Accelerators: The Guide To Starting A Business In Ontario
Accelerators are a valuable resource to the startup ecosystem. If you are starting a business in Toronto, or any other Ontario city, and looking to scaleup you should consider an accelerator. Traditionally Accelerators differ then other programs as they are focused on the growth stage and offer mentoring, education, connections, and funding. The term accelerator is now used to describe programs that are beyond incubation, and focused on growth. The accelerators listed here cover a wide variety services and include traditional and non traditional startup accelerators.
Starting up in Ontario, if you are a small business, or a high growth startup TorontoStarts has you covered with The Guide to Starting A Business in Ontario A Resource Guide For Entrepreneurs, StartUPS, and ScaleUPS Ecosystem. From small business idea, to finding small business grants and loans, or startup angel investors or Venture Capital investors.
TorontoStarts is over 22,000 active entrepreneurs in the Greater Toronto Area strong. With over 120,000 followers on social and having hosted over 700 events we know the Toronto startups, entrepreneurs, and small business and what it takes to succeed and grow. We continue to put together the resources you need to connect, succeed and grow in Toronto
Creative Destruction Lab
Seed-stage program for scalable science and technology-based companies. It focuses on startups who are beyond the concept stage and have a working prototype. Creative Destruction Lab (CDL) is a nonprofit organization that delivers an objectives-based program for massively scalable, seed-stage, science- and technology-based companies.
Empowering Youth Through Entrepreneurship
Entrepreneur Opportunity Network (EON) ensures young entrepreneurs have access to support when and where they need it
Focus on Ontario entrepreneurs ages 15-29. The startup must have, at least, $5000 a month in recurring revenue or $60 000 in sales with a scalable business model.
Founder Institute Toronto
Pre-seed stage program that helps build up your startup with the goal of being accepted into a seed-accelerator program. All tech or tech-enabled business are welcome. The Founder Institute is the world’s largest pre-seed startup accelerator, with chapters across 185+ cities and Alumni that have built companies exceeding $20B in estimated value.
We help you get to traction and funding with a support network of startup experts that are invested in your success, and through a structured business-building process. Since 2009, we have helped over 4,000 startups raise over $950M in funding, get into seed-accelerators, generate traction, recruit a team, build a product, transition from employee to entrepreneur, and more.
gBETA is a program of nationally ranked startup accelerator gener8tor. gBETA is a free, seven-week accelerator for early-stage companies with local roots.
gBETA is a program of nationally ranked startup accelerator gener8tor. gBETA is a free, seven-week accelerator for early-stage companies with local roots. Each program is capped at five teams, and requires no fees and no equity.
gBETA focused on supporting mission-driven, for-profit social enterprise startups.
PARTICIPATING COMPANIES RECEIVE
$1M + in deals and perks from vendors like IBM Cloud, Rackspace, Amazon, PayPal, Zendesk and Microsoft.
The Entrepreneurship Hatchery provides a comprehensive suite of programs and services designed to help students with entrepreneurial ambitions form teams, develop new competencies and launch their companies. *You must be a University of Toronto student to enroll in this program
The Hatchery is invested in building a strong entrepreneurial community at the University of Toronto. We believe there is an entrepreneurial seed in every UofT student and this experiential learning opportunity will provide the resources, mentorship and community to turn ideas into successful start-ups. We want UofT students to graduate not only with a degree but also with a job that they have created! We are about making ideas happen.
IDEABOOST is a Toronto-based business accelerator and startup community for companies that are building the next generation of technology-based media and entertainment products, services, and brands. An initiative of the Canadian Film Centre’s Media Lab, in partnership with Corus Entertainment, IDEABOOST provides high–potential Canadian startups with seed investment, mentorship, and access to its network.
A four-month accelerator program that is designed to support tech or tech-enabled businesses as they build, launch and scale their ventures. This 4-month accelerator program is designed to support entrepreneurs as they Build, Launch, and Scale their ventures through bootcamps, workshops, one-on-one mentorship, and other services.
The newly revamped program will focus on even more hands-on experience, numerous opportunities for peer feedback, customized mentorship, and dedicated office hours with key partners in the entrepreneurial ecosystem.
