Q-ROI - Trailer
What is Queen's Return on Innovation podcast?
Hear lessons learned and success stories from innovators and entrepreneurs from Queen's University and Eastern Ontario.
Episode 2 - Dr. Elspeth Murray
In this episode, Dr. Elspeth Murray shares advice, stories, comments and insights from her experience. In this episode, hear about:
- Considerations before launching a startup
- How to find co-founders
- The founding journey of Evandale Caviar
- How to move forward and iterate the business validation process
Follow Smith School of Business on Twitter @SmithBusiness.
Episode 3 - Anne Vivian-Scott
In this episode, Ms. Anne Vivian-Scott shares the story of Kinarm. Kinarm is a Kingston, Ontario based company based on research from the laboratory of Dr. Stephen Scott at Queen’s University that sells robotic instrumentation to help researchers around the world assess patients with brain injuries.
Key advice from Anne in this episode includes:
- How to recruit talent and form a high-functioning team
- Listening to customers for product development and commercialization roadmaps
- Why Kingston is a great location to build a health technology company
Follow Kinarm’s story on Twitter @KinarmLab
Past and present supporters/partners of Kinarm include Queen’s University, Ontario Centres of Innovation, IRAP, the Ontario Brain Institute, PARTEQ Venture Fund, and Queen’s Centre for Neuroscience Studies. Kinarm has been instrumental in providing funding to Queen’s through the Ontario Research Fund.
Episode 4 - Sir Terry Matthews
In this episode, we replay an interview with Sir Terry Matthews recorded during a visit he made to Queen's campus.
Key advice, stories, comments and insights from Sir Terry Matthews in this episode include:
- Giving ownership to employees
- Building products customers want
- Writing consistent quarterly reports
- Going global – fast!
- Being persistent – how a lost contract can become a win
Follow Wesley Clover on Twitter @WesleyCloverInt
Episode 5 - Alyssa Furtado
Recorded pre-pandemic, in this episode Alyssa Furtado shares the story of Ratehub - Canada's leading comparison platform for mortgage rates, credit cards, GICs, insurance quotes and bank accounts.
Highlights and key advice from Alyssa in this episode includes:
- Learning how side hustles can help develop startup readiness skills
- The importance of listening and talking to mentors/advisors
- How to scale a team
Follow Alyssa on Twitter @AlyssaJRichard.
Episode 6 - Nadia Tatlow
Hear Queen's graduate Nadia Tatlow share the founding and growth story at Shift – a Software as a Service platform to consolidate email and many other subscriptions in the browser.
Nadia shares words of advice on the following topics:
- Solving a problem that team members were experiencing
- Defining product-market fit
- Striking the balance between user feedback and the addressable market
Follow Nadia on Twitter @NadiaTatlow
Episode 7 - Peng-Sang Cau
Hear entrepreneur Peng-Sang Cau describe the journey from day one to building Transformix to over 100 employees.
Peng’s words of advice in this episode include:
- How every startup needs to have a strong focus on sales
- Not hesitating to think globally and go after the best market for your product or service
- Why Kingston (Eastern Ontario) can be an ideal location to build a business
Peng also serves as a mentor for a Queen’s University entrepreneurship program.
Follow Peng on Twitter @PengSangCau.
Episode 8 - Neil Wainwright
Hear Neil Wainwright (Queen’s Engineering & Applied SciencStephen J.R. Smith Faculty of Engineering and Applied Science at Queen’s University grad and 8x startup founder) share the founding and growth story of Nexonia – a Software as a Service company that helps to track and submit expense reports.
Neil shares words of advice on the following topics:
- Using consulting or other work to support yourself while incubating your business as a side hustle
- Having a detailed focus on customer success
- Being patient, but persistent – how building a startup can take many years
Follow Neil on Twitter @neildwainwright.
Episode 9 - Peter van der Velden
Hear Peter van der Velden (2x Queen's grad - M.Sc. in pathology and an honours B.Sc. in life sciences), the Managing General Partner, share the story of Lumira Ventures. Lumira Ventures is a North American healthcare venture capital firm with a two-decade track record investing in transformative biomedical companies.
In July of 2021, Lumira announced a $225M US fund, the largest life sciences focused venture fund ever raised in Canada. Lumira also recently launched the Lumira Ventures Venture Innovation Program (Lumira VIP).
The Lumira VIP is designed for a select and highly qualified group of Canadian students from leading academic institutions who want to gain exposure to life sciences venture capital and start-ups, and are committed to pushing the future of life sciences innovation forward.
Episode 10 - Sushee Perumal
Hear about one of the fastest growing companies based in Kingston, Ontario. In this episode we interview MaxSold CEO Sushee Perumal (whom holds an MBA from Smith School of Business at Queen's). MaxSold, with operations across North America, is in the re-commerce space (for customers downsizing their home, for example, MaxSold will photograph contents to be sold via an on-line auction process).
