StartupCanada wants to lobby for Canadian entrepreneurship

Curated content: first posted by By Heri on June 14th 2011 for Montreal Tech Watch

A new initiative entitled Startup Canada Campaign aims to “celebrate, inspire, & accelerate” Canadian entrepreneurship, with 2 main initiatives: fostering first discussions about canadian entrepreneurship, and provides a marketplace of support services for startups.

For the past year, we’ve seen around the world different initiatives. There was first StartupAmerica, an initiative by Barack Obama to support entrepreneurship, mainly by early-stage & innovation funds, as well as partnerships with proven programs like TechStars.

Another brilliant program is Startup Chile, which aims to propulse Chile into the 21st century. With open arms, Chile is inviting talent to come over & launch businesses, with funds to help the bootstrapping process. You can check out a video here to understand the motivation behind the program, and lots of hackers and entrepreneurs got the message by going there, even successful entrepreneurs based in California.

Startup Greece is another initiative led by the Greek government. It’s mainly a directory to help entrepreneurs “navigate” the troubling waters of greek entrepreneurship and how to do good business in Greece. It feels less empowering and less inspiring than Startup Chile or Startup america, but at least it’s an objective reference that you can consult regulalry.

On more questionable initiatives, Startup Britain was launched a few months ago. It’s a private initiative that was presented to inspire, support & accelerate entrepreneurship in the U.K., and it effectively got the support of the prime minister at its launch day. The program was heavily criticized though, since it was seen by many as a glorified link farm, i.e. nothing much more than few html pages pointing out to services and blog posts on the Internet. What was the added value? The step 4 in a series of steps to create your business was “Create a logo” (doh!). StartupBritain seemed to present only a very basic business crash course, which was too broad and wasn’t going far enough. The initiative was so laughable it inspired those two sites.

Now we’ve got Startup Canada campaign, which also aims to re-create the same Startup Britain initiative, as written in its about page. Only this time, it’s not supported (yet) by the Canadian government and as such, does not exist in a context of the U.K. government trying hard to help entrepreneurs start businesses in the U.K. So what does Startup Canada have? Unlike Startup America, there’s no investment fund. There’s no accelerator program like Startup Chile. Nor does it appear to have extensive ressources on how to launch a startup.

Of course, StartUp Canada is a nice idea and anything that spreads the word about entrepreneurship and the benefits it can provide isn’t entirely bad. But we do need more work that just mentioning Startup Britain or telling that you’ll aggregate links to partners. Or maybe I’m mixed up. I associate a startup with almost exclusively a tech-based, scalable, early stage business whereas this is for any type of business. Please help me understand StartupBritain.

Disclaimer: Heri owns doing, a marketplace of service providers, to support tech projects

    • Startup Canada
    • July 3rd, 2011 2:20pm


    • Startup Canada
    • July 3rd, 2011 2:22pm

    Dear Partners and Friends

    Now seven weeks into partnership-building phase, the StartUp Canada Campaign has grown to over 70 partners across Canada, with more than 30 new partners joining this month. New partners represent a diverse spectrum of enterprise support – e.g. the Canadian Venture Capital Association, the Canadian Association of Business Incubators,CATAlliance, ACCT Canada, the BC Innovation Council, Start Me Up Ryerson, Community Futures Saskatchewan,Impact, Centre for Social Innovation, and Young Social Entrepreneurs of Canada. Partners are taking it upon themselves to contribute to building the campaign in a multitude of ways – from supporting planning and helping to grow the network to providing human resource capacity and resource sharing.

    Special thanks this month goes to Rivers Corbett, Andrea Whabe, Shannon Wells, Didier LeConte, Maura Rodgers, Richard Remillard, Andrew Patricio, Ben Yoskovitz and Erin Bury for their wonderful support with growing the community.

    While partnership building continues throughout the Summer months, in July we turn our attention to:

    Further developing business, strategic, financial, operational, marketing and partnership plans;

    Developing models and metrics for measuring success;

    Assembling a high-level, representative Board of Directors and a robust governance structure; and,

    Resourcing the Campaign through building corporate, media, PR, legal and accountancy partnerships.

    In doing so, we will be working with the support and advice of our Advisors and key partners. We welcome partners that have capacity to consider taking on a greater leadership role in promoting, building and co-piloting the Campaign and contributing to the priorities above to reach out at anytime to discuss ways forward.

    A great deal has been achieved over the last two months in terms of building the partner community across sectors and regions. While the community continues to grow, we now turn greater attention to designing the blueprints and securing the support necessary to begin building the campaign.

    Thank you all for your encouragement and support of this initiative.

    In the spirit of enterprise,


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