Actions and Detail Panel
BDC Scale-Up Canadian Speaker Series
Tue, 4 April 2017, 6:00 PM – 9:00 PM EDT
As part of Venture for Canada's BDC Canadian Scale-Up Speaker Series, come join us for a conversation with Abbas Damji (eSight), Marc Castel (Fiix Software), Mike Silagadze (Top Hat), and Nicole Verkindt (OMX) on what is involved with scaling a Canadian technology company.
The Feel: Relaxed, casual, and conversational
The Structure: There is a reception with light food and drink to start, followed by a Q&A between the panelists and Sarah Efron, editor of small business at The Globe and Mail.
The Audience: Members of Toronto's vibrant tech community.
Below are the bios of the panelists:
Abbas Damji is the CFO of eSight, an institution that acts on the profound mission that everyone deserves to see, developing revolutionary technology that gives sight to the legally blind. Abbas has dedicated his career to lending his financial, strategic, and operational expertise to a diverse array of companies, among various stages of maturity. Abbas has been involved in businesses in biotechnology, software, and media, continually relying on his diverse investment, capital markets, and corporate finance experience having recently participated in a successful exit of a fintech venture to a US private equity firm. Abbas donates his time to the Mackenzie Health Foundation Leaders Committee, and the Duke of Edinburgh Awards Committee, and is a NAUI certified scuba diver. Abbas is a Chartered Accountant (CA) and Certified Public Accountant (CPA) and graduated from the Schulich School of Business at York University.
Marc Castel is the CEO of Fiix Software, a VC Funded global enterprise SaaS company specializing in providing web-solutions to manage the maintenance activities of SMEs. Castel is a serial entrepreneur, and over the last 30+ years has been involved in businesses in industrial manufacturing, medical devices, education, astronomy, robotics, enterprise software, music and wine. Castel is a Business mentor at Georgian College through the Henry Bernick Entrepreneurship Centre and was previously an Executive In Residence at Communitech in Waterloo and a mentor for young entrepreneurs through Futurpreneur Canada, WBT, and TiEQuest and as an early stage funder through the Ontario Centres of Excellence, and as a member of the Golden Triangle AngelNet where he was “Angel of the Year” in 2014. Castel sits on a number of Boards of early stage companies.
Mike Silagadze is the founder of Top Hat, an education software company based in Toronto. Top Hat is changing the way classroom instruction is done on a mass scale. Prior to Top Hat Mike was an early employee at Miovision Technologies in Waterloo. Mike is a graduate of the University of Waterloo in electrical engineering.
Nicole Verkindt is the Founder & President of Canadian technology company, OMX (theomx.com). The platform is the only one in the world that manages obligations that government contractors have to invest in local businesses. OMX is an online marketplace to help companies attract investment and increase their exports from foreign government contractors whom have to spend locally as a result of government contracts (offsets). It is the first software built that provides real-time electronic tracking and data analytics of the exact economic benefits that flow to local companies. It is a truly innovative platform, used by the worlds largest contractors such as Lockheed Martin, BAE Systems and Suncor (oil & gas), and is the only one of its kind globally. Having penetrated the Canadian market, they are now successfully expanding globally. Previously, she led a manufacturing business selling to Governments around the world.
Nicole is on the Board of the Canadian Crown Corporation, CCC (Canadian Commercial Corporation) that performs all government to government contracts between Canada and other countries around the world. She is also on the Board of the Peter Munk School of Global Affairs, known for their Munk Debates. Further, she is a commentator on CBC focusing on technology and business news and is a “Dragon” on Next Gen Dragon’s Den, which is dedicated to early stage technology businesses.