Innovation Week always presents fantastic opportunities for Newfoundland entrepreneurs to connect to fellow businesses owners and learn about the resources available to help grow their business. Each year, the Genesis Centre invites special guests to share their experiences with running successful startup companies. Tales from Entrepreneurs On Tap at Bitters allows local entrepreneurs to connect and listen to the powerful lessons that they have learned along the way. This year, we are very fortunate to have Karl Kenny, CEO of Kraken, Neil Chaulk, VP of Solace Power, and Carol Leaman, CEO of Axonify, who will share stories about their startup journeys.
In 2003, Karl Kenny co-founded Marport Canada Inc. and served as its President and CEO until December 2011. He also co-founded Telepix Imaging Inc., a leader in digital imaging software and photo e-commerce, which was later purchased by a European photo equipment manufacturer for over $50 million. Karl was twice named as a Top 50 CEO by the Atlantic Business magazine. In May 2012, he was inducted into the Newfoundland and Labrador Business Hall of Fame, and he currently serves as an entrepreneur mentor at the Genesis Centre. With over 30 years of technical and executive experience in communications, Karl is able to provide unique insight and sound advice to new startup entrepreneurs.
Neil Chaulk, VP of Business Development for Solace Power, began his startup career as Founder and President/CEO of ICAN, a navigation and communications software company in 1996. He grew the company to profitability with its headquarters in Newfoundland, and eventually sold it a Swedish company, CNS Systems A.B., in 2008. He worked as VP of Marketing and Sales for CNS Systems for the following years afterwards. He was responsible for developing and executing marketing strategies as well as managing Business Development. Neil Chaulk then moved on to Verafin, a St. John’s-based software company that specializes in fraud detection and fighting financial crime. He continued to work in Business Development and, as part of the senior executive team, he was responsible for executing strategies for business growth by developing new channel partnerships and improving the effectiveness of existing channel partners. Currently, Neil is an investor and the VP of Business Development for Solace Power. His previous hands-on experience proves to be essential for the monumental growth of the startup.
Carol Leaman CPA FCA is the definition of serial entrepreneur. She sold her first two companies, RSS Solutions and Fakespace Systems, to strategic acquirers, and followed those sales up by leading the sale of another company, PostRank, to Google in 2011. Her dogged determination and excellent entrepreneur mentoring abilities earned her the 2010 Sarah Kirke Award as Canada's top female entrepreneur. Her current company, Axonify Inc., combines game mechanics with brain science to drive knowledge retention in corporate enterprise, and aims to make every employee a top performer through personalized, next generation eLearning. She is a much sought after speaker as well, presenting at high-profile events in Canada and beyond.
Tales from Entrepreneurs On Tap at Bitters will be an amazing opportunity to learn from these three seasoned entrepreneurs. We can definitely expect a lively discussion to flow as they share their personal triumphs and failures with us. If you would like to attend this great networking event, please be sure to RSVP.