Every summer, Kamloops Innovation brings in entrepreneurs, mentors, community builders, and all-around cool people from the tech industry to hang out in Kamloops, work from our space, and dive into our startup community.
“Shout out to Kamloops Innovation. Easily the best & most genuine startup community in Western Canada.”
– Sahr Saffa, Founder & CEO of CruxAR
Colin How, BCIC Entrepreneur-in-Residence, Strategic Advisor
Colin has been building companies as a founder, operator, executive, advisor, director, investor and mentor since him and his brothers set up a penny fair in the back yard in the late 70’s.
His focus has always been the optimization of talent and capital within an organization combined with customer centric value to drive growth.
Colin’s passion is to help people, teams and companies reach new levels of success through strategy, leadership, entrepreneurship and performance.
Jason Kryski – Managing Partner, and Giuseppe Burtini – Director of Technology
Strawhouse scales customer acquisition for high growth companies. We provide the capital, creative, strategy and technology required to massively scale customer acquisition. We have accelerated our partners’ expansion in verticals such as mobile apps, fashion & apparel, health & beauty, CPG, finance and e-commerce to name a few. From ideation to funding, Strawhouse works quietly alongside dozens of the world’s fastest growing and most disruptive brands.
Cassio Gregorio, Cofounder – Lolaguide
Lolaguide is a platform that allows travelers to find guides (local friends) and trips/activities anywhere in the world. We are a community marketplace that connects travelers, tour guides and travel agencies worldwide.
Charles Kelly, Cofounder – First Guidance
First Guidance helps organizations and communities world-wide to finance, design, build, operate, and maintain guided transportation systems. Guided transportation systems use vehicle-to-infrastructure technologies for safety and logistics information.
Guy Halford-Thompson, Founder and CEO of Blockchain Tech Ltd.
BTL develops platforms built on blockchain, an innovative new technology that uses cryptography to securely and immutably record information. BTL offers businesses the opportunity to utilize the blockchain by creating easy to use and intuitive platforms. Their platforms help businesses become more efficient by working alongside existing legacy systems, and also open new opportunities that may have not previously been available.
Craig Elias, Entrepreneur-in-
Residence at Bow Valley College and CEO of SHiFT Selling Inc.
Craig Elias is the creator of Trigger Event Selling™, and the Chief Catalyst of SHiFT Selling, Inc.
For almost 20 years, Craig used Trigger Event strategies to become a top sales performer at EVERY company that has hired him – including WorldCom where he was named the #1 salesperson within six months of joining the company.
Craig’s Trigger Event strategies have:
- Won him a $1,000,000 prize in a global “Billion-Dollar Idea” pitch competition
- Earned him coverage on NBC news, in The New York Times,The Wall Street Journal, Nikkei Marketing Journal, Business 2.0, The Globe and Mail, The National Post, Sales and Marketing magazine, Venture Magazine, Calgary Inc.
- Earned his last company, the distinction as one of “Silicon Valley’s 40 hottest” and one of Dow Jones™ 50 most promising companies in North America
Roman Hermens, Nimbus Creative
For forward-thinking startups and established organizations seeking to create, enhance or refresh their digital presence. Nimbus Creative is a brand and digital design firm located in Edmonton, Alberta.
Sahr Saffa, Founder & CEO
Andrew Walz, Lead iOS Developer
CruxAR is an application that integrates augmented reality into every day life, encouraging real-life digital discovery. Crux is giving people a new way to connect with each other and interact with their environment, through the Crux Discovery application and changing how companies market themselves and engage their audience
Event: New product pitch, one-on-one testing with designers in the community
Tarah Ferguson, Media Communications Producer at BCIC and Founder of SheBuiltThat.
Tarah is the founder and creator of YouTube series Tarah Talking Tech: Women In Tech and She Built That, a podcast and website that celebrates female entrepreneurs. Tarah envisions a world where women are celebrated for building their own businesses and created She Built That to empower women to build any business on their own terms. When she is not “building” She Built That, Tarah works part-time as the Media Communications Manager at the BC Innovation Council, serves on the TedXGastownWomen Committee and is the host of the Vinetta Project Vancouver Chapter.
