As part of Venture for Canada’s BDC Canadian Scale-Up Speaker Series, come join us for a conversation with Bianca Lopes, Heather Payne, Mallorie Brodie, and Steven Uster on what is involved with scaling a Canadian technology company.

The Feel: Relaxed, casual, and conversational
The Structure: There is a reception with light food and drink to start, followed by a Q&A between the panelists and the moderator, who is Benjamin Bergen, executive director of The Council of Canadian Innovators.
The Audience: Members of Toronto’s vibrant tech community.

Below are the bios of the panelists:

Bianca Lopes

Bianca is an owner and Vice President of Business Development and Strategic Marketing at BioConnect, as well as a public & Keynote speaker. Relentlessly motivated from a young age, Bianca immigrated to Canada from Brazil and sold two businesses before joining BioConnect; one in trades and one in software, all before the age of 27.

She is refreshingly vocal (and REAL) about some of the tougher aspects of being an entrepreneur and why mentorship and self-awareness are two things she attributes to her success. “If I hadn’t talked about failure with my mentors, I couldn’t have found fortitude and solutions in the situations that weren’t going as smoothly.”

Heather Payne

Heather Payne is the founder & CEO of the HackerYou College of Technology, Canada’s original programming bootcamp and the only one of dozens around North America founded by a woman. It is a registered Private Career College under the Private Career Colleges Act, 2005. Founded in 2012, HackerYou offers both full- and part-time courses for people who want to learn front-end development, back-end development or design. Serving over 850 students a year, HackerYou operates a 12,000-square foot facility in the heart of downtown Toronto at Queen & Spadina.

In 2011, Heather founded Ladies Learning Code, a Canadian not-for-profit organization that runs popular workshops for women (and men, and girls and boys) who want to learn computer programming and other technical skills in a social and collaborative way. Ladies Learning Code now has chapters in 31 cities across Canada and thriving programs for youth. In 2012, Heather spent a year working on a project for the Mozilla Foundation: her job was to build a community of people and organizations in Toronto who care about raising youth as creators – not just consumers – of technology and the web. The project was granted $365,000 in funding from the Ontario Trillium Foundation. Heather is an angel investor (she was the first investor in ShopLocket, acquired in 2014 by PCH International), and was recently named one of Canada’s Top 100 Most Powerful Women in the Trendsetters & Trailblazers category, as well as one of the Globe and Mail’s Top 12 Canadian “Innovators at Work”.

Mallorie Brodie

Mallorie Brodie is the CEO and Co-Founder of Bridgit, a communication platform for construction teams, launched in March 2014. She holds an Honours in Business Administration from the Richard Ivey School of Business, and is currently an Advisory Board Member for the Creative Destruction Lab and the Ivey N.O.I.S.E. committee. In 2015, Bridgit won at Google Demo Day in San Francisco and in 2015 Mallorie and her Co-founder Lauren Lake were jointly named Techvibes Entrepreneurs of the Year.

Steven Uster

Steven Uster is the Co-Founder & CEO of FundThrough, an invoice funding service that helps business owners eliminate “the wait” associated with payment terms by giving them the power and flexibility to get their invoices paid when they want, with one click, and in as little as 24 hours.

Launched in 2014 FundThrough has quickly become one of Canada’s leading fintech start-ups, funding millions of dollars in invoices every month. 

Prior to FundThrough, Steven was an investment banker in New York at UBS and Centerview Partners. Steven has an MBA from The Wharton School and a Bachelor of Commerce with Honours from McGill University, where he was a Loran Scholar

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