Some of London’s brightest minds and most promising businesses, will start coming together at various events throughout the city on Tuesday, to take part in Tech Week. The technology sector has become one of the most influential sectors in the London business market, which makes this event one of the most pivotal functions in the city.
The week is organized by TechAlliance, who offer services to help start, grow and connect companies in industries like digital media, the life sciences, advanced manufacturing, and clean technology. It is the only week dedicated to the London technology sector, and it is paramount in importance, because it helps focus attention on some of London’s world-class technology companies and resources. Many of whom Londoners may not be aware of, despite their success.
In a world driven by technology, these businesses and those successes, have the capability to shape the landscape of this city for decades to come. That is why the work that TechAlliance does to put it all together is so important.
“When we started London Tech Week over a decade ago, London’s tech sector looked very different than it does today. Many of the names and faces remain the same, but many of today’s prominent companies were in their early stages, and others weren’t even ideas yet,” said Greg Picken, Communications Manager for TechAlliance.
“We started London Tech Week as a way to shine the spotlight on the tech sector: on the innovations and products that are made here, on the companies that are creating jobs here, and on the great people that make up this community.”
With the help of other community partners like Ferrara Wealth Advisory Group, HSBC and WORLDiscoveries, TechAlliance has once again put together a week of events that will draw out some of London’s top technology leaders. Hosted from April 16-20th at various venues, the industry-specific events facilitate access to valuable expertise for people trying to connect with others in the regional technology community.
As Keegan Howlett from InnoSoft recently told rTraction’s David Billson in a blog interview, events like Tech Week can also be valuable to non- technical people as well, “Technology is everywhere. It’s a misconception that a technology career is only for developers or technologically trained individuals. Technology is for all of us and you can get involved in a technology company regardless of your background.”
Tech Week will get underway with Talkin’ Tech with Sarah Prevette at the Toboggan Brewing Company on Tuesday at 3:00pm. Prevette teaches creativity and design thinking to some of Canada’s biggest business leaders, and has been named one of the top entrepreneurs in North America by Inc Magazine, and one of the “Top 20 Power Elite” by Canadian Business. She will be talking about what it takes to succeed and thrive in today’s business world.
Talkin’ Tech will also feature guests Taylor Ablitt, Co-Founder and Chief Executive Officer of Diply; Mallory Brodie, Co-Founder and CEO of Bridgit; and Jeff Evans, Founder of Tiny Titan Games.
On Wednesday, Munchies with Mentors provides the chance to connect with some of the pillars of the technology sector. The casual networking event is structured so that there are no more than three participants at a table, guaranteeing unfettered access to tech leaders Barney Lawn of Core Solutions, Chris Kirby of Voices.com, David Strucke of Media Sonar, Patrick Poulin of TechAlliance, Paul Turner of CarProof, Peter Rocca of Start.ca, and Rachel Berdan of rTraction.
After twenty minutes, the participants move to a different table for a session with a different leader. A different set of munchies too! After three sessions for each of the participants, the night concludes with an open networking event. What a fantastic opportunity for anybody with some drive, to grab a proverbial bull by it’s horns.
The Techcellence Awards Celebration and Mixer on Thursday evening is where you will find the absolute best that London’s technology sector is currently producing. With awards for Startup Innovation, Business Growth, and Community Engagement, the evening celebrates and honours this past year’s highest achieving tech entrepreneurs, start-ups and established tech companies in London and Southwestern Ontario.
Finalists For Startup Innovation
Finalists For Business Growth
Finalists For Community Engagement
Congratulations to all of the finalists for being recognized in such an exponentially growing sector.
Techcellence will also offer the opportunity to network over refreshments with the nominees, and many local tech companies, entrepreneurs and community technology leaders.
Throughout the four days of Tech Week, TechAlliance also offers the Secondary School Awareness Campaign, where high schools in the London region can invite technology industry experts into their classrooms to share their experiences with students. This important initiative provides a valuable bridge between the technology industry, and educators and students. What better way to introduce the technological minds of young men and women who will forge technology’s tomorrow, than to inspire them with the men and women that are building that future today?
“The Secondary School Awareness Campaign is all about letting students know about the wide range of careers that exist with the tech sector. Obviously, coding and engineering roles come to mind first, but within a sector as broad as ours, there are opportunities for students with backgrounds in the arts, business, geography, and every other discipline,” said Picken. “By showing them these possibilities now, we hope it will help them make decisions about both their academic and professional futures.”
The speakers that have been made available to the students include Alicia Boynton from Advanced Composites Training, Adam Caplan, the founder of web.isod.es, Karen Chalmers from Big Blue Bubble, Vicki Cere from ZTR, Keegan Howlett from InnoSoft, Dr. Michael Katchabaw, Computer Science Professor at Western University, Dr. Theo Versteegh, founder of TopSpin Technologies, and Michael Feeney, who coordinates the Game Development – Advanced Programming (GDP) at Fanshawe.
Now in it’s eleventh year, it’s clear that London Tech Week is accomplishing what it originally set out to do. Picken offered, “We have a sector that’s driving growth in London, and represents a significant piece of what will make London successful in the future. We have companies that are being recognized locally, nationally and internationally for their products and achievements. And we have thousands of great creators, innovators, entrepreneurs, and employers that make up our tech sector.”
It’s a great week of events, and it is without a doubt the quintessential opportunity for any blossoming or aspiring technology student or entrepreneur to dive into what stimulates them most.
“We will still happily spotlight the tech sector, but we need a much larger spotlight,” Picken exclaimed.
That’s the best thing you can do. Support it. Share it. Learn about it.
Give it the spotlight that it deserves.
If supported properly, the technology sector can be a major driving force in London’s economic future.