What is Communitech?


Communitech was founded in 1997 by a group of entrepreneurs who came together to help one another build successful companies to help ensure the future prosperity of Canada. They created an organization tobsupport the entire “Community of Tech” and give us a mission to help companies start, grow and succeed.


We’re still doing it, by:


  1. Providing coaching and advisory services for new entrepreneurs;
  2. Offering training and skills development programs for people working in tech-driven companies—in everything from sales, marketing, user experience design and data analytics;
  3. Helping companies make meaningful connections to talent, investors, customers, and partners through our networks around the world;
  4. Advocating for public policy and a business environment that supports the rapid growth and success of technology and tech-driven firms in Canada; and
  5. Building a strong Waterloo Region brand.
  6. While we’re headquartered in Waterloo Region, our goal is to help grow companies that will create jobs and prosperity for Canada.



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What is the Communitech Hub?


We think of the Communitech Hub as a clubhouse for tech and innovation. Some companies live here with us full-time; and some drop in. Not all of our 1,400 innovation customers are located here. We’re sort of like a gym: we have lots of members, but only a portion of them are here working out at any given time.


Here at the Tannery, we are co-located with University of Waterloo Velocity, which is an incubator program for startups, most of them led by UW students or alumni. Velocity is Canada’s most productive startup incubator.


The Communitech Hub used to be the Lang Tannery, which was once the largest tannery in the British commonwealth. It’s now a 120,000 square foot innovation centre. We’ve been here since 2010.


This building is home to Communitech, Waterloo Region’s tech organization. We share this space with tech companies like D2L, the University of Waterloo’s Velocity incubator and a few others.


This building has a rich history in the Waterloo Region. The Lang Tannery was built in the 1850’s, making it older than Canada’s Confederation! If you know about the area surrounding us, you’ll know the manufacturing core was a huge part of the economy, and often the leather that was made in this building was directly feeding into those local businesses, being used in everything from shoes, to hockey skates, to saddles and clothes. We like to think that the innovations coming out of this building are still feeding right into that ecosystem.



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How much will my Communitech membership cost?


Communitech has an equitable pricing structure to ensure that our fees are appropriate for the purchasing powers of our customer’s organizations. Membership fees are based on the number of employees the participating organization has in Ontario, and the date of purchase. Communitech runs on a July 1 to June 30 membership year, with all memberships entering a renewal period on June 30 each year. Membership fees are prorated down to the amount of months remaining in the year, with June 30 being the year end.


To be eligible for our free startup membership, your organization must have less than 21 employees and be developing and distributing custom-built technology. Your primary source of revenue must be from the technology you have developed.


Membership fee structure is as follows:

1–5

employees in Ontario
6–10

employees in Ontario
11–20

employees in Ontario
21–40

employees in Ontario
41–60

employees in Ontario
61–100

employees in Ontario
100+

employees in Ontario
$300

/ year + HST
$500

/ year + HST
$1,000

/ year + HST
$2,000

/ year + HST
$3,000

/ year + HST
$4,000

/ year + HST
$5,000

/ year + HST



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How long will my membership be valid for?


Your organization’s membership will be valid from the date of purchase until June 30 of each year. Communitech runs on a July 1 to June 30 membership year, with all memberships entering a renewal period on June 30 of each year. Multi-year memberships are available for purchase, however memberships may not be purchased on a month-to-month basis. Your organization may extend it’s membership at any point before or during the renewal period for an additional year.



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Can I purchase a membership as an individual?


Unfortunately not. Communitech memberships are only available to organizations as a whole. In order to purchase a membership, you must be part of an organization. Once purchased, your membership would cover all employees working at your organization.



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We will only be using this membership for our local employees in Waterloo Region; do we still have to pay the price based on the number of employees in Ontario?


Yes, organizations are required to pay a membership fee based on the amount of employees working for their organization in Ontario.


Communitech has an equitable pricing structure to ensure that fees are appropriate for the purchasing powers of our customer’s organizations. Membership fees are based on the number of employees that the participating organization has in Ontario, regardless of the amount of employees who will be utilizing the benefits of their membership at Communitech.


Membership fee structure is as follows:


1–5

employees in Ontario
6–10

employees in Ontario
11–20

employees in Ontario
21–40

employees in Ontario
41–60

employees in Ontario
61–100

employees in Ontario
100+

employees in Ontario
$300

/ year + HST
$500

/ year + HST
$1,000

/ year + HST
$2,000

/ year + HST
$3,000

/ year + HST
$4,000

/ year + HST
$5,000

/ year + HST



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I have under 20 employees. Do I qualify for a free membership?


To be eligible for our free startup membership, your organization must have less than 21 employees and be developing and distributing custom-built technology. Your primary source of revenue must be from the technology you have developed.


Organizations that have less than 20 employees but do not meet the other requirements of this free startup membership may purchase an associate membership based on the number of full-time employees working at your organization in Ontario.


Membership fee structure is as follows:


1–5

employees in Ontario
6–10

employees in Ontario
11–20

employees in Ontario
21–40

employees in Ontario
41–60

employees in Ontario
61–100

employees in Ontario
100+

employees in Ontario
$300

/ year + HST
$500

/ year + HST
$1,000

/ year + HST
$2,000

/ year + HST
$3,000

/ year + HST
$4,000

/ year + HST
$5,000

/ year + HST



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How do you decide who is and isn’t a tech company?


