BlackBerry partners with L-Spark, launches new accelerator programs for SMEs

BlackBerry Limited has partnered with L-Spark, Canada’s largest software-as-a-service accelerator, to help small to medium-sized technology businesses grow to bring new products to the market by using BlackBerry’s QNX technology.

A Sept. 20 press release said as part of the partnership, BlackBerry will be helping companies that participate in the program to research and develop various prototypes of products for different industries including robotics, device security, and sensor fusion.

Leo Lax, executive managing director of L-Spark, said in the release that the partnership would help Canadian small and medium enterprises (SMEs) to grow “the next great, global, technology company.”

“More importantly, it is a great way to elevate the entire Canadian technology community to reach and thrive within the global marketplace,” he said.

Grant Courville, vice-president of QNX engineering at BlackBerry, said in the release that the program will also help foster more partnerships with Canadian companies and “hep bring to market innovative products that will shape the way we’ll live, work, and play in the future.”

L-Spark plans to work with the National Research Council-Industrial Research Assistance Program to “reach out to companies with business models and technologies that could benefit from working” with BlackBerry’s technology, the release said.

It also added that the goal is to have six companies selected to be a part of the accelerator program and will be part of a six-month intensive one-on-one training “aimed to grow and scale each company and bring new products to market.”

Companies that use BlackBerry’s QNX technology include Audi, Cisco, Fiat-Chrysler, Ford, General Electric, Intuitive Surgical, Lockheed Martin, and Siemens.

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Jim Love, Chief Content Officer, IT World Canada

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Shruti Shekar
Shruti Shekar
Shruti Shekar is a video producer and reporter for IT World Canada. She was formerly a political reporter at The Hill Times and was based in Ottawa. Her beats included political culture, lobbying, telecom and technology, and the diplomatic community. She was also was the editor of The Lobby Monitor, and a reporter at The Wire Report; two trade publications that are part of The Hill Times. She received a MA in journalism from Western University and a double BA honours in communication studies and human rights from Carleton University. She was born in India, grew up mostly in Singapore and currently resides in Canada.

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