Ottawa e-signature firm Signority has what it takes to ‘be a leader’: new CEO

A spacious new headquarters in Hintonburg is just one more sign of bigger and better things to come from Ottawa startup Signority in 2017, the firm’s new CEO says.

Founded in 2010, the company makes subscription software that allows customers to sign documents electronically with just the swipe of a finger. Now at 16 employees, Signority is ramping up its sales and marketing staff in an effort to reach its goal of seven-figure revenues by the end of this year, says new chief executive Samer Forzley.

A former entrepreneur-in-residence at Invest Ottawa who helped build local startup eBillme into a fintech force before it was sold to Western Union, Mr. Forzley officially joined the Signority team in December. He says the company is looking at a “few interesting plays” to enhance its products, a drive being led by co-founder Jane He, who shifts from the CEO’s position to chief operating officer.

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“The market is ready for disruption and we’re looking at doing that,” the 2010 OBJ Forty Under 40 recipient says. “I’m coming in to kind of help grow the business and add sales experience, a bit of marketing experience.”

Moving out of Invest Ottawa headquarters on Bayview Road to its own space on Wellington Street West will give the company room to grow, he adds. The firm expects to keep adding to its current headcount over the next few months while it settles into its new 3,000-square-foot office, Mr. Forzley says.

Signority targets its software-as-a-service offering at small and medium-sized enterprises. Some of its most popular clients are insurance agents who a need quick and efficient way of exchanging and verifying documents with their customers electronically, Mr. Forzley says.

Citing a recent industry study that found only about five per cent of Canada’s insurance agents are currently signing forms electronically, he says there is plenty of room for growth in that sector.

“That market alone is significant,” he says. “That’s the right-sized market for us; that’s the right customers for us.”

Signority is working on offering additional services to help separate it from the pack and take its product “to the next level,” he adds – though he declined to be more specific because the company has yet to roll out the new technology.

Mr. Forzley says Signority is operating in a very competitive space, but he’s confident the firm will continue its upward growth trajectory over the long term.

“We feel that we have a good chance to be a leader in this market,” he says. “The question is are we able to find the resources, whether it’s financial or human, in Ottawa to actually make it happen. I hope so.”

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