AccelerateAB in Calgary significant milestone in tech community growth

Posted by Stephen King

AccelerateAB Crowd Calgary A100 C100As many of you know, I am a generally optimistic fellow. Even still, I was pleasantly surprised at the success and exposure of AccelerateAB in Calgary yesterday. Organizer's capped the attendance at about 350, and told me that 100 more were turned away. 

Everyone felt the energy ... a great event; combined effort of the C100, A100, TEC Edmonton, Innovate Calgary, Alberta Enterprise, Startup Edmonton and Startup Calgary.

Kudos to Cynthia Titchkosky and Carey Houston for organizing a great event. Carey tells me the event resonated as a big step forward in community building:

  1. Industry partners are willing to step in and support the ecosystem in a meaningful way
  2. Edmonton and Calgary can work together to create a bigger and better Alberta tech community
  3. We have a ton of great start-ups that are interesting to some big wheels in the valley

The morning included mentoring sessions for 25 companies (listed in yesterday's post), and like Grow, was an intimate gathering with a great exchange of unfiltered brainstorming. As the emcee for the morning, Kevin Swan from iNovia tweeted: "I can't express how excited I am to see a group like this in Alberta. I've been waiting for this type of event here for four years."

Howard Lindzon, CEO and Founder of Stocktwits, gave an insightful and humourous keynote. Two noted statements: "Punch a banker, hug a developer." and "Don't start in Europe if you play Risk" (relating to the # of borders you'll need to defend ... better to start in Western Australia; startups, of course, need to take heed in terms of their focus).

For me, the three panels felt just like I was at a Valley gig; but the difference was that this was in Calgary. Panelists were a great mix of people from both Canada and the U.S.; Robert Simon (Ariva Partners, C100), Derek Ball (Tynt), Dups Wijayawardhana (Empire Avenue), Arthur Wong (Iron Key, C100), Anthony Lee (Altos Ventures, C100), Mark MacLeod (Real Ventures), Shawn Abbott (iNovia Capital), Boris Wertz (W Media Ventures, Growlad, C100), Brad Zumwalt (Zinc Ventures, Veer, A100), Danny Robinson, Stephen Kenny (A100, MRU), David Quail (YouSendIt, A100, C100), Brian Wong (Kiip, C100) and Patrick Lor (Fotolia, A100).

Shout-out to the sponsors: 

  • PREMIER: Alberta Enterprise, BDC, FMC Law, Innovate Calgary, iNovia Capital, KPMG, PWC, and TEC Edmonton
  • SILVER: AVAC, Bennett Jones, Miller Thomson
  • OFFICE HOURS: Techbent, Tecterra, Yaletown
  • MEDIA: Techvibes

Twitter was trending, see all the comments here.

The event even managed to pick up some attention from Calgary Herald ... I was interviewed for the article, and even reporter Kim Guttormson mentioned that the tech community feels more coordinated and coming on strong. For me, as always in a city focused on Oil & Gas, and especially during a Stampede week, it's great validation that we're all on the right track.

A good day for all. 

AccelerateAB Calgary

 

AccelerateAB CalgaryAccelerateAB Calgary Howard Lindzon

Company:
Innovate Calgary
Website:
http://www.innovatecalgary.com
Location:
Calgary, Alberta, Canada

Innovate Calgary is where startups, entrepreneurs, researchers, investors, industry and partners take innovation and ideas to business. It takes an ecosystem to drive the commercialization success of an innovation or discovery, and we are here to give you the help you need to take your startup, discovery or investment to the next stage of growth or market entry. How? It's simple, Just Ask. more

Company:
Startup Edmonton
Website:
http://www.startupedmonton.com
Location:
Edmonton, Alberta, Canada

Founded in 2009, Startup Edmonton is a grassroots nonprofit organization focused on cultivating the tech start-up community in Edmonton. Our organizing committee is made up of experienced and connected young entrepreneurs passionate about growing a world-class tech startup community in our hometown. We’ve been involved in other next gen initiatives in town including DemoCamp and artsScene Edmonton, so we’re... more

Company:
C100
Website:
http://www.thec100.org/
Location:
San Francisco, California, United States

C100 is a non-profit, member-driven organization dedicated to supporting Canadian technology entrepreneurship and investment. C100 is comprised of a select group of Canadians based primarily in Silicon Valley, including executives of leading technology companies, experienced startup entrepreneurs and venture capital investors. C100 members are passionate about leveraging their collective experience, expertise... more

Company:
Alberta Enterprise Corporation
Website:
http://www.alberta-enterprise.ca
Location:
Edmonton, Alberta, Canada

Alberta Enterprise Corporation is an independent private equity fund of funds manager. Our fund, the Alberta Enterprise Fund, is a $100 Million allocation targeting technology venture capital funds. We back institutional seed, venture and expansion capital fund managers. We have deep knowledge of the Canadian venture capital and private equity markets. Located in Alberta, our people have specialist skills in... more

Company:
Startup Calgary
Website:
http://www.startupcalgary.ca
Location:
Calgary, Alberta, Canada

Startup Calgary is all about community building - our primary goal is to help pull the IT based, startup related communities in Calgary closer together. We know that's a pretty tall order - there's a lot of get togethers, basement startups, and technologies being dreamed up here in our city that no one is aware of. We want to make sure everyone has the support and exposure they need. Don't forget to visit our... more


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Stephen King

Stephen King

I'm President of Stephdokin.com, a "Strategic B2B Technology Commercialization" executive consulting firm based in Calgary, AB offering CMO4HIRE services to technology companies.I've got a great deal of passion to help make my clients and our local tech scene hyper-successful on a global basis. I am a co-founder of the A100, on the Board of Advisors for Startup Calgary, blog for... more



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