The Province of Ontario is supporting a new commercialization centre that will help digital media entrepreneurs build new companies and create jobs. The province plans to invest more than $26 million in The Communitech Hub: Digital Media & Mobile Accelerator, a new centre that will help emerging digital media companies grow and succeed in the global market. In particular, The Hub will look beyond the entertainment sector to focus on companies creating hardware and software for industries, including advanced manufacturing, healthcare and finance. Based in Waterloo Region, The Hub expects thousands of jobs could be created over the first five years by serving entrepreneurs across the province.
It seems to me that these types of incubators can be successful but in the case of New Brunswick if I were recommending something like this I would target entrepreneurs in New Brunswick and beyond. Waterloo is teeming with talented software types that have built their careers inside larger firms and may now be ready to move out of RIM, Google, Adobe, Siebel, Sybase, McAfee and others* into their own venture. I’m not sure targeting kids right out of school for this type of activity is the best move.
*According to Communitech there are 30 publicly traded IT firms in the Waterloo area. Wouldn’t it be interesting if New Brunswick had five or six?