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Tech-based businesses get $2.7 million boost in PEC with private/public investment

Bay of Quinte MP Neil Ellis noting a good headline in PELA CFDC's press release - "MP Ellis announces $2.7 million in venture capital funding for tech firms in PEC".

Bay of Quinte MP Neil Ellis the fineheadline in PELA CFDC’s press release – ‘MP Ellis announces $2.7 million in venture capital funding for tech firms in PEC’ at Friday’s announcement at Huff Estates Winery.

Six technology-based businesses will be moving forward with innovative ideas thanks to a private/public investment.

Bay of Quinte MP Neil Ellis, before a business community gathering at Huff Estates Winery on Friday, announced investments totalling $2.7 million, resulting in the creation of 15 skilled jobs with the potential for more. Funding of $1.35 million from Prince Edward Lennox and Addington Community Futures Development Corporation (PELA CFDC) upper Canada equity fund was matched by $1.35 million in investment from private sector investment partner, First Stone Venture Partners.

“Building our rural economy is about keeping our youth here and it’s about small business,” said Ellis. “It is essential for the government to provide the necessary resources to create conditions that foster economic growth, jobs and prosperity. “Locally, our economy relies heavily upon small business expansion, innovation and entrepreneurship.”

PEC Mayor Robert Quaiff

PEC Mayor Robert Quaiff

It was good news for Prince Edward County Mayor Quiaff, who noted he has been pleased to watch the birth and growth over the past few years of the First Stone Ventures and PELA Upper Canada Equity Fund partnership.

“We’ve always been recognized as being a slow-growth area in eastern Ontario, which makes funding difficult. How do you like us now?” he quipped. “Because we are adding to that element of economic growth and sustainability in eastern Ontario thanks to the efforts of First Stone Ventures and thanks to the efforts of these new businesses coming into Prince Edward County.”

Myke Predko, of Mimetics, demonstrated and explained the small robot for classroom use, to councillor Barry Turpin.

Myke Predko, of Mimetics, demonstrated and explained the small robot for classroom use, to councillor Barry Turpin.

Myke Predko, of Mimetics, was demonstrating a small robot that can easily be used in classrooms that “really shows that technology is not something that’s hard or unapproachable and not something only smart kids can do.”

He started out as a volunteer providing robotics programs through the Ontario Science Centre.

“We discovered we had something that was really kind of magical in terms of changing the way students look at science and technology,” “It’s something that everybody can do.”

Success is measured by how many students enrol in academic math and science in Grade 9.

“For females, in Grade 9 it’s nine or 10 per cent before our program. After our program, that number goes up to 91 per cent. With boys it increases from 30 per cent to 82 per cent.”

Melina Salomon explains Gomma's designs in synthetic rubber for the fashion industry during the funding announcement Friday at Huff Estates Winery.

Melina Salomon explains Gomma’s designs in synthetic rubber for the fashion industry.

Gomma, explained Melina Salomon, produces engineered micro-cut designs in high-grade synthetic rubber for use in the fashion industry.

“We are working at a high level of innovation, bringing something new that can be a substitute for leather or any trimming in the fashion industry.”

Kathleen Niles, of Nessis Inc., explained her software tools are designed to streamline business and communications for the manufacturing sector. “We are so technical, we appreciate the help we are getting here with sales and marketing,” she said.

Andriy Azarov explained Nectar Desk’s cloud-based call centre programs will help small to medium sized businesses in sales and support roles as agents will be able to work anyplace they have high-speed internet.

DOT Directory, explained Danny Celovsky, is trucking industry software that helps shippers and carriers communicate and conduct business with each other.

Geoff Salter’s focus is on in-home energy conservation. Green Switch has created a unit that allows the user control of technology in their home or business with a focus on ease of use for techno-phobics.

“Our vision is to help create sustainable ecosystems for innovative start-ups in non-urban communities by investing in entrepreneurial talent and innovative ideas,” said Mauro Lollo, president of First Stone Ventures. “We’re excited to continue our partnership with PELA CFDC in driving success for the region.”

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