A new home for ocean drones

Plus, event season and award season are both in full swing.

Welcome to this week’s Sunday Briefing. In this issue, learn more about which provincial award Audette is in the running for, meet the UVic researchers recognized by the Royal Society of Canada, plan next month’s Google Calendar, and plenty more.

Now, onto today’s briefing. It’s 809 words, a three-minute read.

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Photo credit: Ari Robinson.

It appears Open Ocean Robotics has made its way into open waters with a full head of steam er… electricity. It’s already been a big 2023 for the local oceantech outfit, manufacturing and developing what it calls “ocean drones”: solar-powered autonomous boats that are decked out with data collection instruments and hardware to keep them afloat.

The year started with Open Ocean Robotics’ work in Bahrain alongside the U.S. Navy, which was featured in a Wall Street Journal video report:

The company then announced an expansion of operations — to Eastern Canada, with one of its unmanned surface vehicles present in Halifax — and $1.75 million in funding from the Province’s Innovative Clean Energy Fund. A handsome photo of one of its boats even appeared in the New York Times.

Now, the company boasts an impressive 12,000 square feet near the waterfront of its hometown. Open Ocean Robotics’ new facility includes custom-built manufacturing, engineering, and ocean operations facilities. It enables the company to scale manufacturing and easily deploy its boats on the ocean for testing.

“Thank you to our incredible Open Ocean Robotics team for welcoming our community to our open house and to all those who came to celebrate with us,” the company’s co-founder and CEO Julie Angus wrote on LinkedIn. “We are especially grateful to Victoria mayor Marianne Alto and SIPP CEO Emilie de Rosenroll for speaking at the ribbon cutting.”

“We are excited to be here in the beautiful waters of British Columbia,” the company added in a LinkedIn post. And now those waters are homier than ever for the company.

🏙️ Community catchup, powered by VIATEC

Save the date: Victoria Tech Community Awards are back November 30

As far as Victoria’s tech leaders are concerned, the grandest prize is an astronaut. Mark your calendars to see who takes home the coveted silverware on November 30: the date of this year’s Victoria Tech Community Awards.

Also, sponsorship opportunities are available for the hottest trophy in town. Want your company to be a part of the banner day for the community? Reach out to Anna Quinn ([email protected]) to sponsor a specific award or category. Don't hesitate! Limited spots are available.


Expert guidance for early-stage entrepreneurs

Seed funding is vital for startups in oceantech, but how do they access it? On September 28, COAST Talks explores what’s available and how to best take advantage of it, with industry leaders from Propeller VC, Goparity Canada, B.C. Centre for Innovation and Clean Energy, and Canada’s Ocean Supercluster. Register now.

📰 More Victoria innovation news

🗞️ Featured: Local materials tech outfit Aluula Composites is fixing composite materials’ recycling problem.

🕴️ Tech jobs of the week

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📅 Upcoming events

September 27 | Overcome Your Resistance and Embrace Virtual Networking: iWIST and SCWIST have come together to bring you an opportunity to meet women in STEM and brush up on your networking skills.

September 28 | 2023 VIATEC’s Annual General Meeting of Members And Call for Nominations to the Board of Directors: The AGM will see the announcement of the organization’s newest board members, with networking to follow at Unthinkable Thursday.

Oct 4 | Checkfront's Global Merger: A Fireside Chat: Join Checkfront's leadership team as they discuss their startup journey and merger with Rezdy and Regiondo.

Oct 12 | ITSM x AI: The Power of Artificial Intelligence: Join Highway Three Solutions for an afternoon dedicated to unleashing the power of Artificial Intelligence in IT Service Management. The event will provide insights, client success stories, and networking opportunities in a relaxed and engaging atmosphere.

Have an upcoming event? Reply to let us know.

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