage its water supply sources. However, the data is only collected manually several times over the course of a year which results in delays in getting status information for each of the supply wells. These delays restrict the decision-making ability of the Region in terms of managing its water supply sources.

eleven-x is integrating their next generation network to connect with data logging devices to enable automated measuring and tracking of well water levels and temperature from select production and monitoring wells. Water data will be collected and communicated automatically on an hourly basis. Additionally, a newly added capability of event-driven real-time alerts based on pre-determined parameters, such as significant level fluctuations, will also be tested.

According to Eric Hodgins, Manager, Hydrogeology and Source Water at Region of Waterloo, “The value we gain in having well water data at our finger tips is tremendous for us in terms of decision-making. The technology may allow us to connect our wells directly with our water operations management system and give us the ability to advance the way we monitor and manage this crucial resource”.

“Real-time updates on our wells will give us a better understanding of what is happening with our water supply sources and could really improve this key service we provide to the residents of our Region. The opportunity to reduce our costs is a real bonus,” said Nancy Kodousek, Director, Water Services at Region of Waterloo.

Dan Mathers, Chairman and Co-Founder of eleven-x, said “IoT applications have the potential to help organizations with getting accurate and timely data while greatly improving the costs associated with capturing that data. For the Region of Waterloo, the connectivity our network enables for real-time well water data collection could have an immensely positive impact for them.”

Launched late last year, eleven-x provides a LoRaWAN™ based carrier grade network that enables low cost connectivity and data communications for IoT applications. In addition to the deployment with the Region of Waterloo, the company currently also has other pilots underway enables Smart City initiatives such as Smart Parking and Smart Street Lighting, as well as Industrial and Enterprise IoT applications such as Smart Metering, Asset Monitoring, Smart Buildings and Smart Agriculture.

About The Region of Waterloo
The Region of Waterloo provides more than 60 per cent of municipal services to a growing population of 570,000 people. We are committed to creating an inclusive, thriving and sustainable community through innovative leadership and a range of services such as public health, social services, planning, heritage, water supply, regional roads, waste management, ambulance service, rural libraries, public transit, community housing, emergency planning, Provincial Offences Courts and airport services.

About eleven-x
eleven-x is a network operator enabling the Internet of Things. Our purpose-built low power wide area network is the first of its kind in Canada, providing connectivity for a wide variety of sensors and applications. Our next generation network enables customers in the Private and Public sectors to efficiently and cost effectively manage assets, create and maintain Smart Cities, and realize environmental sustainability. Visit eleven-x.com for more information.

Purpose vs. Passion: Building a Startup Brand

Passion: The powerful emotion that drives you to work for your own success.

Purpose: The why behind what you do. The impact you make on your customers, your community, the world.  

After years of working with startup founders, we’ve seen countless innovative products and services and a lot of passionate people along the way. But with so many passionate entrepreneurs, how do we select the best-of-the-best, those most likely to succeed in the AC’s Accelerator Program?

When we evaluate applications into the program, we weight founder attributes like curiosity, a willingness to continually learn, and having a clear purpose as primary criteria for admittance, and for good reason.

Passion alone is not enough. In the recipe for success, passion and purpose are needed in equal measure. If you are in it for the long haul, and you should be, passion and purpose feed into one another. Before you have an established brand, your purpose – the real problem you solve – is the first thing that helps you get customers. Your passion is what sells your customers on your ability to deliver on that purpose.

An excellent example balancing purpose and passion when building a startup is Waterloo tech company, Vidyard. We interviewed CEO, Michael Litt, to learn more about how they leveraged their purpose and passion to build the Vidyard brand.

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Clinton Ball: The first question is Purpose vs. passion, what have you learned as it relates to running your business today?

Michael Litt: I would say that…Purpose and passion should be aligned. When we started Vidyard, we identified our purpose as helping businesses put their videos online. Our purpose was plain and simple. We built a long-term vision around what that could become.

My passion was always for our customers. It was the only thing I could be passionate about, because when we built Vidyard, it was just a couple co-founders and I writing code – trying to throw ideas around and see what sticks.

The passion for the product came later once we saw it in our customer’s hands, providing them with value, and changing their careers. This inevitability lead to the development of our stakeholder list, which is what I’m passionate about. That list includes our customers, Vidyardians (our staff), shareholders, and our community. The stakeholders get me out of bed every morning.

