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Event Season In 2016 Focuses On NB

There are at least five big events planned for the region this autumn, and three that were held in Halifax last year will be in New Brunswick this year.

The regional finals for the Startup Canada Awards will be held Sept. 13 in Fredericton.  Invest Atlantic arrives in Moncton on Oct. 5 and 6, and the Big Data Congress returns home to Saint John on Oct. 17 and 19.

Two conferences that have been held in Halifax since their inception will take place in the Nova Scotian capital again this year – Startup Empire on Sept. 23, and BioPort Atlantic on Oct. 25 and 26.

The largest of these events is the Big Data Congress, which the tech services company T4G started in Saint John in January 2013. The goal of the conference has always been not just to discuss developments in data analytics with people who work in the field but also to educate the broader community on how data analytics can improve a range of industries.

After a year in Halifax, it will be held once again at the Saint John Trade and Convention Centre this year with the theme of Big Data and the industrial Internet of things, or IIoT. The organizers are expecting about 800 attendees and more than 30 speakers. Tickets are available here.

The Big Data Congress tends to attract speakers who are household names in global tech circles. This year’s selection includes Alex ‘Sandy” Pentland, Director of MIT’s Human Dynamics and Media Lab Entrepreneurship Program; Alec Ross, author and Distinguished Visiting Fellow at Johns Hopkins University; and Sandy Bird, Chief Technology Officer for IBM’s Software Security Division. Two regional entrepreneurs who will speak at the event are:  Tyler Wish, CEO and Co-Founder of St. John’s-based Sequence Bio, and Andrea Feunekes, CEO, President and Co-Founder of Remsoft of Fredericton.

Invest Atlantic started in 2010, and it’s always been held in Halifax. Last year’s Chair Nancy Mathis, the head of the Wallace McCain Institute at University of New Brunswick, suggested to organizer Bob Williamson that the next one be held in New Brunswick. So this year’s event will be held at the Delta Beauséjour in Moncton. Tickets are available here.

Along the same lines, the Startup Canada Awards last year had so many regional winners from New Brunswick that the awards presentation for the region this year will be held at the Fredericton Convention Centre. You register for the event here. The regional winners will compete for the nation awards, which will be handed out in Toronto on Nov. 29.

Startup Empire is hosted by Volta Labs in Halifax and as such will be held in Halifax this year. Volta has announced the date but no other details.

Organized by the Nova Scotia life sciences association BioNova, BioPort is the oldest of these events, having first been held in 2002. The highlight of the life sciences conference is the BioInnovation Challenge, a pitching competition for biotech companies. This year the winner will take home $50,000 in cash and in-kind services.