Good morning, Toronto startups and entrepreneurs! If you have children, this week’s late March break combined with Ontario’s stay-at-home order means you’ll get to spend more time with them — whether you like it or not. No plans on what to do with the little scamps? Why not give them a role in your startup? Who better to suss out the usability of a design than young children? Start them on a task that can be performed with your product and see how they do. Get them to review your microcopy for clarity. Sit them down with clients to get to the core of what they’re trying to achieve — kids love asking why!
The remaining eight startups participating in Techstars Toronto’s accelerator program
hail from around the world: Azerbaijan, India, Nigeria, Vietnam, and the States. Many of these companies have already incorporated in Canada, and their founders aim to move here. They’ll later provide employment and investing opportunities for people living and working in Toronto.
Five Toronto startups have also been chosen to participate in the Canadian Technology Accelerator Digital Silicon Valley program
. Congratulations to KeyDB
, an open-source database with cloud hosting; Willful
, a startup providing online wills and estate planning; iRestify
, automated cleaning and maintenance operations for property managers; VXG
, offering cloud video surveillance services; and Fortuna AI
, an AI-powered platform that helps financial advisors grow their investor base. Great work to everyone who was involved!
If you’re looking for a way to grow your
idea, there’s a new opportunity to find like-minded people to help you. Entrepreneur First Toronto
is accepting applications for its September 2021 cohort until the end of this month. If you want to learn more about the program, be sure to check out their Thursday information session
. Scroll down for more.
Be aware that applications for two other opportunities are closing within seven days. Toronto Community Housing’s Be.Build.Brand will no longer be accepting applications after Monday the 12th
. The following Monday, the Women’s Business Accelerator
workshop series will also end its application round. Read below for more details.
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.
Be.Build.Brand. (B3) is a ten-week entrepreneurship program for Toronto Community Housing tenants between the ages of 18 and 29. The program supports entrepreneurial ideas in the pre-incubation stage and helps participants to turn their ideas into viable business plans. The program offers exposure to relevant entrepreneurship content, industry guest speakers, and capacity-building opportunities. Participants will pitch their ideas to a panel of judges for a chance to win seed funds for their business venture. You could come away with funding of up to $2,500 through, an opportunity to receive free branding and marketing from a professional agency, access to website development and a digital marketing consultation, an actionable business plan through lean business model canvas, and networking opportunities with industry mentors, guest speakers and Be.Build.Brand alumni.
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.
Entrepreneur First is the best place in the world to meet a co-founder and build a startup from scratch. If you’re talented, ambitious, and looking to found a company, then EF is for you. On our 6-month programme starting in September, you’ll join like-minded people who want to co-found a startup right now. You’ll be supported by a global network of founders, advisors and investors. We’ll cover your living costs while you test out your ideas, and you’ll never have to pay us back. If we believe your company has the potential to succeed at scale, we’ll provide further funding to get you started, in exchange for 10% equity.
The Station FinTech Montréal Accelerator, powered by Highline Beta, is an opportunity for fintech and insurtech startups from across Canada to work closely with Québec’s financial and insurance institutions. It’s a true ecosystem program to help startups and big companies connect. Operated in Montréal, the program will benefit startups with a product in the market that enables safer, faster, and more reliable payments. Participants will receive four months of milestone-driven programming tailored to their needs; hands-on weekly coaching on growth, plan development, fundraising, and corporate engagement strategy; corporate connections with curated events, pitch sessions, and private sessions with advisors; as well as an optional minimum initial investment of $25K.
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.
Have a great week, and stay well!