Oct 25, 2010

Mentor Monday: Helping Great Companies Overcome Canada’s Funding Gap

Consider the following list of venture capital firms: Blackboard, Brightspark, BMO Technology Investment Program, CastleHill Ventures Inc., CDP Capital Technology Ventures, CMDF, Crocus Investment Fund , Edgestone, eLab, First Ontario, Garage Canada, Greenstone, GTI Capital, Hydro-Québec CapiTech Inc., Jefferson Partners, Lattitude, Launchworks, Mosaic Venture Partners, MWI Partners, New Generation Biotech Fund, NRG Group, Primaxis, Propulsion, RBC Advanced Technology Fund , RBC Technology Ventures, RBC Capital Partners, RBC Life Sciences Fund, RBC Telecommunications Fund, Rising Tide Canada, RoyNat, Skypoint, Springbank, TechnoCap, Tera Capital, VC Advantage Fund, Ventures West, VentureCoaches, Working Opportunity Fund, XDL, and Vengrowth.

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Thanks for staying with me. Now try to guess what all of these firms have in common. Stumped?

Well, the sad truth, which Wellington’s Mark McQueen noted in a recent blog post, is that none of them are investing in new deals in Canada going forward. None.

This is why I’ll argue that Mentor Monday matters more than ever.

When we pulled Mentor Monday together early in 2010 we intended to create a unique forum to connect CEOs to mentors, providing a candid, effective networking opportunity for all.  Since then, we’ve had many constructive meetings and our model has matured to better meet our group’s needs.

We’re continuing with Mentor on Monday Nov. 29, 2010.  Please join us at Bennett Jones in Toronto (3400 One First Canadian Place) at 2:30 pm to hear from three CEOs of emerging technology companies:  Chango, Beringmedia and Kneebone. Anyone who is senior in Canadian technology and wants to either share experiences or learn from others is invited to attend.

The format for Mentor Monday is evolving. Going forward, we will welcome presentations from CEOs who are both raising capital or considering a change to their business model. We encourage these CEOs to present and test their market assumptions, gather feedback and benefit from the group’s insight.

We continue to be an “anti-SharkTank”, sharing honest, yet constructive, insights and observations with CEOs.

I will continue to moderate, incorporating my presentations called “Six Characteristics of a Technology Juggernaut” and “Getting It Done in Six Slides or Less.”

I will provide a quick overview of both these presentations in my next post.

Please RSVP now for our November session.  As always space is limited so book early.  Last but not least, thank you to Barry Reiter at Bennett Jones for hosting our event.  Without sponsors like Barry, Mentor Monday would not be possible.

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