Partners at Traction Technologies of Kamloops, B.C. entered the New Ventures BC competition in 2005 and five years later, the first-prize winners are still talking about their competition experience on a weekly basis.

“We got far more out of the competition than we expected—in terms of connections to venture capitalists, business knowledge, just everything,” says Andrew Ross, business partner.

Traction, set up to commercialize innovative transportation technologies, was a spin-off of Forensic Dynamics, a forensic engineering consulting firm. Traction entered the competition with a unique air-winch system for securing flatbed loads on tractor-trailers. It was a timely invention because the new North American Cargo Securement Act mandated new auto-tensioning cargo securement devices.

After raising approximately $1 million in financing and experiencing some initial success with the product, the company has refocused its business on consulting because of the heavy costs of research and development.

Ross attributes much of the company’s current success to lessons learned during the competition.

“It was an invaluable experience for helping us become more confident in running a business.”

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