Iron Horse KW Tech Highlights – May 2015

The Iron Horse Angels Tech Highlights are delivered monthly and a reproduced here with permission. The goal is to provide you with a monthly primer on significant news events from private Waterloo-based technology companies in 5 minutes or less.

Communications

Igloo continues to grow its core business. Q1 ’14 vs. ’15 they reported 56% growth in MRR, 71% growth in net new bookings, 77% growth in new platform users, and 94% growth in documents on the platform

bitHound officially launched and announced pricing for their JavaScript code quality product.

Technology

eSentire announced they have expanded to Ireland, opening a Security Operations Center (SOC) there to support their European expansion.

Auvik Networks was named a Cool Vendor by Gartner

Hardware

Aeryon Labs and Dejero announced a strategic technology partnership to enable distribution of video captured by Aeryon UAVs. They demonstrated their solution at the AUVSI conference

Aeryon Labs received FAA clearance for power line inspection.

Deep Trekker conducted open water demonstrations of their new flagship product at the Special Operations Forces Industry Conference in Tampa.

Thalmic Labs announced Myo for Presentations, allowing presenters to use the armband to control a number of effects in popular presentation software.

Palette provided an entertaining and revealing blog chronicle of their efforts to manufacture in China.

Services

Open Data Exchange (ODX) received a $3M grant from the Federal Government along with funds from Open Text, D2L and the University of Waterloo. ODX acts as a clearinghouse for data as well as supplying data from Canadian government databases.

Healthcare

Oculys Health was named to the Top 25 Canadian Up and Coming ICT Companies by Branham Group.

 

These Waterloo Tech Highlights were put together by Chris Wormald, founder at VeraMito and leader at Iron Horse Angels.

Chris’ Thoughts

Lots of opinions about the latest BlackBerry book, “Losing the Signal” around Waterloo Region. Personally, I really appreciated getting a fresh perspective of why tech industry catalysts rarely end up succeeding. RIM spent so much time disrupting the existing value chain for cell phones and breaking up the status quo, it became the lightning rod for critics, incumbents (and patent trolls). It feels like you’re taking on The World.

Like a cyclist leading out the pack in a sprint, RIM got early attention for creating the smartphone yet created an amazing draft opportunity for others as they ploughed wind and built lactic acid. The leader lacks a clear view of all the dynamics going on behind, as they fight the elements, while creating draft for their real opponents – who they can’t see. The drafters get the benefit of lessons learned without paying the price.

I thought the book did a good job explaining the strain and fatigue that front-running created for RIM. I maintain the feeling of supreme privilege for getting to play a role in the race.

More than once as I was reading, I found myself thinking of Uber and the draft they’re creating as they take on The World. They’re hoping their cash buys them a big enough lead that they can power their way to the top of the podium. They’re also hoping that tech trends don’t apply to regulated transportation markets.

Waterloo Tech Highlights is a communication initiative run by a group of experienced investors and strategists who would like to receive and share real news about the vibrant Waterloo, Ontario tech community.

If you would like to share news with Chris, or our readers, email info@ironhorseangels.com.

You can also visit the Iron Horse Angels site here.