Recently, Ontario announced the first recipients of the Youth Investment Accelerator Fund Program (the “Program”). The Program, which mirrors the Investment Accelerator Fund, was launched in 2013 by the Province of Ontario with the goal of providing young entrepreneurs with a boost when launching their ventures. The Program invests up to $250,000 per innovative technology-based start-up with a majority of founders under age 30.
Providing human resources, sales and product supports to assist with the successful commercialization of investee companies’ technologies are additional goals of the Program. This will be done through leveraging of the Program’s current portfolio, which boasts 76 companies which have received investment, raising over $220 million in follow-on financing.
As well, existing start-up accelerators, incubators and regional innovation centres in Ontario will work with the Program in order to support investee companies.
The first four companies receiving investments are:
- Greengage Mobile: a mobile app that helps organizations engage and reward individuals for health, green and community actions. The Greengage platform also includes a web-based management and analytics platform that provides a manager the ability to monitor, track and evaluate program performance;
- PUSH: a fitness tracking device that measures strength. The device is placed on the arm and communicates with the user’s mobile device on the PUSH App, transmitting movement feedback to the user. PUSH allows users to customize workouts, monitor performance and review progress;
- Rubikloud: a platform used to solve the business problems of customers, connecting multiple sources of data from inside and outside of the organization into a single system to be accessed in real-time with the goal of saving time, increasing revenue and delivering simple technology solutions to customers; and
- SoapBox: an innovation management tool that helps companies maximize engagement through ideas. It provides employees with a platform to submit, vote and receive comments on those ideas and aids in the screening, evaluation and execution of new ideas.
Eligibility for the Program and a link to the application can be found here.