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Plastics alternative startup Ecopackers raises $4.3 million

Entrepreneur Nuha Siddiqui pitched her compostable replacement to plastics to her first venture capital investor in 2018 while snacking on a bowl of packing peanuts – foam nuggets used in packaging to prevent damage. Story

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Indigenous trusts provide much needed capital to expand small businesses

When Santana Wooden opened T’Sala Salon Spa, a storefront on the Squamish Nation’s reserve in North Vancouver, the only thing it offered was manicures and pedicures. After hearing about the Squamish Nation Trust (SNT), a fund to help entrepreneurs who are members of the First Nation, Ms. Wooden applied and got a grant of around $6,000. Story

Kitchener-based North Inc. halts sales and production for launch of new smart-glasses

Revenue at Kitchener, Ont.-based North Inc. will soon dry up as the once-celebrated technology company halts production and sales in preparation for the launch of a new line of smart glasses. Story

Kootenays-based maker of survey software Thoughtexchange raises $20-million

A crowdsourcing startup from the heart of the Kootenays has used artificial intelligence in survey software designed to help leaders across North America better understand organizations from school districts to Fortune 500 companies. On Thursday, the company will announce it has raised $20-million in venture funding to expand within and beyond North America. Story

Hootsuite overhauls entire executive team

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Hootsuite Inc. is overhauling its entire executive team, one month after announcing company founder Ryan Holmes would vacate his role as CEO to become executive chairman. Story

Halifax to become second home for Toronto tech star Wattpad

Two years after vying to host Amazon Inc.’s alternate headquarters, Halifax has attracted one of Toronto’s top tech stars – Wattpad Corp. – to establish its second corporate beachhead in the East Coast city. Story

WHAT WE’RE READING ELSEWHERE

With Vancouver set to raise property taxes, small businesses wonder who will foot the bill

As Vancouver prepares to bump up property taxes, there’s one pitch to make the change more affordable for commercial tenants — pass the hike on to landlords instead. News1130

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‘Devastating,’ says truck owner and creditor of failed Tlicho trucking companies

More than 140 businesses have been left in the lurch by the shutdown of two Tlicho-owned trucking companies. For the past 10 winters, Ventures West Transport LP and Tli Cho Landtran Transport Ltd. have hauled fuel and other supplies up the ice road to the diamond mines. After loaning the two companies money for years, last week their parent organization, the Tlicho Investment Corporation, began the formal process of winding them down and selling off their assets. CBC

Often cited as a ‘gold mine’ for alternative work, Alberta’s tech sector now faces uncertain future

It wasn’t so long ago that Calgary’s burgeoning tech sector was being held up as a potential case study in diversification, a lighthouse to chart a course toward in a province rocked from oil-and-gas downturns. CBC

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