Digital Media People to Watch in BC in 2008

One of the benefits of blogging about technology in BC is the opportunity to meet and interact with innovative technology leaders and evangelists everyday. During 2007, we’ve had the pleasure of covering some great people, start-ups, and events and as a result are very excited about what 2008 promises for the BC Tech industry.

To kick off the year, we’ve put together a list of British Columbians in the Digital Media space that we think are worth watching in 2008. While all have been super successful to date, this upcoming year promises to be a BIG one. Mark our word.

David Ascher, MailCo – Ascher heads up this spin off of Thunderbird technology from Mozilla Corporation (Firefox) and is building a team in Vancouver. Mozilla’s strong backing will give Ascher the flexibility to build open source software that takes email to the next level.

Ian Andrew Bell, Something Simpler – Bell is a Silicon Valley veteran who is bringing his consumer market savvy to bear building a series of high-profile services leveraging the PubSub realtime content matching engine. His small team of industry veterans will release the first of their services, a Facebook recommendation engine called “Pulse”, in January.

Leonard Brody, – was named one of the Top 50 websites by TIME magazine in 2007 and went on to record the 2nd largest VC financing of the year – $11.6 Million. All eyes will be on Brody to see what he can do as an encore.

Jonathon Ehrlich, – Former Executive VP of Online at Indigo Books & Music came West to join in late 2007. Ehrlich has big e-commerce plans for a portfolio of online properties that include,, and

Markus Frind, Plentyoffish – Vancouver’s most successful one-man operation is due to cash-in on his Google Adsense cash cow as online dating consolidation moves North. Will he find the right match?

Kris Krug and Robert Scales, Raincity Studios – Raincity has big plans for their recent Bryght acquisition and 2008 should be an interesting year as they integrate the Bryght product and expand into China.

Boris Mann, Raincity Studios – Vancouver Tech evangelist and open source specialist recently sold Bryght and is rumoured to be planning his next big thing in town to help even more companies get started here.

Danny Robinson, Strutta – Robinson is a serial entrepreneur who previously founded two Internet companies (Peerflix and Spinway) is due to launch eagerly anticipated Strutta in early 2008.

Fred Speckeen, AERS – Speckeen brings two decades of experience to Victoria-based e-commerce analytics leader AERS. Founding Sukow Brothers deserve kudos for growing annual revenue to $2 Million and recognizing the need for an experienced CEO. Look for Speckeen to attract the spotlight to AERS in 2008.

Tom Williams, GiveMeaning – GiveMeaning has been reducing the barriers separating people’s generosity from the problems that need attention since 2004 but you can’t help but feel that the former 14 year-old Apple prodigy is just getting started. Look for him to take crowd-sourced giving up a notch in 2008.

As Techvibes continues to increase coverage in other technology hotbeds, look for similar lists throughout the year. And if we’ve missed someone, be sure to add your pick to the comments below.