ChangeLog is a summary of the latest news from the Ottawa startup community.
Tennis management firm OrbitHub launches new app
Invest Ottawa portfolio company OrbitHub, a web-based club management solution provider for tennis and other racquet sports, has just launched a mobile app, OrbitPlay, on Android. The app connects people locally for activities and shows them nearby playing facilities. OrbitHub will also be partnering with the City of Ottawa to offer public court tennis players new services to improve their playing experience. The app is now available on Android, with an iOS version coming by the summer.
Two Ottawa startups join Canadian tech accelerator in U.S.
Ottawa firms Nectar Desk and Postcard (formerly Travelabulous) have each been selected to join the Canadian Technology Accelerators program run by the Canadian Trade Commissioners Service. Nectar Desk will join the program in New York City, while Postcard will operate out of Boston. Postcard, a web and mobile travel planning network, says the firm will be in a “hotspot” for online travel startups, investors and partners. Nectar Desk, which provides cloud-based phone systems with analytic and reporting capabilities, says it hopes to establish an international presence and strengthen its investor network.
Contextere takes part in groundbreaking AI development
Data software company Contextere was accepted into the IBM Global Entrepreneur Program to integrate its technology with IBM Blue Mix and the Watson artificial intelligence engine. The Invest Ottawa portfolio startup is developing a personal software agent to deliver curated guidance and actionable insights to industrial workers. The firm was also accepted into the first wave of Microsoft HoloLens developers to work on real-world industrial applications for augmented reality technology.
L-Spark startup launches product in San Francisco
CareerJSM, a two-man startup that is part of the L-Spark accelerator’s current cohort, debuted its job search management platform at the Launch Festival in San Francisco, an event that helped other startups such as FitBit, Dropbox and Mint get noticed in their early days. CareerJSM’s technology manages job searches for entry-level workers by providing information about prospective employers, finding potential opportunities and giving interview tips. The product is being delivered to 20 post-secondary institutions across Ontario, and the company says it’s also working on landing American clients.
Drink-chilling balls win Dragons' Den investment
Ottawa entrepreneur Dan Fallak has scored a $150,000 investment on the CBC show Dragons’ Den after fashion magnate Joe Mimran was impressed by his shrewdly marketed drink-chilling stones called Amazeballs (his company also makes beer-chilling products called Amazerods). The dragon now owns 50 per cent of the company. Mr. Fallak says he plans to attend major U.S. gift shows in hopes of landing distributors in order to expand the business.
GestureLogic files for bankruptcy protection
Ottawa firm GestureLogic hasfiled for bankruptcy protection, owing $1.9 million to investors. In 2013, the company turned heads with its high-tech wearable fitness monitors – but manufacturing complications delayed the product release and support dried up when the firm was looking for a second round of seed funding. Among the company’s woes is figuring out how to appease the many contributors to its 2014 crowdfunding campaign, which raised $143,709.