Clinton Ball: What about storytelling. What is the purpose of telling a good story and around branding?

Michael Litt: Storytelling is absolutely essential. When you start your business, you have no customers and therefore no customer stories. The only reason someone would buy something from you is because you have purpose and you’re passionate about it. You need to have a story about why you have that purpose, and why you have passion to draw your buyers in.

At scale I don’t think that changes, people don’t buy what you do, they buy why you do it, and that’s why both purpose and passion are both so important.

Our story was a video content production company. We made videos for businesses that didn’t know how to put them online. We built software to help them do that and then built software helped us analyze it. All of a sudden our customers realized there was huge value here, and that’s kind of when the journey started to scale. Our purpose inevitably drove our passion, and that story is what really aligned us with the first few customers.

Clinton Ball: For startups that are just starting out, what do you think is the best approach to marketing and getting that first customer? How do you sell when you don’t have a brand yet?

Michael Litt: When you’re getting started, you have to put yourself out there in front of people. It’s the only way to sell when you don’t have a brand and no one is visiting your website. When we got started, we built a crawler to scan the DMOZ for every business that had a video on their home page. That list extracted 80,000 companies. I’d spend the first few hours of every day sorting through that list, and prioritizing 100 companies that I would contact the next day. The next day, I’d contact those 100, and prioritize my list of 100 for the next day again. This happened over months.

When you have no brand, and no customers, the only way to communicate is to sell your vision, your purpose, and your passion by putting yourself out there in front of people. I’ve seen so many companies that build the digital site of their business, but they miss out on the sense of urgency to put themselves in front of the customers. Maybe they don’t have the experience, or they’re introverted so it’s scary – but it’s ultimately why the never moved into the next phase of their business.

Clinton Ball: Lean startup methodology vs. a design centric approach. In your opinion, do you think it’s a mix of both of those things, or do you prefer one over the other?

Michael Litt: Well Steve Jobs and Elon Musk both got their career started doing exactly what I just described. By the time you have the personal brand, by the time you’re Apple, by the time you’re Tesla, it’s a completely different story of design first and they will come. So we’re talking about 2 very different ecosystems. Any company story, like Nike, McDonald’s, Oakley, always has that essential starting point of like just grinding it out and putting stuff in front of people.

Clinton Ball: Speaking about first clients, how did you land them? Was it a product of many meetings, how long did it take to find someone that was willing to take the risk with Vidyard and believed in you and your vision?

Michael Litt: In the early stages of our business, we were making videos for companies, so we had a client list of those who trusted us and had bought from us. We built software to solve their problems. We were easily able to communicate what we were doing because that line of communication was already open. We were able to implement out Vidyard software in their business, and that was essential because it was a service-based sale. We were then able to talk to the customer and develop a feedback loop so that we could iterate our product accordingly.

Clinton Ball: Let’s talk about leveraging that feedback. How powerful do you think it is to leverage testimonials, and a positive customer experience in order to generate new sales?

Michael Litt: When you start your entrepreneurial journey, FOMO (fear of missing out) is a major driver for people. If you’re able to develop a relationship with someone who will be a reference for you, they’ll be able to communicate your passion and purpose about how you’ve changed the way they do business. Others will hear that, lean in, and start buying your product too. If you have someone who becomes that hook and is willing to make that commitment to you, it’s so important to hear their stories and keep the relationship strong so that you can leverage it for future buyers.

Want more pro advice from Michael? Check out part 2 of our interview with Michael “ Why Michael Litt says Vidyard will Always be a Startup.

Emmetros Launches MemorySparx One – Their First in a Suite of Products for People Who Live with Dementia

For Mary Pat Hinton, helping people who live with dementia and their care-partners have a better quality of life is personal.

Seeing her grandmother, Jean, suffer with Alzheimer’s disease in the 80’s, a time it was not well understood and there were few resources available for patients, made a lasting impact and inspired her to change the way those with dementia cope with their conditions.

As a result of her experience, Mary Pat started Emmetros – a company dedicated to creating solutions that help dementia sufferers to live independently and with dignity.

