Air Miles For Business 2017 | ViewTrak

LOCATION: EDMONTON, AB ⋅ ESTABLISHED: 2005 ⋅ EMPLOYEES: 25

The Co-Presidents of ViewTrak, Ted Power and Hubert Lau, never imagined in their wildest dreams that they’d be pioneers in the agricultural industry. Even when the two friends – who work in parallel streams of the tech sector – ventured in, they thought it would be very short term, given how little they knew about farming and raising livestock.

But the character of the people completely won them over. “The agricultural industry is not known for being tech innovators, but those who are in it are really good, hard-working and honest people,” says Power. “If you look a rancher in the eye and shake his hand, you don’t need documents. You have their word.”

FROM THE JUDGES

In a decidedly unsexy industry, Viewtrak has applied their deep knowledge to innovate their product from within. The result is an international market-leading product for livestock grading and tracking.

It is Power and Lau’s commitment to helping ranchers that has driven the production innovation of their pork grading system, DT-880, which uses state-of-art tech to eliminate human error from carcass grading. With the tool, pork producers around the world can properly gauge the effects of such factors as genetics, feeding and other management programs, as well as get the deserved market price for their product.

The DT-880 also provides a product traceability system that helps improve food safety, accountability and transparency critical to building consumer and government trust.

The innovation borrows from the intellectual property and expertise of the duo’s existing companies. Power is the founder of Power’s Trace Applications, providing software solutions for tracking quality assurance documentation in the metals industry. Lau’s company, Ekota Central, provides IT services nationwide.

The next-generation pork grading tool is helping grow ViewTrak’s market share not just in Canada, but also in China, where the company is already the market leader. And it is helping them expand into new regions such as Vietnam and South Korea.

It has been quite the turnaround for the company, after real estate developer Marc de La Bruyère and noted entrepreneur Brett Wilson (a former dragon on Dragons’ Den) acquired the company in 2011 and asked Power and Lau to take the reins.

“We thought it would be a great six-month gig to turn the company around and leave a great impression with people like Marc and Brett,” says Lau. “But here we are almost five years later – the company is thriving, our people are happy, and we’re having a great time. We can’t imagine not working in the sector.”

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