Western Innovation Forum to showcase Western Canada’s innovation leaders

Vancouver, BC – The Honourable Michelle Rempel, Minister of State for Western Economic Diversification, will welcome more than 500 participants to the Western Innovation Forum on April 16–17, 2014, in Vancouver, British Columbia. Hosted in collaboration with Mitacs and the Canadian Association of Defence and Security Industries (CADSI), this two-day event brings together innovators from across Western Canada to foster collaboration, partnerships and investment opportunities.

The Forum will feature keynote addresses highlighting initiatives across government that foster and support Canadian innovation.  Minister Rempel will offer insight on Western Economic Diversification’s role as convenor and pathfinder for western Canadian innovators in the business, academic, not-for-profit and government sectors. The Honourable Diane Finley, Minister of Public Works and Government Services Canada, will focus on the federal government’s objective for the Defence Procurement Strategy to leverage purchases of defence equipment to create jobs and economic growth in Canada. In addition, the Honourable James Moore, Minister of Industry, will speak on Digital Canada 150, an ambitious path forward for Canadians and Canadian businesses to take full advantage of the opportunities of the digital age.

The two-day Forum offers a comprehensive program, including Business-to-Business/Government (B2B/G) meetings for aerospace, defence, marine and security companies, and an Innovation Stage that spotlights new ideas, products and processes to potential partners and investors.

Quick Facts

  • The Forum will welcome 500 participants from 300 organizations, a ‘first-of-its-kind’ business and networking opportunity in Western Canada for innovators from start-ups, SMEs, universities, not-for-profit organizations, and federal and provincial government departments.
  • One of the Forum’s primary attractions is an innovation stage to showcase new and emerging technologies of western Canadian innovators.
  • The Forum is an important networking event in Spring 2014 for the 14 prime contractors attending, including Seaspan, Lockheed Martin, Boeing and General Electric.
  • The Forum will showcase the 13 federal and provincial innovation support programs available to participants.

“Our Government recognizes that in order to see continued economic success and create new jobs we need to support Canada’s innovative businesses and researchers. By working with our partners to highlight and showcase the West’s top innovators, we are demonstrating leadership and strengthening our region’s economy.”

  • The Honourable Michelle Rempel, Minister of State for Western Economic Diversification

“This event showcases the cutting-edge research being done by businesses and universities in western Canada. It is an opportunity for local innovators to share ideas, learn about emerging technologies and network with multi-national corporations and government.  Mitacs is proud to be a host partner of the Western Innovation Forum.”

  • Dr. Arvind Gupta, CEO & Scientific Director for Mitacs.

“CADSI is pleased to collaborate with Western Economic Diversification and Mitacs at the Forum. Driving innovation and then employing it in new products, technologies and services within Canada’s defence and security industry will keep us competitive and available to the federal government as it recapitalizes the Canadian Armed Forces under its new defence procurement strategy.”

Tim Page, President, Canadian Association of Defence and Security Industries