The Canadian startup incubator scene has taken off lately, with startup accelerators popping up around the country. One of the latest to appear is Toronto-based Extreme Startups. The accelerator, which was officially announced in January, has gone through the application selection process and has had five startups taking part in the program since mid-March.
So who are they? And what was the incubator looking for when choosing startups to participate? Extreme Startups Managing Director Andy Yang told me that the accelerator had companies from 18 different countries over five continents apply to choose from, but in the end it went with an all-Canadian group. That includes three startups that were already based in Toronto, one from Edmonton and one from Ottawa.
Yang & co. were mainly looking for startups that could take advantage of the existing tech scene there, which includes a lot of e-commerce, big data, machine learning, and Internet of things-type startups. With that in mind, the five companies chosen as the members of Extreme Startups’ first cohort are:
- Gijit, which makes using calendars painless, useful, and insightful
- Granify, which uses big data technology to automatically optimize revenue for e-commerce
- ShopLocket, which lets users sell anything from anywhere, in minutes (and which we’ve previously covered)
- SimplyUs, which helps couples organize their lives together
- Verelo, which makes the Internet a more reliable place
Like most incubators, Extreme Startups is designed to provide funding, as well as mentorship and access to administrative and legal resources that young teams need. Extreme Startups provides $50,000 at the start of the 12-week program in exchange for 10 percent of equity, as well as an additional $150,000 convertible note upon exiting the accelerator. Extreme Startups also has more than 50 mentors lined up.
The demo day for the first group of Extreme Startups will be held on June 19 in Toronto. And for those who missed out on this group, you can apply for the next one already: Extreme Startups is taking applications here.