Annee Ngo, VP of Protohack
Annee is an avid adventurer, self-proclaimed wordsmith and perpetual problem solver. She is in love with the process that is breaking down a goal into small, digestible pieces and integrating all of the working parts in order to realize an idea. Presently, Annee is the Vice President of San Francisco based startup ProtoHack.
Prior to ProtoHack, Annee was a co-founder and CEO of GH Nutrition Inc., a health & fitness lifestyle brand that started as a single supplement retail shop. Today, it is a franchised corporation with multiple locations, an international distributor, an apparel line, a fitness studio, and healthy snack bar.
Erin Handy, Executive Director at Kootenay Association for Science and Technology
Erin Handy has 13 years’ experience in policy development, stakeholder management and public relations; non-profit finance & fundraising; program and project development & implementation. Highlights include development of multi-year federal and provincial government funding contracts (2011-2019); design/funding of the $2m MIDAS applied research, commercialization & training centre for the metallurgical sector surrounding Trail, B.C. (2015); the launch of Canada’s first carbon tax via the B.C. Ministry of Finance (2008); launch of KAST’s first paid coaching program (2013); and co-founding of the RoboGames with the Nelson Tech Club (2012). Erin joined KAST in 2011. Another urban refugee, she relocated to Rossland in 2008, worked at the Trail Daily Times as a reporter, and fell in love with the West Kootenay lifestyle. Erin has a Bachelor’s Degree in Political Science from Carleton University.
Rose Hoeher, Business Coaching Coordinator at Kootenay Association for Science and Technology
Rose Hoeher coordinates coaching services for entrepreneurs at KAST, through both the KAST Mentorship & Business Assistance (KASTmba) program and the Venture Acceleration Program (VAP). A serial entrepreneur, Rose has run a number of ventures. Bucking the trend in the male-dominated fashion industry, she and a female business partner launched their own successful modelling agency in Toronto. Later she went on to open a giftware importing business from the Philippines. As human resources manager at the early stage internet technology company Simply Audiobooks Inc., Rose was part of a fast paced, dynamic tech company. From Nelson BC, Rose and her husband ran Recyclers Source Solutions, a thriving industrial equipment distribution business. Rose is a certified business and life coach.
Geoff Dittrich, Associate Lawyer at Segev LLP
Geoff is a corporate and commercial business lawyer in Vancouver, British Columbia (BC) that works predominantly with growth-stage technology companies.
He began his career in business at BlackBerry. He went on to co-found technology companies and social ventures. It was through those experiences, that he came to understand the legal needs of a business owner, and has since built a legal practice focused on delivering that value.
With prior experience at one of Vancouver’s largest full-service law firms, Geoff has since joined Segev LLP as an associate lawyer.
He works with clients that are involved in online crowdfunding, digital health, wearable technology, software-as-a-service (SaaS), mobile application development, social networking, HR technology, big data, traditional and virtual retail and financial services.
Event: Open Sourced Software + Legal Issues
Ronald Iacobelli and Nicolas Bouchon, Founders of Spur Innovations
Spur Innovations Corp.(SPUR) is an innovative vehicle control solutions company. We develop products which address the two largest issues with vehicles – Safety and Emissions.
The automotive industry is on the cusp of a major technology convergence.
- Automation – advancements in sensors and silicon are enabling greater machine awareness artificial intelligence;
- Connectivity – wireless technologies and internet enabled clouds stream data all around us;
- Electrification – technologies are becoming more compact and efficient.
At SPUR we develop systems to harness all of these technologies to make vehicles safer and cleaner.
Kim Cope, Founder & CEO of StartupSkool
Startup Skool is a community of creatives, trailblazers, visionaries, and most importantly, entrepreneurs. We are committed to educating youth on how to think with an entrepreneurial mindset, so that one day they can tackle our society’s most difficult social and environmental problems.
