Notman House, Toronto’s DMZ are officially besties now

Members of Montreal’s Notman House and Toronto’s DMZ at Ryerson University will now gain access to desk space, meeting rooms and other resources when making trips to each other’s city after the two hubs signed a “Cabinet Action Initiative.”

It comes on the heels of Ontario Premier Kathleen Wynne and Québec Premier Philippe Couillard’s joint meeting of cabinet ministers in Toronto last week. Focused on innovation and the economy, the two Premiers agreed to seven action points including creating the right conditions for innovation and accelerated growth in Ontario and Québec.

Most significant from the meeting, made a reality after months of behind-the-scenes work, was easily the two provinces’ electricity agreement which will see Ontario purchase more hydroelectric power from Quebec. It will end up saving Ontario $70 million while trimming 1 million tonnes of greenhouse gas emissions annually, a senior Ontario official told the Star Thursday.

But in the tech worlds of Toronto and Montreal, the meeting had a different positive effect.

Notman House and the DMZ will provide startups from both hubs access to “an amalgamated list of over 100 cross-border advisors that range from lobbyists to capital experts.”

It’s a good first step for tech hubs in each city, and arguably one of the first, if not the first.

“Notman House and the DMZ signed a friendship agreement which means, basically, teams from DMZ here to Notman and work for free. We’re giving them almost everything we would give our members,” said Emma Williams, Notman House’s campus director. “Our Cabinet Action Initiative with the DMZ will help increase knowledge sharing and enhance partnerships between startups in both provinces by introducing entrepreneurs to a market outside their home-base.”

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