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Day 47: NYC Tech for Canadians

November 5, 2014 at 3:51 pm

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Today the teams heard from Charles Brun, CEO and Co-Founder of Now In Store about the tech scene in New York City. Charles was in the 4th FounderFuel Cohort and was able to give valuable insights as to what #NYCTech has to offer. Here are some of the things he found best about the community.

Driven and Fast Paced –  It takes a 24/7 work ethic to build something meaningful and valuable, and this mantra is strong in New York.

Welcoming – People that are new to tech can integrate quickly, and those new to the NYC Tech scene are welcomed with open arms. 

Collaborative – There is a continuous sharing of ideas networks, deals, and more. Everyone is willing to share their own experiences which helps the community continue to grow at a rapid rate. 

Open – The community is very accessible via meet ups, twitter, and blogs and other resources. There are also a number of coffee shops that provide good opportunities for networking. 

Diverse – There are many large industries in town, but tech is involved in every single one.

Innovative – Many advancements exist from corporations, startups, and makers.

Interested in participating in mentorship talks like these? Apply today to the FounderFuel Spring 2015 cohort!

Curious as to what is produced from a FounderFuel cohort? Come by Demo Day on December 2nd to see for yourself! Register here. 

Day 46: “I don’t know what sleep is anymore”

November 4, 2014 at 11:46 am

There’s 27 days left until Demo Day. That’s right ONLY 27 days left!! The teams have their heads down and are busy trying to accomplish as much as they can. They want to walk on stage at the historic Rialto Theatre and knock your socks off with what they’ve achieved in 12 short weeks. To highlight the 1 month countdown mark we decided to ask the teams their thoughts on the looming deadline. 

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Here are some of their answers:

“Please stop reminding me. It’s the only thing I can think about.”

“I don’t know what sleep is anymore. At this point, I wouldn’t even be able to pick my bed out of a line-up!”

“I’m worried we’re not building what people want and we’ll only find that out too late. What if I walk on stage and have nothing? Are we doing everything wrong?”

“Crap…”

“I’m excited for Demo Day! It’s what we’ve been working towards this whole time and we got this!”

And with that, the countdown is officially on. From creative marketplaces to robotic solutions to top notch SaaS platforms, this Demo Day will be one to remember! Are you excited to meet the teams?

Get your Demo Day tickets now!

What’s in a FounderFuel Founder?

November 3, 2014 at 2:34 pm

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Interested in applying to FounderFuel? Having trouble deciding if the program is right for you? Want an inside look at what a typical FounderFuel Founder looks like? With so many accelerators popping up around the world, it can be difficult to decide which one is a good fit for you. Check out the numbers below to see what the average startup in our program is like.

Average Founder Age – 29 

We’ve had a range of founders from 19-38 years old, and only 1/4 of the Founders were students or coming out of University. The rest were seasoned entrepreneurs or came from the workplace.

Top 3 Cities Companies Come From -

  1. Montreal

  2. Toronto

  3. Vancouver

Average Number of Founders per company – 2.5

Gender Breakdown -

17% Women

83% Men

However, we are actively trying to change this and want a 50/50 split by the end of 2015.

Company Stage

Most have developed a MVP (Minimum Viable Product) and spend the program achieving product-market fit. The program is not meant for building, but instead meant for raising traction, revenue, and eventually funding.

Industry

SaaS – 31%

Mobile – 27%

Marketplace – 18%

User-Generated – 8%

Hardware – 7%

Media – 7%

E-Commerce – 2%

Hopefully, the above stats have helped dispel any myths about the typical startup or founder that goes through the FounderFuel program. Check out some of our alumni here.

Think you’ve got what it takes to be a part of FounderFuel? Apply here.

Want a closer look into the profiles of our founders? Come to Demo Day and see what they’re like for yourself!

Ottawa here we come!

October 31, 2014 at 3:09 pm

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Do you have a startup in Ottawa? Are you interested in applying to FounderFuel? Come to office hours with Sylvain Carle and Emma Williams on November 10th from 10am to 4pm at Invest Ottowa!

One of the top-tier accelerators in the world, FounderFuel is now recruiting for the Spring 2015 cohort. We’d love to have applicants from all over the world, so if you are located in Ottawa then make sure to take advantage of this opportunity!

