In March, more than 240 companies entered the 20th annual New Ventures BC Competition. After eight months of pitches, workshops and mentoring sessions, only ten companies remain.
The annual competition, presented by Innovate BC, attracts the province’s top start-ups and provides them with valuable mentorship, education and funding to help them start, scale and stay in British Columbia.
This year, the top ten companies represent a cross-section of industries—including fintech, cybersecurity and cleantech—while also featuring three ventures from regional communities.
Let’s take a quick look at this year’s top 10.
What they do: ABOzymes Biomedical converts all blood types into universal donor blood (O-Type), allowing any blood type to be used for any patient.
Why it matters: Universal donor blood is often in short supply. In emergency situations when there isn’t time to crossmatch a patient’s blood type, doctors have to use universal donor blood to save the patient’s life. By effectively doubling the supply of O-Type blood, ABOzymes is developing a potentially life-saving solution.
What they do: aDolus Technology Inc.’s FACT platform provides companies with an effective solution to safeguard against counterfeit or malicious software and firmware in smart devices.
Why it matters: From governments, to startups, to Fortune 500 companies, cybersecurity attacks impact organizations all over the world and can have a significant effect on a company’s bottom line. If just one file is compromised, a company’s sensitive data could be exposed, leading to potentially significant financial and reputational harm.
What they do: Castofly helps educators create digital content in a simple and intuitive way. Their AI-powered platform significantly reduces the time needed to produce video tutorials and makes it easy for teachers to share content with their students and peers.
Why it matters: The ongoing pandemic has accelerated the transition to online learning and Castofly provides educators with an easy way to create digital content, while also saving valuable time, money and resources. The company estimates that their proprietary algorithms can save educators up to 60% of total production time for each video they create.
Daanaa Resolutions Inc.
What they do: Daanaa’s chip-based, solar powered transfer system generates a sustainable and efficient way to wirelessly power electronic devices, ranging from light consumer electronics to electric vehicles.
Why it matters: Developing, implementing and accessing renewable energy sources provides a direct path to reducing emissions and creating a sustainable future. Given how many electronic devices are in use across the globe, Daanaa believes their innovative solution to powering these devices has the potential to change the world and increase the global availability of renewable energy.
What they do: Fable is a direct-to-consumer lifestyle brand that creates home accessories for millennials at an affordable price.
Why it matters: Traditional supply chains can create additional and unnecessary costs for consumers. Fable is breaking this model by providing high-quality, artisanal pieces at a reduced cost compared to other premium tableware sellers.
What they do: Flash Forest is a drone reforestation company that uses aerial mapping software, UAV hardware and automaton to reforest areas at 10x the normal rate and at a fraction of the cost.
Why it matters: In 2018, nearly 35 billion tons of CO2 was released into the atmosphere by humans. This number has steadily been on the rise and the fastest and cheapest way to capture this excess carbon is to plant trees. Flash Forest has the potential to curb rising emissions through their affordable and scalable reforestation solution.
MazumaGo (FKA DivDot)
What they do: MazumaGo digitizes business payments, making it easy for businesses to send and receive no-limit payments, all from one centralized dashboard.
Why it matters: The global pandemic has accelerated the need to digitize traditional payment methods. MazumaGo’s payment platform saves businesses time and money by optimizing payment processes, allowing companies to focus on their core business and maintain their competitive edge.
Industry: Mental Wellness
What they do: Rootd is the number one ranked app on both iOS and Android for people struggling with anxiety and panic attacks.
Why it matters: People all over the world battle with anxiety and need access to both short- and long-term support. The Rootd app, which has been downloaded by 300,000 users in 150 countries, provides direct relief to people through therapist-approved content and has received endorsements and validation from mainstream publications including Time Magazine and Cosmopolitan.
Industry: Influencer Marketing
What they do: ShopandShout’s platform gives companies the opportunity to connect with a growing community of more than 50,000 micro-influencers to effectively reach new audiences and increase brand awareness.
Why it matters: Digital marketing is one of the most effective ways companies can target specific demographics, connect with new customers, and increase sales. ShopandShout’s platform and massive network of influencers—which is expected to top 1 million in the next five years—makes it easy for brands and influencers to work together while creating a significant impact on a company’s bottom line.
Industry: Seafood traceability
What they do: ThisFish’s tally software collects real-time data from seafood processing plants to strengthen traceability, reduce non-compliance and increase yields.
Why it matters: The Tally software has the potential to directly improve the financial, social, and environmental sustainability of the seafood industry. From a business standpoint, the software cuts down labour time, speeds up reporting and uses data to increase productivity and efficiency across the supply chain.
Which of these ten companies will be named the province’s top start-up? Find out on November 23rd at the New Ventures BC Awards, presented by Innovate BC.
Register for the New Ventures BC Competition Awards here.