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Harper Government Helps Canadian Start-ups Access New York City Market While Fostering Innovation

First six Canadian digital media firms “graduate” from dynamic initiative, and six more begin

June 14, 2012 - The Honourable Ed Fast, Minister of International Trade and Minister for the Asia-Pacific Gateway, today announced that six promising Canadian digital media start-ups have completed their participation in the Canadian Technology Accelerator (CTA) initiative in New York City, and six new participants have begun.

“Our government is committed to helping small and medium-sized enterprises access new markets and become more competitive,” Minister Fast said. “The Canadian Technology Accelerator initiative is already producing results for the first round of participants. Providing targeted business development to Canadian entrepreneurs and connecting them with the right business people and investors in dynamic markets like New York City are two of the many ways we are helping young entrepreneurs succeed and create more jobs for hard-working Canadians at home.”

“The CTA helped me connect with notable gaming companies in New York City and gain access to the greater start-up ecosystem,” said Chris Ye, Co-Founder of Uken Games. “During this initiative, I was mentored by Arkadium, a leading game developer, and over the past three months I made many valuable new contacts in the United States that otherwise may have taken years to develop.”

The CTA initiative provides an innovative platform to Canadian companies from which they can access New York City’s dynamic start-up technology market and potential investment opportunities.

The first six “graduates,” announced in February, are:

  • BFB Fashion Group Inc., Montréal;
  • Buyosphere, Montréal;
  • Engagio Inc., Toronto;
  • Recoset Inc., Montréal;
  • Speakerfile Inc., Toronto;
  • Uken Games, Toronto.

“While I was In New York City in March, I had the opportunity to witness first-hand how the CTA initiative was helping innovative Canadian companies achieve success beyond our borders,” added Minister Fast. “New entrepreneurs, no matter how good their ideas, benefit from exposure to potential investors, like-minded innovators and other key contacts, and I am pleased that our Trade Commissioner Service will be helping the next six start-up companies make these connections in the competitive New York City market.”

By establishing a presence in New York City—the global capital of advertising, media, commerce and finance—Canadian start-ups can tap into new business opportunities and access new global markets.

“We believe that the Canadian Technology Accelerator will facilitate the growth of our company,” said Trevor Doerksen, CEO and Founder of Mobovivo Inc. “Our objective in participating is to gain insight into the needs of our media customers headquartered in New York City.”

To learn more, please visit Canadian Trade Commissioner Service.

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A backgrounder follows.

For further information, media representatives may contact:

Rudy Husny
Press Secretary
Office of the Honourable Ed Fast
Minister of International Trade and Minister for the Asia-Pacific Gateway

Trade Media Relations Office
Foreign Affairs and International Trade Canada
Follow us on Twitter: @Canada_Trade

Backgrounder - Canadian Technology Accelerator Initiative

Participating companies

The following six companies were selected from the Trade Commissioner Service’s clients to be part of the Canadian Technology Accelerator initiative in New York City from June to August, 2012:

Adfinitum Networks Inc., St. John’s, Newfoundland and Labrador - Ed Clarke, President

Adfinitum Networks Inc., enables global advertising agencies to instantly track, monitor and measure their advertising to help strategic business planning.

BuzzBuzzHome, Toronto, Ontario - Cliff Peskin, Co-Founder and Co-President

BuzzBuzzHome improves the way people research and purchase new residential developments, including freehold houses, condos and town houses.

Mobovivo Inc., Calgary, Alberta - Trevor Doerksen, Founder and CEO

Mobovivo is an entertainment software company that enables television and film brands to build, engage, capture and entertain viewers from any source to any screen.

Touch Bistro, Toronto, Ontario – Alex Barrotti, CEO and Co-Founder

Touch Bistro provides restaurants with a complete point-of-sales management application for the iPad.

SendtoNews, Victoria, British Columbia - Greg Bobolo, President and CEO

SendtoNews offers an advanced distribution system that accepts newsworthy multimedia content from any platform connected to the Internet, optimizes it, and distributes it to a network of news broadcast and publishing partners.

Shopcastr Inc., Toronto, Ontario - Matt O’Leary, Co-Founder

Shopcastr makes it simple for retailers to show off their best products and let consumers window-shop their favourite stores.

The Canadian Technology Accelerator Initiative

The Government of Canada’s Canadian Technology Accelerator (CTA) initiative, led by the Canadian Trade Commissioner Service at Canada’s consulates general in New York City and San Francisco, provides Canadian start-ups in information and communications technology, digital and social media, gaming and clean technologies with access to unique resources and contacts that can help them grow internationally. The four CTAs—located in California (Plug and Play Tech Center, Sunnyvale; RocketSpace, San Francisco; and Environmental Business Cluster, San Jose) and New York City (General Assembly)—provide Canadian companies with the opportunity to engage in business development to further their growth in these key markets, in addition to accessing key venture funding and entrepreneurial resources available in Silicon Valley and New York City.

The Canadian Trade Commissioner Service

Located in more than 150 cities worldwide and in regional offices across Canada, the Canadian Trade Commissioner Service, part of Foreign Affairs and International Trade Canada, is Canada’s most extensive network of international business professionals. The Trade Commissioner Service helps companies that are looking to export, invest abroad, attract investment or develop innovation and R & D partnerships.