Want to meet Emma and Sylvain and find out more about FounderFuel? Let your curiosity get the best of you and sign up here! We will also be having beers at Heart and Crown starting at 5:30pm and all are welcome to join!

There is less than one month to apply for the Spring 2015 cohort, so now is the time to find out if FounderFuel is right for you. Don’t be spooked by the November 29th application deadline, and apply before time runs out!

Spooky thought – Demo Day is just a month away!

October 30, 2014 at 12:05 pm

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With Halloween’s arrival tomorrow, the teams now have to face the spooky thought that Demo Day is just over a month away! Crazy right?! It seems like just yesterday they were opening the doors to Notman for the first time, exploring their offices, and setting up shop.

Now after 2 months of hard work and daily grind, they’re kicking it into overdrive to get things ready for their pitches at Demo Day. Presenting to a room full of investors, fellow founders, and techies, the pressure will really be on!

Think it sounds like a wild ride for the FounderFuel Teams? Come check out the action of Demo Day for yourself and experience what all the hype is about! We’re expecting over 900 attendees from around the world, including investors from Silicon Valley, New York, Boston, Montreal, Toronto, and London. Want the chance to network with all these incredible guests? Sign up today and join the fun of Demo Day on December 2nd!

Get your tickets here

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L’arrivée de l’Halloween rappelle effroyablement aux équipes que le Demo Day se tiendra dans à peine plus d’un mois! Dur à croire, n’est-ce pas? Il semble que c’était hier encore qu’elles franchissaient pour la toute première fois les portes de la Maison Notman.

Après deux mois de travail acharné à un rythme effréné, les équipes redoublent d’efforts à peaufiner leurs présentations du Demo Day. La pression sera à son comble lorsqu’elles présenteront leurs réalisations devant une salle bondée d’investisseurs, de collègues fondateurs et de technophiles!

L’aventure vous semble mouvementée pour les équipes de FounderFuel? Vivez l’expérience du Demo Day et constatez par vous-même toute l’effervescence qui y règne! Nous attendons plus de 900 participants provenant des quatre coins du monde, y compris des investisseurs de la Silicon Valley, de New York, de Boston, de Montréal, de Toronto et de Londres. Vous désirez avoir la chance de réseauter avec ces invités de marque? Inscrivez-vous sans tarder et profitez pleinement du Demo Day le 2 décembre prochain!

Achetez vos billets ici.

Entrepreneurs Panel: Women and Startups

October 28, 2014 at 3:25 pm

We couldn’t be more excited to be hosting four rockstar women entrepreneurs for our upcoming event on November 6th at Notman House. The event will start with a networking event, followed by a fireside chat with Cheryl Tom, Co-Founder of Vain Pursuits (Fall 2014) and then will transition into a panel discussion. Emma Williams, FounderFuel Program Manager, will lead the discussion on Female Entrepreneurship and what the Startup ecosystem is like in Montreal. See below to get your tickets to attend. 

The panelists from various stage startups will include:

 

We have many goals moving forward at FounderFuel, while they are all stand alone, they share the common purpose of expanding the diversity within the program. Whether that be, the type of company, industry, which city or country they’re from, the backgrounds of the founders or their gender. Our first focus is on bringing in more female co-founders with the ultimate objective to be having a 50/50 balance. It’s clear that diversity, in all it’s forms, is a driving force behind innovation and we hope that this event, the first in a series, will help us achieve that at FounderFuel. The whole team will be available at the event on November 6th to answer any questions you might have about applying to the Spring 2015 Cohort. 

Check out this list of Female Founders in Montreal to get an idea of how vibrant the ecosystem is!

 


 

Nous sommes très heureux d’avoir avec nous un quatuor d’invitées exceptionnelles pour notre évènement du 6 novembre à la maison Notman. Emma Williams, gestionnaire du programme FounderFuel, animera un panel sur l’entrepreneuriat au féminin dans l’écosystème des startups de Montréal. Pour débuter la soirée, Cheryl Tom, co-fondatrice de Vain Pursuits (cohorte d’automne 2014) partagera son expérience récente, du programme de FounderFuel et de la suite.

