Techstars Global Startup Weekend Ottawa - University of Ottawa Edition

    Friday, November 17 - 19, 2017

  1. Overview
  2. Schedule
  3. Judges
  4. Coaches and Mentors
  5. Organizing Team
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Techstars Global Startup Weekend Ottawa - University of Ottawa Edition

Friday, November 17 - 19, 2017

Friday, November 17 - 19, 2017
Event starts at 6:30 pm

Morisset Library
65 University Private
Ottawa, ON K1N 6N5

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Create a startup in 54 hours!!!

Be one of over 15,000 entrepreneurs who will come together for hundreds of events during November 10-19, 2017 for Techstars Global Startup Weekend!

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?

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.

We're excited to bring you Startup Weekend Ottawa hosted by uOttawa! All are welcomed to join this 54-hour event to start up your ideas.
Our goal is to connect students across all faculties to encourage and promote entrepreneurship regardless of discipline of study while connecting these students to Ottawa's startup community.

This time around, you can win Startup Weekend first place and four additional non-raking prizes in:

1) The largest Social Impact
2) Includes the best Maker Component
3) Uses or impacts Health Technology the most effectively 
4) The best Marketing Plan

We look forward to seeing the different types of innovative ideas that can come to life when students branch out and connect with those around them with different skill sets and areas of expertise.  In an effort to make the event more accessible to students and alumni, the Engineering department at the University of Ottawa has subsidized the tickets for uOttawa & Carleton students.
In terms of format and timelines, the event will be very similar to the events in the past that we have put on. We hope to see you out there and welcome you to send any and all questions to or

About Startup Weekend:

Startup Weekends are 54-hour events designed to provide superior experiential education for technical and non-technical entrepreneurs.  Beginning with Friday night pitches and continuing through brainstorming, business plan development, and basic prototype creation, Startup Weekends culminate in Sunday night demos and presentations.  Participants create working startups during the event and are able to collaborate with like-minded individuals outside of their daily networks. All teams hear talks by industry leaders and receive valuable feedback from local entrepreneurs. The weekend is centered around action, innovation, and education.  Whether you are looking for feedback on an idea, a co-founder, specific skill sets, or a team to help you execute, Startup Weekends are the perfect environment in which to test your idea and take the first steps towards launching your own startup.

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:
  • 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!

No talk, all action!

Follow us and learn More about Startup Weekend and other GEW events at University of Ottawa

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Friday November 17th

6:30 pm
Arrive at the venue and get checked in

6:30 pm
Dinner & Networking
Eat food, share ideas, practice pitches, get to know fellow participants

7:00 pm
Welcome & Speakers
Review agenda for the weekend and introduce speakers, coaches, and community leaders

7:30 pm
Pitches Start
Optionally line up to give your pitch

9:00 pm
Attendees vote for the top pitches

9:15 pm
Form Teams
Teams start forming and discussing ideas

10:00 pm
Begin Work
Start to formalize teams and take an inventory of skills. Be honest, and direct about what resources and skills are needed for the weekend. You may stay and work as late as the venue will allow

Saturday November 18th

8:30 am
Arrive, simple breakfast & coffee

9:30 am
Begin Work
Teams formed and setting up workspace for the weekend

11:00 am
Business Models by Mike Lachappelle

12:00 pm

1:00 pm
After-lunch check-in, status reports, call for help

1:30 pm
Marketing for Startups by Matt Whitteker

2:00 pm
Coach Meetings
Coaches help teams one-on-one. They are here to help!

5:30 pm

7:30 pm
After-dinner check-in, status reports, call for help

10:00 pm
Finished for the day. You may stay and work as late as the venue will allow

Sunday November 19th

9:00 am
Arrive, simple breakfast & coffee

10:00 am
Coaches arrive. Final opportunity to ask questions

12:00 pm

12:30 pm
Coach Meetings
Coaches arrive… ASK QUESTIONS

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

9:00 pm
Go Home!

