Author: BetaKit

Tease Tea opening doors for underrepresented entrepreneurs with new fund

Applications are currently open for a new fund, created by Toronto-based online tea boutique, Tease Tea. The company’s new four-month digital incubator aims to give women-identifying and non-binary entrepreneurs access to funding, mentorship, and resources to accelerate their business.

“I am excited and privileged to be able to give back and provide women-identifying entrepreneurs with access to funding, mentorship and community.”

Created by Tease Tea CEO, Sheena Brady, the Tease Tea Founders Fund is a non-repayable, non-equity investment of up to $20,000 CAD.

The fund is designed to offer participants’ the fundamental aspects of mentorship and feedback, and tackle some of the barriers women-identifying and non-binary entrepreneurs face.

“This has been in my heart and mind for a while now to give back and give opportunities to budding entrepreneurs who are struggling to access support networks,” said Brady. “I am excited and privileged to be able to give back and provide women-ide..

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3 things I wish I’d known before scaling tech companies

It’s no secret that Canada has a scale-up problem. Often, we cite finite resources—talent, money, expertise—as the major barriers to scaling our tech companies at the same rate as our neighbours.

Over the last 15 years, I’ve been the co-founder of two SaaS businesses, and a senior leader at two rapidly scaling companies, including Hootsuite. Now I’m a Managing Director at PwC.

I’ve learned that it’s often the little details and impossible-to-predict moments that are the hardest to navigate. It’s the due diligence emails that need a reply by 8:00 am but require more detailed attention and work than there’s time for. It’s the minutiae of structuring shareholder agreements that retain your top performers. And it’s the unexpected surprises and challenges that arise when expanding into new markets.

Unfortunately, many first time founders—myself included—don’t know where to look for help. Here are some insights I wish I’d known and lessons I’ve learned along the way.

1. Be measured and ..

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True North 2019 announces speakers and ‘Bridges, Not Walls’ theme

For its second iteration, Communitech’s annual True North conference has announced its theme will be ‘Bridges, Not Walls’ in order to examine our interconnected roles as citizens, neighbours, tech creators, and users.

The conference aims to look at the ways technology can be used to impact digital democracy, create new medical technologies, and connect global citizens. The program will include a smart city plan that puts people ahead of tech, the ongoing fight against killer robots, the rise of social enterprise, and ideas for strengthening democracy with tech.

The speakers True North’s for Bridges, Not Walls themed event includes:

Kara Swisher, editor-at-large of Recode: Swisher is also the host of the Recode Decode podcast and executive producer of the Code Conference. A well-known Silicon Valley journalist, Swisher shines a light on the Web’s major players and the Internet policy issues that both unite and divide us.
Tobi Lütke, founder and CEO of Shopify: Lütke has changed the w..

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Mortgage startup, Lendesk, acquired by Quicken Loans parent company

Vancouver-based FinTech Lendesk has announced Rock Holdings, the parent company of US-based Quicken Loans, has acquired a majority stake in the company. The financial terms of the acquisition were not disclosed.

“Our partnership with Rock Holdings will allow us to gain wisdom and insight from the world’s leading mortgage technology company.”

Lendesk’s network connects mortgage brokers with Canadian lenders. The platform was designed to serve as the single point of contact for brokers to submit, and lenders to approve, mortgage applications. Under the new agreement, Lendesk will continue to operate independently from its Vancouver headquarters under the leadership of Alex Conconi, the company’s founder and CEO.

“Rock Holdings and Quicken Loans are FinTech pioneers, known for revolutionizing the mortgage industry with game-changing technology,” said Conconi. “Our partnership with Rock Holdings will allow us to gain wisdom and insight from the world’s leading mortgage technology compan..

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Shanghai Yangpu Global Startup competition coming to Toronto in June

The fourth annual Shanghai Yangpu Global Startups Competition semi-final is coming to Toronto on June 22. The competition is hoping to bring together more than 1,000 innovative and entrepreneurial projects from around the world.

Some of the competition’s sectors include new retail, healthcare, blockchain, and software applications.

This year, the competition is offering up to $500,000 CAD in prizes, which is being offered up by the Shanghai Yangpu People’s Municipal Government. There will also be a follow-up system tracking and supporting the award-winning projects. A panel of judges will be representatives from the VC, angel investor, and incubator communities.

To be eligible for the competition, companies must be less than five years old, and there is a bonus award for individuals with a master or above degree from an overseas college. Some of the sectors include new retail, internet, healthcare, blockchain, new energy, software applications, information security, new finance, au..

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