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Calgary Technologies Inc. rebrands to Platform Calgary

On March 4, 2019 Calgary Technologies Inc. will begin rebranding to Platform Calgary. As Platform Calgary, our focus will remain on supporting Calgary's innovation-driven companies by providing access to space, programming and advocacy, while also championing the vision for the new Platform Innovation Centre's design, activity, and culture. Our name change comes at the heels of our recent announcement as the new operator of the Platform Innovation Centre opening in East Village in the fall of 2020.

Why Platform Calgary?

There is a need to make innovation more accessible and visible to our community and this rebrand aligns with the City of Calgary's 10-Year Economic Strategy. Platform started with the idea of transforming Calgary into a global innovation hub. As Platform Calgary, we are turning that idea into action. Through this work the next wave of shared prosperity is being generated in our city, transforming local businesses into international success stories. By working together, we can make Calgary a global hub for startups and innovation.

It is about elevating innovation, and Platform Calgary is the next phase and evolution of Calgary Technologies Inc.

What's next?

March 4, 2019 marks our first official day of business as Platform Calgary. Over the next few months, you will see our materials transitioning over to our new name and brand. Our long-term priority is to put a focus on innovation in the heart of downtown Calgary. On March 4, 2019, we are opening Platform Beta at the Hillier Block in East Village. This historic 5,300-sq-ft building will serve as our interim downtown facility while the Platform Innovation Centre is being built.

We will continue to operate and provide services out of the Alastair Ross Technology Centre and The Inc.

Save the date for May 15, 2019: Annual Report to Community, Demo Day and Strategy Launch in the new Central Library. The event will showcase our Junction program graduates and will be the public launch event for our new Platform Calgary identity and strategic plan.

Have a question?

Contact us at communications@calgarytechnologies.com

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The following technologies have been assessed and reviewed by our expert team and are currently available for licensing or sponsored research.

Best practice programs to support early-phase startups from idea to revenue.

  • Programs / Workshops
    • Junction 31

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      Applications for Cohort 3 now open

      A pre-seed program that helps build a strong foundation for innovation-driven entrepreneurs.

       

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      Registration for spring 2019 now open

      Understanding customer behaviour is essential to your startup success. This applied program teaches how to engage customers and discover their motivations, preferences and needs. 

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    • 321 Growth Academy: Sales 101

      321 Growth Academy: Sales 101

      Registration now open!

      A full-day crash-course in B2B sales for business and technical founders and execs.

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    • 321 Growth Academy: Lean Sales

      321 Growth Academy: Lean Sales

      Registration now open!

      This program includes eight half day sessions plus a one-on-one coaching session.  

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    • 321 Growth Academy: Marketing 101

      321 Growth Academy: Marketing 101

      Registration now open!

      Marketing 101 is a full-day crash course in B2B marketing for business and technical founders. You’ll learn how to create an effective marketing capacity in your company, assess where you’re at, and develop an action plan to get you from here to there.

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    • 321 Growth Academy: Growth Marketing

      321 Growth Academy: Growth Marketing

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      An eight-week course for Startup Founders, Executives and Marketing Leaders to take a “learning by doing” approach to marketing impact. It’s all about assessing your market and current marketing, learning new marketing ideas and approaches and putting them into action by working on real-world marketing challenges facing your company. The outcome? A more focused and impactful return on your marketing investment and marketing that drives revenue for your business.

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    • 321 Growth Academy: People 101

      321 Growth Academy: People 101

      Coming Fall 2019

      A full-day crash course in human resources (HR) for business and technical founders and leaders. You’ll learn how to build an effective people capacity in your company, how to assess where you’re at with your HR function and how to develop an action plan so you can attract and develop the culture and team you need to grow.

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    • 321 Growth Academy: Agile HR

      321 Growth Academy: Agile HR

      Coming Fall 2019

      Agile HR is an 8-session program for startup founders, executives and people/HR leaders to take an agile and “learning by doing” approach to the People/HR function. 

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    • CEO Roundtable

      CEO Roundtable

      A monthly peer advisory forum for CEOs, board members and founders of technology companies to openly discuss their challenges in a confidential, safe environment. The goal of the roundtables are to provide "just-in-time" advice on current issues, enhance accountability and accelerate actions/decisions. 

      "This roundtable has transformed our company, period. There are not enough good things I can say about this group. Even banks recognize its significance toward the foundation for a strong company." - Jeremy Bridge

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    • Venture Mentoring Service of Alberta (VMSA)

      Venture Mentoring Service of Alberta (VMSA)

      The Venture Mentoring Service of Alberta (VMSA) is a volunteer organization that provides objective, conflict-free guidance to entrepreneurs in southern Alberta. Each entrepreneur is matched with a team of mentors, which gives a more in-depth experience than traditional one-on-one relationships.

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      Canada's Startup Visa (SUV) Program is intended to attract foreign entrepreneurs who wish to establish new, high-growth businesses in Canada that will support innovation and job creation. 

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      Having a plan to fund your business from many sources, which may include equity investors, is just as important as your business plan.

