This is a guest post by Startup Weekend Toronto organizer Chris Eben.
Let’s build some more startups in Toronto! According to StartupIndex, the GTA has 325 startups – by September 26, we might be able create 10 new startups in Toronto.
Startup Weekend, a 54 hour event in which teams go from idea to launch to pitch in a weekend, comes to Toronto September 24-26 at Ryerson University through StartMeUp Ryerson. Check it out here and get registered while tickets are still available.
The only way to determine whether entrepreneurship is for you is by actually going for it, and Startup Weekend gives you that opportunity. Going from idea to pitch requires working on every facet of entrepreneurship – researching a market, articulating the unique value proposition, competitive advantages, user acquisition strategy, business model, building the prototype, and more. You will work on and learn all the critical things you should be thinking about when starting a company and get practical experience.
After the weekend, you can continue working on your project making it your path to entrepreneurship, or you can take what you learned during the weekend and apply it to your next venture. Over 36% of Startup Weekend companies are still alive after 3 months, and over 10% of companies go on to produce revenue or get seed funding.
Startup Weekend is a great way to network with other passionate entrepreneurs and find potential co-founders. During Startup Weekend, you will not only meet some talented individuals, you will get to see how they work, helping you evaluate the potential for long term fit. Interaction and exchange of ideas between different teams is common which means your networking opportunities are not limited to your immediate team.
Every Startup Weekend participant walks away learning a lot about startups and making some valuable connections. There is a great line up of speakers:
- Mike McDerment, CEO of FreshBooks
- Mark Ruddock, former CEO of Viigo (bought by RIM)
- James Lanthier, COO of Mood Media
- Sarah Prevette, CEO of Sprouter
- Tim Smith, CEO of GridCentric
- April Dunford founder of Rocket Launch Marketing
- Leila Boujnane, founder and CEO of Idee Inc.
They, along with a growing list of other experienced folks from the local community will be involved as mentors and judges to help teams during their weekend journey and provide constructive feedback. Attendees will take away valuable lessons to be applied to their current projects and anything they do in the future.
While Startup Weekend is a non-profit organization, there is a cost to the event to cover expenses. StartupNorth readers may use discount code “StartupNorthSWTO” for a significant discount.
Follow @startupwkndTO and #swtoronto for news and updates leading up to the event.