Leaf Forward is the global launchpad for cannabis innovation. An investment of up to $75 000 is required to participate in the 16-week accelerator program.
Through our business accelerator program and venture fund we invest a little bit of money (up to $75,000) and a whole lot of time and expertise into promising early stage cannabis startups.
Over a 16-week period our team works closely with you to help build your business. Our in-house resources are bolstered by our industry wide network of leaders and subject matter experts.
Always looking for our next partner, if you think you have what the next great cannabis startup apply here or book a call with a member of our team to learn more.
Accelerator that focusses on the technology industry. Delivers three programs, Next 36, Next Founders and Next AI.
NEXT selects 36 of the most entrepreneurial undergrads and recent grads from coast-to-coast who we believe have what it takes to build Canada’s next narwal. For students or recent grads with big dreams and an entrepreneurial mindset
Next Founders accepts seed and growth stage founders who are looking to accelerate their business and their entrepreneurial mindset. For growth stage founders looking to scale their businesses into world class ventures
Next AI is a world class program for artificial intelligence based ventures and technology commercialization. We identify talented idea or early-stage teams with ambitious solutions and leverage Canada’s leadership position in AI to provide them with the capital, mentorship, education and network to disrupt industries.
For entrepreneurs looking to solve global challenges with AI enabled solutions
Ryerson DMZ Accelerator
3.5 month program available for tech startups in Canada. Helping Canada’s top entrepreneurs go
from startup to scaleup.
Our growth accelerator is an intensive 3.5 month sales execution program designed for high-potential tech startups looking to grow and scale their business. It features access to world-class mentors, result-driven programming and designated workspace in Toronto--one of the world’s top startup ecosystems.
Your only focus throughout the program? Build a revenue-driven growth playbook and become a true sales-focused organization.
For a 6% equity stake, Techstars offers $100,000 convertible note plus $20,000 USD to support living expenses during the accelerator program. Startups exit the program once they raise a priced equity financing of $250,000 USD or more. Techstars is the worldwide network that helps entrepreneurs succeed. Techstars founders and their teams connect with other entrepreneurs, experts, mentors, alumni, investors, community leaders, and corporate partners who will help their companies grow. Techstars operates three divisions: Techstars Startup Programs, Techstars Mentorship-Driven Accelerator Programs and Techstars Corporate Innovation Partnerships. Techstars Mentorship-Driven Accelerator Programs help founders do more faster and Techstars Startup Programs inspire, educate and connect entrepreneurs. Techstars Corporate Innovation Partnerships helps brands supercharge growth by accelerating innovation and cultural transformation. Techstars accelerator portfolio includes more than 1,500 companies with a market cap of $13.9 Billion.
Look at international startups looking to expand or relocate to Canada. The startups are pre-seed and look to expand into the North American market.
Startups We Work With
International startups relocating or expanding to Canada
Demonstrated product market fit through revenue
Validations by accelerators or other parties
1855 Whitby is Durham Region's first and only Technology accelerator positioning high potential tech companies for the global stage.
1855 was brought to life because of a gap in the innovation ecosystem. There are a range of local supports for start-up companies stemming from the Business Advisory Centre Durham (BACD) to idea conceptualization, product validation, seed funding, and business incubation at Spark Centre. There was no entity along the Eastern Innovation Corridor (Pickering to Kingston) to advance companies under all facets of the tech and innovation sector, to the global stage.
500 Startups Canada
Global Venture Capital and seed fund startup accelerator
Seed Accelerator Programs which emphasize digital marketing, customer acquisition, lean startup practices, and fundraising for pre-Seed companies. 500 Startups further contributes to the development of innovation ecosystems by supporting startups and investors through educational programs, events, conferences, and partnerships with corporations and governments around the world.
500 Startups is a venture capital firm on a mission to discover and back the world’s most talented entrepreneurs, help them create successful companies at scale, and build thriving global ecosystems. It is one of the most active venture capital firms in the world.
