In the lead up to International Women’s Day, we brought together our regional partners to share information about the exciting programs and resources available for female entrepreneurs in the west end of the GTA. Representatives from RIC Centre, Haltech, ICUBE UTM, Innovation Factory, Innovation Guelph, and BDO Canada gave an overview of their women-focused programming.
Opportunities for Female Entrepreneurs New and Old
Brigitte Huard from Innovation Factory outlined their services and programs available to entrepreneurs in IT, advanced manufacturing, cleantech, life science, integrated mobility, and social innovation. She highlighted the Accelerator for Women in Entrepreneurship (AWE), which supports success for women entrepreneurs through inclusive, educational programming and focused engagement that accelerates results for female founded and co-founded companies.
Representing Haltech, Izabela Goclik spoke about Beyond Boundaries and #HerHalton. Beyond Boundaries is an accelerator program aimed to advance women’s economic empowerment through content sessions, mentorship, and networking events. The next cohort will start in Sept 2020. #HerHalton is a peer-to-peer entrepreneur network for women who live or work in Halton Region.
For ICUBE UTM‘s, Ignacio Mongrell gave an overview of programs and services available to U of T students, recent alumni, and residents of Peel Region, including support services valued at up to $10,000 per team and partnership with academic courses that use startup teams as case studies and clients. Ignacio highlighted the upcoming Pitch with a Twist event, where, in celebration of International Women’s Day, founders will pitch to a panel of female-identifying judges and a spotlight prize will be awarded to a company with a woman founder.
Katherine Laycock from Innovation Guelph presented the Rhyze Ventures and Rhyze Up! programs for women-led startups and SMEs to promote equality and prosperity in the region. Rhyze Ventures balances in-class learning, hands-on project work, mentorship, and peer-to-peer networking for small and scalable businesses and social enterprises. Rhyze Up! is geared toward growth-oriented companies with a minimum annual revenue of $200,000, and supports companies through a Discovery Phase to identify growth opportunities, and a Traction Phase to execute the project and accelerate growth.
To close the session, Rick Burdeniuk from BDO Canada’s Government Incentive team spoke about funding opportunities available to female entrepreneurs. He encouraged everyone to start by checking out the Innovation Canada page for an up-to-date list of the available government incentive programs. RIC Centre clients can contact their lead advisor to find out more about booking a 1:1 meeting with the BDO Canada team to explore these opportunities.
Thank you to all the presenters, and to everyone who registered to attend the session!