Sixteen early stage technology startups based in Atlantic Canada will present their business ideas during the virtual Volta Cohort Pitch Event on Wednesday, November 25. Up to five companies will be selected to receive mentorship, resources and $25,000 in investment as part of the year-long Cohort program.
To date, 29 startups have been selected for the program and continue to demonstrate the significant impact the program has and continues to have on the Atlantic Canadian startup ecosystem. Given the ongoing success of Volta Cohort, partners, BDC Capital, Innovacorp and Volta, have expanded the fund to allow for follow-up investment beyond the initial $25,000. The Atlantic Canada Opportunities Agency (ACOA) will continue to support the day-to-day operations of the program.
Up to six high-growth Cohort participants – including those selected in November 2019, May 2020, and at the upcoming Pitch Event on November 25 – will be eligible for follow-up investment, providing they meet specific criteria which includes and is not limited to, being in the program for at least six months. This brings the potential investment amount up to $50,000 for companies selected to receive it.
“We are always looking at ways to improve our program and service offerings to better support entrepreneurs and startups in the innovation ecosystem,” said Martha Casey, Volta CEO. “By expanding the Cohort fund, we are thrilled to be able to make follow-on investments in high-performing companies participating in the program.”
This event marks the seventh intake to the Volta Cohort program since it began in 2017. It was created to address the lack of resources and early stage investment available to technology startups in New Brunswick, Prince Edward Island, Nova Scotia, Newfoundland and Labrador.
The sixteen finalists include:
- Cohability (Halifax, NS) eases the anxiety and guesswork of finding roommates by matching lifestyles and suggesting the best roommate – in the least amount of time.
- Cultivated EcoSystems Ltd. (Egerton, NS) is a women-led biotech company with the initiative to create a better, more sustainable life by increasing soil and global health.
- Dear Life (Halifax, NS) is an online platform used to help you tell your story as beautifully as the life you lived. They make it easy to document and showcase meaningful moments for generations to come.
- Essvai (St. John’s, NL) merges the power of artificial intelligence and solid mathematical algorithms to provide novel solutions for design, optimization and support of drilling processes.
- Granville Biomedical (St. John’s, NL) is a women’s health tech company, specializing in the design of anatomical models to enhance health care training, advance patient education, and innovate device demonstration.
- Haven Villages (Dartmouth, NS ) is building modern eco-villages: close to nature, reimagined to empower remote work.
- Macro Movements Inc. (Sydney, NS) is an innovative biomechanics company. They offer a platform for clinicians and athletes to monitor and improve important movements in users’ lives.
- MICC Financial (Charlottetown, PEI) is a collaborative platform that helps groups of people save money, access capital and build credit.
- Nextcheck Software Inc. (St. John’s, NL) is a cloud-based aircraft maintenance tracking software.
- Owlya Inc. (St. John’s, NL) is an artificial intelligence-powered assessment platform.
- Parados Cerebral Solutions Inc. (Fredericton, NB) is taking a quantitative approach to solving the concussion epidemic in sports.
- Pocket Finance (Halifax, NS) is a personal finance management mobile application minimizing waste, highlighting banking fine print, and improving financial literacy.
- Scarcity Analytics (Halifax, NS) leverages environmental models to help agriculture dependent businesses preempt environment driven price spikes, improving the climate resilience of their supply chains.
- Smooth Meal Prep (Dartmouth, NS) delivers healthy fitness-focused meals provided by the community conveniently to your door.
- Subait Inc. (Dartmouth, NS) takes a scientific approach to develop a superior, sustainable lobster bait substitute, based on seafood co-products replacing environmentally challenging commercial bait fish species.
- Swiftsure Innovations Inc. (Pasadena, NL) develops products that benefit frontline workers, patients, and healthcare institutions overall.
Participants are selected through an application process, which runs twice a year. Winners of the Pitch Event are then accepted into the program. Companies receiving investment are given space at Volta and access to a board of mentors, comprised of industry leaders and Founders of Volta’s Resident and Alumni companies. Support is arranged with partner organizations in other cities across Atlantic Canada for companies outside of Halifax. The collaboration between Volta, the Atlantic Canada Opportunities Agency (ACOA), BDC Capital, and Innovacorp ensures startup founders across the region have provincial, regional and national organizations committed to their success.
The Pitch Competition will be taking place virtually via video conference on Wednesday, November 25, beginning at 5:30pm. Members of the public are invited to watch for free, and can RSVP on Eventbrite.
Volta (formerly Volta Labs) is one of Canada’s largest innovation hubs, located in downtown Halifax, Nova Scotia. The Innovation Hub houses more than 45 tech-based ventures, four Innovation Outposts, and six service and community partners, collectively employing more than 400 people in Volta’s space. Established in 2013, Volta is a place where members of the Atlantic Canadian innovation ecosystem can work, connect and learn from one another by accessing Co-Working Space, programming and events. Learn more at www.voltaeffect.com.
About the Atlantic Canada Opportunities Agency
The Atlantic Canada Opportunities Agency works to create opportunities for economic growth in Atlantic Canada by helping businesses become more competitive, innovative and productive, by working with diverse communities to develop and diversify local economies, and by championing the strengths of Atlantic Canada. Together, with Atlantic Canadians, ACOA is building a stronger economy. For more information, please visit www.acoa-apeca.gc.ca.
About BDC Capital
With more than $2-billion under management, BDC Capital is the investment arm of BDC, serving as a strategic partner to Canada’s most innovative and high potential firms. It offers a range of equity, venture capital and flexible growth and transition capital solutions to help Canadian entrepreneurs scale their businesses into global champions. To find out more, visit bdc.ca/capital.
Innovacorp is Nova Scotia’s early stage venture capital organization. It finds, funds and fosters innovative Nova Scotia startups that strive to change the world. The goal is to help those startups commercialize their technologies and succeed in the global marketplace. In addition to risk capital, Innovacorp gives entrepreneurs access to world-class incubation facilities, expert advice, and other support to help accelerate their companies. More information at innovacorp.ca.