Tag Archives: ocri

Global Entrepreneurship Week

Global Entrepreneurship Week 2011 is celebrated during the week of Nov. 14th-20th 2011.


There are various events in the National Capital Region and the OCRI website has details on some of them.

Lead To Win will be celebrating their successes on Thu. Nov. 17th from 4-7pm. To follow the conversation follow the hastags #leadtowin #GEWnews on Twitter.

Carleton University’s Technology Innovation Management program are also hosting an event for their students and those interested in attending the program.

Are you having an event? Let us know when and where.

By Natasha D'Souza

Land Your Dream Job, 2.0 – June 22nd (Wednesday)


Harley from Shopify just pinged me about a great event that OCRI is hosting as part of their smarTALKS series. The event takes place on June 22nd at Mercury Lounge & is FREE to attend. If you’re looking to figure out how to land your dream job, this is the place to be on the 22nd.

To register for the event (FREE), check out the OCRI Page Directly: Landing Your Dream Job

Summary of Event:

From custom landing pages to personal branding, the traditional strategy for landing your dream job may no longer be effective. Particularly in the startup and technology space, successful candidates are thinking outside the box and creating customized application packages that market to target employers using unique methodologies and tactics. This renaissance of creativity among motivated candidates has raised the bar for entry into many high growth companies. The panel will focus on sharing some of these contemporary tools as well as best practices for landing a job at the tech firm or startup of you choice. In additiona, the panel will discuss trends in current hiring practices and will provide an analysis of how things have changed over the past few years.


  • Brittany Forsyth, Head of HR, Shopify
  • Mike Freeman, Shopify Marketing
  • Luc Levesque, Founder and GM, TravelPod (Trip Advisor)
  • Doug Tetzner, Partner, Odgers Berndtson


  • Harley Finkelstein, CPO, Shopify

Date: Wednesday June 22, 2011

  • 4:00 p.m. – 4:30 p.m. – Registration/Networking
  • 4:30 p.m. – 5:30 p.m. – Presentation
  • 5:30 p.m. – 6:00 p.m. – Networking

Mercury Lounge (Map)
56 Byward Market Square

(Parking is available at nearby public parking lots)

Cost: FREE – pre-registration required

For planning purposes, pre-registration closes at 5:00 pm on Tuesday June 21, 2011

By Aydin Mirzaee

OCRI Company Directory – Register Yourself Today!

Bruce Firestone from Exploriem.org just sent us a note about the OCRI Ottawa Companies database. OCRI has been maintaining a database of companies in the Ottawa region for a while and so if you’re not on the list, make sure to register yourself today! Submitting yourself is completely free and you’ll even get a link back to your website – which is always a good thing :)

You can see if you’re already on the list here: http://www.ottawaregion.com/Tech_Database/index.php

If you’re not, you can register yourself here: http://www.ottawaregion.com/Tech_Database/Register.php

By Aydin Mirzaee

Most Promising Startup of the Year – OCRI Awards (Deadline in 4 Days)

It’s that time of the year again and the OCRI Awards are collecting nominations for a variety of categories including “Most Promising Startup of the Year.” Some of the past winners were: Telepin/Embotics/Menova Energy Inc.

If you’re not familiar with OCRI, they’re the local organization that also runs the Entrepreneurship Center Downtown and the Popular E2 (Entrepreneur’s Edge Program) program.

The OCRI Awards is an awesome opportunity to get some recognition for your achievements in the year. If you’re running a startup in town, you should really consider nominating your company for the award: http://ocri.ca/events/ocri-awards

Here are some other award categories that you may consider as well:

  • OCRI Company of the Year
  • Next Generation Executive of the Year
  • Strategic Partnership
  • Most Promising Start-up
  • Product of the Year
  • Solution of the Year Award
  • Research Award
  • Health Innovation Award
  • Student Researcher of the Year
  • Student Entrepreneur
  • High School Innovation
By Aydin Mirzaee

smarTalks – Shopify, Plank and Napkyn – an OCRI event

Awesome event about eCommerce coming up on
Thursday, November 25th from 4-6pm.
Learn more here: Upcoming smarTalk on eCommerce


Tobias Lutke, CEO, Shopify
Warren Wilansky, CEO, Plank
Jim Cain, CEO, Napkyn


Harley Finkelstein, Director & General Counsel, Shopify

Keynote Summary:

In the past few years, the concept and practice of eCommerce has shifted from a small niche market industry, cornered by the likes of Amazon, eBay, and Zappos, to a mainstream business practice that is at the core of almost every company. From service providers to wholesalers, eCommerce is no longer limited to a select few brands that had the foresight to beta test an online retail presence in the 90′s; today anyone who can effectively use “email” can launch an online shop and commercialize the business or hobby on the web.

