Kevin Carroll, managing director of innovation, will begin his post next Monday and try to turn the new 75-seat accelerator into a world-class facility, he said.
"It isn't an incubator," Mr. Carroll said. "Incubation is too warm and fuzzy. This is really about driving business growth."
The facility will focus on helping innovative companies get from prototype to product to revenue, he said.
While support services and entrepreneurs in residence already exist to help fast-track that process, there's still a missing piece - money.
"We're thinking about it," Mr. Carroll said about securing funding for startups, adding that he has no immediate plans for action.
He said he will help Invest Ottawa work with other local incubators and community partners.
"It's about the success of Ottawa and the tech community, and not specifically our accelerator," he said.
Walt Hutchings, now in charge of investment and trade, said that his first two weeks at Invest Ottawa have been a whirlwind of activity.
His first task is to choose which countries Ottawa should prioritize when seeking investment, he said, adding that China will likely be on that list.
"People always talk about the BRIC countries," he said, referring to economically advancing countries Brazil, Russia, India and China. "But I'm not sure if Russia is really the type of country we should be looking at."
Creating a methodology to rank foreign countries will be the focus of a meeting this week, he said, as well as deciding which industries to sell to them.
While wireless and photonics markets have been hot for awhile, Mr. Hutchings said he would also like to focus on other up-and-coming industries such as clean tech and life sciences.
Mr. Hutchings said that Invest Ottawa has myriad data about the city and the innovation within it, but it's yet to be consolidated into one comprehensive document.
"We need ... something that is precise, powerful; that demonstrates Ottawa is the right place to be from a development and investment perspective," he said. "I'm not sure I have that right now."
A big challenge for Mr. Hutchings, he said, will be to decide which events are most worthwhile to attend, and for Mr. Carroll it will be prove to outsiders that entrepreneurship and innovation is truly taking place in Ottawa.
"There's a lot happening," he said. "It's not just a sleepy, government town."