In 2016, Mary Pat joined the AC’s Accelerator Program to help guide her business to success. “Before I joined the AC, I did a lot of research into incubators and the resources available to entrepreneurs like me,” Mary-Pat explains. “I came to the AC because of their focus on long-term success and their stellar mentorship team.”

When she started Emmetros, she knew she wanted to create something bigger than a single app to support people living with dementia, and the mentors at the AC helped her build out her business in a way that will see the company develop a full suite of solutions that will work together to create an all-in-one digital solution – not only for those living with the disease, but for their families and care communities as well.

“The mentors at the AC are like an extension of my team. They are always there for me.” she explains. “They are incredibly experienced, can shift focus easily, and can go as deep into my business as I need them to. No moment spent with them is a wasted one,” she adds.

Last week, Emmetros launched MemorySparx™ One. The first application in the planned suite of solutions to support those with dementia and their families.

MemorySparx One is a digital memory aid that helps individuals living with dementia organize and recall important information like personal photos, health information, and more.

Traditionally, those living with dementia (or their families) were instructed to create paper booklets to help them organize and keep track of important information. “One of the major challenges with paper-based memory aids is keeping them up to date, while making sure that they remain easy to use and meet the changing needs of a person who is experiencing declining cognitive abilities,” Mary Pat explains.  MemorySparx One leverages decades of research on the value of those paper-based memory aids and combines it more than a thousand hours Mary Pat and her team have spent partnering with and getting to know people who live with dementia, their families, and academic researchers to create a mobile digital solution that provides these people with a way to communicate with confidence and greater independence, wherever and whenever they need to.

MemorySparx One allows users to:

  • Add and update content using intuitive templates designed with the unique needs of people with dementia in mind
  • Store personal details, captioned photos, audio recordings, and personal health information in one easy-to-access tool
  • Access information that’s important whenever and wherever it’s needed – at a doctor’s office, a social engagement, or a professional event
  • Keep track of personal health history, medications, and changes to mood or behavior so you can speak for yourself at appointments with care professionals

Emmetros’ next focus is on developing their complementary suite of products and on continuing to build out their incredible team and work culture. ‘We are fortunate to have a team of very talented and experienced people. Every one of them is incredibly passionate about our vision,” Mary Pat explains proudly. “When I started this, I never expected that people would be asking me how they could join our team, but they are and that’s pretty amazing. Every single day I wake up grateful.  There’s nothing better than that.”

MemorySparx One is available for iPad and is on the iTunes store now. For more information, visit memorysparx.com.

Media Contact:

Tabatha Laverty
Community Manager
tlaverty@acceleratorcentre.com

AceAge’s “Karie” takes first steps as ‘connected health’ solution

Originally published by Innovation Guelph

May 3, 2017

Stacey Curry Gunn

Medication delivery device will make its debut in clinical trial at University of Toronto

Soon to be vying for countertop space in the “connected home” is an automated medication delivery device named Karie, designed to help patients take their medication correctly – a solution to a multi-billion-dollar healthcare problem.

Karie was born out of the personal experience of entrepreneur Spencer Waugh, who saw his grandfather repeatedly admitted to hospital after medication mix ups. Waugh discovered that his grandfather was not alone in his struggles: up to 90 per cent of patients make mistakes in taking medication, leading to 28 per cent of emergency room visits and 23 per cent of nursing home admissions. He founded AceAge in 2015, with Karie as its first product.


Karie is designed to make it simple to follow complex medication regimes, using standard multi-dose packaging to dispense the correct meds at the proper times. The device reads the information on each pouch to schedule doses, and goes off like an alarm clock when it’s time for each dose. Karie can also be set to automatically notify a caregiver if a dose is missed. In addition to supporting patient well-being, Waugh expects Karie to be a boon in clinical trial settings as a way to improve adherence rates.

At the end of March, Waugh and his team were busy assembling devices in preparation for Karie’s first big test: a  usability study at the University of Toronto.

The six-week study, set to start in May, will see 32 patients use the device in their homes, a step that Waugh expects will yield the validation necessary to turn a slew of interest from potential partners and customers into firm business relationships.

