Frequently Asked Questions
What is Extreme Startups?
Extreme Startups is a premier tech accelerator located in Toronto, Ontario. We provide up to $200,000 per company, a collaborative environment, and deep access with companies such to key industry partners (more information coming soon) so that accepted startups can integrate the tools they need from the ground up.
Why do we need another tech incubator?
We looked at what was and was not working in the market, and decided to build something different:
- The funding we provide is superior.
- Our mentorships and deep industry collaborations will help our cohort companies speed the rate at which they reach escape velocity.
- Placement of our companies in cohorts gives them the ability to push together and to collaborate.
We have the pieces in place to hit a whole new level of excellence.
What makes Extreme Startups different?
The industry is crowded with accelerators. We looked carefully at the most successful accelerators (as well as our investors) and asked them for their feedback. What had made them successful and what do they wish they’d had access to when they were growing their companies? The way we have combined expert mentorship, deep industry collaboration, and funding makes Extreme Startups compelling for startups looking for a leg up to develop their ideas.
Who are the key players?
We have lined up the best investors in Canada. BDC, Extreme Venture Partners, OMERS Ventures, Relay Ventures, and Rho Canada Ventures.
How do companies apply?
All applications are online. Go to our website and apply.
What are the criteria for selection into the program?
We are looking for companies that aren’t afraid of taking on big challenges for big markets. Teams will need some technical expertise partnered with great ideas, discipline, and the ability to take a project across the goal line. For more details, see the application form on the website.
What are you looking for?
Entrepreneurs and companies addressing large markets and creating disruptive technologies. Our teams and founders will have a combination of tenacity, leadership, and technical chops to execute and iterate quickly and efficiently.
How many companies will you take?
Ten (10) per year, five (5) per cohort.
What are the main incentives to participate?
In addition to our funding of up to $200,000 per company, our industry partners and mentorships offer potential cohort companies the ideal environment in which to develop, launch, and subsequently grow their companies. We’re also located in Toronto, which is a thriving Canadian tech hub, and easily accessible for startups both inside and beyond Canadian borders.
Who will be guiding the companies?
Andy Yang and Sunil Sharma will be providing day-to-day guidance. There will also be a lead mentor per cohort – Dan Debow is our inaugural lead mentor. There is also a list of 20+ mentors with specific experiences and expertise, from social to mobile to SAAS, which you can check out our mentors page.
Will the investors be hands-on, or are they just money?
Our mentors will all be hands-on.
You say you’re aiming to be a premier global tech accelerator – how do you intend to do that?
By attracting the best and brightest entrepreneurs from across the world. It will be a phased approach.
Will the participating companies need to relocate to Toronto for the duration of the program?
You mentioned you’re working with industry collaborators. Who are some of the companies?
We have some great ones already on board (shhhhh) will be adding more companies as the program matures — stay tuned for announcements!
$200,000 is a lot of money to get upfront – why are you giving out so much?
It’s actually staged. $50,000 upfront. Up to $150,000 upon graduation. This should give our companies the runway and escape velocity they need to scale.
What does Extreme Startups get in exchange for the funding (i.e. equity)?
Equity, as is standard in the industry.
Can you explain what a convertible note is?
A loan that can convert into equity at a later date.
What are the roles of the various personnel?
Andy Yang is focused on internal operations, sourcing applicants, and guiding the cohorts; Sunil Sharma is focused on external relationships: partners, sponsors, etc. Our inaugural lead mentor is Dan Debow, of Rypple (sold to Salesforce.com) and Workbrain (sold to Infor).