Since its inception in Silicon Valley, 500 Startups has invested in over 2,300 companies via its 5 global funds and 15 thematic funds dedicated to either specific geographic markets or verticals. Its 100+ team members are located in 20 countries around the world in order to support the 500 Startups global portfolio of investments which spans more than 75 countries.
ACCEL Centennial College
Free program that is open to small and medium sized businesses.
At ACCEL we believe that innovation and entrepreneurship are within everyone’s grasp. If you have products or services that are in high demand, or if you are looking to get a new business off the ground and do not know where to start, ACCEL can help! ACCEL is about reducing barriers and providing opportunities. Innovation and entrepreneurship are possible for everyone – no matter where you come from or where you are going.
ACCEL is dedicated to networking entrepreneurs with professional mentors, coaches and peers. ACCEL provides the resources needed to help entrepreneurs shift their business ideas into the fast lane and create a start-up. As you look around this site you will find tools and resources here to help you get going – check it out and see what we have to offer.
Colliers Proptech Accelerator
Property and commercial real estate technology accelerator powered by Techstars. Colliers Proptech Accelerator Powered by Techstars focuses on solving problems across the property & commercial real estate industry. The possibilities for innovation, disruption & productivity enhancing opportunities are endless. The partnership combines Techstars expertise in tech innovation, startups & alumni network with Colliers’ expertise in real estate, enterprising culture & global network. We are interested in any businesses that touch the property & commercial real estate value chains.
Innovation centre in Waterloo that supports a community of more than 1400 technology companies. Communitech is an innovation centre in Waterloo Region that supports a community of more than 1,000 tech companies—from startups to rapidly-growing mid-sized companies and large global players. A member of the Ontario Network of Entrepreneurs, which is funded by the Ontario Government, Communitech helps tech companies start, grow and succeed.
Communitech Rev is an accelerator that targets startups that are product-ready by don't have steady sales. Communitech Rev is a revolving six-month program, bringing in new companies every three months.
Community Innovation Lab
Non-profit in Durham region. Focuses on addressing social and economical gaps in communities. The Social Enterprise Accelerator (SEA) is an incubation and training program that provided 25 early-stage social entrepreneurs with access to training led by experts, as well as resources, to further develop their enterprises.
Community Innovation Lab (iLab) is a not-for-profit organization based in Durham Region. Together, Community Innovation Lab, it’s programming, and its co-working space (the Co-iLab Hub) represent a central access point for all entrepreneurs to collaborate, convene, and co-create solutions to gaps in social and industry areas.
Six month revenue growth and sales execution program for technology companies. DMZ Playbook is an intensive six month sales execution program for high-potential tech startups looking to infuse growth into their companies with access to world class mentors, intensive and structured programming and a world renowned startup ecosystem. Your goal? To build a revenue-driven growth playbook and become a true sales organization.
Non-profit that helps startups scale from Latin America to North America. LatAm Startups is a non-profit accelerator in Toronto that works exclusively with international startups. A designated sponsor for Canada’s Startup Visa program, LatAm Startups is a pioneer in bringing the world’s top startups to Canada and helping them scale globally from Toronto.
League of Innovators
National Canadian charity with the goal of building entrepreneurial acumen for youth, at scale. We meet youth where they are - at every stage of the entrepreneurial journey. No cliffs, no strings attached. League of Innovators (LOI) is a national Canadian charity with a goal of building entrepreneurial acumen for youth, at scale. League of Innovators is a suite of accessible programs and tools to provide youth educational experiences that shorten their path to success, empower their ability to be their own boss, and amplify their impact as future innovators and entrepreneurs.
MaRS Discovery District
Helps entrepreneurs in the ICT, cleantech and heath sectors, launch, grow and scale. From startups to scaleups, MaRS offers a range of services that help tech founders grow their companies and create meaningful innovation: solving real problems for real people. We work with hundreds of companies across the country, turning breakthrough ideas into products and services with global impact.
Is a global innovation hub for artificial intelligence related ventures. Next AI is a world class program for artificial intelligence based ventures and technology commercialization.
We identify talented idea or early-stage teams with ambitious solutions and leverage Canada’s leadership position in AI to provide them with the capital, mentorship, education and network to disrupt industries.