“It’s incredibly exciting to see something that I’ve been working on for so long become a reality. Karie is no longer a concept, this is our first chance to show how we will positively impact people’s lives. We are now scaling up to build and deploy thousands of devices. We want to make Karie the central fixture of the connected health home,” says Waugh.
Along the way, AceAge has tapped the ONE Network for assistance, including Innovation Guelph where Waugh has worked closely with mentor Don Thompson on product development.

“Don has been phenomenal, covering all the challenges of going from building a handful of beta units, to thousands of devices every month.”

AceAge has also benefitted from $30,000 in matching funds from Innovation Guelph’s Fuel Injection program. “It funded the build of our on-board user experience and application interface, and created the brand for our product Karie,” Waugh said. “Without the Fuel Injection award, we would not be able to go to market right now. The funding and advice that Innovation Guelph gave us was crucial for us to get to the stage we are at today.”

Fuel Injection funds also made it possible for Waugh to travel to Edmonton, Hong Kong and Paris to introduce Karie to potential partners and investors.

“It’s been extremely rewarding to help Spencer navigate the many aspects of bringing this important medical device to market,” Thompson says. “Karie solves a real problem for patients and the healthcare system as a whole, and we anticipate exciting things to come.”

AceAge will also be making the rounds at Toronto Health Innovation Week (April 3-7, 2017): Waugh will be competing at the 3rd annual MaRS HealthKick Challenge April 5, as well as pitching at the Aging2.0 Toronto Global StartUp search on April 7. He is also scheduled to speak at the Apps for Health conference at Mohawk College on April 27 and will be at OCE Discovery May 15-16. Follow the company’s progress on Twitter @AceAgeKarie and LinkedIn.

Alert Labs Announces Intact Ventures as a Strategic Investor

Originally published by Alert Labs

KITCHENER, ONTARIO, April 19, 2017 – Alert Labs Inc., designer of easy-to-install, cellular-connected home protection technology, is thrilled to announce an investment by Intact Ventures, the strategic venture arm of Intact Financial Corporation, Canada’s largest provider of property and casualty insurance. BDC Capital, Garage Capital, Hedgewood Inc., and several angel and private investors have also invested in Alert Labs in order to accelerate marketing activities and scale business operations.

In 2015, Canadian insurance companies spent approximately $2.6 billion repairing homes due to water damage. In the USA, 45 per cent of the $41.2 billion in home insurance claims were due to water damage and freezing pipes. In the next 5 years, it’s expected that North American insurers will spend over $100 billion to repair water damage in customers’ homes. Alert Labs is committed to helping the insurance industry reduce preventable expenditures.

“This represents Intact Ventures’ first investment in Canada. It’s exciting to support a company like Alert Labs that is developing technology that will help protect homeowners and mitigate risk,” says Karim Hirji, Senior Vice President, Intact Ventures, “We appreciate the importance of providing homeowners and businesses with innovative solutions that are easy to use, cost effective and reliable. The value of this type of technology will continue to grow as we adapt to climate change.”

Alert Labs’ Flowie water sensor and Floodie companion sensor work together to protect homes from flood damage, and to provide minute-by-minute water use information. This allows Alert Labs’ analytics engine to identify leaks from the municipal water supply, like a leaky toilet or malfunctioning furnace humidifier, and to share insight into water conservation opportunities. Homeowners receive email and mobile alerts for floods, leaks, high or continual water use, and power outages. Alert Labs’ sensors are cellular-connected with a built-in battery backup, which means they don’t rely on WiFi and will continue to operate during an ice storm or power outage. Flowie also reports basement temperature and humidity which gives early warning about environments with higher potential for mould or freezing pipes.

“It is inspiring to have Canada’s leading insurance company believe in our vision and goals, and we’re grateful for the financial support of our investors. This will ultimately enable us to share our products with more customers,” says George Tsintzouras, CEO of Alert Labs. “We’ve designed our sensors with our customer’s experience as the top priority. Our sensors are as easy to install as a watch or a Fitbit – everyone can do it with no tools or professional installers.”

Alert Labs also recently announced a program with the City of Guelph, Ontario. As the largest city in Canada that relies solely on groundwater for its water source, Guelph is promoting Alert Labs’ Flowie Water Sensor Kit as a tool to drive water conservation, and is offering a rebate to its residents for purchasing Alert Labs’ leak and flood protection solution.