Event Judges

Kathleen Kemp
Director, Social Enterprise Business Development

Kathleen Kemp is known in Ottawa for her work building social enterprises, educating and inspiring others. Passionate about entrepreneurship from a very young age, Kathleen started her first business at the age of 13. She has helped start and lead a number of different social enterprises. In 2015, she traveled to Johannesburg to compete in an international world cup for social enterprise, bringing the CigBins project international attention.Today she is Director of Social Enterprise Development at the Centre for Innovative Social Enterprise Development. Kathleen previously held the role of President of Enactus at the University of Ottawa and she is a former board member at Causeway Work Centre.

Adrian Salamunovic

Expert in PR. Public Relations and Growth Hacking. Founder of several multi-million dollar Internet 1000 retailers, including Also launched top 1% iOS app PopKey. 

David Knox | General
Assistant Professor, University of Ottawa

Dr. David Knox has worked in industry for over 20 years in Engineering Design and management, both in large and smaller start-up organizations.  He has also been an independent contractor and taught undergraduate and graduate courses at Algonquin college and Carleton University. 

Michael Curran
President of Great River Media

Michael Curran is the president of Great River Media. He joined the company in August 2010, when he helped acquire the Ottawa Business Journal and Ottawa At Home. Before that he was the Regional Manager in Eastern Ontario for Transcontinental Media, one of Canada’s largest media companies. During his 20 plus years in the media business, Michael has acquired experience in all aspects of media, including news, digital, event production, sales and marketing. Michael is a graduate of Carleton University’s School of Journalism and Communications and a frequent commentator on Ottawa’s business and technology scene for CTV Ottawa and CFRA.

Pablo Srugo
Co-founder of Gymtrack

Pablo is the co-founder of Gymtrack, an Ottawa startup that builds a system for gyms that lets members automatically track their workouts. At 23, Pablo had already had a successful exit, raised angel funding and had experience recruiting and managing over 30 employees. Before founding GymTrack with Lee Silverstone, Pablo and Lee got their start in entrepreneurship by creating MyTutor, a tutoring service for Ottawa-area students. After sensing a future in the personal training industry, the pair developed GymTrack and sold MyTutor months after its launch. Since then, Pablo and Lee have attained exceptional success, including being invited to attend 500 Startups’ Accelerator program in San Francisco and raising $2.5 million in their first round of funding. Gymtrack is also available in Algonquin Students’ Association’s Fitness Zone.

Regine Paquette

Coaches and Mentors

Marco Janeczek
Director Accelerator + Incubator, L-Spark

Marco Janeczek’s currently serves as a director to L-SPARK, 
an Ottawa based SaaS accelerator and is the Managing Partner of Infinite Ventures, 
where he invests, advises and creates early stage startups. 

Marco’s entrepreneurial journey began with the creation of Gables Medical Billing System and 
His early passion for startups has given him the possibilities to be part of great teams and products,
in a variety of roles including CEO, VP Sales,  and Product Development, as well as advisory roles in 
companies such as Yostro, OnTab, Pat Group, TOWNHILL Software, Gbatteries, hatchbrands, Pcsso, Responsa, Zikera, Zooppa, DomainsIncome, Ottawa Hyperbaric Oxygen Therapy, 
Planet Domains and Decisyon. Marco experience ranges from idea creation, product development,
customer development, M&A and partnerships. When possible, Marco commits time to StartupWeekends and FounderInstitute.

Matt Whitteke
Vice President, Sales

Matt Whitteker’s entrepreneurial career began with founding a rapid growth technology company, which then led him to become an early team member at Assent. Matt also combined his background in business development with his passion for boxing to co-found the most publicized charity boxing event in world history, raise hundreds of thousands of dollars for charity and open a 5,000-square-foot boxing gym. 

His extensive business experience has been shared through University guest lectures, including University of Ottawa, Carleton University and Queen’s University. He is currently VP of Sales at Assent Compliance and a key contributor to Assent’s growth and continued success.

