Relationship Manager, Alberta IoT Association
Whether an established business integrating IoT, or a small solution provider looking to scale, the path to growth should not be a solo mission.
Alberta continues to make headlines in the tech sector, and for a good reason. According to Alberta Enterprise, over 2,800 tech companies exist in the province, a 203 percent increase from 2012. Many of these companies are scaling, with 38 percent reporting annual revenues greater than $1 million.1
How can the province and broader tech ecosystem support the remaining 62 percent to reach the next level of growth? How do we ensure the 38 percent continue scaling?
The most common reasons for small business failure include access to capital or funding, finding and retaining talent, business model flaws, and inadequate marketing initiatives.2 In response to these common failures, business accelerators and boot camps have become prominent in the province to support businesses at every stage. Alberta IoT developed the Fast Track Program to specifically support scale-up businesses with a vested interest in IoT and emerging technology through access to resources, mentorship, and a community willing to collaborate.
It has been incredibly rewarding to see organizations commit to the adoption of IoT, and even more rewarding to understand the impact it’s having on their business and the province.
A total of 32 companies graduated from the program in March of 2022, and another 36 are actively participating. By focusing first on the underlying business model, marketing, sales, financial and HR strategies, the program encourages strong foundations for growth. Facilitators then focus on expansion through grant and funding strategies, digital marketing, IP & patents, and international markets. Subject matter experts become coaches for one-on-one mentorship, working through challenges specific to each business.
“The value of the Alberta IoT Fast-Track program for our business has been the ability to step back and consider all the broad elements that come together in a scale-up entity,” commented Peter Solymos, Co-Founder and CTO of Analythium.io. “It forces you to think about the business through a different lens focused on growth. It’s not, however, just about knowledge sharing. It’s about connecting to the right people to make that knowledge actionable.”
While the Fast Track Program supports the growth of IoT and emerging tech companies, the impact goes beyond. Organizations in traditional industries, including oil and gas, construction, or agriculture, are realizing the value of IoT, and broader digital transformation, in their businesses.
As shared by Executive Director of Alberta IoT, Brenda Beckedorf, “it has been incredibly rewarding to see organizations commit to adoption of IoT, and even more rewarding to understand the impact it’s having in their business and the province, Jobs are being created. Revenue generated. New markets accessed. That’s incredibly rewarding to be a part of.”
For the 2,800 technology companies in Alberta, or more traditional firms looking to accelerate growth through technology, consider this a reminder that scaling up is not a solo journey.
About Alberta Iot Association
Alberta IoT is a non-profit member-based association on a mission to position Alberta as the worldwide Centre of Excellence for Internet of Things (IoT) and emerging technologies. The member companies collaborate to provide a common voice to advance the knowledge, adoption, and growth of the IoT industry within Alberta and throughout the world.