Sources:
http://assets.ibc.ca/Documents/Facts%20Book/Facts_Book/2016/Facts-Book-2016.pdf
https://www.cia-ica.ca/docs/default-source/2014/214020e.pdf
http://www.iii.org/fact-statistic/homeowners-and-renters-insurance

About Alert Labs Inc.
Alert Labs is an IoT technology company based in Kitchener, Ontario. They were the $100,000 winners at Communitech’s Rev Demo day in November 2016. Alert Labs builds affordable monitoring solutions for residential and commercial property owners. Alert Labs’ simple-to-deploy sensors can be placed on water meters, sump pumps, near toilets and other appliances to detect water leaks, floods, power issues, abnormal temperatures, and other events. Customers receive real-time alerts and insightful data analytics via SMS, email, and the Alert Labs app. Visit www.alertlabs.com.

AC Grad Alaunus Unveils Bloom

New Platform Puts Ontario Patients and Families in the Driver’s Seat When Accessing Home Healthcare Services
April 10, 2017 (WATERLOO, ON) — Alaunus, an emerging leader in technology-enabled care solutions today launches Bloom, a new technology platform to directly connect Ontario patients and families with caregivers, accelerating access to high quality home-based care.
Targeting the 1.46 million people, mostly seniors, in Ontario today who receive community support such as meals, transportation and caregiver services in their homes, Bloom gives patients and family members more choice, using modern technology to connect and match patients to high quality, fully vetted caregivers. The platform streamlines the existing home health care delivery system, empowers full patient-choice, enhances accountability, and elevates the quality of accessible caregivers, all while strengthening the voices of patients and families in their own healthcare planning.
In Ontario today, 93% of eligible home care patients receive their first nursing visit within five days of being approved and 84% of home care patients with complex needs receive a visit from a personal support worker (PSW) within the five day target[1].  The ultimate goal of the Bloom platform is to narrow that time window even further, says Andrew Ringer, CEO of Alaunus, Bloom’s creator.
“With the home health care market expected to grow internationally to reach $400 billion by 2021, our healthcare system can expect to see more cost constraints, more hospital admissions and more “aging in place” preferences. Bloom is a much-needed platform for the time,” says Ringer. “It puts flexibility, real-time communications and on-demand service directly in the hands of patients and their families, while leveraging proven evidence-based practices for increased client satisfaction and care outcomes. At this time of growing demand, we want to provide fast, safe, secure, and affordable home care for everyone.”
Bloom Capabilities:
●   Full alignment with Patients First Act and Better Care Closer to Home
●   Patient choice of personal support worker (PSW) or health care provider (HCP) on-demand, with real time notifications
●   Easily search PSW or HCP by geography, skill-set, experience, & ratings/reviews – ideally matched based on Bloom’s matching algorithm
●   On demand service capability, easily scheduled by patient, family, or care team
●   Geo location time and attendance verification to increase caregiver accountability, alleviate over-billing & reduce administrative burden.
Bloom’s Advantages:
●   15-20% reduction on home care services spend
●   Provides more care and control to more patients
●   Encourages faster, more accountable and efficient care
●   Increases at-home quality of care, motivating caregivers to do better work
●   Adds value to the community, and
●   Supports an increased number of caregiver jobs in order to provide better care closer to home
Fuelled by Ontario Health Technologies Fund (HTF)
Bloom’s innovation is fuelled by the Ontario Health Technologies Fund, a $20M Fund developed specifically to support the development of leading, market-ready, made-in-Ontario health technologies. The first priority area for the HTF is Better Care Closer to Home, enabling Health Innovation Teams from across Ontario to work on projects related to home and community care through virtual, digital and mobile health-care technologies. Alaunus is one of 15 health innovation projects selected province-wide for HTF funding.
Pilot Projects in Hamilton, Waterloo Region.
Bloom will be piloted in partnership with Brain Injury Services of Hamilton and the Waterloo Wellington LHIN/CCAC.
“We have the ability with Bloom to leverage technology transform the traditional home health care delivery model,” says Laurie Graham, Director, Residential Services, Brain Injury Services. “Patients and their families are provided with greater control over their health care decisions and more expedited care. This drives better outcomes. Care workers as well, are provided with better support to succeed in their roles. Across the board, quality goes up.”
“The Waterloo Wellington LHIN was pleased to support Alaunus’s application for funding from the Ontario Health Technologies Fund, given its potential to facilitate a better connection between patients and caregivers, while reducing costs and increasing transparency and accountability. This is directly aligned with Ontario’s  Patients First Action Plan,” says Bruce Lauckner, CEO, WWLHIN.”
The Hamilton pilot kicks off in June 2017.  For more information visit joinbloom.com
For more information contact:
Andrew Ringer
CEO Alaunus
OR:
Ellyn Winters
Ignition Communications
PR for Alaunus

