On May 11th – 12th, at the Metro Toronto Convention Centre, OCE’s Discovery 09 takes place. OCE stands for Ontario Centres of Excellence and is a ‘must know’ organization if you are in the start-up, commercialization or research world.
As you’ll see on the Discovery web site, there are lots of sessions, booths, talks on technology, business, etc. All excellent and all worth the price of entry in my opinion.
Here’s one of those likely overlooked items that Canada (yeah, I’m still on the go Canada soap box) kicks butt. On the agenda, there is this blurb:
Visit this networking hub for innovators and entrepreneurs who are interested in pursuing international opportunities for collaborating, partnering or commercial expansion. At the International Café, you will have the opportunity to gather and exchange information through pre-arranged one-on-one meetings with international Trade Commissioners from Canadian Embassies Abroad, as well as network with international organizations.
Yawn, right? Wrong. What this translates into is your shot to meet with 80 Canadian trade ministers representing 26 Canadian trade countries from around the world. Here’s the scoop on these 80 folks. They are real, non-suit/stiff types that have only one mission in life: You and your business in the country they represent. They have real/actual email addresses, phone numbers, and a true desire to help you. This is a massive competitive advantage for any business wanting to do business overseas. And least you think, doesn’t apply to my web start up/service, think again. Understanding local customs, people, getting some local coverage on a launch, partners to help etc; are just some of the things the Trade Commissioners can help with. They are, in summary, a gold mine of assistance for you.
I have personally dealt with folks in 14 countries and in every single case, the help, responsiveness, and enthusiasm was way above expectations.
See you at OCE Discovery.