Innovation Place Tenants Share Startup Experiences At Crown Executive Conference

On October 22, the 19th Annual Crown Executive Conference in Regina featured an engaging panel discussion entitled Empowering Your People to Take Risks.

Here, several Innovation Place tenants had an opportunity to share their experiences in leading a tech startup in Saskatchewan.

The panel was moderated by Jordan Dutchak (Co,Labs) and featured Greg Sutton (TinyEYE Therapy Services), Ryan Quiring (SafetyTek) and Jordan McFarlen (Conexus).

Greg attended the session virtually, thanks to an innovative TinyEYE robot sporting a Helping Grow Saskatchewan's Tech Sector t-shirt.

They highlighted the multitude of risks and rewards in starting and growing tech companies and shared the startup mentality that helped them grow and thrive. It's all about being agile, curious, change-driven and mission-driven - and being eager to learn and grow from mistakes. 

These tech leaders also reiterated the importance of Crown corporations and their role in supporting the province's vibrant entrepreneurial community.


Crown Corporations and the Tech Ecosystem

“Saskatchewan Crowns are an integral part of our economy and community and are faced with the challenge of rapidly changing market forces due to the disruptive nature of new technologies. That said, by leveraging the core values that tech startups possess such as encouraging rapid iterations and encouraging risk, they will no doubt meet and exceed the challenge at hand. At Co.Labs, we seek to assist them in doing just that by creating an intersection point for the province's top tech startups and our Crown corporations to learn from one another and collaborate.”

- Jordan Dutchak, Executive Director, Co,Labs (Saskatoon)


“Saskatchewan’s Crowns are poised to be the early adopters of innovations created by Saskatchewan entrepreneurs. These innovations can make the Crowns more effective, improve life for the tax payers and, in the process, provide the fuel for the growth of new companies.”

­- Greg Sutton, CEO, TinyEYE Therapy Services (Saskatoon)


“Crown corporations in Saskatchewan make a huge impact on the local economy. Leveraging their strength within our local startups will enable them to make an amplified impact that would ripple through the very foundation of our economy and boosting it to unimaginable levels. Curating products that solve problems for the Crowns that can be sold across borders will undeniably create jobs and import revenue for the province.”

- Ryan Quiring, President & CEO, SafetyTek (Saskatoon)


“As the Conexus Incubator prepares to launch in Regina, it was an honour to connect at the Crown Executive Conference. A strong relationship between Saskatchewan’s Crown corporations and innovative tech startups is an essential component to further building the innovation ecosystem that our province needs. By engaging with the Conexus Incubator in Regina, we can help Crowns thrive in their relationship with the startup community from the get go.”

- Jordan McFarlen, Business Incubator Manager, Conexus Credit Union (Regina)

- November 1, 2018