Exciting news out from Wilfrid Laurier University yesterday as it was announced that the local University, renowned for its Business programs, will receive $35 million for the creation of a Technology Management institution. In addition to the $15 million provided by the Ontario government, as confirmed with the release of the latest provincial budget, WLU will also receive a $20 million philanthropic donation from entrepreneur and BlackBerry co-founder Mike Lazaridis.
The institution will be known as The Lazaridis Institute for the Management of Technology Enterprises and will be housed in Laurier's $100 million Global Innovation Exchange Building that's nearing completion on University Avenue. But what exactly is technology management? Well, the idea is to help startup firms grow from a good idea with a few employees into stable, globally competitive companies that employ up to 500 people. The idea came from the realization that, here in the Region, we are great at starting firms, but really need to make sure we grow them as that’s what will create economic benefits for the community in the future. Lazaridis has stated that the institute builds on the "deep culture of innovation and entrepreneurship in this region. … This institute will play a fundamental role in developing business managers with the tools necessary to build globally competitive high-technology businesses."
The institute will spend the $35 million to hire faculty, develop curriculum, and fund students. The institution is also intended to become self-sustaining after the required start up costs.
Sources: 570 News, The Record