On April 19, the sixth anniversary of The Innovators brought ICTAM members and friends together for an evening of food, drink and conversation.
At the RBC Convention Centre in Winnipeg, people met again or for the first time, sharing a networking and social experience unlike any other in the Winnipeg ICT community.
“In putting on events like The Innovators, our hope is always to stimulate discussion, educate and inspire success in our members,” said Christian Dandeneau, ICTAM’s board chair. “If you’re able to use tonight to grow and develop, we’ll have done our job.”
The event saw Winnipeg play host to Janet Bannister, founder of Kijiji.ca and a partner at Real Ventures. Janet spoke with host Allan Gregg and over 300 guests about just some of the ways technology – and the creative use of that technology – is shaping the state of business now and to come. It was clear from Janet’s speech that she sees Manitoba’s potential as a hub for Canadian technology.
“The great thing about technology is that you really can build a business anywhere,” said Bannister. “There’s a lot of great stuff happening that’s starting to bubble up.”
“It’s starting to pay off,” said Dandeneau. “For example, ICTAM’s flagship program, ICT West, is drawing attention on a global scale. ICT West members who attended last year’s shows with us – Mobile World Congress, the Consumer Electronics Show and Web Summit – are a combined 75 million dollars richer this year in sales, investments and partner meetings through the events.”
Cliff Cullen – Manitoba’s Minister of Growth, Enterprise and Trade – also spoke to attendees about the value of engaging youth to continue building a robust workforce capable of serving the growing demand for information and communication technologies workers in the province’s future.
“It’s only to our advantage to continue to work with government and educators to ensure we have a workforce that reflects our customers, clients, and the people who use our products and services,” said Dandeneau.
Regardless of the challenges facing our industry, Bannister was confident Manitoba’s ICT sector would continue to boom – thanks in large part to supportive networks like ICTAM.
“I think it takes a community to raise a company,” she said.