🏙️ It's not all doom and gloom, right?

So much can change over three weeks in the Vancouver tech community.

If you’re wondering why you’ve been seeing our fantastic founder William Johnson in your inbox since the New Year, it’s because I’ve been on a boat in Antarctica. (Yes, seriously.) As well as being an indescribably beautiful location, it’s also the last remaining black-spot on the globe for the internet. Needless to say, I’ve been entirely in the dark about Vancouver tech for three weeks. And what a landscape to come back to.

On Wednesday, Hootsuite announced that it has laid off 70 employees: the third deep cut the social media giant has undertaken in five months. I learned about those personnel losses the same day I heard about the Thinkific layoffs from the week before, when the company let 76 employees go. Vancouver Tech Journal has tracked that between just August and November last year, more than 900 Vancouver-based tech workers lost their jobs at the city’s major companies. Let’s hope we don’t see the same pattern repeat over the next few weeks.

But it’s not all bad news. Read on to discover which companies — and industries — are scooping more funding, which businesses are hiring, and why we should be optimistic about Vancouver’s energy future. Today’s briefing is 1,056 words: a four-minute read.

-Kate, @KateWilsonSays

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Vancouver’s energy future looks cleaner, greener, and carbon-emission free

In a two-part collaboration with The Georgia Straight, we explore ambitious clean energy in an ambitious new work economy. Start reading »

How Vancouver tech workers work

What we’ve learned about local work-life from our How (and why) to get a job story series. Start reading »

CubicFarms-partnered project receives $1.2M from CFIN

The local agtech firm linked up with a Winnipeg-based company to put beef on the blockchain. Start reading »

Klue acquires DoubleCheck to advance win-loss analysis

The multi-million dollar acquisition will grow the platform into an all-in-one tool for businesses looking to improve sales against their competitors. Start reading »

'Is Vancouver tech all hype?' Reddit responds

Read the top member briefing from last week. Get started »

🤝 Funding and deals

  • Switchboard PR, the Vancouver-based tech-focused PR firm, was acquired by national public affairs agency Earnscliffe Strategies. Start reading »

  • WELL Health Technologies, ORX Surgical, and SFU are partnering to turn healthcare data into actionable insights through a Digital Technology Supercluster project called “health compass.” Learn more »

  • Innovate BC and NRC IRAP are providing a combined total of $2 million in research and development funding to help 14 companies pilot their technologies. Get the details »

  • Sustainable Development Technology Canada announced its list of successful Seed Fund recipients from fall 2022, including Vancouver-based UVX. Learn more »

  • For all funding news, become a Vancouver Tech Journal member »

⛰️ Coming up in Vancouver | #vtjtalks: How B.C. Climatetech Could Save the World | February 22

Join us next month for a window into the city’s cleantech businesses, and why they’re being awarded so much funding. Discounted pre-speaker tickets available » 

🗞️ In other news

  • A couple ‘minted’ their wedding vows, marriage license and key photographs from the occasion as nonfungible tokens on the Flow blockchain, writes Robbie Spencer. The New York Times »

  • See the 13-page slide deck that landed food and wellness venture Blume an oversubscribed funding round of USD $1.8 million in five weeks. Business Insider »

  • Payments platform Lynk has added a new product, Pay by Bank, to its portfolio, which lets businesses reduce their credit card processing fees. Pymnts »

  • Langley-based developer Mackenzie Bowes has been showcasing his AI startup GPTBoss, which gives non-technical SMEs access to GPT3 avatars and generators. GPTBoss on TikTok »

  • Oscar-winning VFX studio DNEG hired Adriano Rinaldi to be its new Vancouver general manager. BIV »

  • For all the local news and our daily coverage, become a Vancouver Tech Journal member »

Not your average “HR” workshops

New year, same old leadership strategies? Maybe it’s time for a fresh take! Recruit your A-team, dial in your retention strategy, or make sense of employment legislation. Reimagine Work’s three-part workshop series sets the groundwork to lead people well.

Find out more here.

💡 Ideas and insights

  • Dan Burgar, CEO of the Frontier Collective, exploring how bleeding-edge technology and innovation hubs will change the way we look at office space. The Globe and Mail »

  • Scott Dickens, director of business development at Form and two-time Olympian, speaks to Global News about how to reach your fitness goals this new year.

  • Chris Neumann, general partner at Panache Ventures, reflects on his journey to becoming an investor and gives insight on what the work entails to Seattle-based VC firm Ascend.

  • Alisha McFetridge, CEO and co-founder of Rainstick, talks about the highs and lows of entrepreneurship and offers some advice to founders.

  • Launch Academy’s Samson Li, Jean Yoon, and Sam Chan chat on their organization’s Bits & Bytes podcast about Li’s winding career journey, his current day-to-day, and Launch Academy trivia. Listen now »

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