Originally Published by CBC Radio Canada
Gryd, an emerging technology company from Winnipeg, has become the first Manitoba company selected by Google’s business incubator. For several weeks, the web giant offered its services to the company to accelerate its growth.
We were really not optimistic , recalls the president and co-founder of the company, Josh Glow.
When we realized that we were accepted, we were in shock!
Among the 12 technology companies chosen by the web giant in February, 7 were not in Toronto, including Gryd. The Manitoba company was facing fierce competition, since Google says it received hundreds of files.
Founded in 2016, Gryd is particularly known for enhancing properties through the design of virtual and immersive tours of apartments or houses in three dimensions.
We were really impressed with Gryd’s candidacy. She met all the criteria and clearly explained that she was at a turning point in her development as well as how Google could help her [to reach a milestone] , explains Iran Karimian, head of the ecosystem of emerging companies at Google Canada.
The pandemic, an advantage for Gryd
Like all tech companies, Gryd has profited from the pandemic.
We really took off during COVID-19, when people weren’t comfortable leaving their own homes, says Josh Glow. They could always dive right into the home tour and get a preview with virtual furniture and, thus, better design the space.
Gryd now has a good thirty employees. More than twenty, including several Francophones, work at the head office, located in downtown Winnipeg.
The others are divided between Vancouver, Ottawa, Toronto and Saskatoon.
In addition, there are contract workers also distributed in the United States , adds Josh Glow.
Although the company is already seven years old, an emerging entrepreneurial atmosphere mixed with a certain seriousness reigns in the recently furnished premises of Manitoba’s capital. All employees, for example, are in the same room, regardless of their hierarchical position.
10 weeks to grow the business
For 10 weeks, Gryd was able to take full advantage of Google’s incubator.
The goal was to enable us to accelerate our growth. Through the program, we have access to specialists within Google in different areas, such as products, business management, sales, software engineering, etc. , explains Josh Glow.
We received a lot of invaluable advice and resources. We have also built relationships with industry experts and investors , he adds.
The program, which officially started on March 21, is, however, coming to an end. On Thursday, Manitoba entrepreneurs will participate in the high mass that concludes all the work done, during a demonstration day broadcast on YouTube Premium.
This will be an opportunity for Gryd’s employees to make themselves better known, to show their growth over the 10 weeks and to describe their projects in order, potentially, to convince potential investors one last time.