Announcing the Alpha Exchange Innovation Campaign, a contest for start-up Canadian companies and a year-long editorial and mentoring campaign. The contest is presented by Backbone magazine and the Alpha Group.

Registration is open!

TORONTO, Feb. 8, 2012 /CNW/ - Backbone magazine and The Alpha Exchange are excited to launch the Start Me Up Innovation Campaign.

The Alpha Exchange Innovation Campaign is about finding inspired Canadian technology ideas, and helping entrepreneurs bring those ideas to the marketplace. The product or service can focus on any sector and use any type of technology.

The campaign includes the following:

  1. Prizes: $95,000 in prizes (part seed capital, part products and services)
  2. A live pitch event, judged by leading technology and business leaders
  3. A full year of follow-up editorial exposure (successes, challenges, advice) in print and online

The top 200 applicants will also receive invitations to the World Congress on Information Technology (WCIT), Oct. 22 to 24 in Montreal.

The competition application form is online at www.backbonemag.com/startmeup

Qualified entrants are early-stage companies, with revenue of no more than $2 million annually. Successful entrants will have a ready-to-sell product or service and a complete business plan and market analysis. Any business or technology sector is relevant.

Timing of campaign

Launch/Contest Applications             February 7, 2012 - March 31, 2012
Judging             April 2 - 21, 2012
Awards Event             May 16, 2012
Follow-Up Winner Stories - Online and Print             May 2012 - April 2013

Backbone will create an online "Innovation Campaign Portal" in addition to the publication, where readers can monitor the winner's advancements, successes, resources and challenges in weekly blog posts, tweets and other Web content.

"The campaign is consistent with Backbone's mandate of inspiring innovation and helping companies learn from other businesses", says Steve Dietrich, Publisher of Backbone magazine.

Alpha Group, the founding sponsor, is an organization established in 2007 to reinvigorate trading in Canada. With its Alternative Trading System, Alpha Group brought the change the financial industry was waiting for in the trading space. Now, with the formation of its Exchange, Alpha Group is looking at bringing similar change to the Canadian listing space driven by what issuers and investors need.

"We are determined to help build the eco-system that Canadian technology entrepreneurs are currently missing in the initial and early stages of their business." states Jos Schmitt, CEO of Alpha Group.

Additional Gold, Silver and Bronze sponsors include: HP, ORION, Ceridian, Ryerson Digital Media Zone, Wildeboer Dellelce, BCTIA's Centre for Growth, Financial Technology Partners, World Congress on Information Technology (WCIT).

Backbone magazine is a broad based business magazine focused on technology. Distribution is 100,000 copies to The Globe and Mail subscribers, 1,000 to Air Canada Lounges, 3,000 to 4,000 copies to trade shows per issue. Backbone targets educated, influential and affluent decision makers, early adopters, forward-thinking executives who strive to keep up to date with important technology trends for business and personal use.

SOURCE Backbone Magazine

For further information:

Sue Ansell
Backbone Online Communications Manager

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