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Tech start-ups partner with Ontario academics, financial institutions


Canada’s financial services and technology sectors are heading into a new era of innovation and collaboration. Working in partnership, Ontario Centres of Excellence (OCE) and the Toronto Financial Services Alliance (TFSA) will connect companies and institutions in the country’s largest financial services cluster with Ontario’s innovation ecosystem including its academic community and technology companies, to address individual businesses and industry challenges.

“OCE is pleased to be working with the TFSA to find made-in-Ontario solutions to address current and future issues, opportunities and threats,” says Dr. Tom Corr, president and CEO of OCE. “Every day we work with leading innovators, educators and technology companies, and we know that they have the skills and knowledge needed to assist the modern financial services industry.”

Through a collaboration agreement signed today, OCE will work with the TFSA to identify and develop collaboration and networking opportunities.

“The Toronto region’s financial services sector already ranks in the global top ten and is an international leader in a number of financial sub-sectors,” says Janet Ecker, president and CEO of the TFSA. “However in an increasingly competitive global market place we want to ensure that the region’s financial industry has access to the most innovative technologies. We believe that by effectively tapping into local solutions Toronto’s financial services sector will not only continue to grow as a world leader, but the financial technology ecosystem being created will attract businesses, jobs and investment into the region.”

The initiative not only addresses a pressing industry need, it will position Ontario as a leader in fields such as cybersecurity and strengthen its reputation as a technology hub.

“Combining Ontario’s academic and start-up expertise with Toronto’s financial services knowledge is a catalyst for the development of new, cutting-edge technologies for the financial technology sector that will bolster Ontario’s position as a global financial hub,” says Reza Moridi, Minister of Research and Innovation and Minister of Training, Colleges and Universities. “This collaboration will help us innovate the next generation of technologies and will create an environment to stimulate job creation and economic opportunities across the board.”

The first event under this agreement will be a partnering forum at the end of February. This will include discussions between financial institutions, academia, technology start-ups and business incubators about challenges and opportunities the sector faces and ways to address them.

The OCE-TFSA partnership will also be on display as part of OCE’s Discovery 2015 conference and trade show April 27-28 at the Metro Toronto Convention Centre.

Janet Ecker, President and CEO of the Toronto Financial Services Alliance, and Dr. Tom Corr, President and CEO of Ontario Centres of Excellence, sign a new partnership agreement that will connect Toronto's financial services sector with Ontario's innovation ecosystem.


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