Tech Acceleration Program Launches in North Central B.C. and Kootenays

Prince George | BCBusiness
BCIC welcomed three new partners into its Venture Acceleration Program last week in Prince George.

Entrepreneurs in northern B.C. and the Kootenays get a boost as the BCIC announced the expansion of its tech sector accelerator

The BC Innovation Council (BCIC) welcomed three new partners in Prince George, Rossland and Golden for its province-wide, paid program designed to guide, coach and help grow early stage technology companies.

The program connects aspiring young tech companies with mentors to help coach and develop a network for a fee of $200 per month. Funded in part by the BCIC, a provincial Crown agency, the Venture Acceleration Program encourages participating entrepreneurs to develop a viable product, an investment pitch and a go-to-market plan all under the guidance of designated “executives-in-residence.”

Announced last Tuesday in Prince George, the BCIC’s new regional partner, the Innovation Central Society, hosted provincial officials and the recently appointed Minister of Technology Andrew Wilkinson for a roundtable about a dozen local technology-based businesses pitched their ideas “Dragon’s Den” style.

“The Venture Acceleration Program provides technology entrepreneurs anywhere in the province with easy access to highly qualified entrepreneurial expertise and know-how in an organized and consistent manner,” says Dean Prelazzi, managing director of the BC Acceleration Network, which developed and manages the program.

“If someone is very clever in Burns Lake or Mackenzie but doesn’t have someone to talk to about getting investment in their idea, or taking their idea to the next level, this program is here to do that,” Wilkinson said at Tuesday’s event.

Along with the Innovation Central Society, two Kootenays-based organizations–the Kootenay Association for Science and Technology and the Kootenay Rockies Innovation Council–also became partners with the BCIC, helping to expand the program across north central B.C.