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Launched in January 2017, the Western Accelerator provides an intense, rapid and immersive education for prospective entrepreneurs. Our goal is to accelerate the life cycle of high potential ventures and to compress a year’s worth of learning into a few months for their entrepreneurs.
The Western Accelerator is a critical component of the cross-campus Western Entrepreneurship ecosystem and is open to Western students, faculty, and recent alumni with an expectation of a full-time commitment. The Western Accelerator program is made possible by the support of our generous sponsors: Libro Credit Union and StarTech.com
During their time in the accelerator, teams can expect:
As part of your Western Accelerator experience, you can expect to participate in a weekly workshop that will give you the education and real-world feedback that you need to launch your business. Workshop topics can include:
We look for teams who have a high-potential to scale and who meet the following criteria:
We look for startups who have completed product development and are ready to launch! If you are still in the idea or build stage, you may not be a good fit for the Accelerator yet. Teams who are in early stages can find great resources available for you at Western’s Propel Entrepreneurship Centre.
Competitive applications for the Accelerator are startups who have high potential to scale (i.e. have IP and/or have a clear competitive advantage addressing a large potential market). We also look for a founding team who have the skills, ability and determination to launch their product offering into the market.
Teams applying to the Accelerator should have a functioning prototype or minimum viable product (MVP) that can be offered to their customers.
You don’t have to have every feature or offering built and ready to sell. In fact, we encourage you to test your MVP early and often so you can build and shape your business based on customer feedback.
Entrance to the Accelerator is a competitive process. We accept 6-8 teams per Semester (Fall, Winter and Summer).
There are two parts to the application to the Western Accelerator.
All teams are required to submit a written application that consists of:
Applications for our next cohort open October 2020. Subscribe to our newsletter to be notified of applications opening.
Applications are reviewed by an external panel, and the top ranked teams will have the opportunity to pitch their business to a selection committee. Each team has 10 minutes to pitch their startup, followed by 5 minutes of Q&A.
The Western Accelerator consists of 3 cohorts per year (Fall, Winter and Summer). The Fall and Winter terms are for teams who have an MVP that is ready to go to market. These cohorts are all 16 weeks in duration. The summer cohort is designed for validation-stage startups who have put significant effort to understand their business model and are ready to validate their idea with early adopters.
Applications close 2 months prior to the beginning of the cohort as per the chart below
|Duration||September - December||January - April||May - July|
Please visit our website regularly or join our email list for exact dates.
ARISE N' GO aims to promote mindful snacking on the go with a centuries-old ingredient called Makhana, also known as popped water lily seeds! Our goal is to transform a simple ingredient that accommodates your dietary restrictions into a crunchy and flavorful snack; A snack that has real ingredients that YOU can pronounce. With every bite you take, we want to take you on a journey and experience the culture of India. ARISE N' GO is offered in three delicious flavors including; Ultimate Turmeric, Matcha Green Tea and Cinnamon Chocolate.
Co-Founders: Gurveer Bahia and Sucheta Khurana
Beecuz develops and facilitates innovative, skill-based workshops and educational curricula that provide youth with the tools and resources needed to address and care for their mental health. Currently, Beecuz facilitates a 12-week school program for students in grades 4-6 that consists of six, two-week modules. By developing youth mental health literacy, spreading the power of positivity, and building supportive communities, Beecuz is committed to inspiring and promoting healthier futures. Beecuz' school program has reached more than 800 students and over 20 teachers in London, Kitchener and Waterloo.
Founder: Lena Schreyer
Bella Lash & Beauty is an up and coming beauty institute. Our initial focus is on our Accelerated Eyelash Master Program where we teach individuals to become certified Eyelash Technicians. Students are equipped with high-quality supplies, tools, and equipment, along with business acumen in order for students to start and run their businesses efficiently.
Founder: Isabella Greco
BUZZ Natural Foods
BUZZ is an all-natural chocolate topping and spread made with healthy, simple ingredients including honey, cocoa and coconut oil. Our all natural confection can be used as a hot cocoa mix, chocolate fondue, dessert topping and much more! We currently offer 3 delicious flavours: Original, Wild Orange, and Macaroon.
Founder: Mitchell Hammond
C-Spray is natural chlorine eliminating spray that neutralizes the effects of chlorine for swimmers. Our natural solution to chlorine irritation uses Vitamin C to effectively eliminate chlorine residue on skin, hair, and swimsuits after swimming. It is sold online at c-spreaycanada.com and in 10 retail stores across Canada.
Founder: Elliot Kimelman
Cafezia Coffee is a coffee infused with herbs. We add the power of three herbs to give you an energy boost that feels amazing - no jitters, no insomnia, no headaches - just focused, feel-good energy. Organic, Fairtrade, biodegradable bags
Founder: Natalie White
Wick Insurance is an online store that sells device protection for cell phones, tablets, and laptops. Wick utilizes third-party repair shops to provide the most convenient, user friendly device protection at the lowest prices. Features include getting cash instead of 'refurbished' devices, discounts for insuring multiple devices, and reducing premiums after claim-free months.
Founder: Rhys Wickens
Zentein creates incredibly nutritious and delicious food products that incorporates alternative protein derived from insects: the world's most efficient, nutritious, and environmentally sustainable protein source. Its products offer a unique and differentiated nutritional and health advantages over competitors while supporting an environmental cause.
Founder: William Wang
Avocado Core (AVO)
Canadian Load Board
Amass Dynamic Data Solutions
Conquest Hockey Apparel
Shop Accessories 365
Myoprynt Nutrition Inc.
ScrumGenius (SmallCloud Technologies)
North Strong Collective
Sugar & Co.
Os & Oakes
For the Love of Laundry
Evelynn by Nicole Snobelen
At Western, entrepreneurship isn't about widgets – it's about people.
Western Entrepreneurship harnesses the university's collective expertise to arm the next generation of leaders with crucial entrepreneurial and leadership skills that enable them to develop great ideas that excite the world. Western and its Ivey Business School are invested in this cohesive, student-focused entrepreneurship ecosystem that brings together students, faculty and alumni.
Western Entrepreneurship builds upon a tradition of entrepreneurial thinking at Western, including the establishment of Canada's first MBA program (1948), our launch of Canada's first PhD program in business (1961), and QuantumShiftTM – Canada's premier leadership program and network for the entrepreneurs driving the growth of Canada's most successful companies, founded by Ivey and KPMG.
The umbrella of Western Entrepreneurship brings together incubators, alumni mentorship, co-working space, academic excellence, commercialization and thought leadership across all our faculties and schools.