Techstars Startup Weekend Calgary

    Friday, May 31 - June 2, 2019

  1. Overview
  2. Schedule
  3. Speakers
  4. Judges
  5. Coaches and Mentors
  6. Organizing Team
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Techstars Startup Weekend Calgary

Friday, May 31 - June 2, 2019

Friday, May 31 - June 2, 2019
Event starts at 6:00 pm

Global Business Centre
120 8 Avenue Southeast
Calgary, Alberta T2G 5P6

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Your event in 54 hours

Do you have an idea you'd like to pursue or a problem you'd like to solve but don't know where to start or who to start with? 

Techstars Startup Weekend is the place to look for a team, create a prototype of your idea, validate your business idea, and receive feedback from experienced entrepreneurs, all in one weekend.

What do you need to bring?

Lots of energy! You'll pitch your own idea or listen to others, then vote on the most interesting ideas and form teams with diverse skill sets. You can come with friends, but you’ll get the full experience if you participate in separate teams. Remember, it’s all about the team.

Your idea should be something you have not previously worked on. The idea you pitch and the problem you set out to solve can span social, educational, financial, environmental, or other issues. Over the course of the weekend you'll be challenged to create a prototype of your MVP, or minimum viable product, that fits the needs of your target customer. You'll get feedback, iterate, and likely pivot your approach entirely! Important: You cannot have worked previously on your idea.

Techstars Startup Weekend is a full weekend long experience. Your ticket includes:

  • 7 full (and delicious) meals over the course of the weekend
  • Benefits and discounts from our global partners
  • One-on-one time with amazing mentors
  • A new network of developers, designers, and entrepreneurs eager, like you, to change the world.
  • All the internet and coffee you can consume.

Watch the video below to see what you can expect, and if you’re feeling inspired click on the “Buy Ticket” button now!

Still have questions, feel free to reach us at “”.

Don’t wait any longer and join the Techstars Startup Weekend movement!

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Friday May 31st

6:00 pm
Registration, Dinner & Networking
Check in, grab some food and meet fellow participants!

6:30 pm
Welcome & Keynote
Review the agenda for the weekend, play a couple ice breakers, and get ready to pitch. Keynote Speaker: Hannah Cree, Senior Manager, Entrepreneur Education at ATB Financial & Co-founder at CMNGD

7:30 pm
Pitches Start
If you have an idea, line up to give your pitch!

9:00 pm
Vote for the top pitches.

9:15 pm
Form Teams
Form teams, discuss ideas, and setup workspaces.

10:00 pm
Finish for the day. All teams must be out of the building by 11pm.

Saturday June 1st

9:00 am
Breakfast & Check-in
Arrive, grab coffee, and eat a continental breakfast. We will have a group check-in shortly after 9am.

9:30 am
Get to Work
Leverage tools such as the Business Model Canvas to help you get started.

12:00 pm
Lunch & Check-in
After lunch, do group check-ins, status reports, and calls for help.

1:00 pm
Coach Meetings
Three coaches are available to help teams until 4pm. Coaches: Mike McAra, Alex Todorovic and Eric Yeung

4:00 pm
Happy Hour & Coach Meetings
Take a break! Grab a drink and have a snack before dinner. Three coaches are available to help teams until 7pm. Coaches: Luciano Cabrera, James Sprenger and Stephen Wensley

6:30 pm

10:00 pm
Finish for the day. All teams must be out of the building by 11pm.

Sunday June 2nd

9:00 am
Breakfast & Group Check-in
Arrive, grab coffee, and eat a continental breakfast before you get to work. Review goals for the day, judging criteria and ask questions.

12:00 pm

2:00 pm
Pitch Coaching
You will sign-up for a 20 minute pitch coaching session sometime between 2-3:30pm. Please go to tech check immediately after your coaching session. Coaches: Roger Kingkade and Jenn MacDonald

3:00 pm
Presentation Prep & Tech Check
Final hours of worktime should be focused on perfecting your presentation, tech-check for final presentations also takes place

4:00 pm

5:00 pm
Final Presentations

7:30 pm
Judging & Awards

8:30 pm
Wrap-Up & Group Photo

9:00 pm
Head Home or Join us for a Drink!
Venue will be announced after award presentation.


Hannah Cree
Social Strategist & Community Connector

Hannah Cree is a connector; she is a sieve for information for all things Social Entrepreneurship & Social Impact. She is leading the social entrepreneurship strategy at ATB through providing workshops, online education & social entrepreneur strategy sessions.   Hannah is also the co-founder of CMNGD (COMMONGOOD), a social impact linen business tailored to the hospitality industry providing transitional employment to people facing poverty and homelessness.  Hannah is active in the entrepreneurial ecosystem by supporting community initiatives like ATB X Accelerator, Fuse 33 Makerspace, Work Nicer and Startup Calgary.    

Event Judges

Thomas Battle
Co-founder & COO at Nobal Technologies

My passion in life and work is helping organizations, people, groups and causes get to the next step. I help accomplish this by creating organization when there is none, delivering successful projects and by truly understanding how communication leads to more effective organizations. I especially love doing this with startups. I love the challenging work, sense of urgency and the amazing people.

I am always looking to meet new people and build my network – please reach out to me if you would like to meet for a coffee. I am best reached at

Danielle Gifford
Venture Leader at Creative Destruction Lab - Rockies

As a solutions-focused professional with a myriad of start-up experience, Danielle has guided the growth and development of a number of start-up companies and entrepreneurs. She brings with her hands-on experience in entrepreneurship, from developing strategic business plans and design prototyping to business development. Danielle possess a strong understanding of contributing deliverables to key business stakeholders on a local and national level. She worked as the Director of Marketing and Sales for an Augmented Reality venture focused on the furniture industry across North America. Her experiences in the start-up community has allowed her to interact efficiently and effectively with top industry leaders, clients, and peer groups. She has lived in Toronto, Windsor, and Calgary and worked across North America.

Vicki Knott
CEO & Co-founder of Crux OCM

Vicki comes from an operational background at TransCanada Pipelines where she worked in commercial operation, process control engineering, and most importantly, spent significant time in the control room. She is a chemical engineer with a special interest in system wide operations and control. She sees midstream systems as a single operational process to be optimized in real time by providing the control room operators with the best tools possible. Utilizing her tenacious spirit she is excited to provide engineered software solutions to ensure that the industries front line people (control room operators) can operate oil and gas assets in the safest, most profitable way.

Kevin Brent
Chief Investment Officer at Bluesky Equities Ltd.

Kevin leads a multi-disciplinary investment team at Bluesky Equities, a Calgary based family office. Having seen hundreds of pitches and invested in dozens of early stage companies over the past 5 years, he is constantly searching out disruptive business models with sustainable competitive advantages.   In addition, Kevin is a member of the Alberta Securities Commission’s New Economy Advisory Committee, providing insight into the challenges and benefits of new technologies in relation to the regulation of capital markets.  He has a Bachelor of Commerce degree from Saint Mary’s University and is a CFA charterholder.

Coaches and Mentors

Mike McAra
Chief Executive Officer, RealOffice360™

Mike McAra is the Chief Executive Officer for RealOffice360, a real estate software platform that is reimagining the real estate consumer experience together with the industry. Prior to this, Mike co-founded two energy start-ups and spent time as an international energy consultant. Mike has operated as both technical and senior executive, working with bankers, legal and accounting to execute multi-million dollar transactions, projects and strategies. Mike holds a Bachelor of Science in Geology from the University of Calgary, Canada, an MBA - Summa Cum Laude from EDHEC Business School in Nice, France. 

