Published On: Monday, 11 December 2017
Cascadia Venture Network Backs Cross-Border Innovation
SEATTLE - Nearly 50 tech, research and investment partners from British Columbia and the Pacific Northwest recently launched the Cascadia Venture Acceleration Network, which aims to match tech startups with funding and collaboration opportunities across borders.
BC’s tech sector is firing on all cylinders, with businesses and researchers increasingly looking to work together on a larger scale, says Bruce Ralston, Minister of Jobs, Trade and Technology. He added that the Cascadia Venture Acceleration Network will help B.C.’s home-grown talent connect with partners across the Pacific Northwest region to boost the province's economy and create new jobs.
Ralson was in Seattle where the 48 signatories from BC, Washington and Oregon met to sign a memorandum of understanding for the network, each pledging to work collaboratively in support of entrepreneurs and researchers across the region. The Cascadia Venture Acceleration Network is initially focusing on the information technology, life sciences and clean-tech sectors, with additional sectors to be added over time.
British Columbia’s 17 founding members include tech accelerators, incubators, universities, and others that can support researchers and early-stage companies to commercialize, access resources, and scale up within the Cascadia region.
The Consulate General of Canada facilitated the creation of the Cascadia Venture Acceleration Network, building on the establishment of the overarching framework for engagement across the Pacific Northwest, the Cascadia Innovation Corridor, established by the Province of B.C. and Washington State.
In September 2017, a suite of new projects and programs for the Cascadia Innovation Corridor were announced, including:
- A partnership between three internationally recognized polytechnics;
- Expansion of the Global Innovation Exchange to include the University of British Columbia;
- The launch of the Seattle-Vancouver Financial Innovation Network; and
- Progress on transportation connecting the Cascadia region.
In November 2017, Premier John Horgan and Washington Governor Jay Inslee reaffirmed their commitment to work together to further develop the Cascadia Innovation Corridor Initiative.