Gray Robinson, Startup Operations and Business Development at Anzu Partners
Anzu Partners teams with entrepreneurs and strategic players to transform their industries with investment and insight.
Industrial: We fund high-impact ventures in manufacturing, mining and energy
Consumer: We develop products and fund companies that create healthy and sustainable lifestyles
Andrew Greer, Programs Manager at Accelerate Okanagan
Accelerate Okanagan is the tech accelerator that provides the necessary tools, disciplines and structure required for success, in an innovative not-for-profit, zero-equity-stake model that works better, in a place where people live better.
Event: Social Innovation
Daryl Chymko, Developer and Community Builder
Web developer, community builder & outdoor adventurer.
Daryl works with startups and consulting firms to build exceptional software products. Some of the companies he has worked for include ChangeHeroes and Fresh Grade. Currently Daryl is a consultant with Universal Mind.
Amit Mathur, COO at Livecare
Amit Mathur is co-owner and founder of Omni Eye & Vision Inc. – an ophthalmology and optometry clinic with multiple locations across British Columbia. Over the years he has sat on national advisory boards to multiple pharmaceutical companies. He has a passion for rural healthcare and has participated in international conferences and seminars in Asia as an advisor and keynote speaker on rural healthcare delivery.
Amit has been part of the team lead on trade missions with the Secretary of State of Washington to India and has been an Advisory board to Cross Border Education( training and educating nurses internationally) and Quality Program Services Inc.( BC Hydro’s delivery agent for the Energy Conservation Assistance Program (ECAP) in the Lower Mainland). Dr. Mathur is also a partner at The Deetken Group – Business Advisory and Asset Management.
Lunch and Learn: Livecare
Bill Tam, CEO of BC Tech Association (Previously BCTIA)
The BC Tech Association is guided by our vision of making BC the best place to grow a tech company. For more than 20 years, BC Tech (formerly the BCTIA) have been providing opportunities for the tech industry to collaborate, learn, and grow together. We are dedicated to connecting companies, developing talent, sharing stories, and advocating on behalf of tech companies to keep our industry thriving.
Keith Ippel, Cofounder & Partner at Spring
With over 15 years experience as a leader in technology centric businesses, Keith has accelerated the growth of both small and large companies, launched new products, and raised over $20m in angel investment and venture capital. He has an unparalleled ability to collaborate with entrepreneurs, employees, and investors to deliver amazing products to the market. Keith is passionate about creating opportunities that previously did not exist for people and co-founded Spring to bring that into the social venture space.
David Paquet Pitts and Sam Hallé – OKAM
Founded in 2010 in Montreal and counting now over 20 employees working in two offices, one in Quebec and one in British Columbia, Okam is an agency specialized in the design and production of web and mobile experiences for large companies. The agency’s portfolio includes, among others, renowned companies such as Bell Media, Kombi, and Arrow.
Lars Lofgren, KISSMetrics
Lars originally joined KISSmetrics to write blog posts and run webinars. After 26 webinars which generated thousands of leads for KISSmetrics, Lars now manages their Growth Team and is responsible for improving the conversion rates at KISSmetrics. Most of his time is spent on launching back-to-back A/B tests, managing internal data, and building out infrastructure for the rest of the marketing team. He also advises startups and consults for tech companies in his spare time. He can be found on Twitter at @larslofgren.
Events: 1) Startup Analytics 2) Growth Hacking and Building a Growth Team, and 3) The Most Important Part of Your Growth – Pricing
Miguel Kudry, Co-Founder of HelpHub
HelpHub lets students get tutoring help instantly, at any time.
Our platform connects tutors and students over phone and online video calls. All users are able to connect for free, through messaging and Q&A features, which create online communities around networks and schools, which provide all users with an insider’s point of view on courses, materials, and school work.
Event: Founder’s Story