James Sprenger
Strategic Insights at Legwork Research

James started his career at ad agencies in Montreal and Victoria . His entry into entrepreneurism began with his own creative shop in the 90s. At the same he opened a café, to fuel his passion. A move to Calgary got him back at an ad agency, as an account executive. He moved to the client side of marketing as the VP for a medical equipment company. James has always taught sessionally since his early career. However, in 2007, James joined academia world at SAIT as a full-time faculty member, where he tuned his research and curriculum innovation aptitude. He took a lead role in building and teaching curriculum in lean development, integrated digital marketing, go-to-market strategy and marketing insights. His research work focuses on late adoption technology purchase behaviour, change behaviour of social network members and engagement through micro-learning tools.   Currently, James is the lead researcher at his company Mensch. The Mensch framework provides businesses a clear understanding of why customers buy products and services. Mensch uncovers customer insights through contextual interviews. Consumers are making a choices at each part of their purchase journey, so a better understanding of what customers are thinking can lead to relevant value creation for new and existing products.

Alex Todorovic
Technology Project Strategist at the University of Calgary Hunter Hub for Entrepreneurial Thinking

Alex is responsible for the design and development of the UCalgary Campus MApp. He is also the CEO of CoDesign Factory, a platform that connects software developer students with local entrepreneurs or startups looking for software solutions, providing students with project guidance and mentorship, and clients with affordable quality products. All of this while still being a University of Calgary Computer Science undergraduate student.

Alex’s focus is on creating change and impact within the local software and tech ecosystem, enabling those with incredible ideas to see their vision come to life, and working towards creating more local tech opportunities for student software developers.

Stephen Wensley
CEO at Acuspire

With over 10 years of experience in building software to streamline business processes, Stephen has delivered more than 125 projects and led his team to a first place win at the Calgary Region Hackathon in 2017. He successfully raised investment to launch Acuspire, a tech startup with a mission of "A Future Without Job Search". He takes pride in delivering cost-effective technology solutions to increase efficiency for customers and make the world a better place.

Eric Yeung
Co-founder & CEO at Cuiseek

Eric is an alumni at the University of Calgary with a BSc in Computer Science.  After graduation, he spent several years at a oil & gas company building enterprise software and eventually leading a small team of developers.  He began is entrepreneurial journey in 2010 when he opened PAWS Dog Daycare.  As PAWS Dog Daycare developed into a stable and successful business, Eric started looking for more challenging ventures.     Eric's current focus as a co-founder and CEO of Cuiseek is to exploring ways to leverage technology to bring people together for a great dining experience.  Cuiseek is a social dining reservation system that streamline and enhances users dining planning process.  Cuiseek aims to provide value to restaurants by driving dine-in traffic and increasing their profit margins.

Roger Kingkade
Founder, Offcourse Golf

Offcourse Golf is a mobile application company serving the global golf industry. Whether it's a golfer looking for a convenient and free statistic and handicap tracking application or a golf club looking to enhance its customer experience and marketing capability, Offcourse Golf is the premier mobile solution. 

Jenn MacDonald
Senior Development Manager at the Institute for Innovation and Entrepreneurship at Mount Royal University

Jenn is the Senior Development Manager at the Institute for Innovation and Entrepreneurship at Mount Royal University. The Institute’s mission is to develop high-impact talent through personalized and industry-engaged transformational experiences. Mount Royal University was the first mover in Alberta fostering an entrepreneurial mindset and is now a pioneer in how systems thinking, disciplined execution, and a growth mindset can impact organizations, industries, and society. During her five years at the Institute, Jenn has built a thriving community of 200+ innovators and entrepreneurs and established the LaunchPad Founders Circle. With the Institute, she has awarded over $370,000 to student founders.   Jenn is also a Masters of Economic Development and Innovation Candidate at the University of Waterloo. She moved home in April after living in Waterloo for 8 months. Jenn’s research focused on the economic impact of entrepreneurial universities, scaleup policies and cluster development.

Organizing Team

Techstars Startup Weekend Calgary is 100% led by volunteer community leaders.
Learn how to get involved here

  • Chad
  • Chad
  • Danielle


Kari Gordon
Director, Ecosystem & Export Development at Calgary Economic Development

 Director, Ecosystem & Export Development at Calgary Economic Development

Jenn Delconte
Manager at Startup Calgary

Manager at Startup Calgary

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