$1 Million Leaders Prize to launch at True North 2019
WATERLOO, November 21, 2018— Communitech is excited to announce the Leaders Prize at True North, in partnership with the Schulich Foundation and Leaders Fund, and the University of Waterloo as the academic partner. This national competition will award $1 million to the winning team(s) solving a problem of global significance using artificial intelligence (AI). The detailed problem statement will be revealed at the True North Conference in June 2019.
“The goal of the competition is to capture the imagination of Canadians and unleash a wave of innovation,” said David Stein, Co-Founder and Managing Partner, Leaders Fund. “The Leaders Prize at True North aims to solve a major problem with broad applicability, recognize leading AI talent within Canada, and inspire the next generation to pursue a career in technology. We expect that teams will be created from within our universities, our tech companies, and from recent graduates.”
The solutions developed through this competition should provide the foundation for a new product or company that will possess a distinctive edge in the marketplace. Individuals or groups can register at leadersprize.truenorthwaterloo.com, provided they reside in Canada. The problem statement will be announced at the True North Conference on June 19 and 20, 2019, where teams/individuals can then apply.
“When it comes to artificial intelligence, Canada is leading the way. And as leaders, our job is to tackle large problems that both impact society and enhance prosperity,” said Iain Klugman, CEO, Communitech. “We see an opportunity to motivate and inspire talented Canadians to solve meaningful global problems.”
Applicants will have one year to solve the challenge problem, with the winner announced at True North 2020 in Waterloo Region.
“Canada has developed expertise in AI that could transform the way we live and work,” said Charmaine Dean, Vice President, Research at the University of Waterloo, academic partner for the prize. “Waterloo understands how to ensure that expertise can turn into commercial success across multiple sectors of our economy. I am certain the Leaders Prize at True North will showcase the best of our talent and ideas.”
For media inquiries, please contact:
Manager, Public Relations, Communitech
Matthew Grant, BA, MJ
Director, Media Relations, University of Waterloo
Communitech was founded in 1997 by a group of entrepreneurs committed to making Waterloo Region a global innovation leader. At the time it was crazy talk, but somehow this community managed to pull it off. Today, Communitech is a public-private innovation hub that supports a community of more than 1400 companies — from startups to scale-ups to large global players.
Communitech is a member of the Ontario Network of Entrepreneurs and helps tech companies start, grow and succeed in three distinct ways.
● Communitech is a place – the center of gravity for entrepreneurs and innovators. A clubhouse for building cool tech and great companies.
● Communitech delivers programs – helping companies at all stages with access to capital, customers and talent. We are here to help them grow and innovate.
● Communitech partners in building a world-leading ecosystem – making sure we have all the ingredients (and the brand) to go from a small startup to a global giant.
About Schulich Foundation
Founded by leading businessman and philanthropist Seymour Schulich, The Schulich Foundation is one Canada’s largest foundations. They have donated over $350 million, with a focus on scholarships, education, and health care centers. The Schulich Foundation is investing heavily to create the next generation of technology leaders.
About Leaders Fund
Leaders Fund is a leading venture capital firm investing in high growth enterprise software companies. Their $100 million fund has made investments in Canada, USA, and Israel. They use their experience successfully building and exiting nine software companies to help entrepreneurs build world class enterprises.
About the University of Waterloo
University of Waterloo is Canada’s top innovation university. With more than 39,000 students we are home to the world’s largest co-operative education system of its kind. Our unmatched entrepreneurial culture, combined with an intensive focus on research, powers one of the top innovation hubs in the world. Find out more at uwaterloo.ca.