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Ryerson University and Tangerine Bank announced a joint partnership Feb. 23 to officially launch the new Ryerson Tangerine Thinkubator.
The “Thinkubator” is the latest addition to Ryerson’s growing fleet of startup zones, like the DMZ and the Transmedia Zone. This incubator will focus on, but not limit itself to, startups creating tools that could benefit financial technology companies. Examples would include tools, such as screen sharing and web conferencing, that can be used to virtually connect workforces.
The incubator provides a communal space for Canadian startups and offers mentorship for the emerging companies. This 3,600-square-foot space is located on the second floor of Tangerine’s downtown location across from the Eaton Centre.
“We’re excited,” said Mark Patterson, executive director of networking site Magnet, a social initiative co-founded by Ryerson and the Ontario Chamber of Commerce. “It’s a great opportunity, not just for startups but for the Ryerson community.”
There are currently five companies, including Magnet, that are using the space. The space typically holds around four to five companies, depending on the company size.
Tangerine is working specifically with Magnet, which does work on unemployment and underemployment, “specifically as it relates to youth and new immigrants.”
“There was a mutual desire (with Tangerine) to create a space for new and innovative companies,” said Patterson.
Ryerson’s partnership with Tangerine is non-exclusive so future partnerships aren’t out of the question.
Tangerine has already integrated a few startup companies based out of the DMZ. It is interested in financial technology companies, but the incubator is open to any innovative company, like WhoPlusYou — currently housed in the space.
WhoPlusYou is an online career-matching system that introduces candidates to jobs and professionals based on their needs, interests and preferences.
“The opportunity to work with Ryerson gives the teams access to an organization whose basic DNA is all about innovation,” said Doug Walker, CEO and founder of WhoPlusYou, in an email.
“Relationships will develop that support both the teams located at Tangerine as well as our Ryerson collaborators.”
Within the space, companies can leverage and collaborate with software developers and are also given the opportunity to collaborate in other areas, including marketing, management, business strategy and legal services.
Walker added that the collaboration will support faster, better decision-making and marketplace success.
“(It will) contribute to the innovation DNA of the university.”