CanadaCleantech launches pan-Canadian network to support cleantech entrepreneurs

CanadaCleantech has launched CONNECT, an initiative to support the clean technology sector by creating a pan-Canadian network dedicated to supporting cleantech entrepreneurs across the country, regardless of the province in which they are located.

CONNECT is leveraging regional best practices at the national level, facilitating access for entrepreneurs to the right users, advisors, partners and investors, CanadaCleantech said.

There are numerous programs to support Canadian innovators, yet the impact of these resources is often limited by the “regional silos” of the parent organizations. This limits entrepreneurs’ ability to access the right resources at the right time.

The CONNECT initiative aims to increase collaboration and harness synergies between cleantech accelerators and industry organizations across Canada.

The founding members of CONNECT are Foresight (Vancouver), BC Cleantech CEO Alliance (Vancouver), Alberta Clean Technology Industry Alliance (Calgary), MaRS (Toronto), Ecofuel Accelerator (Montréal), Écotech Québec (Montréal), Creative Destruction Labs (Rockies, Atlantic), Innovacorp (Halifax) and CanadaCleantech (national).

“With this new national network, we want to leverage expertise and best practices in all regions and better connect start-ups with valuable resources and with established firms seeking innovative solutions,” Michael Dennis, interim chair of CONNECT, said in a statement.

“CONNECT will bring new business opportunities for entrepreneurs who will benefit from enhanced access to market, capital and talent through a series of targeted activities,” added Denis Leclerc, chair of CanadaCleantech.

Market-pull industry challenges for cleantech innovators, speed-dating events for entrepreneurs with adopters and investors, access to business intelligence analysis and mentor training are among planned activities presented during the launching event at Globe Forum 2018.

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