Representatives from the DMZ, along with Ryerson University president Sheldon Levy and Michael Chan, minister of trade for Ontario, visited the Innovation Birmingham Campus to sign a Memorandum of Understanding (MoU), which will set the foundation for joint initiatives.
“The cities of Toronto and Birmingham both have a world-renowned automotive manufacturing legacy.”
“When visiting Toronto’s DMZ last month, it was evident just how similar the ethos, community, and outputs were to the Innovation Birmingham Campus,” said David Hardman, CEO of Innovation Birmingham. “This partnership will create benchmarking and strategic opportunities for both incubation centres, as well as open up a wealth of global possibilities for the tech entrepreneurs based in each location.”
The partnership between the two incubators will enable entrepreneurs based in Birmingham to gain insight and connections into North America, while Ontario-based entrepreneurs can access UK and continental European markets through Birmingham. Representatives from the UK Trade and Investment (UKTI), the High Commission of Canada and NatWest Bank will work alongside the entrepreneurs-in-residence and incubation centre managers at the two centres to facilitate connections.
“The signing of an MoU between the DMZ; one of the leading tech incubators in Canada and indeed the whole of North America, and Innovation Birmingham’s leading UK tech incubator, will create significant global opportunities,” said Chan. “The cities of Toronto and Birmingham both have a world-renowned automotive manufacturing legacy, which has played a part in fuelling the huge growth in the size and breadth of their respective tech communities in recent times.”
The Birmingham agreement follows the DMZ’s successful partnerships with India and South Africa, helping entrepreneurs fast-track their startups and connect with mentors, customers, and investors internationally. “This initiative is an important evolution of our global partnerships that drive entrepreneurship,” said Levy. “We’re delighted to partner with Innovation Birmingham and create a new bridge between Canada and England that offers international opportunities to entrepreneurs.”