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Calgary Herald Startup of the Week – TLink

Wednesday, February 26, 2014

Wearable gadgets are all the rage these days and if you’re a golfer, you’ve probably come across GPS golf watches. These watches gained popularity as they make it convenient to simply look at your wrist to navigate the course and determine how far away you are from the green. However, the ones currently on the market are either too big and heavy, cost a lot of money or are not customizable.

This week we talked to Derek Rucki, Founder and CEO of TLink, a small, lightweight Bluetooth device that pairs with a GPS app on your smartphone to provide the same front, middle and back of the green yardages as the watch. Golfers have to simply connect their TLink to their phone via Bluetooth, open up the GPS app, select the course that they are playing and put their phone away for the round. Pressing the button on the device once displays the updated yardage information as well as the hole and par, and holding down the button switches to the next hole. Plus you have the option of wearing TLink on your wrist via interchangeable straps to suit your style or you can attach it anywhere else on your body.

For golfers who already use GPS golf apps on their phones, TLink will help solve the problem of battery life because you can now keep your phone screen off and don’t have to worry about unlocking the phone for a yardage every single shot.
Here’s more from our conversation with Derek, who’s also a former top-10 junior golfer in Canada.

How did you come up with the idea for your startup? Was there an “ah-ha” moment?

I’ve been a highly competitive golfer since a very young age and have travelled all over the world playing events, which has enabled me to recognize trends in the market much easier than your average golfer. I am also a bit of a tech nut and was able to see the trend of wearable tech expanding at a rapid pace. I was excited when the GPS watches hit the market; however, when I actually took a swing with one of the watches, it would cut into my wrist slightly at the top of my swing which is enough to throw off your concentration. For this reason many golfers do not play with watches on. This led to the thought of making something that could provide the same convenience but without the discomfort. We took feedback from several golfers on the early prototypes to finalize the product.

Are there any key individuals outside of your organization that have been of great help to your startup?

Where do I start? The entire ENTR program at Mount Royal University is absolutely outstanding and has allowed me to work on TLink throughout the majority of my classes with the guidance of some fantastic professors. The program is all about making something real happen. One professor that stands out is Ray DePaul, Director of Innovation and Entrepreneurship. Ray has introduced us to all the right people to turn this idea into something real. A big connection he helped us establish is with Entrepreneurs’ Organization (EO) Calgary which is group of extremely successful entrepreneurs. This led to a connection with Gene Vollendorf of Wolverine Management who has been mentoring us and getting us to closely look at the financial side of the business.

Andrew Browne from Startup Calgary has also been huge help from the beginning. I got to know Andrew at Startup Calgary’s Weekly Hack Nights. I just had an idea at the time and was looking for a technical cofounder, and Andrew introduced me to several developers. I also attended another Startup Calgary event called Startup Grind where the Head of Global Sales at Groupon, Rajen Ruparell was giving a talk. After his talk I was able to hook him on TLink with a quick pitch and I now have frequent mentorship calls with him. Rajen’s a marketing genius!

What advice would you like to share with other entrepreneurs just starting out?

I’ve learned so much in the last five months throughout all of this, but there are a few things that stand out to me as a student entrepreneur:

1. Be passionate. It is so much easier to pursue something in an area that you are passionate about than something you really don’t have much interest in. Having that passion for what you are working on is what will get you through those inevitable setbacks that come with startups.

2. Get the right partner. I spent almost two months finding someone who could handle the programming and tech side of things to make sure it was the right fit. I met a ton of people who said “I can do this no problem it is really simple stuff”, but had absolutely no passion or vision for what this could become. Then Stefan and I met because we had both won grants from MRU to pursue our ventures. He immediately saw the vision for TLink and we dove in together. We have since accomplished so much and have become great friends in the process.

3. Play the student card! I have made my way into some amazing doors by just mentioning I am a student working on this venture. You will be surprised by how much people are willing to help students out and want to see these young startups thrive so why not work that angle as much as possible.

What made you choose to go down the path of entrepreneurship? 

I’ve pretty much been that entrepreneurial kid growing up. Before starting TLink, I was trading the stock market, running an eBay business, and doing arbitrage with fiverr services. While I made money doing all of this, they all lacked something that I am now learning is so important if you are going to be an entrepreneur – passion. Being able to wake up every day and know that you are working on something that you truly care about is the best feeling in the world. It has been a ton of work and I have had to make some sacrifices along the way like not really having much of a social life anymore. I have two quotes on the wall above my desk that sums this up fairly well:

“If you don’t build your dream, someone else will hire you to help build theirs” – Tony Gaskins

“Entrepreneurship is living a few years of your life like most people won’t so you can spend the rest of your life like most people cant.”

What are your thoughts on our startup ecosystem? 

Alberta is a very entrepreneurial place in general. I think this gets clouded a little by the oil and gas industry, but the help I have received from organizations like Startup Calgary and Innovate Calgary has been amazing.

What do you and your startup need help with?

We will be looking to raise some capital within the next two months for the initial production costs and we would love to talk with anyone who has overseas manufacturing and distribution experience. Please contact me through our website www.golftlink.com.

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