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With Alberta’s tech scene booming, Canadian innovators gather to share insight at ASC Connect

This year has been a landmark year for Alberta’s technology sector.

ASC Connect 2022
The Alberta Securities Commission (ASC) invites business leaders and industry experts from across Canada to attend the sixth annual ASC Connect event, happening virtually October 13. - Image courtesy ASC
The Alberta Securities Commission (ASC) invites business leaders and industry experts from across Canada to attend the sixth annual ASC Connect event, happening virtually October 13. - Image courtesy ASC

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This year has been a landmark year for Alberta’s technology sector, and the province has scored top marks from several organizations that track global tech and innovation ecosystems.

One look at the numbers shows why:

  • Alberta-based companies received $562 million in private equity funding, and $999 million venture capital funding in 2021 says Invest Alberta.
  • Startup Genome, a global policy advisory and research organization, put both Edmonton and Calgary in the top 10 markets in North America for affordable talent. 
  • And the CBRE’s Tech Talent report put both cities in the top 35 on the continent for top-performing tech talent.

With spending on digital transformation initiatives expected to surpass $20 billion between 2021-2024, all eyes are on Alberta tech and innovation in the capital markets.

To facilitate that discussion and provide a platform for leaders to share insight, the Alberta Securities Commission (ASC) will host its annual ASC Connect on October 13. 

Now in its sixth year, ASC Connect is a free, half-day virtual conference where capital market participants can connect with the regulator to discuss critical issues and evolving trends affecting Alberta’s economy and capital market. Attendees typically include c-suite executives, small business owners, entrepreneurs, corporate lawyers, brokers, advisors, investors and other industry experts.

“Again this year, ASC Connect offers an opportunity to see and connect with leaders in the technology space,” says Denise Weeres, Director of Corporate Finance at the ASC. “Alberta is an innovation leader, and so we hope this event creates opportunities for other innovators to hear about what is happening in our province, and what the ASC is doing to support the flow of capital in this sector.”

Weeres is moderator of the Innovation in the capital markets panel discussion, one of three taking place Oct 13. Joining her on the panel are:

Platform Calgary is a member-based organization that brings together resources to help startups launch and grow. The organization recently celebrated a milestone when its 100th member joined its Innovation Centre community.

AltaML, a business that builds and operationalizes artificial intelligence (AI) solutions, recently placed 18th on The Globe and Mail’s list of top-growing companies in Canada. To date, the company says it has worked with more than 90 companies on 400 problems using AI.

Joining Platform Calgary and AltaML on the panel at ASC Connect 2022 is the ASC Innovation in Finance team. This group coordinates the ASC’s efforts in both financial technology (fintech) innovation in the capital markets, and regulatory innovation, exploring ways to support capital formation while still protecting investors.

“One of the reasons we are looking at technology solutions as a securities regulator is so we can consider how to reduce regulatory burden without eliminating any of the rules that we need to protect investors,” says Weeres. 

The panel will share details around how artificial intelligence and machine learning are being used in the province. The panel will also talk about supporting the early-stage financing process and educating new market participants on the rules for raising money. 

“If we can introduce technology that allows people to meet their compliance obligations, protect investors and do it in a way that’s not so burdensome, that helps us achieve our mandate of having fair and efficient capital markets,” said Weeres.

To get a ticket to the October 13 event, you can register free of charge on the ASC Connect 2022 website.

Alberta Securities Commission

The Alberta Securities Commission (ASC) is the regulatory agency responsible for administering the province's securities laws. It is entrusted to foster a fair and efficient capital market in Alberta and to protect investors. As a member of the Canadian Securities Administrators, the ASC works to improve, coordinate and harmonize the regulation of Canada's capital markets.

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