GTA Tech Leaders Concert – May 30 2013 @ Sound Academy

May 30, 2013 - GTA Tech Leaders Concert


Are you waiting impatiently for Dreamforce? Why Dreamforce? Where else could you have seen: Red Hot Chilli Peppers (2012), Metallica (2011), Stevie Wonder (2010), Black Crowes (2009), Foo Fighters (2008), Inxs (2007), Train (2006), etc. It’s an amazing list of bands but you have to head all the way to San Francisco to find out who’s headlining 2013. Why not try something a little more local and a little sooner.

Ok, it’s not Dreamforce, but the folks at KPMG have put together  the KPMG GTA Tech Leaders Concert Series – AmaTour (password: KPMG). The event is Thursday, May 30, 2013 at Sound Academy on Polson Pier. It features bands from Ceridian (formerly Dayforce), KPMG, Smithson Martin, Intelex and others. Rumor is there might be a big name or two that take the stage. Alan Smithson is MCing/DJing. If you aren’t familiar with Alan, his Emulator is used by Linkin Park and Infected Mushroom and others. It’s going to be fun.

The goal of the event is to raise money in support of the Ride to Conquer Cancer. Tickets are $40 each with 100% of the proceeds going to Ride to Conquer Cancer.

The Toronto startup community lost a good friend in Michael O’Connor Clarke to cancer on October 14, 2012. And we will not forget, and we continue to support fundraising efforts. This is a great opportunity to get out of the office for a social evening with some tunes and make some connections.

Join us Thursday, May 30 (password: KPMG) for a social event.

Disclosure: KPMG is a sponsor of StartupNorth.

CIX Top 20 – 2012

CIX Top 20 Canada's Hottest Innovative Companies

We’ve written about CIX Top 20 Follow @CIXCommunity in 20082009, 2010 and 2011. So you’ll be shocked to find that I’m writing about it again in 2012.

What is CIX?

“The CIX Top 20 is an elite index of the most forward-looking companies in the Canadian innovation ecosystem, and connects the key players driving technology-based business both in Canada and beyond.”

Who should apply?

“The CIX Top 20 is open to any Canadian company working in Digital Media or Information and Communication Technology with annual revenues under $10 million.”

Why do you care?

These are some of the leading companies in Canada. Don’t believe me, past participants include:

Alright, there probably is a correlation between the success of these companies and their CIX submission and attendance. But CIX is an amazing opportunity for Canadian startups to generate attention, drive awareness with investors and media, get input and feedback in a safe environment and start to build connections.

You miss 100% of the shots you don’t take.” Wayne Gretzky

Nothing is foregone conclusion, as in past performance is not an indicator of future success. But you can’t win if you don’t apply (follow the directions on the bottom of the page).

Workbrain Children

Joey deVilla, Austin Hill, and I (here & here) have written about one of the best indicators of a strong startup community is the number of repeat entrepreneurs and the number of successful follow on/spinout companies. It’s the “Fairchildren” principle that is one of the many complex factors attributed to the rise of Silicon Valley.

Workbrain agreed to be acquired back in April 2007 for $227M. This was one of the largest software acquisitions in recent history in Toronto, Platespin’s $205M acquisition by Novell being the other. It has been 2 years since the the announcement, and it appears that many of the Workbrain’s ex-founders and senior executives are starting to turn up running the next generation of Toronto startups poised for massive success.

  • dayforce 
    Dayforce is an enterprise solution that enables companes to integrate performance with planning, scheduling and management of their workforce. The company’s management team is a mix of ex-Workbrain leadership (David Ossip, Paul Sandusky, Ozzie Goldschmied, Warren Perlman) and new blood (Bob Brooks & John Orr [Note: Andrew Giblon comments John Orr was previously the VP Industry/Retails Solutions at Workbrain]). The company is building a world-class enterprise application. Dayforce launched on April 16, 2009, roughly 2 years after the Workbrain acquisition. There’s no data about the funding, but one would guess that David Ossip is able to bootstrap.
  • rypple 
    Rypple is a bottom up solution to collaborative performance management. It is a collaborative tool that enables employees and managers to request and give near real-time feedback about their performance. The team is also a mix of ex-Workbrain founders (Daniel Debow, David Stein, Tihomir Bajic, David Priemer) and new talent (George Babu, Ryan Dewsbury, Jay Goldman, and others). Rypple is funded by Peter Theil, EdgeStone Capital, Roger Martin, Seymour Schulich, and others. That’s some heavy valley hitters and some of Canada’s most respected busines individuals.

These are 2 very prominent Toronto-based startups that are poised to knock it out of the park (again). And it provides further proof, that one of the best training grounds for young entrepreneurs is to work in successful companies. By the way, both Dayforce and Rypple are hiring.

Are there other Workbrain children?