MONTRÉAL, Dec. 2, 2015 /CNW Telbec/ - InnoCité MTL, a business accelerator for smart city start-ups and proud partner of the City of Montréal, is hosting a Demo Day for its first cohort today at the Olympia Theatre in Montréal. InnoCité has teamed up with FounderFuel, a renowned Montréal-based business accelerator, in order to host the largest-ever Demo Day in Canada. For this occasion, the two graduating cohorts featuring start-ups in the virtual reality, education and smart city solution sectors presented their projects before the biggest crowd ever assembled in Canada for a Demo Day, attended by about 1,400 people.
The businesses participating in InnoCité MTL's first cohort were selected after various coaching and development activities were held over the summer. Evaluation criteria included business plan quality, growth potential and relevance within the six fields of activity of the Montréal, Smart and Digital City 2015-2017 Action Plan, namely Public Wi-Fi, Ultra-High-Speed Multiservice Network, Smart City Economic Cluster, Smart Mobility, Participatory Democracy and Digital Public Services. InnoCité has also added smart buildings and local trade to these categories.
"The interest in this first Demo Day wildly exceeded our expectations and marks a crowning achievement for the selected businesses," said Jacques Bernier, Chairman of the Board at InnoCité MTL. "As part of their iterative approach, our businesses delimited their offering and validated their marketing strategy."
"Montréal is a renowned leader in terms of supporting economic cluster and smart city initiatives," said Harout Chitilian, Vice-Chair of the Executive Committee of the City of Montréal, in charge of smart city initiatives, information technology, administrative reform and youth. "The enthusiasm for this Demo Day clearly shows that the initiatives undertaken by these start-ups address the concerns of both the City and its citizens by proposing innovative urban solutions for all."
"Quebec's entrepreneurial spirit is very much alive, and TELUS aims to support entrepreneurs by providing them with the resources and strategic advice they need to fuel their growth, especially through initiatives such as InnoCité MTL," said Hugues Bélanger, Strategic Alliances Director at TELUS. "We've had the opportunity to work very closely with participants of the first cohort as they navigate toward the realization of their project. Demo Day is an important step in the selection process of the most viable projects. Innovation, strategic thinking, and perseverance abound in the InnoCité program; Montreal is in good hands."
The 12-week acceleration program was launched on September 1, 2015. It includes a $50,000 private investment to help better define the company, as well as a comprehensive training program and a range of coaching services, including the support of experienced mentors. The goal of the program is to equip participating companies with all the tools and knowledge they need to export their solution worldwide.
Registration underway for the second cohort
The selection process for the second cohort takes place between November 2 and December 14, 2015. A maximum of eight businesses will be selected among the applicants. The next cohort will launch in March 2016.
"We urge entrepreneurs to submit their applications", said Béatrice Couture, General Manager, InnoCité MTL. "Through our comprehensive ecosystem of municipal and private mentors, financial partners and work providers, we provide invaluable coaching to local and foreign businesses in the development of their projects focused on Montréal's needs as a smart and digital city."
Businesses from the first cohort attending Demo Day
Dasbox has developed an all-in-one, small, rugged, Internet-connected box with 31 sensors sending real-time data to the cloud. – dasbox.io
DigitalState provides a complete, digital public service platform that revolutionizes the way governments deliver services online. – digitalstate.ca
Prkng develops digital solutions to improve urban mobility and facilitate parking for drivers. - prk.ng
Sensequake is the first sensing-based earthquake vulnerability platform to deliver fast and accurate seismic assessment of structures. – sensequake.com
Ubios offers simple, modular, smart-home building blocks providing comfort, security, and savings for everyone. – ubios.co
Proud partner of the City of Montréal, Innocité MTL receives support from the City thanks to the financial assistance of the Government of Québec as part of the Entente Montréal 2025 Agreement, administered by the Secrétariat à la région métropolitaine. Several organizations also contribute financially to this project, including TELUS and Pages Jaunes, as sponsors of InnoCité MTL, as well as Real Ventures, Pages Jaunes and Québecor, as investors in the start-ups selected to take part in the program.
About InnoCité MTL
InnoCité MTL is a business acceleration program that directly meets Montrealers' expectations. Through this program, the private sector in general and start-ups in particular will implement solutions to urban issues, with a focus on the City of Montréal's priority projects outlined in its Montréal, Smart and Digital City, 2015-2017 Action Plan. A complete copy of the Action Plan is available online.
InnoCité MTL's Board of Directors is made up of:
Jacques Bernier, Senior Partner, Teralys Capital
David Nault, Investment Director, iNovia Capital
Jean-Nicolas Delage, Partner, Fasken Martineau DuMoulin LLP
Damien Lefebvre, Co-Chair, w.illi.am/
Francis Guimond, Partner, EY
For more information on the acceleration program, visit www.innocitemtl.ca.
SOURCE InnoCité MTL
For further information: Béatrice Couture, General Manager, InnoCité MTL, Telephone: 514-778-8503, [email protected]