Lions announced for 2016 LiON’S LAIR competition

Originally posted on



The Hamilton Chamber of Commerce and Innovation Factory are excited to announce the five Lions for the 2016 LiON’S LAIR Pitch Competition. For the first time, the panel features three women – including two well-known Hamilton entrepreneurs. Four Lions from the 2015 contest are returning: Mario Paron (KPMG), Michael Macaluso (CARSTAR), Cheri Chevalier (Microsoft) and Tonia Jahshan (Steeped Tea). Julie Ellis (co-founder Mabel’s Labels) is new to the Lair this year.

“With the recent naming of Tonia Jahshan as Canadian Business’ Top Female Entrepreneur, and Julie Ellis coming from Mabel’s Labels who were just acquired for $12M, we have Hamilton’s female entrepreneurs incredibly well represented. Women entrepreneurs are a fast-growing segment in Canada’s economy and we’re thrilled to be representing that with this year’s panel,” says David Carter, Executive Director at Innovation Factory.

Dr. Nick Bontis, award-winning business professor at McMaster University, will also return as the event emcee. “It says a lot about this event and what if offers the entrepreneur ecosystem that we have so many of Hamilton’s key business figures coming back to participate, year after year, “ adds Carter.

Applications for the competition closed April 29. The 35 companies who applied are waiting to hear whether or not they made it through two tough rounds of business plan judging to be part of the top 15 start-ups who will go through summer training. The first 15 finalists will be announced during the first week of June. In August, five more companies will be eliminated and 10 finalists will win the opportunity to pitch to the Lions for the chance to take home over $100,000 in cash and in-kind prizing.

Winners will be revealed at the September 29 gala event at Carmen’s Banquet Centre. Tickets go on sale in mid-July – check back for details!


Canadian Technology Accelerator in Boston (CTA @ Boston) – CALL FOR APPLICATIONS

CTA @ Boston


DEADLINE:  Thursday, June 2 2016


Apply to CTA@Boston


Program Placement: Fall/Winter 2016 (September – December)


The Canadian Technology Accelerator in Boston (CTA @ Boston) is a 4-month immersion program that connects your business to the unique resources and contacts in New England to help accelerate your growth. The benefits of participating in the CTA and the resources in Greater Boston are highlighted below.


WHO:  Accelerator candidates are small to mid-sized Canadian companies from life sciences, IT (Including green IT and health IT), robotics and security technologies, and emerging food product sectors, with initial traction in the market, differentiated technology, a strong and committee executive team, and the potential to scale the business through the CTA experience in Boston.


WHY: Benefits of participating in the CTA@Boston:

  • Handpicked team of mentors for each client –  CENE Mentoring Service – CENE mentors comprise a select group of 70 Canadians based in New England who are C-level executives from global technology and life science companies, successful entrepreneurs, venture capitalists and angel investors who are passionate about giving back to Canada by mentoring and growing a new generation of successful Canadian-led companies at the CTA@Boston
  • Space/services at the Cambridge Innovation Center (CIC) in Kendall Square. CIC has approximately $7B of venture capital headquartered within two buildings and is the largest start up co-working space, housing 800 innovative tech companies
  • Introduction to industry leaders, venture capitalists and other key resources by the Trade Commissioners
  • Pitch Coach to refine your in-market investor, partner, or client-focused presentation
  • Member privileges at key industry associations (MassBio, MassMEDIC, MIT Enterprise Forum of Cambridge, Mass TLC, New England Clean Energy Council (NECEC), New England Health Information Management Systems Society (NEHIMSS), TIE – Boston (The Indus Entrepreneurs Annual Conference is Tie- Con)
  • Weekly CTA@Boston Client Newsletter highlighting upcoming events/opportunities
  • Corporate Partnerships with Microsoft, HubSpot, Harvard Business School offering in-kind or discounted services and products


You’ll find the following resources in the Greater Boston area:

  • Highest Concentration of Global Technology and Pharmaceutical companies in the world
  • Strong technology and innovation cluster – over 2000 companies – (Microsoft, Google, Amazon, Akamai, IBM, Nuance … )
  • Over 400 biotechnology companies
  • World renowned research institutions -100+ academic institutions – (MIT, Harvard, Tufts, Northeastern)
  • 120+ Venture Capital Firms, Corporate VCs and Angel investors


Deadline is COB Thursday, June 2, 2016. More information at: website.


