Better VC access the aim of CATAAlliance, Silicon Valley partnership

Elizabeth
Elizabeth Howell
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There's a new superhighway to United States venture capital through a recently announced partnership between CATAAlliance, Canada's largest high-tech association, and a Silicon Valley non-profit, said CATAAlliance's president and chief executive.

(Stock image)

Silicon Valley's C100 will offer up membership access to the roughly 300,000 Canadians it supports who are working in the tech hub south of the border, as well as the potential to tap into $8 million of venture capital in the region, according to John Reid.

"What I think is interesting is often, in order to have the governments understand what's required to grow high-tech businesses, you need to look at the leaders who are outside of Canada," Reid said in an interview with OBJ.

The partnership aims to achieve several goals, chief among them being to increase the flow of venture capital money back into Canada -- something the high-tech centre of Ottawa as well as other, smaller hubs have struggled with throughout the financial crisis.

"If you think of an advocacy group in terms of a messaging index, the fact you can point to successful Canadian business executives outside of the country that are pointing out those things that have to be changed in order for us to be successful, it makes your message much more powerful," Reid said.

"You have to scan the globe in terms of best practices, because everthing is competitive now. What you do here is measured against the U.S. and France and Australia and elsewhere. You want to hook up with world locations where you have groups of Canadians [who can tell us] how we're doing in Canada. They can bring a lot of our best practices to you, and that's how you measure how we're doing."

This is believed to be the first such partnership of a Canadian business association with a Silicon Valley-based group.

Other aims include making Canada's "brand" of commercializing technology better known, and increasing the pace of commercialization, as well as promoting trade relations across the border with a minimum of regulation.

Organizations: Silicon Valley, Apple, Cisco EBay Google Microsoft Oracle Events/Events

Geographic location: Canada, Ottawa

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