The discussion will be focused on new trends – such as brick-and-mortar to brick-and-click conversions in the conventional retail model, the democratization of eCommerce (from students to retirees to mompreneurs), and what the landscape will look like in the coming years.

By Aydin Mirzaee

Awesome Free Event: New Company Success Framework!

The fall 2010 Entrepreneur’s Edge (e2) program leads with a new half day session (…it is free!):

Nov 3rd – 8:00am-1:30pm (first speaker starts at 8:30am)

“NewCo Success Framework – from Garage to Going Concern”

Topic 1 – Startup Environment – Intro (Rainer Paduch)
· The Entrepreneur challenge
· The Investor problem
· Why do companies fail?
· Managing risk elements
· What it takes to build a company
· Building a Company Strategy

Topic 2 – Market Strategy – where’s the money? (Peter Fillmore)
· Success secrets of RIM, Apple, Cognos
· Chasm-crossing stages & key changes
· Disruption – choosing a way to beat incumbents
· Roles of Product Line Management, Sales, and Marketing
· Resource issues in startups, and solutions

Topic 3 – Guest Entrepreneur success story (over sandwiches)
· Guest speaker Bob Huggins, with his Cold North Wind Inc. entrepreneurial success story

More Info and registration at www.ocri.ca/e2 – follow the link to “e2 Start” at right side of page.

By Aydin Mirzaee

Three e2 Sessions Coming up


Peter Fillmore just contacted us to tell us about three upcoming e2 (Entrepreneur’s Edge) sessions:

March 4th – “Bootstrap Market Entry” (8:00am – 3:00pm)
-          Session leaders Caroline Somers and Rick O’Connor

-          At OCRI on Queensview Drive

March 18th – “Leading Effective Executive Teams” (8:00am-4:00pm)
-          Session leader Doug Somers

-          At OCRI on Queensview Drive

May 6th – “Bootstrap Corporate Structure and IP Strategies” (8:00am-12:00noon)
-          Session leaders Andrew Foti and Sol Avisar

-          At Entrepreneurship Centre downtown (in City Hall at Elgin/Laurier)

More Info:

For all these “e2 Plus” programs, most of the workshop time is in hands-on problem-solving mode, and we encourage participants to bring their specific business issues and challenges, so immediately valuable progress can be made for each company. In addition peer-to-peer interactions and learning is a valuable by-product of these sessions.
Also, for these e2 Plus Programs, a special reduced price of $50 is available to graduates of the main e2 Program, and all Lead to Win (LTW) Program participants.

Second – the Main e2 Program runs over 5 half days in March – dates as below (details on Web at www.ocri.ca/e2 ). This blockbuster program is designed and delivered by tech innovation entrepreneurs, for entrepreneurs – and has graduated over 120 people, generated millions of dollars of investment money and customer revenues for graduates, and helped add or sustain hundreds of tech innovation jobs in the Ottawa area. The e2 program is also run in Waterloo by the Centre for Business, Entrepreneurship & Technology (CBET).
March 15-16th       Section 1 – “Success Framework”   ((7:30 am – 12:45pm)
-          Introduction (Early stage company context), Company Strategy, Team building and Management, Market Strategy

March 22-23rd       Section 2 – “Market Development”  (7:30am to 2:45pm on day 1, 12:45pm on day 2)
-          Market Value Assessment, Product Line Management (PLM), Sales Management, Go-to-Market Management

March 30th              Section 3 – “Financial and Funding”   (7:30am – 3:45 pm)
-          Financial view of Innovation product formation, Funding of innovative products and companies, Investor pitch

More e2 info, a free Ottawa Entrepreneurship white paper, and a free “direction-setting” coffee discussion available by contacting e2 program manager Peter Fillmore – pfillmore@ocri.ca .

