One of the most stressful things we can say to the companies is “there are X number of days until Demo Day”. Today that number was 26. To highlight just how quickly Demo Day is approaching, we hosted Show & Tell III today. We invited a handful of Mentors to come in and watch the companies give their updates and most recent investor pitches.
The results were mixed. Some companies still have a LONG way to go before Demo Day and some are roaring along and really impressing everyone.
As usual there were some great one liners. Here are some of the best:
“At the first Show & Tell all I wanted to know was how can I give you all my money. Today, I’m beyond relieved that I didn’t invest in you.”
“I’m really proud of you, this pitch is 1000% better than it was 1 month ago.”
“I think you thought you would be in a much different position today. As far as I can tell, you just keep getting worse and less impressive.”
“Why do you have a slide that depicts you staring lovingly at a 12 year old? That’s just weird.”
“I don’t think you succeeded in explaining where your company is going. In any way, shape or form. Do you even realize where you’re going??”
“I don’t think what you’re building is useful for 90% of the population. It’s cool, but it’s not useful.”
Next Wednesday, Notman House will be hosting an Entrepreneurs Cocktail with the theme “Good to Great, the startup’s guide to creating valuable products & high-impact companies”.
The Jeune Chambre de Commerce de Montréal is proud to present, in collaboration with FounderFuel, the SDEVM and Notman House, their Entrepreneurs Cocktail. You’re invited to come meet visionary entrepreneurs who have dared to dream big and challenge the status quo in their industries:
- Magaly Charbonneau, Password Box
- Martin-Luc Archambault, Wajam
- Julien Smith, Breather
- Caithrin Rintoul, Provender, animateur du panel
Through an evening that will combine inspiration, networking and experience, hear them talk about their inspiring journey, vision for the future and how they established strategic alliances with some of Silicon’s Valley major players to take their business ventures to the next level.
WHY PARTICIPATE ?
- Inspiration: Be inspired by the stories and lesson learned shared by our panelists.
- Networking: Enjoy a friendly environment to better share and exchange with entrepreneurs present.
- Building to launch internationally
- Making strategic alliance to take your startup to the next level
- Surrounding yourself with the right team, partners
- Challenges and lessons learned
Check out the event here.
Today was the big day!
The Montreal and San Francisco tech communities were brought together for AccelerateMTL at the historic Rialto Theatre on Parc Ave. This year’s focus was Scaling Innovation. The morning featured round table discussions and the afternoon was filled with speakers who gave a behind-the-scenes look at what scaling innovation really means.
Check out some of our pictures from there day:
It seems like the closer we get to Demo Day the faster time passes. Wasn’t it just yesterday that we installed a countdown calendar saying that there were 75 days left until Demo Day??
The teams are in full stress mode and working 7 days a week to make sure they have an MVP out, 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! Over 600 people have already registered. 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.
As several of our teams come from outside of Montreal we make an effort to expose them to the local community in the hopes that they chose to permanently establish their companies here. A perfect example of one of these events is AccelerateMTL which is happening on April 10th.
AccelerateMTL is an exclusive event hosted by the C100 that celebrates the local startup community. Montreal’s hottest tech companies come together to connect with leading investors and influencers to further accelerate their development. This year’s focus is Scaling Innovation and the speakers will give a behind-the-scenes look at what this really means, the pros and cons of working with big corp and an inside view of investment negotiation. The day features exciting speakers and insightful panel discussions to give entrepreneurs a platform to build high speed companies. You’ll also have the opportunity to network with the Montreal and Silicon Valley tech communities.
The day runs from 12:30pm – 6:30pm at the Theatre Rialto. Tickets cost $20 but if you use this exclusive promo code “TWO2TANGO” you’ll get to bring a friend for free!
Get your tickets here
The majority of our teams will be attending this event, will you?
Yesterday the teams were lucky enough to get a tour of the Frank & Oak offices by the one and only Hicham Ratnani their super talented co-founder & COO. We started out in their newly set-up Atelier where Hicham explained the vision behind the brand and how their storefront helps convey that to customers.
Next, the teams moved on to the Frank & Oak warehouse where they learned all about the massive amount of work and effort that goes into shipping all of the product out. Hicham also highlighted how, as much as possible, they try and keep everything in house. This means that from beginning to end, the shipping process is completely managed by them. They’re even building their own warehouse management system.
The tour moved on to their upstairs office space where we went through each department of the company and got to meet some employees. Along the way, Hicham grabbed employees who were passing by and asked them to give the teams words of advice on building a company, startups and even just life itself. What really resonated with the FounderFuel Founders was that Hicham knew the name and hiring date of every single one of his employees, an impressive feat with a company that’s gone from 8 employees to over 100 in under 18 months.
We ended up in their kitchen space and listened to a short talk on the history of Frank & Oak and some of the key startup lessons that they learned along the way.
Hicham’s final words of advice were to just never stop, don’t give up and have the courage to accomplish greatness.
Yesterday marked the halfway point for the Spring 2014 cohort and that meant one thing: Show & Tell II. This half-day event gives each company the chance to update their Peers and Mentors on their progress to date. Every team gets 15 minutes to share their lessons learned, failures, successes, pivots, KPIs and anything else that they deem necessary. Then, of course, it’s tough love time.
Here are some of the best lines from the day:
“You need a crowning, holy shit moment and I just don’t think it’s there”
“Do you even know what your users are doing?”
“You didn’t even talk about the smart, you call it smart but there’s no smart.”
“Im trying to make you realize how bad it is in front of everyone else.”
“I don’t want you walking out of here thinking you’re anywhere close to ready. You’re so bad it’s crazy”
“You’ve had so much feedback and you’re not absorbing any of it, you’re not changing!”
Did you hear the whispers and the rumours that were spreading over the weekend? Could they be true? Are Demo Day tickets already available?
You better believe it! Tickets are live and boy are they going fast!
Don’t miss your opportunity to watch the 8 teams from the Spring 2014 cohort walk on stage at the historic Rialto Theatre and show you how far they’ve come. After the pitches join the entire FounderFuel network at a 5 à 7 to meet and mingle with the teams.
See you there!
Major props to those making it all possible!
Ring in the new year with not one, but two parties tonight with our friends over at RPM!
Two New Years Eve parties in one. For parents with kids, they’ll have snacks, drinks, games, and a chance to watch people ring in the New Year from Trafalgar Square at 7PM EST. Kids leave by 8.
Then the mischief starts. They’ll have drinks and snacks (bring your own!), bartenders, DJs, and watch 2014 come in on the big screen.
Event is free, but tickets are required and available here.