2023 TIA finalists: Noted startups shaping the BC tech future

 2023 TIA finalists: Noted startups shaping the BC tech future

Image courtesy: BC Tech Association

The BC Tech Association has just unveiled the Technology Impact Awards 2023 finalists across nine categories. These 2023 TIA finalists are British Columbia startups that have demonstrated high success in the past year.

The Startup category includes notable finalists like Active Witness, Airble Aviation, and Blanka. Fatigue Science and Forward Security stand out in the Growth category. Aspect Biosystems and DarkVision are prominent in the Scale category, while East Side Games and STEMCELL Technologies are competing in the Anchor category. The TIA also has Gamechanger categories, honouring Climate Leadership, Diversity & Inclusion, and Ambition. BC Tech also awards companies for excellence in industry innovation and company culture.

The BC Tech Association announced the finalists in downtown Vancouver in front of a live online audience. The TIAs gala, where they will announce the winners, will be held on September 29th in Vancouver. These awards try to highlight BC’s dynamic tech industry and celebrate the innovative & resilient tech companies shaping BC’s future.

“This year, we’re celebrating BC Tech’s 30th Anniversary alongside companies dedicated to making BC the best place for tech company growth. Seeing the impact of technology across industries and on BC’s future economy is exciting.”

Jill Tipping, CEO of BC Tech

Also read: Clean energy innovations get CA$5.2M more support from BC

Background of the BC Tech Association

The BC Tech Association calls itself BC’s “largest member-led tech non-profit” aiming to help startups grow into scaleups. The Association also aids its members in talent diversification, customer acquisition, capital access, and accelerating their scaleup journey. Founded in 1993, it believes technology is crucial for BC’s future and that every company today is, in fact, a tech company. Overall, their mission is to help British Columbia become the best place to grow and scale a tech company.

Another area of focus for BC Tech is promoting the accessibility and diversity of tech careers. BC Tech Association’s CEO, Jill Tipping, has recently been promoting the concept of “New Collar Jobs”. She aims to dispel the “common misperception” that a tech career requires an undergraduate or postgraduate degree, being in a major city and a high aptitude towards STEM fields.

BC Tech is leveraging the increased connectivity and remote working opportunities that the pandemic has accelerated to promote careers in technology to a broader demographic. Importantly, this includes those currently employed in other sectors and in rural areas. This is especially important as companies strive towards diversity, equity, and inclusion, as there is a talent shortage in BC’s tech sector​.

Also read: BC indigenous communities get CA$5.9M for clean energy & upskilling

Here’s a look at the 2023 TIA finalists in the Startup Category

Here’s a quick look at the finalists in the Startup Category:

  • Active Witness (Vancouver): Offers a comprehensive access control and visitor management system, employing mobile credentials and facial biometric tech for secure, seamless entry to facilities. It also recently partnered with IDN-Canada, a leading door hardware and electronic security solutions distributor.
  • Airble Aviation (Richmond): It’s an “Uber of aviation” and connects passengers directly with private jets, helicopters, float planes, and turboprops.
  • Blanka (Vancouver): E-commerce marketplace helping online stores start their beauty line by providing easy access to private-labelled products. It’s also raised a pre-seed round from Forum Ventures.
  • Ethos (Vancouver): White label platform to help brands navigate digital assets & NFTs. Late last year, it launched huddl3, an educational community for brands to understand web3 better.
  • Knowbie (Vancouver): An affordable and scalable beverage-service training offering for hospitality staff. Hospitality veteran Crystal Hamilton has founded the startup.
  • myMomentum (Vancouver): Focused on individual progression, it delivers motivational daily prompts and promotes personal discovery. Established in 2017, the startup targets fitness, mobile apps, and wellness.
  • Newsly (Vancouver): Mobile app that gathers news and content and presents trending articles in a natural-sounding human voice.
  • Origen Air (Victoria): Origen Air has developed Pinnacle, an innovative plant-based air purification solution for commercial spaces like a living wall. The company raised a CA$1.5M seed round from First Inflection Business Advisors late last year,
  • VoxCell BioInnovations (Victoria): A biotechnology company that has developed advanced 3D bio-printing technology to address existing gaps in tissue engineering and drug development applications. It has raised funds from Phoenix Fire.
  • WiiBid (Vancouver): Founded in 2018, it’s a fintech startup with a reverse bidding platform where lenders bid their best mortgage offer to borrowers.

Other finalists

In addition, finalists in some other company award categories include Growth (Fatigue Science, Forward Security, Ideon Technologies and IKOMED Technologies), Scale (Aspect Biosystems, DarkVision, MineSense and ScalePad), as well as Anchor (East Side Games, STEMCELL Technologies, Trulioo and Visier).


Also read: BC e-bike rebate: 5 things to know

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