Silicon Valley is saturated. From rising rents to established heavy hitters in the technology sector, start-ups are widely moving to new tech corridors in cities such as Toronto and Austin.

This overwhelmingly popular shift is proving to be beneficial not only for local economies, but is providing breathing room to comfortably develop new ideas outside of the constricted — and highly competitive — valley. Interestingly, many artificial intelligence companies are decamping for Canada. Montreal, Toronto and their adjacent metropolitan surroundings are quickly serving as automation hotspots. Meanwhile, New York City and Boston are drawing product life cycle management solutions, omnichannel analytic tools and social marketing platforms as well as tech-focused consultancies.

That’s not to say that Silicon Valley is a has-been — just take a look at Salesforce’s newest tower set to open its doors in April.


  1. NewstoreHelmed by Demandware creator, Stephan Schambach, Newstore offers a mobile retail platform that empowers users to deliver end-to-end consumer journeys.
  2. PTCAimed to support companies manufacturing, designing and operating in a smart and connected industry, PTC has carved a niche for itself.
  3. ZaiusTouting full integration under four minutes, this marketing platform delivers real-time consumer analytics to improve revenue.
  4. SalsifyA product content management service, Salsify provides digital asset management, product information management and commerce-driven workflows.
  5. Locus RoboticsOptimizing warehouse operations through the use of robotics, LocusBots enable retailers and brands to respond to e-commerce volume demands while lowering labor costs.


  1. DropSpecifically targeted at Millennials, Drop is a digital rewards app that accrues points from everyday spending.
  2. Zoom.aiImprove productivity with this automated assistant. Users are able to the artificial intelligence tool to schedule meetings, make introductions, and discern travel logistics.
  3. Intuitive: Seeking to create a zero waste world, this AI-powered platform has the functionality to sort garbage from organics and recyclables.
  4. RubikloudWith its customer life cycle management platform, retailers are able to predict shopper intent to improve engagement in addition to other features.
  5. AskuityA retail sales enablement platform garnered toward improving sales team successes with data and insights.


  1. LightspeedA cloud-based POS system, the software company touts that its customers boost commonly up sales 20 percent after their first year.
  2. Automat: An AI-powered conversational marketing platform that enables companies to hold one-on-one conversations with their customers.
  3. FAIR Montreal (Facebook property): Citing Montreal’s booming AI community, Facebook has set up its new AI hub in the city, which will focus on AI-powered reinforcement learning and dialog systems.
  4. NexalogyCut through the clutter and upgrade social media accounts with this campaign management and analytics tool.
  5. SalesfloorThe role of the sales associate is elevated with this technology, in-store professionals are able to connect with shoppers.
  6. MnuboAdaptable to consumer, enterprise and industry verticals, users are able to improve time-to-insights for connected industrial assets and consumer products.


  1. RetailmenotRetailers, brands and restaurants are able to connect with millions of consumers on the platform that extends deals and savings.
  2. Silicon LabsA provider of silicon, software and IoT solutions, Silicon Labs looks to support the auto, consumer and industrial automation segments.
  3. Q2A scalable smart banking platform, Q2 delivers secure and streamlined financial services.
  4. IndeedWith over 200 million monthly unique visitors, Indeed covers approximately 94 percent of global GDP with its digital job board.
  5. SailPoint Technologies: A security platform that aims to mitigate the likelihood of breaches and provide an identity governance market.
  6. SolarWinds: A comprehensive IT management system that reduces complexity often encountered in legacy enterprise software.

New York City

  1. TransfixTrack shipments and gain real-time visibility by following the delivery cycle — and receive alerts as they arise.
  2. EtsyA global marketplace that connects online and offline vendors that offers seller services, which helps entrepreneurs start, manage and scale new ventures.
  3. CrowdtapAn influencer marketing platform that devises an ecosystem that fosters shopper feedback with rewards and free sampling.
  4. AccentureA holistic strategy and consulting firm centered on digital transformation.
  5. DeloitteA comprehensive company that extends services ranging from audit & assurance to risk and financial advisory.

 More from WWD:

What Net Neutrality Means for E-commerce

Artificial Intelligence to Create 2.3 Million Jobs by 2020

Technology Evolves, Poised to Revitalize Consumer Experiences

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