Next AI is delivered on two campuses: Toronto and Montréal. Next AI – Montréal is delivered in partnership with HEC Montréal.
RBC Reach is an accelerator program to help high-impact startups grow while adding value to RBC's business and consumer clients. Delivered in partnership with Highline BETA, RBC Reach goes beyond banking to help high-impact startups grow while creating unique products and services that RBC clients love.
Entrepreneur and innovation hub for Mississauga, Brampton and Caledon. RIC Centre provides business startup services and access to incubator space to entrepreneurs, startups and mature tech companies that want to kick-start growth for their enterprise. RIC Centre provides a broad range of sector specific services to entrepreneurs, startups and growth ready companies in Advanced Manufacturing, Internet of Things, ICT, Life Sciences and Clean Tech. This includes mentoring services, access to funding channels, available market research and knowledge-based databases, and connection to industry, government and academic influencers.
Round 13 Capital
Looks at early stage companies with a proven ability to provide ramp-up capital. Round13 Growth invests in growth opportunities including those in technology and healthcare, as well as more traditional industries where there is an opportunity for technology enablement. We focus solely on Canadian based growth companies where our knowledge, experience and relationships can be utilized to help drive growth and to positively and actively influence outcomes. We help to bridge the late-stage growth funding gap in Canada between traditional venture capital and public market investors.
Spark Innovations is an award-winning industrial design company specializing in the development of innovative products and inventions. Our industrial designers and mechanical engineers work closely with our clients on product development, strategy, product management, manufacturing, patents, and logistics. We help companies and individual inventors identify, visualize, and communicate product design opportunities to create revenue. In short, we generate innovation that matters for our clients, our company, and the world.
The Big Push
4-6 month equity-for-service program that identifies the business challenges for your startup. As an all-women founding team we have a unique perspective and life experience which we bring to projects and businesses. We also understand the challenges women founders experience navigating the male-dominated startup ecosystem.
Service for equity business accelerator that prepares you for Seed and Series A financing.
Urban pilot program identifying emergent smart city solutions and facilitating live technology demonstration aimed at resolving city challenges. UPPliftTM was created by Urban Living Futures Inc. in 2016 to tackle the disconnect between emergent smart innovations and the market for those solutions. We deliver convergence between urban innovations (supply) and built asset owners/managers (demand), resulting in efficiencies and enhanced user experience. UPPlift brings together private sector companies, city authorities and global technology leaders in a joint effort to support smart city technology adoption and accelerate their impact.
Non-profit regional innovation centre that supports entrepreneurs in York Region, Simcoe County, and Muskoka District. ventureLAB is a leading technology hub located in York Region, Canada’s densest tech cluster. Our community of entrepreneurs, innovators, and tech leaders work together to create globally competitive tech titans. We support tech companies in 3 key sectors Hardware, Enterprise Software, and Health
Wilfred Laurier University Launchpad
The Laurier LaunchPad is a campus-linked accelerator dedicated to help Laurier students and alumni start and scale their venture. aurier’s incubator, LaunchPad, run by the Schlegel Centre, provides support, mentorship and resources to startups, both traditional enterprises and social ventures, founded by Laurier students, alumni and community members at the Waterloo and Brantford campuses.
Once you have tested your startup idea through Laurier’s innovative curriculum and co-curricular experiences, you can apply to LaunchPad, located in the Communitech Data Hub in Waterloo and the Community Innovation Hub in Brantford, to bring your idea to life.
York Entrepreneurship Development Institute Accelerator
YEDI is a free startup incubator based out of the Schulich Executive Education Centre at York University. Accepted participants undergo an intensive 16-week program, including formal academic lectures by Schulich Executive Education Centre instructors, workshop-based training in entrepreneurship, and mentorship by key industry leaders. Program graduates are eligible for seed funding upon successful program completion. Upon program completion, graduates are eligible to apply for seed funding and/or VC funding through YEDI’s Venture Capital fund.
Funding is intended for early-stage opportunities in the start-up validation stage, when the scientific, technical and commercial merit, as well as the feasibility of the applicant’s product or service has been determined.