Sushee was an engaging interviewee whom shared the founding story of MaxSold, creation of a minimum viable product, finding product market fit through their recent $16M+ financing together together with plans to continue their corporate growth.
Episode 11 - Rob Baker
In this episode, we chat with Rob Baker from Kingston's own The Tragically Hip. We talk about The Tragically Hip through the lens of a startup, growing into a fully fledged company that had a significant impact on the lives of millions of music fans in Canada and around the world.
Rob talks about the 'Why?' of starting a band. He provides insights into team dynamics and making decisions unanimously amongst the 5 band members. Learn where The Tragically Hip played their first gig! Rob provides a fascinating account of how the band developed a following (hint - the Kingston, Ontario advantage) and the 'product' they were refining in the early days. Listening to feedback from the fans was paramount from day one! And, networking to find people to 'join them in the boat'. The Tragically Hip had an infinite mindset for goal setting - Rob describes their journey as always looking forward and being mindful of their activities to grow the band 'their way'.
Follow the The Tragically Hip on Twitter @thehipofficial
Episode 12 - Shyra Barberstock
In this episode, we speak with Dr. Shyra Barberstock one of the co-founders of Okwaho Equal Source - an Indigenous social purpose enterprise on a mission to fuel social impact through human-centred design, innovation, and Indigenous-led research. Hear about Shyra's journey building a business while being a full time student and her 'Why' for starting and running a business. Shyra also shares some of her PhD research related to procurement practices in Canada.
Episode 13 - Steph Smith
From Queen's chemical engineering to podcast host! Listen to Steph Smith's career journey from working at an engineering consulting firm to present day, as the host of the A16Z podcast. Along the way, Steph has worked as a marketer at companies such as Trend and The Hustle. In this interview, Steph shares a wealth of advice for navigating one's career by being curious, travelling, constantly learning, and the valuable role of having a side hustle (or two).
Follow Steph Smith on Twitter.
Check out the A16Z podcast
Lastly, be sure to have a look at Steph's book "Doing Content Right."
Q-IR - Trailer (Episode 1)
Listen to a brief introduction to the Queen's Innovation Runway Podcast (Q-IR, for short)
Episode 2 - Rillea Technologies
In this episode, we hear from emerging success story Rillea Technologies. Rillea has developed a web platform to take chemical safety management (e.g., safety data sheets, hazard identification/control and worker training) to the next level with much better accuracy and relevance and at a fraction of the cost of current practices.
Highlights and key advice from Rob Hallsworth, RilleaTech's COO, in this episode includes:
- How Rillea Technologies is helping organizations get educated, get equipped and work safely with chemicals
- The initial challenge of building out a web platform
Businesses can reach out to RilleaTech via their website to learn more about SDS RiskAssist™ and RilleaTech's mission to put confident chemical safety at everyone's fingertips.
Episode 3 - Cadenza Practice App
In this episode, we hear from the team behind the Cadenza Practice App, Dr. Rena Upitis and Jodie Compeau.
The Cadenza Practice App is an online tool for music teachers. This platform helps music teachers stay organized, while motivating and communicating with students to self-regulate their practice time and continually improve their skills.
Episode 4 - Limestone Analytics
In this episode, we interview the founder and CEO of Limestone Analytics - Dr. Bahman Kashi. Dr. Kaski holds a PhD in Economics and, prior to Limestone, he worked as a consultant in the areas of public investment management, economic analysis of development projects, and evaluation of social programs.
Limestone Analytics provides a range of analytical advisory services across the project and policy cycle to improve the value obtained from every dollar spent in areas such as Health, Education, Financial inclusion, Energy, Crime Prevention among other areas.
Follow Limestone Analytics on Twitter @LimestoneAnalyt.
Episode 5 - House of Three
In this episode, we interview the founder of House of Three - Lisa Henderson. With over 20 years of design experience, Lisa has worked as a building inspector, a designer for a home builder, a kitchen designer, flipped houses, and taught architecture as a college professor – before following her dream of owning her own business.
House of Three is an architectural technology firm that produces BCIN-licensed, predesigned house plans, custom designs, and renovation blueprints.
For more information on House of Three, follow them on Facebook.
Episode 6 - Fictionary
In this episode, we interview the founder and CEO of Fictionary - Kristina Stanley. Combining her degree in computer mathematics with her success as a best-selling author and fiction editor, Kristina is the creator and driving force behind Fictionary - a book editing software for writers and professional editors.
Episode 7 - mDETECT
In this episode, we interview one of the co-founders of mDetect Inc. - Dr. Irsa Shoukat. Dr. Shoukat holds a PhD in Biochemistry and Cell Biology from Queen's University. mDetect is commercializing a novel 'liquid biopsy' technology to support the treatment of cancer.
To learn more about mDetect, please visit their website.