Simply put, the cleantech industry in our area is taking off. With our region’s gift of incredible natural scenery, resources and the propensity of our community to love local start-ups it’s not hard to see why.
In fact, Peterborough was just rated as the No. 1 destination in Ontario and No. 2 overall in Canada to launch a water tech start-up by Water Canada.
Phil from Noblegen in Trent Makerspace Lab
What is cleantech though? “It’s knowledge-based products or services that improve operational performance, productivity or efficiency while reducing costs, inputs, energy consumption, waste or pollution,” says John Gillis, the Cleantech Innovation Specialist at the Innovation Cluster.
Still need it in more layman’s terms? In essence, It’s products and services that reduce negative environmental impacts.
Helping lead local cleantech start-ups (and those in other industries) in the right direction as always is the Innovation Cluster (located in the VentureNorth building, see picture below) who work with entrepreneurs in a variety of different areas.
If you have a product idea you’re looking to legitimately take to market, they should be number one on your contact list. They’re the local professionals who bridge any gaps that those looking to start a business might encounter, and, trust us, there are a lot of gaps that require bridges!
Having a great product is one thing, but creating a successful company is a whole different ball game. They offer training in finance, business planning, strategy, sales and marketing to name a few knowledge boxes you’ll need to tick off. Expertise in these aspects of business gives start-ups a higher probability of success which is very crucial. Not to mention they also regularly offer events that connect clients to potential investors and mentors, reducing the barriers and red tape that cleantech start-ups often encounter.
Knowledge Partner Nicole Stephenson talks with Ribbet co-founder
Cleantech inside of the Innovation Cluster and in Peterborough and the Kawarthas is dynamic and booming. “We have world-class laboratories at both the Centre for Advancement of Water and Wastewater Technologies (CAWT) in Lindsay and Trent University as well as multinational companies working in the Cleantech market,” says John Gillis.
“The support being given in our community is simply amazing and the network of people, businesses, and facilities embracing the industry is second to none.”
The Innovation Cluster, Fleming College, CAWT, Trent University and the coming Cleantech Commons, along with Peterborough and the Kawarthas Economic Development (PKED), have all thrown their weight behind furthering the Cleantech industry in our community and beyond.
Knowledge Partner Catia Skinner with Sana Virji, a client attending Innovation Cluster event
At Trent, Innovation Cluster cleantech clients have access to $65 million in research laboratories and leading-edge technology. This includes the Trent Water Quality Centre, which is rated one of the top analytical facilities in the world. Coming soon, the Cleantech Commons is set to become Canada’s premier green technology research and innovation site, hosting a cluster of companies and start-up enterprises.
CAWT is now establishing itself as a focal point for water and wastewater technology performance validation and verification. By providing a Canadian location for performance measurement and certification services, the CAWT is helping Canadian companies enter the market quicker, and with greater confidence.
Client using incubator space at The Cube
The access to resources which would otherwise be almost inaccessible is another thing. The Innovation Cluster has a variety of assets on board including Innovation Specialists, exclusive access to capital, the Trent Makerspace and business connections.
It’s also all about location, location, location. Geographically speaking, the ecosystem surrounding Peterborough and the Kawarthas creates an environment that leads to success when scaling a cleantech company.
Workshop at Innovation Cluster
Numerous cleantech start-ups have reaped the benefits of working with the Innovation Cluster to become thriving companies on a global scale.
NobleGen is working on an advanced ingredient which produces unique proteins, oils and flours, Aclarus Inc. are the first in Canada to install and get operation on an Ozone unit for final disinfection at the Cobourg Waste Water Treatment facility, while Horizon Aircraft (based in Lindsay) is developing a Hybrid Amphibious Aircraft using an automotive gas engine with an electric motor. All these disruptive technologies are unique in their own way, reducing negative environmental impacts in products and services!
Bryan and Brandon from Horizon Aircraft
All things considered, Peterborough and the Kawarthas has set itself apart as a world-class hub for clean technologies. The region already has the base of a tight-knit business community that provides access to any needed resource, and with an environment like the Kawarthas, there is no better place for a cleantech business to stay and thrive in.
Watch this awesome video to learn more about the CleanTech program…
Do you have the next great cleantech start-up idea? Click here to start your journey.
For more information on the Innovation Cluster, go here: