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Techstars Startup Digest Toronto - Find your path to profitability during COVID-19

Good morning, Toronto startups and entrepreneurs! If your business is still reeling from the COVID-19
Issue #9  •  July 20  •  View online  •  Suggest a link to us
Techstars Startup Digest Toronto
Techstars Startup Digest Toronto
Locally curated talks, workshops, and other events for those interested in creating a startup, growing one, or who want to connect with startups in the Greater Toronto Area.
Good morning, Toronto startups and entrepreneurs! If your business is still reeling from the COVID-19 shutdown, you might find solace in SnapTravel’s rise to profitability during the pandemic. Despite a huge hit to the travel sector, the Toronto startup’s founders Hussein Fazal and Henry Shi were able to turn the company around and reach profitability within just 60 days. Last week, they shared the 10 steps they took and the lessons they learned, including using the opportunity to renegotiate costs with vendors.
Canada is home to another accelerator. Intuit Canada and Toronto’s Highline Beta have come together to form the Intuit Prosperity Accelerator. The program welcomes global tech startups to help solve financial prosperity challenges that Canadian consumers, self-employed, and small businesses will be facing in the wake of COVID-19. Look to our community opportunities below for more information.
Last week I posted that Toronto’s Roots Community Services needs Black tech entrepreneurs or managers for Black Leaders of Tomorrow, their youth entrepreneurship mentoring program. If you haven’t applied already and meet the criteria, please consider applying ASAP.
Community Opportunities
Here are some upcoming deadlines for applying to accelerators, grants and funding, or other competitions. Don’t miss out! If you know of others, please submit any application deadlines and I’ll post them if they’re relevant.
As a national video series, Startup & Slay Digital aims to raise the profile and visibility of women business owners of colour or racialized women, persons with disabilities, Indigenous women, those who identify as members of the LGBTQ+ community, or those who come from an immigrant or refugee background. This year’s program is online. Startup & Slay is now taking applications for 2020. Selected 2020 honourees will share their stories through virtual meetups and engage with an even larger audience.
Calling all leaders and innovators! The York Entrepreneurship Development Institute (YEDI) is now accepting applications for its Fall 2020 Incubator Program. Receive extensive education, ongoing mentorship and the chance to showcase your venture to industry representatives. YEDI’s Incubator Program is the perfect way to transform your venture from an idea to a reality.
Intuit Canada and Toronto’s Highline Beta have joined forces for the Intuit Prosperity Accelerator. They’re primarily looking for companies making an immediate impact on small businesses and consumers’ most pressing challenges post-COVID-19. Seed stage tech startups with a product in market are preferred, but businesses of all stages — including pre-seed and ideation — are welcome.

Have a great week, and stay well!
Ian.

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Meet TechCrunch at Disrupt online and save 15%

TechCrunch DisruptTechCrunch Disrupt is 100% virtual this year and will be action packed with content over 5 days from September 14-18. Our networking platform opens up next week with opportunities to meet other attendees, speed network and watch some pre-event content to get you excited for the real deal! Now’s the time for you to grab your passes before early bird pricing ends on Friday and you can even take another 15% off with code TECHSTARS15.
Tuesday
Learn more about the challenges and opportunities with scaling innovation in a quickly changing world. With normal practices out the window, companies are focusing their attention on survivability and liquidity. And yet, difficult times always present new openings for clear-thinking entrepreneurs. Each week, we’ll discuss how you can take advantage. 

The discussion is meant to raise important issues, provide best practices, and explain how startups can avoid common pitfalls and meet key deadlines critical to hiring foreign nationals—and maintaining them in legal status. Attendees will also get the chance to ask their questions directly to our lawyer and have them answered in a group format for all to learn from.

Looking for a project or potential co-founders? Want to join an early-stage startup? Join our live chat to meet our members. This is ideal for networking, meeting team members, potential co-founders, beta users, and connecting with opportunities.

Wednesday
Owning a business is a dream for many people. Every new business starts with an idea. This interactive workshop will help you have a step-by-step overview of what you need to do to make it happen. This session is designed for those looking to start their own business, but don’t know where to start. The session will help get you started on pulling together the things you’ll need to get your business started.

Entrepreneurship Connections helps newcomers who plan to start a business in Canada. If you have owned or operated a business outside Canada, or would like to launch one here, this innovative and informative program will assist you with setting up a successful small business in the Canadian market. Join us to learn more about the program!
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The Entrepreneur First Toronto team is hosting a virtual open office for the next generation of founders. We’ll be having conversations about: Why entrepreneurship is the career path to scale your ambition; What we look for in future founders; Applying to EF & the admissions process; What the programme looks like in detail.

Join FoodShare Toronto as we host a conversation centred around the experiences of Black leaders. We will be speaking with Black leaders working and organizing in predominantly white spaces, who have taken the time — and in some cases, the risk — in their lives and careers to advocate on behalf of the Black community. 

Thursday
Traditionally, you could either choose to bootstrap your business, or get on the VC (venture capital) track. But what if you could get just enough money to get you to the next level, while keeping control of your business and your growth? This workshop will explore the alternate funding options available for you and your business.

In the premiere of this at home series, Richard Reiner of dfuse Platform will tell a handful of stories from his five successful (and a few unsuccessful) tech startups, highlighting some of the opportunities and the challenges that come with creating and growing a tech company in Canada. Subjects include finding and dealing with investors, what to do when no one wants your product (and how to avoid getting into that situation in the first place), and how to navigate exit opportunities.
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Are you ready? As a founder or emerging founder of a business venture that has been dealing with pandemic related turbulence in recent months, what are YOU doing to re-calibrate? This interactive workshop is designed to focus on you, your wellness, and support your efforts to focus on your business. All women (and those that identify as a woman) entrepreneurs are welcome to join in for a discussion.

It’s time to build bridges of support for Black tech to move in and up in the tech ecosystem. This is a powerful conversation that will enable companies and stakeholders to identify real barriers to seeing more Black professionals in tech and how to dismantle those barriers. We know this is not about skills, but about networks, so we want to dig into how we reduce the network gap.

Friday
Discover the untold stories about successful fundraising rounds, with firsthand accounts from the people in the room. In each episode, you’ll hear from each side — the founder and the investor — about the process of closing a deal. You’ll also learn more about the ongoing relationships that drive businesses forward. Each week, TechTO’s Alex Norman interviews buzzworthy founders and investors.
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Techstars Startup Digest Techstars Startup Digest Toronto is curated by:
Ian Stevens Ian Stevens - https://ianstevens.ca/
ian.stevens@startupdigestmail.com
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