Canadian Manufacturing

ventureLAB announced winners of the 2021 HardTech Pitch Competition

by CM Staff   

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The HardTech Pitch Competition showcased small businesses developing hardware and semiconductor-focused products; winners have been awarded nearly $100,000 in cash.

MARKHAM — As part of the HardTech Conference, Canada’s Premiere Hardware and Semiconductor Event, technology hub, ventureLAB, announced the winners of the 2021 HardTech Pitch Competition on June 30. The winners are contributing to Canada’s hardware technology ecosystem by building breakthrough technologies that are changing the game in a variety of industries across manufacturing.

“The companies in our HardTech Pitch Competition are not only creating technologies that will power the products of tomorrow, they are modernizing traditional industries, and helping to support a sustainable and resilient Canadian hardware economy.” said Melissa Chee, President and Chief Executive Officer, ventureLAB. “The winners are leading the way in using semiconductor technology to make significant advancements in their industries. On behalf of the entire team at ventureLAB, congratulations to the winners of this year’s pitch competition.”

Winners of 2021 HardTech Pitch Competition

Eight finalists were invited to showcase their semiconductor-focused solution to industry leaders, investors, government, and media, for a chance to win $100,000 in cash and in-kind prizing. Their participation also served as an application to the next cohort of ventureLAB’s Hardware Catalyst Initiative, a hardware and semiconductor lab and incubator to help homegrown hardware startups commercialize their products and enter the global semiconductor market.


1st Prize – RockMass Technologies (Toronto) 

The future of mining tech is being shaped by RockMass. As a Toronto-based company, RockMass enables data-driven solutions that increase productivity, reduce cost, and create a safer working environment for the underground mining industry.

  • CASH$20,000 
  • IN-KIND$15,000 in Product Strategy, Product Development or Product Manufacturing services (from Inertia Product Development); $5,000 in Manufacturing Services (from Microart Services, Inc.)

2nd Price – TITAN Haptics (Markham)

TITAN Haptics is creating category-leading ‘haptics’, the technology behind the tactile responses on devices (i.e. when your phone vibrates, your controller rumbles, or it feels like you’re pressing a real button on a touchscreen). They are implementing their haptic technology in various devices from virtual reality, gaming, mobile communications, and autotech.

  • CASH$15,000
  • IN-KINDUSD $30,000 in annual software subscription of the Siemens Xcelerator platform (1-year subscription)

3rd Price – Cyberworks Robotics (Markham) 

Cyberworks Robotics builds autonomous vehicles for hospitals, airports, greenhouses and commercial & industrial properties to meet a multitude of market-specific demands. Examples of their current products include autonomous wheelchairs for hospitals, self-driving tractors for greenhouses and autonomous floor cleaners for industrial and commercial properties.

  • CASH$10,000

Judges for the HardTech Pitch Competition

The judges for the HardTech Pitch Competition included semiconductor and hardware industry leaders from Canada and U.S, as well as leading venture capitalist:

  • Tarun Verma, Managing Partner, Silicon Catalyst
  • Duncan Stewart, Partner, BDC Deep Tech Fund
  • Shelley Kuipers, Founder, The51
  • Pani Pendse, Senior Partner Development Manager, Microsoft
  • Olivier Rousseaux, Director Venture Development, imec
  • Tony Di Benedetto, CEO, Launch Capital


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