Asif Hasan and Keelen GagnonSimpTek
In 2015, we released a Business Profile Series video of local Fredericton startup SimpTek Technologies. Since then, SimpTek has both grown immensely, receiving honourable recognition and awards for that growth. With more plans for expansion on the horizon, we wanted to highlight the great initiative and work that co-founders Asif Hasan, CEO, and Keelen Gagnon, COO, have accomplished over the last two years.
SimpTek Technologies is a unique platform that brings together efficiency focused services, products and property stakeholders who are looking to have a single turnkey platform to leverage their real-time data optimizing the energy efficiency of buildings. In the past year alone, SimpTek was named Emerging Exporter of the Year at the NB Export Awards, recognized as one of the Companies-to-Watch by Deloitte, and featured on Dragons’ Den.
While Hasan and Gagnon’s innovation, initiative, and drive have led SimpTek’s success, they have also been assisted by the various local accelerators and support programs in Fredericton, such as Planet Hatch’s third LAUNCH cohort in 2015, UNB’s Technology, Management Entrepreneurship (TME) program, and most recently, Ignite Fredericton’s Export Igniter program in 2017. By harnessing resources from the local ecosystem, SimpTek has gone on to create 13 jobs, and expect to create an additional eight jobs this year to support their rapid growth. SimpTek is additionally expanding operations to Halifax, Nova Scotia, and as part of their export development plan, they have also launched a pilot project in Saudi Arabia, and are nearing the completion of deals in the United States, Quebec and Ontario.
“We have an amazing ecosystem in New Brunswick that has nurtured us since the beginning, allowing us to be innovative and creative through collaboration,” says Hasan of their growth. “All of New Brunswick’s government and private organizations, such as NB Power, Ignite Fredericton, the University of New Brunswick/TME, Planet Hatch, the New Brunswick Innovation Foundation, and many others are constantly providing such an incredible support structure for startups.”
SimpTek’s expansion and export plans were aided and expedited during their time in Export Igniter, Atlantic Canada’s first export accelerator. Launched in January 2017 by Ignite Fredericton, the program is designed to help export ready companies navigate the complex landscape of international business, and jump start their export sales. SimpTek was one of six companies that participated in Export Igniter’s pilot cohort, which is supported by partners such as Opportunities NB, Fredericton Chamber of Commerce, University of New Brunswick (UNB), Canadian Manufacturers & Exporters, Global Affairs Canada’s Trade Commissioner Service, Export Development Canada, McInnes Cooper, and more.
An ongoing success story, SimpTek has become a great example of how the aligned services in Fredericton can come together and push a startup to laudable heights. With their current and future plans, they are definitely a company to keep your eye on over this next year.