InNOVAcorp - Provincial I-3 Technology Start-Up Competition Launched



    MEMBERTOU, NS, Sept. 9 /CNW/ - More than $700,000 worth of seed
investment and business building services will be awarded to 10 start-up
companies in the 2009 provincial I-3 Technology Start-Up Competition.
    Building on the success of the 2007 competition, InNOVAcorp launched the
2009 competition today, Sept. 9, with the goal of creating new Nova Scotia
knowledge-based companies.
    "Innovation leading to a robust knowledge-based economy is critically
important for Nova Scotia's future prosperity," said Percy Paris, Minister of
Economic and Rural Development. "The InNOVAcorp I-3 competition has supported,
and will continue to support, the high-potential early stage companies that
keep our economy thriving."
    The competition will take place in five zones across the province. Each
first-place zone winner will receive a $100,000 award package and each second
place zone winner will receive a $40,000 award package of seed investment cash
and in-kind contributions for development of start-up ventures.
    One provincial winner will be selected from the five zone winners, and
awarded a $100,000 seed investment from InNOVAcorp's HPi Microfund.
    "In 2007-08, InNOVAcorp rolled out the I-3 Technology Start-Up
competition provincewide, and it was a huge success with over 120 entries from
all areas of Nova Scotia," said Dan MacDonald, president and CEO of
InNOVAcorp. "All 10 winners from the competition are moving forward and
constantly growing, and we hope to see the same level of entrepreneurial
spirit this time around."
    Piloted in Cape Breton in 2006, I-3 stands for Idea, Innovation,
Implementation, the early steps in the commercialization process. The
competition is meant to foster and support entrepreneurial spirit, build local
business capacity across Nova Scotia, and encourage new technology start-up
companies.
    "Starting a technology company is never easy, especially in today's
challenging economy," said Roland Swift, president and CEO of Digby-based
Morswift Machines, the 2007 I-3 Technology Start-Up Competition winner.
"Participating in, and ultimately winning, the I-3 Competition, then receiving
ongoing support and guidance from InNOVAcorp, have been key ingredients to
building our company."
    Zone 1 includes Cumberland, Colchester, Pictou, Antigonish and
Guysborough counties; Zone 2 includes Lunenburg, Queens, Shelburne and
Yarmouth counties; Zone 3 includes Digby, Annapolis, Kings and Hants counties;
Zone 4 includes Halifax Regional Municipality; and Zone 5 includes Cape Breton
Regional Municipality and Victoria, Inverness and Richmond counties.
    A six-person judging committee in each zone will include representatives
with relevant private-sector start-up business expertise. The committee will
consider the quality of the business idea the strength of the management team,
and the clarity and persuasiveness of the written plan and oral presentation.
    Entrepreneurs have until 5 p.m. on Thursday, Oct. 8, to submit entries.
Finalists will get professional assistance to polish their plans and pitches
during the competition's third and final round. The five zone winners will be
announced Jan. 26, and the provincial winner will be announced Feb. 9.
Submissions can be completed online at www.innovacorp.ca.

    InNOVAcorp helps early stage Nova Scotia companies commercialize
technologies and succeed in the global marketplace. InNOVAcorp's High
Performance Incubation (HPi) business model is recognized internationally as a
"best practice" technology commercialization approach. It incorporates
incubation infrastructure, business mentoring, and seed and venture capital
investment. InNOVAcorp engages high-potential, early stage companies to
provide hands-on business guidance, customized to address specific business
challenges. InNOVAcorp focuses on companies with innovative proprietary
technology and/or service offerings.
    
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    FOR BROADCAST USE:
    
    More than $700,000 worth of seed investment and business building
services will be awarded to 10 start-up companies in the 2009 provincial I-3
Technology Start-Up Competition.
    Building on the success of the 2007 competition, InNOVAcorp launched the
2009 competition today (September 9th), with the goal of creating new Nova
Scotia knowledge-based companies.
    Economic and Rural Development Minister Percy Paris says the InNOVAcorp
I-3 competition and its support of high-potential early stage companies are
key ingredients to Nova Scotia's prosperity.
    The competition will take place in five geographic zones across the
province. For more information, visit www.innovacorp.ca.




For further information:

For further information: Media Contacts: Teri Sproul, InNOVAcorp, (902)
424-8670 ext. 1155, Cell: (902) 225-7284, tsproul@innovacorp.ca; April
MacLeod, InNOVAcorp, (902) 424-8670 ext. 1177, Cell: (902) 441-9198,
amacleod@innovacorp.ca

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