Les panélistes pour représenter les diverses phases de la vie d’une startup:

 

Un de nos objectifs avoués à FounderFuel est d’augmenter la diversité de nos programmes. Le nombre co-fondatrices d’entreprises au sein de notre programme est un des indicateurs que nous suivons de près, avec comme but ultime d’arriver à avoir autant de femmes que d’hommes parmi nos équipes. Nous espérons que cet évènement sera le premier d’une série, nous sommes convaincus que la diversité sous toutes ses formes est porteuse d’innovation! Toute l’équipe de FounderFuel sera sur place pour discuter du programme d’accélération et des modalités de participations pour les cohortes de 2015. Toute l’équipe de FounderFuel sera sur place pour répondre à vos questions à propos de nos programmes pour 2015.

 

Day 37: How to approach Investors

October 22, 2014 at 5:50 pm

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Ever wonder how to best approach investors when raising a round? Today, FounderFuel teams received valuable insight from our investor panel and were given advice on how to form valuable relationships with both VCs and Angels. The panel was lead by Real Ventures own Sam Haffar and included Antoine Nivard of Inovia Capital, Stephane Pilette of Anges Quebec, and Angel investor David Chemandy. Here are some of the insights they gave the #FFMob :

“Use the network you already have to reach the investors you would like to contact.”

“The real value of the investors that you pick is their network.” 

“Angels generally depend upon recommendations from anybody that they have worked with in the past.”

“Don’t be afraid to give gentle reminders for a response.”

“What’s the difference between persistent and stubborn? Well you only know after the fact, and then it is called success.”

“If you’re going to go the email route and use it as a cold call, make sure you give your value proposition in the very beginning of the email.”

“Carefully decide who you want to work with, because you’ll typically be stuck with your investors for the next 4-5 years.”

Stephane also suggested everyone check out Elad Gil’s blog post about how to ask for an introduction. Read it here

Day 35: The Countdown is Officially On!

October 20, 2014 at 10:29 am

Demo Day is about 40 days away and time is moving quickly! The teams are working 7 days a week to make sure their product is perfect, they achieve high levels of traction, launch successful Kickstarters and/or get lots of valuable press coverage before the big day. Let’s just say they have very high mountains to climb but they’re getting there! 

Tickets for Demo Day are going fast! General Admission is already half full. Make sure you get yours before we run out! You don’t want to miss your chance to watch the pitches from our best cohort yet and to mingle with the entire Montreal startup community. 

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We’re Coming Back To Toronto!

October 17, 2014 at 3:15 pm

Hey Toronto Startups!

We couldn’t be more excited to be coming back to Toronto! We had so much fun this past summer at Project:OWL and met some amazing founders and startups. 

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This time around we’ve partnered with One Eleven and will be hanging out there all day Tuesday, Oct 28th hosting office hours for startups interested in applying to our Spring 2015 Cohort. Even better than that, on the evening of Monday, Oct 27th we’ll be hosting a panel discussion on what it was like to take the leap to entrepreneurship. We’ve got solid line-up of seasoned entrepreneurs who will talk about how they knew it was the time to turn their vision into a business, the risks, the rewards and where their companies are now.

The panel will be hosted by FounderFuel GM Sylvain Carle and is made up of:

Alkarim Nasser of BNotions

Andrew Sider of Varage Sale

Nikolai Bratkovski of OpenCare 

Joe Rideout of Relay

So come have a beer (on us!) and listen to these awesome Toronto entrepreneurs talk about how they built their businesses!

Register here!

Want to come meet us during our office hours? Register here!  

 

Office Hours Galore!

October 16, 2014 at 11:10 am

Interested in FounderFuel but you’ve got lots of questions? Not sure if it’s the right fit? We want to meet you! And this year, we’re doing our best to come to you! 

We’ll be holding office hours in Montreal, Ottawa, Quebec City, Toronto, Vancouver, New York & San Francisco! 

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Montreal (Notman House) – Oct 21st, Oct 30th, Nov 6th, Nov 12th & Nov 26th – Register here!

Ottawa (Invest Ottawa Offices) – Nov 10th – Register here!

Quebec City – Nov 7th (TBD) & Nov 16th (2325, rue de l’Université, local 1304)

- Register here!

Vancouver – Nov 16th – We don’t have set times so e-mail us if you’re interested!

New York & San Francisco – We’ll be there on and off throughout the next month so e-mail us and we’ll book you an appointment!

We can’t wait to meet you! 

Ready to apply? Submit your application for the Spring 2015 Cohort here.

Think your team has what it takes?

Apply