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Editors note: Since his days as a student, Calvin has been immersed in entrepreneurship and start ups including being an executive in Students in Free Enterprise Ryerson, winning first place in the ACE National Entrepreneurship Challenge and winning Most Profitable Business Venture for his start up from the John Dobson Foundation. Calvin was a founding member of the Ryerson Entrepreneur Institute which launched the Ryerson Angel Network, the first university led angel network in Canada. Since graduation, Calvin has worked for two years at a boutique mobile marketing agency called Broadplay Inc. and helped to launch Spenz as the Director of Marketing.

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I’ll preface this with saying we’re a bunch of twenty somethings from Toronto who had never done this before, we don’t claim to be good at it or know what we’re doing but hopefully our experiences can help you.

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Matterhorn sunrise

Scott Munro is the founder and a managing director at Pagemill Partners. Prior to founding Pagemill, Scott was CEO of Savoir Technology Group, Inc., where he grew the business through acquisition from $50 million in revenues to more than $1 billion. While there he completed 13 acquisitions with hardware, software and services companies.

The M&A market has undergone permanent change over the last three to five years and the implications of these changes need to be known and understood by every entrepreneur.

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Euwyn is the founder of Opzi, an enterprise collaboration software startup that has raised $1M in funding and was part of the Summer 2010 Y Combinator class. Euwyn grew up in Canada (Vancouver) but headed east to earn his CS degree at Cornell, graduating at 18. He then stayed at Cornell to obtain a JD and practiced for 2 years prior to heading out west to join Y Combinator.

There have been a number of Y Combinator (YC) teams from Canada, in particular, from the University of Waterloo and the University of Toronto. These include Pager Duty, E La Carte and Backtype. Teams from Canada have generally fared very well on both the product and fundraising, perhaps driven by the knowledge their ability to remain in the US generally hinged upon the success of their companies.

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Scenes from the Year One Labs Google Hackathon


Ben Yoskovitz is a founding partner at Year One Labs, an early stage accelerator in Montreal. Previously he founded Standout Jobs (which got acquired). Follow him on Twitter @byosko and subscribe at Instigator Blog.

We’ve learned a lot launching and running Year One Labs. And we’ll continue to learn. Here are 7 lessons learned that I hope you’ll find useful:

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Brian Wong - Kiip - Canadian

Editor’s note: This is a guest post by Brian Wong. Brian is the founder of Kiip (pronounced “keep”), a mobile rewards network that has raised over $4.4 million in funding. Wall Street Journal called Brian the “youngest person to ever receive funding by a venture capital firm“.

He was an early Bachelors of Commerce graduate from the University of British Columbia, graduating at the age of 18, after skipping four grades in elementary and high school. He was recently lauded in Mashable as one of “The Top 5 Young Entrepreneurs to Watch”, and the Vancouver Sun called him “a budding internet visionary”. He was also recently a recipient of the Top 20 Under 20 awards in all of Canada.

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