Last week Cambridge House hosted its annual Extraordinary Future event at Canada Place in Vancouver, Canada. Cambridge defines the event as:
‘Driving innovation in Canada by connecting companies with capital. Extraordinary Future is the cornerstone event showcasing Canadian technology.’
From esports, blockchain, cannabis, VR, crypto, quantum computers, cyber-security, electric cars, drones, 3D printing, nearly every base was covered for anyone interesting in what’s coming down the pike. We spoke to several entrepreneurs, CEO’s, CTO’s and innovators at the event and learnt a few things.
Our camera crew was there as well, stay tuned for those interviews, they will be released in the coming weeks.
1. eSports is the next big invest opportunity
The DOTA 2 world championships were held at Rogers Arena in Vancouver earlier this month where top prizes ranged in the $20 million area. The Aquilini family who owns the stadium were in attendance, they were so impressed at the event that they acquired an expansion slot in Blizzard Entertainment’s professional Overwatch League.
DOTA 2 and Fortnite are 2 of the most popular games on the market now. Fortnite reported $318 million in revenue in the month of May 2018 alone.
For people who aren’t into video games, this industry may seem odd. For those who are involved in it, it becomes a lifestyle that users invest in greatly, the games are generally free, but add-on skins (costumes) or weapons are purchased, this is how these companies generate a large portion of their revenue.
It’s still unclear as to how a eSports and the world of pubco’s will mix, but it definitely looks in the cards in the near future as the revenues, interest and growth potential are all abundant. This is an industry investors need to keep an eye out for.
Our friends at Equity Guru wrote a piece recently that compares eSports in 2018 to cannabis in 2015.
2. Vancouver has a pubco startup incubator that helps tech companies go public
Victory Square Technologies (VST.T) is a publicly traded company based out of Vancouver, Canada who holds the startups it funds in its portfolio. This gives investors a chance to get a piece of young startups that they wouldn’t have access to otherwise. VST’s portfolio contains: blockchain, fintech, entertainment, AI, SaaS, AR/MR/VR and health.
We spoke to CEO Shafin Diamond about the company, they not only search for local talent, they have successfully recruited entrepreneurs from around the globe to come to Vancouver to build their company. Shafin also said they are currently looking at the emerging world of eSports for opportunities.
Launching his first company, iFlurtz, out of his dorm room at the age of 19, Victory Square CEO Shafin Diamond Tejani has gone on to launch over 40 startups in 21 different countries. Employing over 350 people and generating over $100 million in annual revenues through our Living Labs.
3. Province brands will be making the first beer brewed from cannabis plants
Province Brands completed a round of funding with $10.95-million raised in August. The company initiated this funding round in April of 2018, and its closing brings the total funding raised by the company since its launch to more than $15-million with the promise of creating cannabis based beer.
Province Brands of Canada plans to raise a Series B of $20– to $30-million, which will coincide with its public listing on the TSX.
Province Brands of Canada is an early stage, Toronto-based, highly disruptive premium adult beverage company founded by veteran entrepreneurs with extensive experience in the premium alcohol and legal medical and recreational cannabis industries.
4.We should be worried about quantum computers hacking our personal data
Encryption protects us from the current computers on the markets. However, when quantum computers become more mainstream and easy to access, hacking this data will likely become a lot easier. Quantum Red Technologies is working to prevent such hacks from occuring.
‘QRT’s revolutionary data encryption technology is based on the natural properties light that are governed by quantum physics; which, enables the creations of truly random and undecipherable QK.’
The Cambridge Analytics breach was an eye opener for a lot of people. In speaking with Parm, one of the co-founders of QTR, I was informed that no matter what we dry and delete now, it will exist forever on a server somewhere. If this potentially sensitive information is leaked at scale we could all be at risk.
5. There’s a pubco trying to end mass shootings through technology
Patriot One Technologies (PAT.C) has created effective and licensed firearms security technology with the help of McMaster University. Patriot One distributes its products in 12 countries, but has a strong focus on America where mass shootings continue to be a pressing issue. Even more unfortunate is that these shootings often happen at schools. Patriot’s system is currently patent pending on four continents, North America, Europe, Australia and Asia.
Patriot’s PatScan technology calculates the probability that a concealed object is a weapon:
6. YDreams VR games are much more exciting than at home VR games
YDreams Global (YD.C) is a publicly traded VR gaming company. They had the most popular booth at the entire event. YDreams were featuring a multiplayer VR game where you were shooting aliens with a gun in each hand. The game was exhilarating to say the least, participants needed about 30 seconds to come back down to earth once the time was up.
The quality of the gaming experience was much better than at home setup, and this is what YDreams is banking on. They will be selling their games and technology to entertainment locations such as arcades and bowling alleys.
YDreams works as a partner with companies and brands to reframe their strategy through relevant initiatives that have integrated the digital experience with the physical presence and space. The company is capable of anticipating future challenges and connecting them to the needs of the market, by building innovative concepts and delivering results with international excellence.