Windsor organizations collaborate to attract tech, auto companies at Detroit auto show

Monday, January 14, 2019

CBC Windsor


'We need to build on and and evolve our strengths'

Four Windsor organizations are showing unity — and showing off Windsor — on the exhibitor floor at the North American International Auto Show in Detroit this week. 

WEtech Alliance, Windsor Essex Economic Development Corporation, the University of Windsor and St. Clair College are sharing a space to showcase what Windsor has to offer to media, industry representatives and automotive fans. 

The four came together to form what they're calling a "significant presence" at the auto show., hoping to display Windsor-Essex as a "premier location for mobility innovation," as well as detail automation and technological creations from the region.

"We're here to demonstrate that as the automotive capital of Canada, Windsor-Essex is primed to be a mobility centre of excellence," said Susan Anzolin, executive director for the Institute of Border Logistics and Security, a department of WEEDC.

"We're here to raise awareness of what we're doing and what we have."

According to Anzolin, that means they're looking beyond just automotive technology — they're interested in how people move goods and services. 

"Mobility is the next wave of technology," said Anzolin. "It's about how we live our lives today with all these new mobility technologies."

The organizations came together because they see themselves as the full product chain — educational institutions like the university and college pump out graduates who use economic development to get jobs, and then the tech alliance looks into the future to see what's coming next. 

"We need to build on and and evolve our strengths," said Anzolin. 

The group also hopes its presence will stand out to industry representatives looking for the next location.

"We're right across the river, we offer a phenomenal cluster of great organizations," said Anzolin, adding Canada's immigration policy lets companies attract global talent.

"Why not come here?"

The Windsor booth is set up in the "universities" section of the exhibitor floor for the entire run of the auto show.