Click here for CTA@Boston Application

New Virtual and Augmented Reality Group


When: Thursday June 2nd 2016 at 7:00pm

Where: Halton Hive @ 901 Guelph Line, Burlington, Ontario


Organizer: Halton-Hamilton Virtual Augmented Reality Group


The Halton/Hamilton Meetup group is to bring together local businesses, developers, users and the curious into the worlds of VR and AR.   2016 will be the biggest year for VR/AR ever!!    We have secured two top sponsors  (MEUK Corporation which is a local Technology Commercializer and Buon Appetito to keep our reality engines going!!)

Very happy that SUBPAC will be running demos of both their Tactile Vest and Seat.  Very Cool and Very effective!   #NOWYOUFEELIT


Python Hamilton continues with June meetup



Editor’s note: great to see another meetup group forming in the Hamilton-area!


When: Wednesday June 1st 2016 7:00pm – 9:00pm

Where: CoMotion on King @ 115 King Street East, Hamilton



Follow us on Twitter if you aren’t already! @PythonHamilton

After the scheduling trouble we experienced with the last event, we’re going to hold future meetups at a new location: CoMotion on King! The wonderful people at the CoMotion Group have agreed to give us use of their space. If you haven’t been there before, it’s a beautiful 10,000ft coworking space with great AV equipment.

As a result of the new venue, the format will be a little different than last time: instead of presentations & refreshments together, we’ll be doing presentations first and then — for those who desire — we’ll move downstairs for refreshments.


– Colin Gorrie will be preaching about test-driven development (TDD) in Python

– Emily Horsman will be introducing us to Wagtail, a Django-based CMS


YWCA Women in I.T. program accepting applications



YWCA Hamilton‘s Women in I.T. program is still accepting applications for its June 6, 2016 start. This FREE program is open to eligible women facing barriers to skills upgrading and access employment in the I.T. sector. Participants in the program will receive Webmaster Certificate through Mohawk College, paid placement and job search support. Bus tickets and child minding are available.

Contact Jupiter at for registration.

Manufacturers urge feds to adopt digital manufacturing strategy



HAMILTON (May 25, 2016) – Digital manufacturing is reshaping manufacturing in Canada and around the world; Canada needs a national strategy to accelerate ‎adoption and creation.

‎Today Canadian Manufacturers & Exporters (CME) hosted an Industrie 2030 roundtable at Mohawk College with Greg Fergus, Parliamentary Secretary to the Minister of Innovation, Science and Economic Development, Filomena Tassi, MP, Hamilton West-Ancaster-Dundas, alongside industry leaders on innovation, digital manufacturing (additive manufacturing, robotics, 3D printing, and the Internet of Things), and the future of manufacturing in Canada.

“Today’s roundtable discussion on digital manufacturing and innovation reinforced the need for a national strategy on the future of manufacturing in Canada,” stated Jayson Myers, CME President & CEO. “Canadian companies are creating and have access to world leading technologies, but the mainstream of Canadian industry are not leveraging these technologies to their fullest capabilities to drive their businesses forward.”

Industrie 2030 roundtables are being held across the country to listen to Canadian manufacturers; input received from the roundtables will provide the foundation for a national strategy to double manufacturing and value added exports.

Today we heard many great examples and suggestions on how to accomplish these objectives, including:

  • Critical need to improve linkages and collaboration on research and commercialization between post-secondary institutions, large OEMs, and ‎SMEs;
  • Government support programs need to ‎better align to modern manufacturing and business realities, including modernizing the SR&ED program and investment supports, both of which are currently ‎based on outdated business realities; and,
  • Canadian companies must be better educated and increase adoption rates on advanced manufacturing technologies, especially the game changing abilities of digital technologies, to increase innovation and global competitiveness.