By Aydin Mirzaee

BootStrap Awards Results

This past Friday, I got a chance to attend the Bootstrap awards which was organized by Bruce Firestone’s Exploriem.org and OCRI. It was great to see so many startups out there – and particularly ones that I’d never had a chance to meet previously. The event was a great networking opportunity and it was encouraging to see the ever-increasing startup activity in this city :)

Here is a list of the winners taken from OCRI’s webpage:

Congratulations to all the finalists and winners of a 2010 Bootstrap Award:

  1. Best New Micro Business of the Year
    Nominees should have annual revenues of less than or equal to $100,000.00

    Gold  - Network Hippo Inc
    Silver – EventBots
    Bronze – DoGood Headquarters

  2. Fastest Growing 20 and under Bootstrap Startup of the Year
    Nominee must have been aged 20 years or under when the organization was started and the organization must be three years old or less.

    Gold  -  Stewart Supreme Vending
    Silver –  Full House Poker
    Bronze –  Jennifer Lee Promotions

  3. Best New Web Site of the Year
    Nominees should demonstrate how the website’s design and usability supports the business model. Success indicators may include traffic and online sales.

    Gold  -  Wedding Republic
    Silver –  Citifry Inc.
    Bronze –  Jennifer Lee Promotions

  4. Best New Technique for Sales, Pre-Sales or Launch Clients
    Nominees should demonstrate proven ability to identify and engage pre-launch and launch customers.

    Gold  -  CrowdWave Games
    Silver –  Unique Auction
    Bronze –  University Shopping

  5. Best Value Differentiation Technique of the Year
    Presented to the company who is best able to articulate their differentiated value. See:http://www.dramatispersonae.org/DifferentiatedValueAnotherLook.htm. 

    Gold  - UCreate Media  
    Silver –  Fluid Surveys
    Bronze –  Adjoy

  6. Best ‘Pixie Dust’ Technique of the Year 
    Presented to the company that best demonstrates the magic behind their success. See:http://www.dramatispersonae.org/PixieDustDefinition.htm.

    Gold  -  Business Services, ETC (BSETC)
    Silver –  UCreate Media
    Bronze –  DoGood Headquarters

  7. Most Innovative Source of Bootstrap Capital of the Year
    Presented to the company with the most innovative source of capital outside of traditional capital investment sources.

    Gold  -  MartSmart Shopping Network
    Silver –  Business Services, ETC (BSETC)
    Bronze –  DualCode Inc.

  8. Best Guerrilla Marketing Idea or Campaign of the Year
    Presented to the company or organization with the most clever and successful guerrilla or social marketing tactic or campaign.

    Gold  -  Social Mention
    Silver –  DoGood Headquarters
    Bronze –  Ripple Adventure

  9. Most Innovative New Bootstrap Business Model of the Year
    Presented to the company with the most innovative business model which enables the company to compete effectively within their target markets.

    Gold  -  Shopify
    Silver –  UCreate Media
    Bronze –  Lease to Own Experts

  10. Fastest Growing Bootstrap Startup
    Presented to the organization with significant top line growth. Organizations must be ten years of age or less and not have received outside funding of more than $650,000.

    Finalists: Mobile Money, MacGregor Media, Runamok Party Rentals, MediaMiser, Business Services, ETC (BSETC), Shopify, Unique Auction
    Winner to be announced at the OCRI Awards, April 8th at Hilton Lac Leamy

By Aydin Mirzaee

Claude Haw at Mayor’s Breakfast

chaw01Michael Curran of the Ottawa Business Journal sent a reminder that Claude Haw, President and CEO of OCRI, will speak at the Mayor’s Breakfast on November 27th to unveil his vision for OCRI.

If you don’t know Claude, check-out this event…he’s a really nice guy doing great things at OCRI.

By Scott Lake

OCRI Zone5 Marketing Forum – Social Media

Natasha D’Souza just pinged me to let me know about an upcoming event from OCRI that she’s participating in (a Zone5 event). Here is a brief description:

“If you are like many organizations, you have likely begun to add some elements of social media to your marketing tactics. But how do you leverage these new channels to truly engage customers in meaningful conversations, and to gather and respond to market feedback?

In this Zone5ive session, you will learn how to use Twitter, Facebook, YouTube and Blogs to listen to and engage your audience, and to build your own online community using open source tools and hosted services.”

Find out more on the Zone5 Marketing Forum page.

By Aydin Mirzaee