Dear friends,

In 2013, Northumberland CFDC launched the open invitational N100: an annual business competition for technology startups. We developed the idea to test a new strategy for startup attraction and acceleration, and to position Northumberland as a place of opportunity for innovative, early-stage entrepreneurs. With the dedicated help of volunteers and experts from the entrepreneurial ecosystem, with our premiere software sponsors and with the support of FedDev Ontario, we successfully delivered what would be the first five years of N100.

Some highlights:

We are now gearing up for the next five years and beyond, and significant changes are coming. N100 will emerge bigger and better than ever. All of the exciting details will be released on May 17, 2018, which will be one year since the fifth annual N100 Pitch Contest was held at Victoria Hall in Cobourg—the day our MP for Northumberland-Peterborough South, Kim Rudd, announced funding from the Government of Canada for the creation of a 30,000 sq. ft. technology and entrepreneurship centre. Once construction of the Venture13 facility is complete, it will become N100’s permanent home. We are looking forward to the next stage of development of N100 at V13.

Many of you have been emailing me and asking why the timeline for N100 2018 was pushed forward this year. Normally the call for applications goes out in January, with applications due in March. This year, quite simply, we pushed the timeline forward because we wanted to hold all of our N100 workshops and events at Venture13.

Venture13 addresses an element that was missing from our initial attraction strategy. We needed a strong locational value proposition and immediate soft landing for technology startups that wanted to establish operations with us, and specifically, to co-locate with Northumberland CFDC in a dynamic, innovation-oriented space. Further, we wanted that offering to be unique in the entrepreneurial ecosystem in Southern Ontario. This vision took shape in V13 and its strong combination of a MakerLab for prototyping, engineering and microfactory production, an Innovation Commons, 24/7 secure access, fibre connection, a web-based, automated platform and a flexible co-working space alongside Northumberland CFDC and our innovation partners: the Town of Cobourg, Northumberland Manufacturers’ Association, Fleming College, Northumberland Makers, The Impact Centre at the U of T, UOIT, Spark Centre, OCE, BDC, and many more.

In short, we are excited to have you with us for the evolution of our startup competition. The countdown to N100 2018 is officially on.

Nil volentibus arduum.

~John Hayden, for the N100 team.