BeeSecure: Innovators in Asset Tracking and Rural Crime Prevention
In October of 2017, Innovation Saskatchewan introduced the rural crime challenge. The question they posed to innovators was “How can we use technology to reduce rural crime?”
Jeff Shirley and his team entered the competition with a strong understanding of the solution. As a professional beekeeper, he had already been working on technology to solve the problem of bees being stolen. “Rural communities have the same technology challenges. Often, they have no internet and no power to the area that needs to be protected,” he shares.
Rivercity Technology Services won the competition with “BeeSecure”, their app and small component that is attached to a piece of property. The small device sends a text message and GPS data to the owner’s cell phone and the app when an object moves. The hardware does not require permanent power or the internet to alert the owner of unusual activity of their property.
“When you want to know when a truck moves, if it does, you will get a text message, so you can check the map to see where it is going,” explains Shirley. “Another example is livestock management. If you have a farmer with two-hundred head of cattle, he can monitor exactly where each cow is all year.”
He continues, “Originally, we built this using cellular technology. Unfortunately, there are quite a few places where there is no cellular technology, so we have created a new version of the product. Our new technology uses LoRaWAN which uses much less battery power, does not require cellular service or the associated cellular fees, and is sold through their new company Rivercity Innovations Ltd.”
Rivercity Innovations is actively working with a major European client here in Saskatchewan, with law enforcement across the province, and with Rural Municipalities and rural residents in furthering the technology to reduce rural crime while simultaneously bringing other value in additional sensor data collection on their LoRaWAN network.
As the technology and market expands beyond the original scope of the challenge, Shirley remains grateful. “Innovation Saskatchewan fostered the environment for us to be this successful. They facilitated working with the government ministries and the competition helped us facilitate the first version of the tech. This has created several jobs right here in Saskatoon.”
Founding Date: November 2017
Founder and CEO: Jeff Shirley