Dragons' Den's Michael Wekerle Buys Former BlackBerry Building in Waterloo, Snags First Tenant

Posted by Knowlton Thomas

Michael Wekerle of Difference Capital is the driving force behind a $200 million venture capital focused on Waterloo startups that will soon be unveiled, according to The Waterloo Record.

Wekerle, who recently replaced Kevin O'Leary on CBC's hit reality show Dragons' Den, also bought a former BlackBerry building. The 50,000-square-foot office space, located at Columbia and Phillip streets, already has its first tenant: Auvik Networks. Avuik, which was founded in 2012 by Marc Morin, David Yach, and Alex Hoff, currently has close to 30 employees and is hiring.

Wekerle made his fortune investing in tech and media companies. Wekerle’s rise to success began at the age of 18, where he honed his talents on the Toronto Stock Exchange trading floor before ascending the ranks to become a Bay Street pack leader. He has been described as a "heavily tattooed single dad to six children, who loves fast cars, rock music and living a lavish lifestyle."

Company:
BlackBerry
Website:
http://www.blackberry.com
Location:
Waterloo, Ontario, Canada

Research In Motion (RIM), a global leader in wireless innovation, revolutionized the mobile industry with the introduction of the BlackBerry solution in 1999. Since then, BlackBerry products and services have continued to change the way millions of people around the world stay connected. With the launch of BlackBerry 10, we have re-designed, re-engineered and re-invented BlackBerry. Not only did we introduce a... more

Company:
Auvik Networks Inc.
Website:
http://www.auvik.com
Location:
Kitchener, Ontario, Canada

At Auvik Networks, we believe that networking is too complex in the IT environment. Unless you have a dedicted team of networking engineers it's hard to make time to stay on top of the best practices for monitoring and securing your network, let alone actually configure everything. The result is an inflexible network that can't keep up with the latest trends. Auvik wants to make networking easier. Through the use... more

Company:
Difference Capital
Website:
http://www.differencecapital.com
Location:
Toronto, Ontario, Canada

Difference Capital Financial Inc. is a publicly listed specialty finance company focused on creating shareholder value through strategic investment and advisory services in growth companies. We provide debt and equity growth capital to technology, media, and healthcare-related companies to help them create long-term shareholder value. We focus primarily on later-stage companies (post or near-commercialization)... more


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Knowlton Thomas

Knowlton Thomas

Knowlton is the managing editor of Techvibes. Based in Vancouver, Knowlton has been published in national publications and has also appeared on television and radio. Previously he was an editor for New Westminster weekly The Other Press and served on its board of directors. When not working, Knowlton enjoys playing tennis or otherwise enjoying the outdoors. more



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