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Roundup for May 2024 – Communitech

Wait a minute, Mr. Postman

Six Canadian startups pitched their solutions to address challenges in the global supply chain on May 8 at the Communitech Fast Track Cities Showcase. The showcase event, sponsored by supply chain logistics solution provider Purolator, was a chance to hear from startups and industry partners working to improve supply chains worldwide. 

Dariusz Grabka, head of the Digital Lab, Purolator's R&D technology department, shared Purolator’s commitment to environmental sustainability and ambition to become the greenest courier in Canada. 

“At Purolator, we’re always trying to find new and exciting models and secure the services of companies to help us with our core business,” said Grabka. “It’s insightful to hear what these companies think is interesting and valuable in logistics and parcel delivery. These are spaces that maybe haven’t seen as much love, but definitely post-COVID you saw a boom and interest in the space.”

The presenting companies competed for cash prizes, with Gomove winning a $10,000 prize, Bluicity earning $15,000, and Mely.ai receiving $25,000 in addition to the Viewer’s Choice Award.

“We’re excited about bringing founders together to explore how to use the right technology to make things better, whether it’s tracking shipments, tackling worker shortages or smoothing out logistics,” said Carleigh Johnston, Fast Track Cities Program Manager at Communitech. “By connecting Canadian tech startups with industry partners we can work towards identifying sustainable solutions.”

I like to move it, move it

Two Canadian startups, Bidmii and MoveMate, are joining forces to enhance trust in the moving and home renovation industries. Bidmii’s platform empowers homeowners to obtain quotes, hire contractors, and manage secure payments, while MoveMate connects users with vetted moving professionals, offering transparent pricing and digital booking. 

The new partnership is a significant step towards reducing scams and increasing transparency in these sectors, addressing issues highlighted by the Better Business Bureau and the Canadian Association of Movers.

“There’s a lack of trust in the moving industry,” said Jon Christensen, co-founder and CEO of Bidmii. “People are looking for a third-party trusted source to point them in the right direction.”

Christensen and William Preudhomme, COO of MoveMate, say consumers can confidently and securely plan their projects with Bidmii's AI-powered platform and MoveMate's user-friendly interface. Bidmii and MoveMate plan to broaden their services and form new partnerships to offer consumers a solution for their moving and home improvement needs.

"We want to transform the way moving and home improvement happens," said Preudhomme. "By leveraging technology and partnerships, we can create a more transparent and trustworthy ecosystem for consumers."

Our house, in the middle of our street

The Communitech Hub opened its doors to the public on May 28 for a peek inside the heart of Waterloo Region’s innovation ecosystem. Over 260 people toured the space to learn more about what happens inside the historic walls of the Tannery Building in downtown Kitchener.

Communitech supports over 1,000 founders in fields ranging from cleantech to health tech and every “tech” in between. Angela Larraguibel, Senior Vice President of Founder Services at Communitech, said many founders join Communitech to connect with peers, coaches, and public and private partners.

“It’s a testament to the pressing need for diverse voices and perspectives in shaping the future of tech and health care. We’re here to support founders in every industry, at every stage of their journey,” Larraguibel said.

Earlier in the day, the Region of Waterloo held its State of the Region event, focusing on the community’s growing population. The latest StatsCan numbers show we’re on track to reach one million residents by 2050.

“As we look forward to being one-million ready, because we know that our population continues to grow, it will be standing on the track record and the vision and building on what has made Comunitech so important to Waterloo Region,” said Region of Waterloo Chair Karen Redman.

Other news

This edition of the Roundup was compiled by the Communitech News Team. Sign up to receive the Roundup each month by visiting communitech.ca/technews and scrolling to the bottom of the page.

"Communitech helps tech-driven companies start, grow and succeed. Communitech was founded in 1997 by a group of entrepreneurs committed to making Waterloo Region a global innovation leader. At the time it was crazy talk, but somehow this community managed to pull it off. Today, Communitech is a public-private innovation hub that supports a community of more than 1400 companies — from startups to scale-ups to large global players. Communitech helps tech companies start, grow and succeed in three distinct ways: - Communitech is a place – the center of gravity for entrepreneurs and innovators. A clubhouse for building cool shit and great companies. - Communitech delivers programs – helping companies at all stages with access to capital, customers and talent. We are here to help them grow and innovate. - Communitech partners in building a world-leading ecosystem – making sure we have all the ingredients (and the brand) to go from a small startup to a global giant."

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