A new home for smart manufacturing is coming to 137 Glasgow St. in early 2017 called Catalyst 137, according to Miovision CEO and co-founder, Kurtis McBride.
“The buzzword these days is the Internet of Things — I’ve been calling it basically device-enabled software companies,” McBride said.
That’s exactly the type of company he envisions moving in to the 475,000 sq.-ft. maker space (which will be expanded to about 550,000 sq.ft. in the future). There should be room for about 35 or more companies, with space ranging from 2,000 to 50,000 sq.-ft. for each tenant.
Unlike local software companies, who have a fixed address such as the Lang Tannery, or a brand like Communitech backing them, device enable-software companies don’t have that type of space, he said.
“This hardware cluster doesn’t really have a home. It doesn’t really have an address where capital, talent and customers, government support and all that kind of stuff can rally to."
— Kurtis McBride, Miovision CEO and co-founder
“This hardware cluster doesn’t really have a home. It doesn’t really have an address where capital, talent and customers, government support and all that kind of stuff can rally to.
“So the vision with Catalyst is basically to kind of give the hardware cluster a home or a brand it can attach to.”
The campus, whose anchor company will be Miovision — so far — will also have an on-site manufacturer, radio frequency test and certification laboratories, plus an outdoor testing environment for drones and smart devices.
“The other dimension of it is to try to bring things that help those companies get to the market faster by bringing it right into the building.”
That also includes laboratory equipment, access to 3D printers, access to circuit boards and more, according to McBride.
“Basically, surrounding the companies that are there with all the sort of professional elements that will help them get their products to market in 12 months instead of 18 months,” he said. “That’s good for the community because it gets to the market six months faster.”
While the space won’t open until 2017, there’s a launch party Jan. 29 at 3:30 p.m. for anyone interested in leasing the space.
It’s taking place at Communitech’s main boardroom at 151 Charles St., where you can see renderings of the space, learn
about occupancy perks, lease rates and other programs Catalyst 137 is trying to land from the federal and provincial governments.
“There’s a lot of work to do. Right now it’s basically a giant clean, but empty warehouse,” McBridge said.
“Miovision is targeting moving in in the first half of 2017, a year or so from now.”