World’s Largest Startup Accelerator Launches First Canadian Chapter in Montreal

­The Founder Institute, a startup accelerator with over 1,000 graduate companies, will be officially launching its first Canadian chapter in Montreal.

With plans to run two semesters annually, the program aims to launch over 25 “meaningful and enduring” technology companies per year in Canada. Anyone interested in launching a technology company is welcome to apply to the Montreal Founder Institute.

“The Canadian Startup Visa was a great step forward policy­wise, as it positioned Canada to import top talent. However, you can ‘import’ top entrepreneurial talent from your existing workforce as well,” says Adeo Ressi, CEO of the Founder Institute. “The Founder Institute is a part­time program that helps promising entrepreneurs start meaningful businesses before quitting their day jobs, which will ultimately increase the flow of high­quality Canadian­-led companies into the local ecosystem.”

By setting up its first ever program in Canada, the Silicon Valley­-based Founder Institute now operates across 35 countries. The Founder Institute decided to officially launch in Montreal after “an overwhelmingly successful” trial period in February.

“We are admittedly very late to launch in Canada,” added Ressi. “It was not an implicit decision to wait so long before launching here ­ we simply had not yet found the right people to help us do it. With Sergio and Maurice, I believe we have an ‘all-­star’ team.”

“The Montreal startup ecosystem is positioning itself firmly on the global map and the city has shown one more time that it is an economic and cultural key player in Canada,” says Sergio A. Escobar, who will be co-director of the Montreal Founder Institute.

“There are increasingly more options for startups in Canada at the seed­funding stage, with accelerators like FounderFuel and a growing number of early­stage investors. However, there are fewer resources to help people get to this stage,” added L.P. Maurice, the other co-director of the Montreal Founder Institute. “We aim to fill this resource gap in Montreal with the Founder Institute.”