Velko Tzolov
Industrial Advisor, NRC-IRAP

Velko is an Industrial Advisor at NRC-IRAP - providing business and technology advisory services, and funding to eligible small and medium Canadian technology firms. He is a seasoned executive with solid track record in business development, sales, marketing and technology leadership roles.

Specialties: Technology sales, marketing, business development, channel & partnership management, strategic business, marketing & technology positioning.

Trevor Wilkins
Engineer Entrepreneur Executive in Residence

Trevor is a Mechanical and IT engineer who has spent 26 years in the technology industry. He’s been the sales leader at a highly successful NASDAQ start-up, directed a global solutions channel, wrote navigation software for the America’s Cup, sold to the world’s largest banks and airlines, and was Managing Director of a company building internet collaboration software.During this time, he observed and modelled how the “best of the best” in business influenced, spoke, acted and thought. He used this work to create a simple universal process that can be used by absolutely anyone to influence others to buy (or buy into) their ideas, services or products. This process is described in detail in his three “Turning Selling into Buying” books.As Engineer Executive Entrepreneur (E³iR), Trevor lectures in classes ranging from Engineering Management to Entrepreneurship to Business Influence. He also teaches and coaches in a wide range of startup programmes, the largest being Startup Garage. He tweets @sellingtobuying about creating what others want, need and buy.

Midia Hassan
CO-Founder and COO Dextra

Midia is a 4th year chemical engineering student and the coordinator of a social entrepreneurship training program called the Difference Makers program at the University of Ottawa. Midia is also a Global Shaper with the World Economic Forum.Midia has founded several projects and startups that solve social issues through engineering entrepreneurial design. She is a co-founder of a social venture that provides 3D printed prosthetics to amputated war refugees. She is the cofounder of Startup that provides immersive and interactive virtual reality training platform

Suzanne Grant

From a young trailblazer in Military technology, to humanitarian and social change catalyst for Africa and the Middle East, to entrepreneurship in a developing Arab country, strategy and leadership have been part of Suzanne's life.
Her diverse background ranges from technology to creative, from delivering impact within the Canadian Forces to successfully founding and leading a profitable Strategic Communications Agency (revenue $2.5 million/yr) in the developing country of Qatar.
She has been a strategic advisor to the C Suite of several national and multi-national brands across diverse industries such as Accenture, Virgin Health Bank, Intercontinental, SHELL, ChevronPhilips, Qatar Science and Technology Park, Qatar Marine Sports Federation and many more.  Suzanne is an active connector within the Ottawa Startup community and serves on the Governance Committee of the Canadian Military Communications and Electronics Network.

Hanan Anis
Professor, University of Ottawa

Stephen daze

Stephen is a long-standing award winning member of the entrepreneurship ecosystem in Canada. He keeps his fresh as a part-time professor teaching entrepreneurship at the University of Ottawa while working with entrepreneurs to launch their new ventures. 
Previously, Stephen led the Ottawa Centre for Research and Innovation's (OCRI) Entrepreneurship Centre as the Executive Director. 

Organizing Team

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

  • Hanan
  • Stephen
  • Aqeela
  • Renee
  • Issam
  • Abtin


Krissie Harrigan
Organizer, Operations Lead

Proud to be geeky. Unhealthy obsessions with the internet, data, marketing, and customer experience. Spent a decade working with enterprises like Google, American Express, and Chase Bank on demand gen and marketing campaigns, then took a leap of faith with an early stage tech startup (acquired in 2013) and have never looked back.

Currently Co-Founder of TenStartups - A community-based accelerator program (Alpha), and JustReply - A performance reporting platform that prompts employees to report things back by simply replying to an email. (Beta).

Passionate about helping startups and entrepreneurs with growth and marketing strategies and execution. Unofficial Startup Weekend, Ladies Learning Code, and Code for Kids ambassador.

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