TORONTO, May 1, 2018 – Today at the Discovery 2018 conference, the winner of Ontario Centres of Excellence (OCE)’s $20,000 Accessibility Tech Pitch Competition was announced by Reza Moridi, Minister of Research, Innovation and Science (MRIS) in partnership with the Accessibility Directorate of Ontario (ADO).
Five Ontario-based accessibility and assistive technology companies were chosen as finalists to pitch to a panel of judges. Each company had 10 minutes to pitch their product or service to the accessibility community, the innovation ecosystem, and the judges, followed by a 10-minute question-and-answer period.
Steadiwear Inc. was selected as the winner and will receive a $20,000 award to assist with further development of their assistive technology solution.
Steadiwear caters to the dexterity needs of Essential Tremor & Parkinson's disease patients. Their aim is to improve independence and quality of life through the development of assistive device technology.
“Congratulations to Steadiwear for the creative thinking, hard work and tenacity that helped them win this year’s Accessibility Tech Pitch Competition,” said Reza Moridi, Minister of Research, Innovation and Science. “Ontario is proud to support innovations like this one, which promises to make a real difference in people’s lives.”
“Congratulations to Steadiwear, this year’s winner of the Tech Pitch Competition, and to all of the participants and finalists this year,” said Tracy MacCharles, Minister Responsible for Accessibility and Minister of Government and Consumer Services. “Achieving accessibility is a complex and challenging endeavour, but innovators and creative thinkers like these participants are finding new ways to open doors for their fellow Ontarians, regardless of their disabilities.”
The Accessibility Innovation Showcase (AIS) and Tech Pitch Competition showcased industry and entrepreneurs creating ground-breaking technologies that are improving quality of life for people with disabilities. Each year at Discovery, companies focused on accessibility and assistive technology are provided the opportunity to display their innovations, increase awareness of their work and products, and network with the wider innovation and accessibility communities.
“On behalf of OCE, I’m honoured to congratulate Steadiwear and the finalists in this year’s competition for their exceptional work developing innovative technology in the accessibility sector,” said Dr. Tom Corr, President and CEO, OCE. “Removing barriers in order to create a more inclusive society is important both to OCE and our partners in government, and innovation in accessibility and assistive technology goes a long way to achieving that goal.”
Named Canada’s Best Trade Show in 2010, 2011, 2016, and 2017, and celebrating 13 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 information on the Accessibility Innovation Showcase (AIS), the Accessibility Tech Pitch Competition and Discovery 2018, please visit www.ocediscovery.com.
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