Back in September, BlackBerry and L-Spark announced a new accelerator program to help medium-sized technology enterprises grow their businesses using BlackBerry QNX technology. At the time, specialized companies were invited to participate, and now, BlackBerry and L-Spark have chosen their seven finalists from applications submitted across Canada.

  • Martell (Ottawa, Ontario): Martello's solutions manage and optimize the performance of real-time services on cloud and enterprise networks. Martello's network and IT performance management software and SD-WAN technology allow enterprises around the world to deliver better service quality and a reliable user experience. Designed for real-time communications such as voice and video, Martello's solutions detect, identify and address network performance problems BEFORE service quality is impacted. Headquartered in Ottawa, Canada, Martello is a TSXV listed issuer trading under the symbol 'MTLO'.

  • KyberSecurity (Montreal, Quebec, Canada): KyberSecurity uses innovative concepts to combat a wide range of persistent and sophisticated cybersecurity attacks. KyberSecurity technology does not require source code modifications nor prior security knowledge to protect applications. From a user perspective, the protection process is straightforward, automated and transparent.

  • Evolved Vehicle Environments (Ottawa, Ontario): Evolved Vehicle Environments (EVE), offers comprehensive connected car experiences via a SaaS subscription model available in Tesla & Subaru models today with an aim to be a leading software contender in the connected vehicle space. EVE is at the forefront of the connected car revolution. They offer an in-market connected car solution that is fully functional, user customizable, and continually evolving.

  • Visionary Semiconductor Inc. (Waterloo, Ontario): Visionary Semiconductor Inc. focuses on realizing color imaging and depth mapping with one compact device, thereby solving the heavy computing and form factor problems of current 3D imaging technologies. Their products extend from the source of 3D imaging technology, advanced image sensors, to intelligent 3D imaging device and modules with Internet of Things (IoT) capabilities.

  • Bluink (Ottawa, Ontario): Bluink allows customers and citizens to carry their identity with them on their smartphone in a secure wallet app called eID-Me. This e-identity can be used by citizens for Omni-Channel login to websites and to assert their identity in person. eID-Me can carry a driver's license and health card, plus secure cryptographic keys to unlock doors of buildings and cars or to access IoT devices. Bluink's mission is to empower secure smartphone based e-Identity everywhere.

  • Acerta (Kitchener, Ontario): Acerta provides an AI-powered solution that is designed specifically for automotive applications. By integrating domain expertise into their machine learning models, they are capable of delivering results with enhanced precision. From reducing scrap and rework, to accelerating root cause analysis, their solutions provide clients with a tool to reduce waste, increase throughput, and boost product quality.

  • Soltare (Edmonton, Alberta): Soltare is an automotive technology company that develops automotive sensors to add value and safety to current automotive designs, along with applications for future autonomous vehicles. Specifically, they offer an emergency vehicle siren detection – iHear – that is designed to notify both the existence and direction of an approaching emergency vehicle.

Being finalists, the companies will have access to senior leaders at both BlackBerry and L-SPARK for six months of one-on-one training and work with BlackBerry to research and develop product prototypes covering robotics, device security functional safety, analytics, medical devices, and autonomous vehicles.

"We were extremely impressed with both the quality and breadth of applicants for our first ever accelerator program with L-SPARK," said Grant Courville, VP, Product Management and Strategy, BlackBerry QNX, BlackBerry. "The future of technological innovation is all about collaboration and we look forward to helping these companies over the next six months bring to market their next-gen products that will help shape the way we'll live, work and play in the future."

"We are honored to launch the BlackBerry/L-SPARK Accelerator and bring together the passion and innovation of our SME companies with the global footprint of BlackBerry. Together, we will bring to light the best and brightest to serve our community," said Leo Lax, Executive Managing Director of L-SPARK.

At the end of the program, BlackBerry and L-Spark will be hosting a pitch event where each of the finalists can share their accomplishments, show off their prototypes and lay out their plans to take their products to market.