Early this morning, a crowd of entrepreneurs gathered at the Centurium Conference Centre to celebrate Ottawa’s start-ups for the Bootstrap Awards. Ten different categories were represented, with the first prize winning team awarded with, you guessed it, a golden boot.

It was a community event, put together by organizations involved with mentoring, assisting and furthering entrepreneurs. The awards were presented by Bruce Firestone’s Exploriem.org, organized by OCRI, and sponsored by a myriad of community supporters, including Carleton University’s TIM program and OCRI’s TalentBridge.

It was a fantastic event, despite the early morning wake up call.  Rob Woodbridge, President and CEO of ROVE m-ced the event brilliantly: quick funny and to the point.  OCRI TalentBridge was a sponsor of the event and Manu Sharma presented one of the awards.  Another proud moment for TalentBridge was when Wedding Republic won Gold for Best New Website of the Year, a website developed by OAK, of which Manu Sharma is a founding partner and TBridge alum Dave Hunt is a managing partner. Congratulations!

Other highlights include Stewart of Stewart Supreme Vending receivng his “Fastest Growing 20 and under Bootstrap of the Year”award and matter-of-factly stating “I own a number of vending machines across Ottawa and I stock them and service them. That’s what I do”.  Straight  and to the point. :0)  You can watch him and the other winners receiving their award on youtube.

The only information I think was missing at the event was the what.  I know who won, and for what category, but I don’t knowwhat the best technique is, or what exactly was the best innovative source of bootstrap capital.  It’d be great to have this information shared for further learning.

Congratulations to all the finalists and winners!  Listed below are golden boot winners; a full list of awards and winners can be found at the OCRI site.

  • Best New Mircro Business of the YEar – Gold Boot to Network Hippo Inc.
  • Fastest Growing 20 and under Bootstrap Startup of the Year – Golden Boot to Steward Supreme Vending
  • Best New Web Site of the Year – Gold Boot to Wedding Republic
  • Best New Technique for Sales, Pre-Sales or Launch Clients – Gold Boot to CrowdWave Games
  • Best Value Differentiation Technique – Gold Boot to UCreate Media
  • Best Pixi Dust Technique of the Year – Gold Boot to BSETC
  • Most Innovative Source of Bootstrap Capital of the Year – Gold Boot to MartSmart Shopping Network
  • Best Guerrilla Marketing Idea or Campaign of the Year – Gold Boot to Social Mention
  • Most Innovative New Bootstrap Business Model of the Year – Gold Boot to Shopify
  • Fastest Growing Bootstrap Startup – Winners to be announced at the OCRI Awards on April 8th.
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