This all rounded Startup Accelerator is a 6 week part- time virtual training and coaching program designed specifically for Canadian women who are ready to step into their purpose and fulfill their goals of becoming entrepreneurs. The program duration and timing of the classes were made with YOU in mind. It is ideal for those who are students or who are still entrenched in the corporate world.
This accelerator program be simple yet effective. The components are below:
- Weekly workshops hosted by industry experts on varying startup subjects. Each course has 2 workshops, one held virtually during weekdays and the second during the weekend.
- A Virtual Pitch day in which all participants get to pitch their current business or future business idea with the goal of simulating a pitch to future investors in case you would like to seek funding in the future. This will be your opportunity to receive feedback in order to improve your pitch.
- Access to mentors throughout the program to provide clarity during the startup process
- Access to partner resources
- Access to a shared private Facebook Community strictly for Accelerator participants
Upon completion of this program, you will have:
- Acquired all of your necessary business vocabulary to easily navigate conversations with industry professionals.
- A very clear idea on what your next steps should be to start your entrepreneurial journey or improve the state of your business.
- Accumulated a very sound business acumen and best practices.
You will also have the ability to:
- Easily read and interpret financial accounting statements.
- Make a difference between Marketing and Brand Management.
- Conduct a competitive environmental analysis.
- Craft a concise strategy for your business.
- Make better and ethically informed business decisions.
- Make compelling and engaging speeches to convince your investors or inspire your employees.
- Identify reasons why your startup is currently stagnant or mistakes to avoid failure of your future startup.
- Bring out the leader and identify the leadership style appropriate for your business.
- Understand the sales process and how to increase lead generation and conversion rate.
- Expand your professional network.
- Be a resident of Canada
- Be 18 years of age or older at the time of application
- Be a Canadian citizen or permanent resident of Canada
- If there are two or more partners in the business, the partner applying must have a 51% minimum ownership to participate
- Not be a commission based or franchised business
There will be weekly live and pre-recorded workshops covering the following topics:
- Brand Management
- Public Speaking
- Public Relations
- Accounting Foundations
- Startup Basics
The program runs from Wednesday April 20th to Saturday May 28th.
Time: Wednesdays from 6PM ET – 8PM ET & Saturdays from 1PM ET – 3PM ET
Location: Virtual (Online)
To celebrate, there will be a wrap-up pitch event where each applicant will get a chance to present their business idea in pitch format. This isn’t a competition, but rather a way for you to apply the concepts learned throughout the 6 week program and to gain insightful feedback from our panel of experts.
Successful completion of the course will result in an official Certificate of Completion as well as up to $1,000 per participant.
**Successful completion requires participants to attend 9 of 10 workshops over the 6 week period and they MUST attend and participate in the Wrap-Up Day Pitch competition**
**Active participation in workshops and in the private Facebook group is strongly encouraged**
Meet Our Facilitators
Dwania Peele is the Owner and Executive Director of Canadian Small Business Women. As an Author, Public Speaker, Business Strategist and Entrepreneur, Dwania continues to make an impact in the entrepreneur community. She has spoken as a keynote speaker and panelists at numerous events across North America. She has spear-headed the success of tens of thousands of entrepreneurs via workshops, conferences and seminars over the past 9 years. Dwania has been recognized for her contribution to the entrepreneurship community by being awarded with The Alumni Ambassador Award from the University of Windsor, the Top 40 under 40 Award from the Brampton Board of Trade, the IWAA Entrepreneur of the Year Award and the Top 100 Black Women to Watch in Canada Award to name a few. Dwania also champions the success of entrepreneurs in her new books The Power Within: Inspiring Stories of Female Immigrant Entrepreneurs and Voices of Strength: Inspiring Stories of Female Entrepreneurs
My name is Sacha Pinto, branding and social media strategist and educator. After being in the corporate world for over 20 years, and always having an entrepreneurial spirit, I decided to become an entrepreneur. My first endeavor as an entrepreneur was supporting women who owned their own businesses as a licensed owner of a member-based organization, even though my original plan was to be a sales and marketing consultant. Through this experience, I learned a lot about myself and, of course, of all the amazing talented smart women pursuing their dreams. One thing was glaringly evident, many of us shared the same insecurity, to varying degrees, of being in the spotlight of our own businesses. We pivot, pause, even resisted the idea of being front and center and owning up to our incredible talents and expertise.
I myself would pivot the direction of my entrepreneurial journey a couple of times, all while quietly supporting business owners in branding and marketing their business until finally got the courage to show my confidence in my knowledge, experience, and expertise. I now help other business owners showcase themselves and their businesses by providing easy-to-follow strategies and training to help them brand and market their business on social media.
The vision of my business is to help entrepreneurs and small business owners gain marketing success on social media.
Casey Schlegel is a Trade Credit Specialist providing Transactional Advisory and Leadership within the Nacora Trade Credit team. He was previously North American Director of Trade Credit at Nacora International Insurance Brokers, with responsibility for all Trade Credit and related Financial Insurance Products in North America.
Prior to joining Nacora, Casey was deployed to a special project at Export Development Canada, (EDC) where he led both the development and delivery to the market of a significant new online Trade Credit product. He was also a past Automotive Underwriter for EDC, managing multinational relationships, complex risk structures, and was heavily involved in the Canadian Government’s Automotive sector Supplier Support Program, also known as “The Bail Out” of General Motors & Chrysler. In his career at EDC, Casey was also responsible for EDC’s Business Development efforts in Southern Ontario, primarily supporting manufacturing companies in securing financing and insurance.