Determining whether or not organizations can be constituted as a ‘tech company’ for the purposes of our membership categorization isn’t an exact science, but we like to ask two questions to help us make this determination:


  1. Has your company conceptualized, built and distributed custom-built (proprietary) technology?
  2. Is your primary revenue source derived from the sale of this custom-built technology?


We understand that most modern organizations are working with complex technologies to drive business success, however the key determination between a ‘tech company’ and a ‘tech enabled’ company is where your primary streams of revenue come from.



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Does Communitech take an equity stake in my startup business?


No, Communitech does not take any equity from member companies. Startup memberships are free with no hidden costs. We only require that you participate in our quarterly surveys to provide us with updates on your company milestones, for us to report on for our government funding agreements.



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Does my company need to be based in Ontario to be a Communitech member?


Yes, to be eligible for a Communitech membership of any kind, you must have a physical address and full-time employees working in the province of Ontario.



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Can I purchase a membership on a month-to-month plan?


Unfortunately, memberships are not available on a month-to-month basis. Communitech runs on a July 1 to June 30 membership year, with all memberships entering a renewal period on June 30 of each calendar year. Membership fees are prorated down to the amount of months remaining in the year, with June 30 being the year end.



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What are my membership payment options?


Membership fees may be paid by credit card, electronic funds transfer (EFT), cheque, purchase order (PO) or direct debit using the Moneris machine at our main location. Membership fees must be paid in full.



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Do I need a membership to participate in Communitech programs and events?


Communitech is ‘member-focused’ but not ‘member-exclusive’. Non-members have access to participate or attend certain events and programs. However, members have access to all events, services and programs with either member-exclusive access, member-discounted price, or free access.



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Are all Communitech events and services free once I pay my membership fee?


Your Communitech membership gives you access to both free services and paid services at a subsidized members-only rate.



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Do I get access to Communitech member companies with my membership?


Communitech members get plenty of opportunities to network with other members at exclusive events and programs. However, we do not provide a directory of member companies and contacts.



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Can Communitech help us promote our services?


Communitech does not directly promote companies, services or products for the purpose of supporting your business development goals. We will share information on events and services that will be beneficial and informative for our member companies, as long as they are not sales oriented.

Members are also eligible to participate in our Member2Member Discounts program. Click here for more information.



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How do I list an advertisement on the Member2Member Discounts directory?


Please complete the short form on our Member2Member Discounts page. A member of our team will review your submission within 5 business days and will notify you upon publication.



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Am I able to book meeting rooms at Communitech with my membership?


Communitech members who are tenants of our Tannery or Data Hub locations are permitted to book meeting rooms. Members who are not tenants of these buildings do not have access to meeting rooms with the exception of special events arranged through a Communitech account manager. All members are welcome to use the common spaces in our two locations (Area 151 & Area 14) at any time.



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Am I able to work out of the Communitech Hub with my membership?


Members are welcome to work out of the common spaces in our two locations (Area 151 & Area 14). Please check in at our front reception desk and display your name tag at all times while in the building.



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Will Communitech provide space for our company to host events?


We assess requests for event space from our members on a case-by-case basis. As we have limited space availability, we cannot guarantee that access to space will be granted. Please work with your Communitech account manager to determine if your request is something that can be supported.



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Can anyone receive business advice from Communitech?


Communitech does not have the resources to provide business advice to walk-ins or non-members. Eligible startup and scale-up members will receive an advisor who will be assigned to assist with business strategy and resource connections.


For general business and commercialization consultations, please contact our friends down the street at the Waterloo Region Small Business Centre (WRSBC).



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Is Communitech a not-for-profit organization?


Yes, Communitech is a registered not-for-profit organization. 20 years strong, we’re a private-public partnership driven by the mission to help tech companies start, grow and succeed.

Communitech receives funding from our municipal, provincial and federal partners. We also secure private revenue through membership and program fees to sustain our programming.



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If I sign a sponsorship agreement with Communitech, do I need to purchase a membership?


Yes. Any companies that engage in sponsorship of Communitech programs and services are required to be an active member.



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How do I stay informed about Communitech events and services?


Communitech is always evolving and announcing new events and services. Stay informed by:



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Can I display Communitech’s logo on my website after becoming a member?


Yes, we encourage you to proudly display your partnership with Communitech on your website. Please reference our media kit for high-resolution copies of our logo, and brand usage guidelines.



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How do I start posting on the Work in Tech job board?


Members can post an unlimited amount of job advertisements for free on the Communitech run job board, workintech.ca.

Please register an account for your organization here. Job posting credits will be assigned to your account within 24 hours of registration.


What do you get with your posting?


  • Live job postings for 30 days
  • Access to 10,000+ job seekers visit workintech.ca each month looking for work in the Toronto-Waterloo corridor
  • Email alerts sent to candidates when new jobs are posted
  • A candidate pool with passion for and experience in the tech industry
  • Fast and efficient customer service



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Can non-members post on the Work in Tech job board?


Yes. Non-members can post jobs on our Work in Tech job board at a rate of $149.00 CAD per posting.


Learn more about getting started on Work in Tech.



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Does Communitech share my company data with anyone?


Communitech will not share any data that you provide to us in meetings or quarterly surveys. Any information flagged as confidential with a Communitech employee is protected by a Non-Disclosure Agreement (NDA).


Communitech shares aggregated data about our member companies to our government partners, as required by our funding agreements.



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Tyler

Questions? Tyler Swabey is happy to help.

Customer Success Manager | Email Tyler or call 519-888-9944

Email Tyler
or call 519-888-9944