A|I: The AI Times – Ford to the future

Plus: NYT calls Toronto a "quietly booming tech town."

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ApplyBoard makes first acquisition, grabbing Panda Portal to train recruiters (BETAKIT)

ApplyBoard closed the deal earlier this month and has rebranded Panda Portal to TrainHub. With the purchase, the international student recruitment startup is expanding its capability to train educators and recruiters that will in turn attract more students to schools. The financial terms of the deal were not disclosed.


Osler releases multi-year study of 300+ Canadian VC and growth equity financings

Osler, Hoskin & Harcourt LLP has released its first comprehensive study of 332 anonymized venture capital and growth equity financings from 2019–2021, valued at US$5.7 billion, providing data and insights for founders, entrepreneurs, investors and advisors contemplating transactions this year and beyond.
Read the report!

Toronto, the quietly booming tech town (NEW YORK TIMES)

As the tech industry continues to expand and communities all over the world compete for tech jobs outside Silicon Valley, many executives, investors and entrepreneurs are promoting warm climes like Austin and Miami as the next big tech hubs. But they are tiny tech communities compared with the new hub growing in the cool air along the shore of Lake Ontario.

Larger rounds, US dollars fuelled Canadian tech’s record-shattering 2021 (BETAKIT)

According to briefed.in’s annual tech report, Canadian startups raised a total of $14 billion across 698 deals through 2021. This represents a 218 percent increase in investment dollars and a 31 percent increase in deal volume from 2020. briefed.in’s CEO and founder, Rob Darling, described 2021 as an “amazing year” for the Canadian tech sector.

Ford creates unit to develop autonomous vehicles and new technology (BNN BLOOMBERG)

Ford Motor Co. Chief Executive Officer Jim Farley has reshaped the company’s internal operations to accelerate development of autonomous vehicles and foster new technology businesses.

Alphabet’s quantum tech group Sandbox spins off into an independent company (CNBC)

Alphabet has been relatively quiet about Sandbox, which was launched in 2016 by Jack Hidary. It operated as a separate group outside of Alphabet’s well-known moonshots division, X, which has spun off a handful of its companies into its “other bets” segment.

Oil and gas tech startup Validere closes $55 million CAD with BlackRock backing (BETAKIT)

Calgary-based Validere has raised $55 million CAD ($43 million USD) in its Series B financing round led by Swiss commodity trading group Mercuria Energy as well as select funds and accounts managed by BlackRock.

China’s AR company Rokid closes $160M Series C to expand globally (TECHCRUNCH)

Chinese startup Rokid has been through a few stages of transformation over its eight years of existence, and it’s recently raised some new funding to stay afloat. The Temasek-backed company started out as a smart speaker maker when the vertical was all the rage in China in mid-2015s, but it has in recent years put more focus on augmented reality.

Corl secures $20 million in USD stablecoin for its revenue-based financing model (BETAKIT)

Corl Financial Investments Inc. has secured $20 million in USD stablecoin from Naos Finance, a decentralized (DeFi) cryptocurrency investment company.

How Native Americans Are Trying to Debug A.I.’s Biases (NEW YORK TIMES)

In September 2021, Native American technology students in high school and college gathered at a conference in Phoenix and were asked to create photo tags — word associations, essentially — for a series of images.

Wisedocs closes $4.1 million to bring medical document analysis to “entire” insurance ecosystem (BETAKIT)

Armed with $4.1 million CAD in seed capital and a “broader” vision, Toronto-based Wisedocs plans to chase more enterprise-level customers and fuel its United States expansion efforts, as it looks to move into serving other segments of the insurance industry.


Cameron Chaddad

Cameron is a fourth-year journalism student at Carleton University, with a minor in business. Originally from Ottawa, ON, his family roots are both Italian and Lebanese.

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