From start-up to success: The Accelerator Centre is propelling Waterloo Region forward

Recipient: The Accelerator Centre
Region: Waterloo Region
Program: Science and Engineers in Business; Investing in Business Innovation
Total funding allocated: $8,945,000

The Accelerator Centre provides start-ups with the right guidance to turn their ideas into successes.
The Accelerator Centre provides start-ups with the right guidance to turn their ideas into successes.

With the mention of Waterloo Region comes its tech-savvy reputation—a status earned over the past decade as the growing community of high-tech start-ups and early-stage companies continue to achieve success. The emergence of these thriving companies correlates directly with the opening of a number of supportive start-up accelerators and incubators, with one of the most influential being the Accelerator Centre.

FedDev Ontario partnered with the Accelerator Centre through the Science and Engineers in Business and the Investing in Business Innovation initiatives to further support the area’s entrepreneurs and boost its economic growth.

“As a not-for-profit organization, the Accelerator Centre would not be able to support start-ups with seed capital without additional funding and support from organizations like FedDev Ontario,” says Clinton Ball, Director of Client Programs and Initiatives for the Accelerator Centre.

The Accelerator Centre is a structured organization that offers intensive mentoring and a four-phase Accelerator Program to support technology start-ups. Partnering with FedDev Ontario allowed the award-winning incubator to create the AC JumpStart program, which is delivered in association with the University of Waterloo, Wilfrid Laurier University and Conestoga College.

“Waterloo Region has a wealth of incredible talent and ideas and there is a need for early stage capital to help companies get off the ground,” says Ball. “AC JumpStart fills that gap.”

So what exactly does the AC JumpStart program offer? If accepted, start-ups receive seed capital and 12 months of one-of-a-kind mentorship and instruction in the areas of sales and marketing, public relations, technology and product development, finance, leadership and human resources—all the tools new companies need to get started.

According to Ball, the program’s structured approach not only provides the early capital and know-how start-ups need to commercialize, it also helps them get their products to market more efficiently, which creates value faster and leads to revenue and jobs in the region.

To date, 169 companies have received funding through the AC JumpStart program, with more scheduled for the end of 2017. With such an impressive list of companies coming out of its doors, the Accelerator Centre’s team of in-house experts is ready to provide the necessary supports to help the next round of enthusiastic entrepreneurs establish and grow their businesses.

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FedDev Ontario has been instrumental in making our AC JumpStart program a reality.
Clinton Ball, Director of Client Programs and Initiatives, Accelerator Centre
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