IBM is deepening its cooperation with Canadian fintech startups through Toronto-based MaRS, following up on pledges to help promising startups develop and commercialize their innovations.
The tech giant will join a network of corporate partners including CIBC, Manulife and payment processor Moneris in the MaRS C Suite, MaRS’ “corporate innovation district.” Partners provide startups with product feedback, advisory services and other forms of support.
“What we’re doing is saying: you have a great idea,” Patrick Horgan, VP, Manufacturing, Development & Operations at IBM Canada, said in an interview with TechPORTFOLIO in June. “You’re missing some ingredients to be successful. Let’s help you through that because we have some history of being able to get through all of those cycles and to the world market.”
As part of IBM’s partnership with MaRS, the company will provide technology and services, including access to IBM Cloud and cognitive computing (Bluemix and Watson), support for demonstration projects, data analytics internships, and “soft-landing export development opportunities.”
Fintech startups will also get assistance in opening new markets, completing international sales transactions, and connecting with new parties for collaboration.
“As IBM transitions into the physical building in the space, we’ll continue to expand the programming elements of the partnership,” Adam Nanjee, head of the MaRS fintech division, said in an emailed response to questions. “This type of collaboration tears down silos to accelerate the rate of innovation and leads to tangible, meaningful results.”
MaRS’ fintech hub aims to connect the financial services sector with startups developing next generation technology in emerging payments, financial services, peer-to-peer transactions, alternative lending and crypto-currencies.