Venn Innovation Announces New Board Members & Strategic Priorities

Moncton – December 12, 2018

Venn Innovation welcomed two new Board members and new Executive Committee members during its 2018 Annual General Meeting today in Moncton.  Assuming the role of Board Chairman is Pablo Asiron, Executive Vice President of Global Business Development at MASITEK Instruments Inc, and Tammy Godfrey, Senior Director Human Resources at IGT becomes the new Vice Chair. Joining the Board are Daniella DeGrace CEO of ProcedureFlow and Wayne Chamberlain, President of Intelisys Aviation Systems.  “This is a time of exciting growth and opportunity in New Brunswick’s tech sector” said Venn President and CEO Doug Robertson. “It is also a time of significant challenges, especially around talent, and I am excited to welcome two industry leaders – Wayne and Daniella – to the team.”

In his remarks, outgoing Venn Chairman Roddy Awad, President and CEO of TKS noted “These past two years have seen continued growth for Venn as it has cemented its place as New Brunswick’s tech and innovation industry association and as a leader in the development of the provincial and regional innovation ecosystems.” He added “From its beginnings in 2010 as a locally-focused innovation intermediary, the corporation has successfully made the transition to a province-wide mandate, and in the past two years to become the first innovation hub to deliver programming in all four Atlantic provinces.” 

Before presenting the strategic priorities for Venn for the next three to five years, Robertson outlined some of the impact of Venn’s current programs and services that would not have been possible without the support of its industry and government partners.  These include: the soft landing of 18 New Brunswick companies in international markets through Venn’s role as the New Brunswick hub in the Canadian Digital Media Network; provision of key market data to over 100 early stage companies through its pan-Atlantic Market Intelligence program that has delivered a value of over $5M to date; Competitive Intelligence training to 66 companies, including nearly 100 individuals across Atlantic Canada that has helped to accelerate their growth; lead generation support to 20 companies that has resulted in $1.23M dollars of sales to date; and assistance to over 70 startups through Venn’s early stage incubation program, the Venn Garage.  In addition, Venn has provided training in key business areas such as sales and product management and helping to nurture talent through its current cohort of ten interns focused on international growth.

Building on this record of success, Robertson announced that as the corporation moves into 2019, its 10th year of operations, the three strategic priorities for Venn will include startup services, growth and scaling stage programming, and talent services. “We will continue to work closely with later stage companies with our growth programming and services as they prepare to scale as well as with startup teams to foster entrepreneurship with our Garage program.” said Robertson. He added “We also realise that tech companies around the world are competing in a global war for talent.  It’s the number one issue facing our industry, and the numbers are daunting – which is why Venn is prepared to play its role to help fill the talent pipeline and we will be announcing details of our new talent services early in 2019.”  Venn, as one of the three leading innovation hubs in Atlantic Canada, will also continue to work with industry and government partners across the region to strengthen the services and programs available to tech industry entrepreneurs. 

Incoming Chairman Pablo Asiron closed the meeting by saying “As we look forward to 2019 and beyond, we see exciting opportunities for a range of tech and innovative companies. With exciting advancements and opportunities ahead in industries like advanced manufacturing, fintech, cybersecurity and more, enabled by technological developments like artificial intelligence, blockchain and growing computing power, we see a bright future for New Brunswick and our region. Atlantic Canada has innovative companies and technologies that can compete on the world stage.  The role of Venn, and similar organizations across the region, is to ensure that those entrepreneurs and companies are provided with the resources and opportunities vital to their success.”

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