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The software-as-a-service firm intends to use the money to develop its technology and grow its customer base. (The Logic)

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Talking point: The eight-year-old firm tracks the location of key assets for industries with a large number of valuable products, like the oil and gas sector. “We’re helping some of the world’s most demanding organizations unleash the real potential of IoT and AI by interweaving their disparate IoT systems into a system of systems,” said CTO Steve Liang. “There’s an enormous amount of geospatial and AI talent in our own backyard to develop a world-class centre for movement intelligence.”

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The visa is designed to fast-track the immigration process for university graduates promising to start companies in the province. The $75 million is going to offices the province has set up in other countries to boost their marketing efforts and help them bring investment to the province. (BetaKit)

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Talking point: The new initiatives follow The Logic’s report that Wattpad picked Halifax over Calgary, citing Wexit and provincial tech policy. The startup visa program is similar to one in Quebec that has brought in a significant number of workers. The budget also highlighted the government’s desire to grow its angel-investing sector, following the National Angel Capital Organization setting up shop in Calgary. The tech sector is still facing its fair share of cuts, however. The province is cutting about $11 million from the budget of Alberta Innovates, the province’s research and development hub, which laid off about 125 people in November 2019 after earlier cuts. More structural changes could come from an advisory council formed post-Wattpad snub to attract more investment. That group was supposed to deliver its report today, but it looks like that may now be delayed.

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In a statement, the Office of the Privacy Commissioner said privacy regulators in every province and territory have also agreed “to work together to develop guidance for organizations – including law enforcement” on the use of biometric technology, including facial recognition. (The Logic)

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Talking point: The statement comes just over a week after Toronto police admitted to having tested the controversial company’s facial recognition technology, which reportedly has includes a database with over three billion photographs of people. They have since halted its usage, but are one of a handful of police services in Canada known to have tested the technology. Police in Hamilton, Ont. said members have “been provided with log-in credentials” to the app for what police called “part of a trial period,” but that the technology was not used “for any investigative purposes.” Durham Regional Police have also confirmed some members used the technology “to see if there was any value in terms of local investigations.” Peel and Halton police also said they ran tests of the app.

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The Alberta Federation of Labour is warning that the province’s pensions managed by the Alberta Investment Management Corporation (AIMCo) are over-exposed to carbon-emitting industries, despite increased awareness of the risks linked to them. AIMCo’s portfolio produces 243 tonnes of carbon dioxide for every million dollars it invests, up from 179 tonnes in 2015. AIMCo said its exposure to fossil fuels is in line with global trends; Joel Gehman, associate director of the Canadian Centre for Corporate Social Responsibility at the University of Alberta, echoed the claim. (The Canadian Press)

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Talking point: AIMCo’s increased exposure to fossil fuel-reliant companies isn’t just an environmental concern—it could be a problem for people relying on those investments to fund their retirements. Trident Exploration serves as an example: the junior energy company went bankrupt last spring, even after a $12.3-million AIMCo investment. As the financial risks linked to climate change are increasingly understood, some regulators are considering legislation to limit exposure. On Thursday, the accounting watchdog for the U.K. and Ireland said he plans to review how firms and auditors assess and disclose the potential impacts of climate change on their businesses. The EU is also considering standards for how companies report environmental and social risks.

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The seven-member Innovation Capital Working Group is co-chaired by Joseph Doucet, dean of the University of Alberta’s business school, and Adam Legge, Business Council of Alberta president. (The Logic)

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Talking point: The group’s formation comes eight days after The Logic reported tech firm Wattpad rejected Calgary’s bid to host its second headquarters, citing provincial tax policy and Wexit concerns. At the time, Alberta Premier Jason Kenney said he was not worried other firms would skip the city. Now, his government has formed a committee armed with a $50,000 budget, and tasked with delivering a report by February on how to get more investment in the province’s early-stage tech companies. In the wake of the Wattpad snub, Calgary Mayor Naheed Nenshi said the province’s cuts to tech-firm tax credits were partly to blame. He also called for more cooperation, pointing out that Halifax’s winning bid included “the city, the province’s business development agency, a university, and a local incubator.” The Alberta advisory council does not, however, include anyone from the City of Calgary. “The working group may choose to consult with Calgary Economic Development or with the City of Calgary, but the working group is made up of members who all have substantial entrepreneurship, tech or venture capital experience,” said Justin Brattinga, press secretary for Alberta’s minister of economic development. Nenshi’s office did not immediately reply to a request for comment.