CME and its partners will continue to hold Industrie 2030 consultations on ‎the future of manufacturing in Canada until September 2016; the action report will be released at the first Manufacturing Summit on October 18-19, 2016 in Ottawa.

About Industry 2030 – Industrie 2030 aims to double manufacturing output and value added exports by 2030. Through a series of cross-country consultations, we will create a roadmap and implementation strategy to help us achieve this goal. The roadmap and implementation plan will be released at CME’s National Summit in Ottawa in October.


Patio party next week



When: Tuesday May 31st 2016 from 4:00pm to 7:00pm

Where: CoMotion 302 (formally known as Platform 302) at 302 Cumberland Avenue, Hamilton, ON




It’s Party Time!


Join the Comotion Group May 31 for a Patio Party! Food, Fun, Drinks to be had! This shindig will kick off around 4pm, with performances to commence at 5:00pm at the 302 Cumberland location.

Wait… was that performances? Yes, you will be the star of the show!


Have you heard of Lip Sync Battle?

It’s gone viral people! And now it is coming to us.

Put on your best dress baby, pick your favourite song and get ready to perform!

Everyone is invited to perform two songs.

For those who don’t want to sing, you get to be the panel of judges! You decide: who deserves to be champion?

In case you aren’t familiar with Lip Sync:

It’s good, real good!

This event is totally a community thing. We ask that you bring something scrumptious or a beverage of some sort. Please confirm your attendance and if you are bringing a guest along. Get read for some fun in the sun and awesome performances!


Open as a Way of Being with Chris Moore



Chris Moore is the former Chief Information Officer at the City of Edmonton, an advocate of an Open Ecosystem, Open Government and Open Innovation. Chris has been described as transformational, innovative and refreshing.

While in Edmonton Chris was the driving force behind the City of Edmonton’s Open Data and Open Government Strategy. Chris has returned home to Ontario and more specifically is very excited to be a Hamiltonian.

Chris would love to share the Edmonton Open Government story and create a space for a “Next Steps” conversation about Open Government in Hamilton.


When: Thursday June 9th 2016 from 6:30pm to 8:30pm

Where: CoMotion On King @ 115 King Street East

Agenda: Talk will start promptly at 7pm, with plenty of time for networking and discussion before and after.

Audience: This isn’t just for tech gurus – anyone interested in open data, open government and related topics is welcome to attend!



Freelancer meetup this Wednesday

When: Wednesday May 25th 2016 from 6:30pm to 8:30pm

Where: The Pheasant Plucker ” 20 Augusta Street, Hamilton, ON


Organizers: Freelancers Group




This month we are happy to welcome Elizabeth Thorsen from the Innovation Factory!

elizabethElizabeth is a graduate of the McMaster University’s Human Resources Management program, an alumni of Western University, and a proud Hamiltonian. For the past few years, she has become immersed in the world of entrepreneurship, both as the Program Manager at Innovation Factory, and also as a co-founder of the start-up company, Cinetic.

Through her experience, it became clear to Elizabeth that successful companies and entrepreneurs all have a few things in common: a clear view on their customer, a defined value proposition, and an understanding of how these factors – among others – fit into their business model. These factors can be examined and explained in one of the best tools for entrepreneurs, The Business Model Canvas. Join her to learn more about how you can set your business up for success.


6:30pm-7:00pm – Registration and mingling
7:00pm-7:30pm – Presentation
7:30pm-8:30pm – More getting to know others!


Street parking may be available nearby and is usually free after 6pm, check signs to be sure 🙂

There is plenty of parking in the IMPARK parking lot next to the venue. Entrance to the parking lot is accessible off James Street S. as well as off Augusta Street beside The Pheasant Plucker (20 Augusta). It is $4 for the evening.


Freelancer Meetups are monthly events. They are free, and open to all professionals, entrepreneurs, and freelancers in the Hamilton area, whether you’re just starting a freelancing consulting business, or you’re running a consulting business full time.

We bring in some of the best and brightest to give talks on ways to help you build and grow your entrepreneurial venture, along with networking.

The Hamilton Freelancers meetups are free to join to become a member and is open to freelancers of all skills and specialties, including designers, developers, marketers, videographers, photographers, writers, and everyone in between.