Ignite profile: Raven Bay

Posted by: Aaron Kroontje on February 14, 2017

Last week, the Calgary Chamber launched its brand new Innovation Accelerator. The Accelerator – titled Ignite – is the first of its kind in the city, and designed to help local businesses accelerate their growth through rapid innovation.  

What makes the Innovation Accelerator unique is that it focuses not on new startups, but established growing businesses, and gives them the chance to launch a new product or service quickly. Participants of the Accelerator must already have an innovative product or service concept and want to sprint it to be market-ready in 90 days.

The Innovation Accelerator kicked-off last Friday with the first cohort, consisting of four local companies. Over the next couple weeks we will be running a series of blogs on each of the participating companies, as they journey through the 90 day program.

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We sat down with Don O’Dwyer, CEO of Raven Bay, a program participant, to find out more why he chose to join the Ignite Innovation Accelerator, and his hopes for the program.

Why is innovation important to your company, and what sparked you to make innovation a priority?

We've always valued innovation as part of our offerings, we anticipate new regulations and pervasive availability of data in the environments which our clients operate will require more complex and creative solutions to thrive in these new market forces.

Why did you decide to join the Innovation Accelerator, and what do you hope to get out of it?

The Innovation Accelerator gives us a formalized opportunity to explore business development ideas outside of our everyday environment, where we would otherwise have been challenged to carve time out of schedules to do.  We hope to get a process which we can continue to apply to innovation efforts after we graduate from the program. Innovation is a gamble, our hope is that the Innovation Accelerator curriculum gives us a method to make better bets, faster; so we can put our chips on the winning numbers, before we roll the dice.

In what way do you think joining this program will help your business?

Having a repeatable, proven methodology to accelerate innovation and evaluate business opportunities will help us to respond more quickly to markets we choose to serve.

What is the innovation concept you plan to develop throughout the program?

We are looking at developing an Offset Protocol Analytics solution for agribusiness firms managing GHG baselines and improvement to farming practices so they can track emission credits.

What do you expect to be challenging about the program?

We need the discipline of applying a programmatic methodology to our business development.  It's always been a challenge to balance the time and capacity to do this efficiently while attending to the daily activities of running a business.  The Innovation Accelerator program provides us this discipline.

Raven Bay is a full-service management consulting and analytics firm that helps their clients improve business performance through business strategy, data management and analytics, so that they can drive better decisions, improve business effectiveness and increase operational efficiency.

Photo Credit: Dion Dicks