Accessibility Innovation Showcase and Tech Pitch Competition

Accessibility Innovation Showcase


Ontario Centres of Excellence (OCE), in partnership with the Accessibility Directorate of Ontario (ADO) and the Ministry of Research, Innovation and Science (MRIS), will host the third Accessibility Innovation Showcase and Tech Pitch Competition at Discovery 2017 on May 15 and 16.

In 2005, the Government of Ontario created the Accessibility for Ontarians with Disabilities Act (AODA). The act aims to set out a clear goal and timeframe to make Ontario accessible by 2025. Through this act, public, private and non-profit organizations across Ontario have been working together to improve the everyday lives of people with disabilities.

Twenty-five Ontario-based companies will be invited to exhibit their accessibility-focused innovation on the Discovery show floor. This will build broader awareness of the companies that exist in this niche market, provide exposure to potential private investors, and engage the entire innovation ecosystem.

Successful applicants will receive a complimentary 10x10 foot booth, two attendee passes, and travel costs covered if outside the GTA. This exclusive opportunity gives the applicant access to experts, industry, government funders, investors, engaging keynote speakers, fascinating panel discussions, networking opportunities and an opportunity for face-to-face meetings with sector experts.

Further, the Tech Pitch Competition at this year’s Discovery will provide a platform for five of the showcase companies to pitch during Discovery for a $20,000 award. Participation in the Tech Pitch Competition is completely optional. However, we encourage any business applying for the Accessibility Innovation Showcase to consider this incredible opportunity to further expand the development of your company.


  • Investment-ready companies based in Ontario that are seeking capital to help scale their business.

Application Process

All Ontario-based companies interested in this exciting opportunity are required to submit an online application form no later than March 24 at 12:00 p.m. Companies applying for the Tech Pitch Competition will fill out a more in-depth  application and must submit a video no longer than two minutes.

Companies will be notified by April 7, 2017.



Application steps

March 24, 2017 at 12:00 p.m.

Online application and pitch video are due

April 7, 2017

Showcase and Pitch Companies notified

May 14, 2017

Tech Pitch Finalists attend pitch workshop

May 15, 2017

Tech Pitch Finalists pitch at Accessibility Innovation Showcase

May 15 and 16, 2017

Showcase companies exhibit at Discovery

May 16, 2017

Tech Pitch Competition Winner is announced at the Discovery luncheon


For Tech Pitch Competition Applicants Only

Finalist Pitch Workshop – May 14, 2017

Five Tech Pitch finalists will be identified by a selection committee based on the online submissions. Finalists will participate in a mandatory pitch workshop on Sunday May 14, 2017.  Travel reimbursements are available for companies outside of the GTA.

Finalists will be coached on the art of the pitch in a practical workshop prior to the live pitch competition. During the workshop, finalists will have the opportunity to receive feedback on their pitch.

Tech Pitch Competition – May 15, 2017

Five finalists will participate in a live pitch competition on May 15, 2017 at Discovery.

Finalists will have a maximum of 10 minutes to pitch their innovative product or service of interest to the accessibility community and panel of judges, followed by a 10-minute question and answer period.

How Funding Works

One winner will be selected and receive a $20,000 award to assist with further development of their assistive technology innovation.  The winning company must be willing to sign a contract confirming that they will put the award toward business development.


Please ensure your video submission is properly programmed for closed captioning to meet accessibility standards under the Accessibility for Ontarians with Disabilities Act (AODA). All submissions must also include a transcript of the pitch video in the description of the video on YouTube. Video submissions without proper closed captioning enabled or a transcription will not be accepted.

  • Your video submission must be no longer than two minutes.

  • You must grant the competition organizers unrestricted use and reproduction rights for any purposes.

  • Video submissions must clearly explain your elevator pitch. Please refer to the questionnaire in the online application form for information to address in your pitch.


  • Your video must be uploaded to YouTube and your online application form submitted by March 24th, no later than 12:00 p.m.

  • A transcript of your video must be included in the application form and in the description section of your video on YouTube.


The judging panel for the competition will include members of the investment community, leaders in the accessibility community and OCE representatives.  


Tibor Turi, Regional Director, Central Ontario, Ontario Centres of Excellence

Accessibility Panel

Championing Accessibility in Business featuring industry leaders with an innovative commitment to accessibility and building business


Valerie Fox, Chief Innovation Consultant, The Pivotal Point and former Executive Director, Ryerson DMZ

Judging Panel

  • Brenda Hogan, Senior Investment Manager, Ontario Capital Growth Corporation

  • Jaswinder Kaur, Director Emerging Markets, Kivuto Solutions Inc.

  • Arjun Mali, Co-Founder and COO, iMerciv Inc.

  • Mickey Milner, Ph.D. (Wits), D.Sc. (Hons) (Queen’s), P.Eng., C.C.E., Professor Emeritus, University of Toronto

Terms of Agreement

  • All entries become the property of the contest organizers.

  • Your video must not infringe upon or violate any laws or any third-party rights, including, but not limited to, copyright, patent, trademark, trade secret or other proprietary rights and must not lead to any cause of action including libel, defamation, privacy violation, contract breach or tort.

  • If necessary you must obtain all necessary permissions, licenses, clearances, releases, waivers of moral rights and other approvals from third parties (including, but not limited to, all copyright holders and all individuals appearing in the video submission), necessary to use the video submission, in whole or in part, in any way, including without limitation, to reproduce, make derivatives, edit, modify, translate, distribute, transmit, publish, license and broadcast the video submission worldwide, by any means. Any and all such permissions, licenses, clearances, releases, waivers of moral rights and approvals must be attached to the video submission.

  • Each contestant must consent to the use, reproduction, publication, transmission and/or broadcasting of his/her name, address, likeness, and/or prize information, without compensation, in any advertisement, publication or promotion, for general news or other information purposes. Winners must also consent to their photographs being taken by the competition organizers for the same purposes, without further compensation.

  • Each contestant irrevocably and in perpetuity grants the competition organizers, without compensation, the right to use the video submission, in whole or in part, in any way, including without limitation, to reproduce, make derivatives, edit, modify, translate, distribute, transmit, publish, license and broadcast the video submission worldwide, by any means. 

Further Information

For more information on the Accessibility Innovation Showcase or Tech Pitch Competition, please contact:

Stacey Lines
Project Coordinator, Discovery
t:416.861.1092 x 1022