TORONTO, May 16, 2017 /CNW/ - Today the winner of Ontario Centres of Excellence's (OCE) $20,000 Accessibility Tech Pitch Competition was announced at the Discovery conference by Reza Moridi, Minister of Research, Innovation and Science (MRIS) in partnership with the Accessibility Directorate of Ontario (ADO).
Interested companies could apply to participate in the Accessibility Innovation Showcase (AIS), the Tech Pitch Competition, or both. In total, 24 Ontario-based companies were selected to participate in the AIS and of the applicants for the Tech Pitch Competition, five companies were chosen as finalists to pitch to the panel of judges. Each company in the competition had 10 minutes to pitch their innovative product or service to the accessibility community and panel of judges, followed by a 10-minute question-and-answer period.
Of the five finalists, MyndTec Inc. was selected as this year's winner and will receive a $20,000 award to assist with further development of their accessibility solution.
MyndTec Inc. is a medical technology company that researches, develops and distributes innovative therapies designed to improve function, maximize independence and enhance quality of life for people with paralysis due to stroke or spinal cord injury. MyndMove, MyndTec's first product to market, is a non-invasive rehabilitation therapy that combines patient participation, therapist expertise, and a proprietary eight-channel functional electrical stimulation (FES) device to treat patients suffering from upper-limb paralysis following stroke or spinal cord injury (SCI). MyndMove is the first complete system to provide FES therapy for the full arm with the ability to execute reaching and grasping.
Both the AIS and the Tech Pitch Competition focus on improving accessibility, and each year the showcase provides companies with the opportunity to display their innovation, build broader awareness of the ground-breaking work being done in this sector, and to network with industry experts, investors, government funders, and the accessibility community.
"Congratulations to MyndTec Inc. on winning this year's Accessibility Innovation Showcase Tech Pitch Competition, and to all of the finalists for their innovative work," says Reza Moridi, Minister of Research, Innovation and Science. "These talented innovators are making a real difference for people with disabilities, and for Ontario. I look forward to seeing these homegrown companies transform the way we address the needs of people with disabilities and tap into market opportunities in our province, and beyond."
"Congratulations to this year's winner of the tech pitch competition MyndTec Inc.. I commend your commitment to accessibility and encourage you to continue to develop innovative concepts that positively impact daily lives," says Tracy MacCharles, Minister Responsible for Accessibility. "As the Minister Responsible for Accessibility, I'm always delighted to see technology used to reinforce inclusion in our society and economy."
This annual competition and showcase has become a highlight of the Discovery conference with a focus on innovation and inclusion that has a positive impact on the lives of people with disabilities in Ontario and beyond as well as on the innovation-based economy in the province.
"I would like to congratulate MyndTec Inc., and all of this year's finalists for their inspiring work in the accessibility sector," says Dr. Tom Corr, President and CEO, OCE. "Innovation in the field of accessible technology benefits all of us. It removes barriers for people with disabilities and it helps create a more inclusive society with greater opportunity for everyone."
Named Canada's Best Trade Show in 2010, 2011, and 2016, and celebrating 12 years of bold, new ideas, OCE's Discovery is Canada's premier innovation showcase. It brings together the best and brightest minds in industry, academia, investment and government to showcase leading-edge technologies, best practices and research in the areas of energy, fintech, cleantech, the environment, advanced health, digital media, information and communication technologies and advanced manufacturing. The annual conference and showcase attracts more than 3,500 attendees and 500 exhibitors.
For more on Discovery, visit www.ocediscovery.com.
About Ontario Centres of Excellence (OCE) Inc.
OCE drives the commercialization of cutting-edge research across key market sectors to build the economy of tomorrow and secure Ontario's global competitiveness. In doing this, OCE fosters the training and development of the next generation of innovators and entrepreneurs and is a key partner with Ontario's industry, universities, colleges, research hospitals, investors and governments. A champion of leading-edge technologies, best practices and research, OCE invests in sectors such as advanced health, digital media and information communications, advanced manufacturing and materials, and cleantech including energy, environment and water. OCE is a key partner in delivering Ontario's Innovation Agenda as a member of the province's Ontario Network of Entrepreneurs (ONE). Funded by the Government of Ontario, the ONE is made up of regional and sector-focused organizations and helps Ontario-based entrepreneurs rapidly grow their company and create jobs.
SOURCE: Ontario Centres of Excellence Inc.
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