TORONTO, ONTARIO--(Marketwire - Sept. 13, 2011) - Toronto start-up businesses Wave Accounting and Guardly will have greater opportunities to develop and bring their innovative products to market thanks to new Government of Canada investments of nearly $1 million. The announcement was made today by Mark Adler, Member of Parliament for York-Centre, on behalf of the Honourable Gary Goodyear, Minister of State for the Federal Economic Development Agency for Southern Ontario (FedDev Ontario).
"Our government is providing the tools businesses need to succeed and expand into promising new areas," said MP Adler. "The investments in Guardly and Wave Accounting will help the companies to develop new technologies so they can grow their businesses and create jobs."
Wave Accounting Inc. will receive a contribution of up to $755,039, through FedDev Ontario's Investing in Business Innovation initiative, which will help the company to further commercialize its online accounting and financial management tool for the growing small business market. With the expansion of several new features, Wave Accounting's clients will be able to manage their financial information from any device with a browser, such as collaborating with business partners and accountants, logging, generating and sending invoices or categorizing expenses. With increase in product demand, the company plans to double its size by the end of 2012.
"This support from FedDev Ontario allows us to make the best strategic decisions for the long-term viability and success of Wave," said Kirk Simpson, CEO and co-founder of Wave Accounting. "By helping Wave Accounting at this early stage, FedDev Ontario puts us in a position to build a truly global enterprise, with impactful innovation and significant future growth here in the Toronto area."
Guardly's platform for emergency communication facilitates rapid social, mobile and location-aware responses to calls for assistance. With a contribution of up to $237,500 through FedDev Ontario's Investing in Business Innovation initiative, Guardly will focus on developing the functionality of its personal safety platform for commercial users, enabling businesses in health monitoring, seniors care, residential homes and security industries to extend their alerting and collaboration capabilities.
"I am extremely pleased to receive this federal funding through Investing in Business Innovation," said Josh Sookman, Founder and Chief Executive Officer of Guardly. "This FedDev Ontario program has provided Guardly with an opportunity to accelerate the development and deployment of its emergency alerting, communication and resolution platform to partners looking to add similar functionality to other products or devices."
Investing in Business Innovation is a direct result of feedback from business leaders, academics and community leaders from across southern Ontario, who suggested FedDev Ontario take a leadership role in encouraging entrepreneurs and investors to take the risks necessary to put southern Ontario businesses on the map.
For more information, please refer to the backgrounder.
FedDev Ontario was created as part of Canada's Economic Action Plan to support businesses and communities in southern Ontario. Now in its third year of operation, the Agency has launched a number of initiatives to create a Southern Ontario Advantage and place the region in a strong position to compete in the global economy. These initiatives are designed to support businesses and other organizations through partnerships and investments in skills and training; innovation; research and development; and increased productivity. To learn more, please visit www.feddevontario.gc.ca or call 1-866-593-5505.
Contribution to Wave Accounting Inc.
WaveAccounting.com is a free online accounting application for small businesses. Part of the new generation of software-as-a-service (SaaS) or cloud-computing applications, Wave aims to make bookkeeping and accounting a quick, painless process for its customers, thereby freeing them to focus on the success of their own small businesses. While offering a 100% free product, Wave plans to drive revenue through an innovative, privacy-protected method that connects business owners to the suppliers of products and services they need, as well as other revenue streams. This approach enables Wave to build on a large scale around the globe, and provides a significant competitive advantage over the other international market leaders.
FedDev Ontario is providing Toronto's Wave Accounting Inc. with a repayable contribution of up to $755,039. The company has already grown from 6 to 21 staff in less than a year and this investment will enable Wave to create new highly-skilled positions that it projects will double its workforce by the end of 2012. Wave's innovative approach to small business accounting has already garnered international attention and more than 55,000 small business signups. More information is available at: www.waveaccounting.com.
Contribution to Guardly
Guardly empowers its users by providing one-touch access to their safety networks. Simply launching Guardly on a smartphone will instantly identify a user's location and alert family, friends, campus security (at schools that have joined its Safe Campus Program) and 9-1-1 that they are having an emergency. Beyond simple notifications, Guardly instantly connects users to their contacts through conference call, instant messaging and real-time location tracking. Guardly has been widely adopted by students, real estate agents, social workers, and travelers. Privacy is extremely important to Guardly and its mobile application will only track location data during an emergency incident. Guardly's service is available on iPhone, BlackBerry and Windows Phone devices and in connection with certain university campuses across the country.
Guardly is a venture-backed company based in Toronto and with the help of FedDev Ontario's repayable contribution of up to $237,500 Guardly will focus on developing a Partner Application Programming Interface (API) and reporting tools through research and development efforts, product testing, and commercialization of intellectual property. Guardly is committed to dramatically decreasing the amount of time it takes responders to arrive at an emergency. The company is a member of the National Emergency Number Association (NENA). More information is available at www.guardly.com.
Investing in Business Innovation
FedDev Ontario's Investing in Business Innovation is designed to boost private sector investment in start-up businesses to accelerate the development of new products, processes and practices and help bring them to market. Funding under the initiative is also available for angel investor networks and their associations to attract new investment and support the growth of angel investment funds.
Applications for funding are being accepted and assessed on an ongoing basis. For more information and to apply, please refer to the program guidelines available on the FedDev Ontario web site at www.feddevontario.gc.ca.