Hello Toronto startups and entrepreneurs! By many measures, our local startup ecosystem leads other cities, Canadian and North American alike, and continues to grow. There is one area of technology, however, in which Toronto lags: agtech.
Agtech is a catch-all for innovations which promise to improve efficiency, profitability and/or sustainability in agriculture. These could include anything from crop-picking robots, to automated irrigation, to managing farmland with satellite photography and sensing.
Toronto ranks second in Canadian agtech, according to Startup Genome
, a US-based innovation policy advisory and research firm which ranks the world’s strongest agtech ecosystems. Leading in Canada is Vancouver, at ninth internationally
. Toronto-Waterloo came close in eleventh place, falling behind Vancouver in talent and focus, where our region scored a one out of ten.
If you’ve got the talent and focus, be aware that two opportunities close this month, and they could be yours if you apply before the deadline. The first is the DMZ Bootcamp Pre-incubator Program
, for early-stage tech founders to establish their roadmap, with applications due by May 10. Less than a week later, the Women’s Business Accelerator
will also close its admissions for newcomer women seeking to build a profitable business. Read on for more details.
Have a great week, and stay well!
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.
The DMZ’s Bootcamp helps early-stage tech founders validate their business idea, establish a minimum viable product and build a roadmap for implementation to launch a startup. Over the course of 6 weeks, this program gives founders exposure to the different domains important in building a venture: sales, marketing, operations, technology, finance, leadership and more. Through the Bootcamp, founders get: founder roundtables and peer to peer sessions, expert-led workshop series, and dedicated one-on-one support from our Program Leads. Upon completing the program, startups should be ready to launch within three months and generate revenue within six months.
Are you a newcomer woman with a business idea? The Women’s Business Accelerator is a free, online workshop series that will equip you with the tools you need to build a profitable business. In the WBA program, you’ll develop your idea and craft a business plan, receive coaching support to enhance your learning, network with other entrepreneurs and industry professionals, and practice and refine your pitching skills. Eligible applicants must be a permanent resident, convention refugee or live-in caregiver with a legal right to work in Canada, and have a business idea or be interested in starting a business in Canada.
BHive is an initiative powered by the City of Brampton with a goal to empower the next generation of innovators, accelerate their journey, and create a positive impact for the entrepreneur, economy, and community as a whole. The program has been strategically designed to ensure startups have everything they need to scale and grow. Successful applicants will have access to an unrivaled ecosystem and expertise to support exceptional founders in building successful companies. Our integrated approach involves thoughtfully designed programs, one-to-one mentorships, and access to our entire portfolio of service.
This program, delivered by Futurpreneur, will provide young, Black entrepreneurs age 18-39 across Canada with a comprehensive offering of $5,000–$60,000 in startup loan financing, as well as up to two years of mentorship, opportunities to engage with a national network of Black entrepreneurs, leaders and community organizations at a range of entrepreneurship events, and a variety of relevant tools and resources. Participants who are keen to scale their businesses even further will also be eligible for up to $40,000 in follow-on financing funded by RBC, based on the first two years of successful business performance.
At the Science Discovery Zone (SDZ) we help people take evidence-based approaches to test big ideas and discover new ventures. We aim to serve as a model for strong collaboration across all disciplines (not just the science ones) that fuels innovation and entrepreneurial discovery. What makes the SDZ stand out amongst other incubators are the unique services and opportunities we create for our community, which are geared towards fostering your goals and success!