Casey is also a Professor, teaching International Finance to Post-Graduate students in Ottawa, and has had the opportunity to provide management consulting to multi-nationals and established Not-For-Profits. In 2012, he proudly supported re-branding efforts for Paralympic Canada, in preparation for the London 2012 Olympics. As a graduate of the Telfer School of Management Executive MBA program, Casey also held the designation of Certified International Trade Professional (CITP) and brings with him a wealth of expertise and skills in structuring and managing international financial risks for mid-market and global companies.
Primarily based in Ottawa, Casey is one of the Nacora experts in Trade Credit, and often is called upon to help create solutions for Nacora clients throughout the world.
Zahra Qureshi is a coach, consultant and community leader who works with changemakers and founders to support their passion for positive impact on people, communities and the planet. A Chartered Professional Accountant (CMA) committed to doing business with heart, she launched Optinum Professional Corporation with a mission to reduce the overwhelm and stress caused by finance and impact planning tools. With Zahra’s support, clients build confidence and strategic clarity to achieve financial sustainability, powerful growth, and positive social change.
She also launched a learning and networking community in 2020 called Social Venture Circuit (SVC) and joined the Startup Canada network to help early-stage social entrepreneurs amplify their impact. For the last two years, she has led SVC to host a national conference for social entrepreneurs to build new connections and understand the social impact sector better.
Zahra shares her passion and knowledge through workshops at 15+ entrepreneurship programs across Canada, covering topics such as accounting basics for new founders, financial literacy, the power of budgeting, creating an impact blueprint, and the United Nations’ Sustainable Development Goals.
Candace Huntly is the Founder of SongBird Marketing Communications, an award-winning agency that helps businesses find their voice in the world of Social Media, Public Relations, Branding, and Marketing. She believes strongly in using both traditional and non-traditional tactics when it comes to building strategies for brands, merging the digital and face-to-face worlds. Candace has run successful strategies for both individual experts and organizations leading to increased brand awareness, community engagement, influencer buzz, and widespread media coverage in top tier print, digital, and broadcast media outlets. Her influencer and media relations campaigns have garnered millions of impressions for both large and small startup brands.
Some of her current and past clients include LEGO Star Wars, Hilton, emla, The Grand Order of Divine Sweets (The GOoDS), The Baby Show, Coppertone, iögo, and The Princess Ball.
An active member of the Canadian startup community, Candace also works with TorontoStarts, The Fashion Zone at Ryerson University, Women’s Entrepreneurship Hub, and Newcomer’s Entrepreneurship Hub as a Mentor, Business Advisor, and Educator.
Kimesha is the CEO of Oasis Integrated Communications, a PR firm with operations in Canada and Jamaica, and a focus on helping businesses to find their paradise. She’s a seasoned PR professional with a passion for crafting meaningful stories that connect with people. An eternal optimist who thrives on perfecting solutions that marry creative brand experience with consumer engagement, she believes in tapping into the core values of a company and tailoring strategies that share their narrative and find affinity. Her experience spans public relations, corporate communications, marketing, social media and advertising across a range of industries. She has executed projects in Toronto, New York, and Jamaica where she has deftly managed some of the foremost brands across North America and the Caribbean.
Gaby (with one “b”) Mammone
Gaby with one “b” is an award-winning business executive recognized as an advocacy leader in the charitable and not-for-profit sectors. She is a career and speaking coach and successfully helps individuals transition to a role that aligns with their passions, skills, and values.
She provides guidance, organizes events, and assists with other fundraising and awareness campaigns. She is a philanthropist and takes pride in supporting charities; it’s no surprise that her company is appropriately named, Kind Projects. Gaby is an inspirational example of someone who has overcome adversity.
She believes in togetherness and has inspired audiences to believe that we are all here to give and help each other. Gaby is full of energy; her sense of humour is entertaining and her laugh is contagious.
Khaled Bitar, B.Sc., CBI, is a seasoned business professional, with extensive sales and business management experience in Canada and overseas. Khaled has worked abroad for many years, and traveled to many countries on 5 continents, dealing with different customers having varied requirements, backgrounds and cultures. These interactions have afforded him the learning opportunities to get to know different cultures and traditions over the years. He has always had consistent success in all his dealings, and continues to provide excellent service to his current and future clients. Khaled has held many sales and executive positions during his career, having served as Branch Manager for a multinational company in Ottawa, as well as VP Sales and Marketing in two global technology companies. Khaled also owned and managed an export and international consulting business, where he facilitated the sales of North American products to overseas customers, as well as assisting different companies in establishing and managing new markets. For over 13 years, Khaled has been a leading business and M&A intermediary, offering his clients business and financial analysis,
valuation, advice and intermediary services in Ottawa and Eastern Ontario. During that time, Khaled sold many large and small businesses in different industries, and gained valuable experience in how to negotiate and structure successful deals.
Blair is an Education Specialist at Xero. Hailing from Guelph, Ontario, Blair studied Accounting at Western University. He then went on to work in both Payroll and Bookkeeping before joining Xero in November 2021. Blair comes from a family of accountants (both his father and sister are CPAs!), and when he’s not facilitating education programs for Xero customers, you can find him golfing or cheering on the Toronto Maple Leafs.
Jules Hawkins, FCPA, FCA
Co-founder of Hawkins Accounting
Jules is an FCPA, FCA and the co-founder of Hawkins Accounting, an advisory firm based out of Windsor, Ontario. A transplant from the UK, Jules has 15 years of big firm experience in the UK and Toronto, and 10 more years with smaller firms in Windsor. Although Jules has worked with businesses of all sizes – from new start-ups to multinational corporations – he particularly enjoys working with small fast-growing companies, owner-managed businesses and non-profit organizations. He stays on top of his professional game by teaching courses for CPA Ontario and at University of Windsor.