GainX is on a mission to eliminate billions in wasted innovation spending for global financial services companies

Across the innovation landscape, agility matters. Fast innovators are 42% stronger, 27% more disruptive, get new products to market quickly and generate 30% more revenue from those products.[1]  And yet, 90% of CEOs across all industries remain unsatisfied with their year/over/year progress and returns on innovation. They are plagued by a lack visibility across their complex innovation portfolios and processes. This poor transparency translates into billions of dollars in waste and Innovation DragTM across the industry.

Entrepreneur Angelique Mohring founded her company GainX in 2012 after spending two decades as a technology executive, working for large enterprise software organizations such as OpenText.  “After working with Global 1000s for 20+ years as a tech executive and global change agent, I realized I had the skills, passion and expertise to help the world’s biggest businesses better understand and overcome the innovation challenge and finally realize real financial payback from their efforts,” says Angelique.  “I want people to understand that innovation is so more than simply counting ideas. It is about cultural and digital transformation, and it is about producing measurable business impact.”

GainX, a fast-growing leader in the FinTech market (the company will target other sectors but is initially focused on Financial Services) is leading and defining the Innovation Strategy Management (ISM) market, providing financial services companies with the critical bridge between innovation happening at the edge of business and the core enterprise.

“By combining predictive analytics, artificial intelligence, semantic analysis and in-depth behavioural analytics to drive cultural change and improve innovation capacity, our ISM platform ensures creativity and delivery stay in balance, and allows businesses to achieve sustainable market success and drive greater return on innovation investment (ROII). This results in increased productivity, improved employee engagement, greater clarity of vision and reduced risk of in-market failure,” says Mohring.

Recently, GainX released the findings of a benchmark survey it conducted on behalf of the Canadian financial services industry assessing the innovation capacity of Canada’s leading financial services institutions (FSIs). More than 375 executives and employees participated in the analysis, which captured both data and semantic analytics on innovation derived from their respective organizations. More than 27,000 data points were analyzed through the GainX platform, and FSIs were plotted on an innovation maturity curve, measured against the critical gains necessary for innovation and transformation, including strategy and clarity of vision, appetite for risk, digital enablement, culture, and engagement and collaboration.

While the Canadian FS executives and employees surveyed all identified innovation as a top priority, our analysis found that the sector’s capacity to achieve those goals remains limited. 77% of Canadian FSIs surveyed indicated they lacked an integrated innovation process, and only half (51%) believed their organization to be innovative. More than 90% of those surveyed indicated they lacked a clear, actionable digital strategy and effective tools and technology systems, representing significant barriers to innovation and growth.[2]

After joining the Accelerator Centre in 2015, Angelique has been able to drive the business forward, landing key deployments of the GainX platform in several Canadian banks. Thanks to critical AC JumpStart funding made available through FedDev Ontario, she’s also expanding her presence into the US, the UK and other international markets.

“It’s been powerful to be at the Accelerator Centre and to be able to tap into the fantastic network to draw on the resources most needed to help our company grow. The JumpStart funding provided yet another critical stepping-stone in our company’s development and growth.

“We are on the brink of massive change in the innovation market,” says Mohring. “The emergence of artificial intelligence and machine learning technologies will provide a critical catalyst for innovation, by allowing organizations to unburden smart people from administrative tasks, and to put the right people on the right project to accelerate innovation. It is going to be a huge year for GainX, and I’m so excited I could just about explode.”

 

[1] Boston Consulting Group, 10th Annual Survey, Most Innovative Companies 2015

[2] GainX Insights™ benchmark analysis data.

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