Out of the lab and into the marketplace
Canada has a good system, but start-ups need support before strong ideas can stand on their own.
Taking a good idea out of university laboratories requires entrepreneurs who talk to customers at the earliest opportunity, says Phillip Abrary, chief executive officer of Ostara Nutrient Recovery Technologies Inc. of Vancouver. But start-ups need support before those good ideas can stand on their own.
Abrary, 47, trained as both a microbiologist and chartered accountant before becoming a technology consultant for manufacturers, and then decided he wanted a business challenge that could make the world a better place. Abrary designs, builds and sells water treatment systems. Ostara’s patented technology, developed at the University of British Columbia, recovers phosphorus and ammonia from municipal and industrial wastewaters and transforms them into Crystal Green, an environmentally responsible fertilizer.
The company was named a 2011 Technology Pioneer by the World Economic Forum, the only Canadian company so honoured this year.
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Out of the lab and into the marketplace _ Jan.31.2012