Turning their vision into reality: Wattpad wins PwC’s 2012 Innovator of the Year Award

Vision to Reality Awards celebrates Top 10 outstanding Canadian tech start-ups to watch

TORONTO, November 8, 2012 —PwC is pleased to announce that Wattpad, a Toronto-based company which has created the world’s largest community for readers and writers, has been awarded the 2012 Innovator of the Year Award. Co-founded by Allen Lau and Ivan Yuen, Wattpad provides a free way for people to read fiction and share creative writing on any type of web and mobile device.

“Wattpad is a terrific example of a game changing technology solution that is a winner not only because of its incredible innovation but also because of the company’s ability to hit the ground running, going after a large market with a sound business plan,” says Eugene Bomba of PwC’s Emerging Technology Company practice.

Wattpad has grown to 10 million unique users in 2012, who spend about 2.4 billion minutes per month on average with the service (70% from mobile devices), with 8 million stories shared. “We saw an opportunity to fundamentally re-invent the way the publishing industry has traditionally worked, making it easier to share and exchange content between storywriters and readers,” says Allen Lau, Co-founder of Wattpad.

Lau continues, “We are excited to be awarded the 2012 Innovator of the Year Award. For tech start-ups, having a solid network and community is instrumental in turning an idea into a successful business. Programs like PwC’s Vision to Reality recognize this, and support our journey to grow into the best company possible.” The Innovator of the Year Award acknowledges the company that has best demonstrated the commercialization of an innovative technology solution. Nominees must showcase an innovation that is new, unique and demonstrates customer acceptance.

Runners up for the Innovator of the Year Award include Brossard, Quebec-based Acquisio, an online provider of Performance Media Platform, which marketers can use to buy, track, manage and report on media across all channels through a Software as a Service (SaaS) model.

Toronto-based Infusion was also a runner-up. The company’s Personif platform is a cloud-based video solution that takes video streaming to the next level and allows companies to develop and provide unique marketing content through co-generated and interactive experiences with its customers.

Top 10 Up-and-Coming Technology Companies

All nominations for the Innovator of the Year were considered for the top 10 list of up-and-coming technology companies. These 10 companies are demonstrating significant promise and are considered the companies to watch:

Bomba says, “The strength of these companies is a reflection of Canada's tech startup community, which has reached a new level of growth and maturity. Startup CEOs are optimistic and the majority continue to take an aggressive approach to business planning and execution, while understanding that innovation takes many forms – from improving on what already exists to completely disrupting an industry.”

About the Vision to Reality Awards

The Vision to Reality Awards program celebrates dynamic companies in the technology sector that have demonstrated successful growth, and whose outstanding achievements have made them some of Canada’s most successful technology companies. These companies have made a difference in Canada by having the courage to expose their visions, and then turn them into the reality of revenues, profit and benefits to the industry.

Once the nomination phase is closed, a shortlist of companies was selected by an independent panel of judges, and from this stage a group of finalists were chosen. Finalists were evaluated by judges based on innovation, financial performance and strategic direction.

For more information, please visit http://www.pwc.com/ca/en/emerging-company/connecting-vision-to-reality.

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About PwC Canada

PwC Canada helps organizations and individuals create the value they’re looking for. More than 5,700 partners and staff in offices across the country are committed to delivering quality in assurance, tax, consulting and deals services. PwC Canada is a member of the PwC network of firms with close to 169,000 people in 158 countries. Find out more by visiting us at www.pwc.com/ca.

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