Startup Slam goes virtual to showcase Victoria tech ecosystem


Startup Slam, a one-day regional event aimed to showcase and connect the Victoria tech community, is the latest Canadian tech event to be held virtually this year due to the COVID-19 pandemic.

In 2019, Victoria was home to more than 9,000 tech workers, as well as tech hubs like VIATEC.

Startup Slam is aimed to bring together students, developers, and entrepreneurs to share ideas, knowledge, and expertise. This year’s online event will feature workshops and sessions led by industry professionals, centred on four core themes: fundamentals, advanced development, product and design, and entrepreneurship.

Speakers for this year’s event include Laura Cooper, lead web developer of LeapXD, and John Oram, senior backend developer at Certn. Session topics include building applications for the modern web, progressive web apps, and inclusive usability. In addition to speaker sessions, the event will also feature ‘Talk to an Expert’ roundtables, where attendees can participate in a question-and-answer format.

Startup Slam was created by software startup Dyspatch in 2015. Last year, over 350 students, developers, and entrepreneurs were in attendance at the in-person event.

Startup Slam is one of many tech events across the country to be held online this year due to the COVID-19 pandemic. In addition to major conferences and festivals such as Collision, True North, Elevate, and Startupfest, regional tech events such as Uniting the Prairies (which rebranded to “UP-ish” during the pandemic) were also cancelled or leaned on a virtual format.

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In 2019, Victoria was home to more than 9,000 tech workers, in addition to several tech hubs, including Fort Tectoria, a coworking space that houses startups and hosts events, Accelerate Tectoria, an accelerator program, and the Victoria Innovation, Advanced Technology and Entrepreneurship Council, (VIATEC). VIATEC’s aim is to cultivate a cohesive tech community by providing resources to tackle opportunities and challenges in the region.

The BC capital city has also spawned a number of grassroots tech initiatives. For example, YYJTech, a Slack group for the tech industry in Victoria, began offering pro-bono assistance to local small businesses, restaurants, and bars in March when the COVID-19 pandemic first hit.

Tickets for Startup Slam remain free for this year’s event and are available to attendees across Canada. The event will be held on October 3.

Image source Pixabay.

Isabelle Kirkwood

Isabelle Kirkwood

Isabelle is a Vancouver-based writer with 5+ years of experience in communications and journalism and a lifelong passion for telling stories. For over two years, she has reported on all sides of the Canadian startup ecosystem, from landmark venture deals to public policy, telling the stories of the founders putting Canadian tech on the map.

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