“Edmonton Unlimited” Showcases Boundless Innovation, Growth

Edmonton, Sept. 29, 2022 (GLOBE NEWSWIRE) — Today, the city’s innovation authority becomes “Edmonton Unlimited,” to better reflect, accelerate, and inspire innovators-of-all-stripes. From the sticky problems solved by local companies and post-secondaries, to the brilliant people who solve them, Edmonton is known for breaking barriers, defined by a relentless pursuit of risk, and celebrated for doing big things.

“Edmonton Unlimited captures the spirit of our city, harnesses the power of possibility, and brings the best of Edmonton to the world,” said Edmonton Unlimited CEO Catherine Warren. “It reflects the impact and aspirations of local business leaders, expands the public perception of innovation, and charts a course for new startups, capital attraction, and international recognition, relationships and returns.”

By dreaming big and aligning with other innovative capitals, worldwide markets, and high-impact investors, Edmonton already delivers solutions to meet global demands. Now is the time for the organization, Edmonton’s innovators, and our city’s residents to seize this bold identity, and to beat the drum for local innovation — on the home front and for the world.

Take the work of the TELUS Community Safety & Wellness Accelerator, funded in part by Edmonton Unlimited. This first-of-its-kind, Edmonton-based accelerator supports ventures that leverage artificial intelligence and machine learning for positive social impact.

“The TELUS Community Safety & Wellness Accelerator is positively contributing to positioning Edmonton as an inclusive global innovation capital,” said Ashif Mawji, Chair of the TELUS CSW Accelerator and the Edmonton Police Foundation. “Participating founders gain access to leading-edge programming and collaborations with local organizations, creating solutions to global challenges, improving lives of Edmontonians, and people around the world.”

“We are a city of innovators tackling global challenges with solutions that international markets demand and where enlightened investors want to put their capital,” said Warren. “Not only are we a global leader in foundational, mission-critical technologies such as artificial intelligence, but Edmonton’s ingenuity continues to transform the energy sector, shape culture, sports and urban planning, advance virology, and define digital education – to name just a few of our bench strengths.”

Over the past five years, the Edmonton region has created 25 percent of all net new jobs in Canada. In 2021, our city was named North America’s fastest growing tech sector. And since 2020, our ecosystem value increased by 236%. This kind of growth is a sign of the drive and talent within our city, and incredible potential — something Edmonton Unlimited activates and unlocks.

From July 1, 2021, to June 30, 2022, Edmonton Unlimited supported 2,577 founders and companies through free startup and scaleup programs. Of these, startup members have received $2.7M USD in investment, over $1M in grant funding, and have achieved 32% employee growth since 2020. Propel program alumni have received $14M in USD investment, $1M in grant funding, and have achieved 105% employee growth in two years.

In our first 18 months of operation, we achieved several strategic milestones:

  • A focus on inclusive innovation and Edmonton’s renown in addressing global challenges;
  • Growth through consolidation of the entities Startup Edmonton, TEC Edmonton and the Edmonton Regional Innovation Network;
  • The launch of a novel municipal Accelerator fund, including attracting three Silicon Valley Accelerators to Edmonton, and the roll-out of the novel pre-accelerator Alberta Catalyzer, all aimed at supporting entrepreneurs;
  • Unlocking an exciting municipal procurement experiment, Capital City Pilots, giving local innovators a chance to transform city-owned assets, while gaining powerful case studies for investment attraction and business development;
  • Revitalizing a key corner of downtown, with a new urban innovation destination, preparing to open a new home that’s sustainable, accessible, street-level and welcoming to all; and
  • Significant funding from three orders of government who are behind our strategy and programs every step of the way.

Edmonton Unlimited invites all Edmonton-based innovators and investors to the table and offers support for those at every stage — from idea to seed and growth — through an interconnected network of tools, programs, and experts. Edmontonians will soon see “Edmonton Unlimited” on the newly refurbished corner of 101 and Jasper Avenue and on a digital installation at YEG International Airport, designed to put innovation into the public realm, attract talent, and foster a culture of innovation across our city.

Edmonton Unlimited: Innovation from here for the world. Check out how far we’ve come and where we’ll go together at EdmontonUnlimited.com.

Quotes:

“With this renewed identity, Edmonton Unlimited further positions our city as a global innovation hub. Edmonton has the people, the knowledge, and with Edmonton Unlimited, the resources to tackle the biggest challenges faced by Canadians and the world today. Today’s announcement is reflective of a vision for our city’s future that is built on bold ideas and entrepreneurial spirit.” – The Honorable Randy Boissonnault, Minister of Tourism and Associate Minister of Finance, MP for Edmonton Centre

“The world is recognizing the growth of Edmonton’s tech and innovation sector, and Edmonton Unlimited is embracing their future potential. It is not just the region that has potential, it is the innovators and entrepreneurs who call Edmonton home. I am very much looking forward to all the good news stories and solutions that will come from Edmonton Unlimited in the years to come.” – The Honorable Tanya Fir, Minister of Jobs, Economy and Innovation

“I love Edmonton Unlimited! This name is the perfect blend of a more encompassing view of innovation, creates a sense of global possibility, while tying it back to the geographic region. I am thrilled to be a part of this exciting new chapter. The possibilities are well…limitless.” – Connie Stacey, President and CEO, Growing Green Innovations and Edmonton Unlimited Innovation Growth Council

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