Joining a category-defining technology start-up can accelerate your career. It does this by increasing your knowledge and skills, providing a strong network and potentially creating enough wealth to start your own company.
Historically there has been no more than one such company in Canada (e.g. Shopify, Blackberry, Nortel) at any time. With the rapid growth of our ecosystem, there are more potential category-defining start-ups than ever before. The question is which one should you join? TechTO worked with leading venture capitalists and angels to identify the rocketship companies that have the potential to accelerate your career.
Startup: company pre exhibited product market fit
Emerging: post product market fit and just started to scale
Growth: later stage company with significant revenue or customers but still large opportunity to grow
$42.2M USD total funding over 5 rounds.
Union Square Hospitality Group, Ten Coves Capital, Conexus Credit Union, Enlightened Hospitality Investments, Relay Ventures, SaskWorks Venture Fund, Western Economic Diversification Canada, and Napier Park Global Capital.
The culture at 7shifts is one that values authenticity, trust, and curiosity. We believe in working hard, and celebrating the hard work with team building, company wide events, and other social initiatives that empower our employees. These efforts have made 7shifts one of the top 3 best places to work in Canada in 2021.
$200M USD total funding over 7 rounds.
Version One Ventures, Ramen Ventures, Leaders Fund, FirstMark, Burst Capital, Bessemer Venture Partners, and Accel.
To understand the problem they were solving, our co-founders joined multiple support teams to identify the barriers - like time, technology, and tedious tasks – that were keeping businesses from delivering incredible customer experiences. Our co-founders both answered tens of thousands of customer inquiries, painstakingly and manually addressing each one, to arm themselves with broad-based insight of what it would take to overcome these barriers.
$178.3M USD total funding over 9 rounds.
Educational Testing Service (ETS), Index Ventures, Harmonic Growth Partners, Blue Cloud Ventures, Candou Ventures, Fidelity Canada, Artiman Ventures, Anthos Capital, and Drive Capital.
ApplyBoard’s company culture is mission driven in helping every student in the world have access to the best possible education. We do this through global collaboration and support of one another, dedication to our stakeholders, and having as much fun as possible along the way.
"They have a clear product market fit, wild traction, and crazy growth." - Craig Hunter, Angel investor
Andrew D'Souza, Ben Sanders, Charlie Feng, Ivan Gritsiniak, Michele Romanow, Pavel Melnichuk, and Tanay Delima
466.5M USD total funding over 4 rounds.
Oak HC/FT, Nestle China, Inovia Capital, Emergence, Highlight Capital Partners, Founders Circle Capital, Christian Martinez, Kevin Breay, and Envestors.
Clearco's mission is to empower founders around the world and help them win - this is the same for Clearco helping their teammates win. Clearco has built a positive, inclusive and supportive culture to allow employees to do their best work and be their best selves here. Transparency, responsibility, integrity, and authenticity are the core values at Clearco.
"A rapidly growing company with lots of career growth opportunities, a very smart executive team, and a well-respected brand." - Karim Gillani of Luge Capital
$367M CAD total funding over 5 rounds.
T.Rowe Price, TCV, OMERS Growth Equity, Bessemer Venture Partners, Oxygen Capital Partners, LLC, Acton Capital, Version One Ventures, and Point Nine.
At Clio, we’re proving that it is possible to build and scale a human and high-performing company culture. Meaning, we believe that you thrive when you are both challenged and supported to do your best work. We show up as our authentic selves and are united by our shared purpose.
"Amazing training ground for talent!" - Boris Wertz of Version One Ventures
Beier Cai and Greg Gunn
Commit’s company culture is guided by our operating principle: Do what’s right for the Engineer. This translates into a community of constant learning, helping others, and an approach to the craft of engineering that is genuinely interest-driven. We also ensure that the integrity of this culture is preserved when we partner with startups and match our Engineering Partners with them.
"Excellent founding team with a very unique engineer-centric business model not yet seen in the market." - Alex Tong of Information Venture Partners
Chris Grouchy and Roger Kirkness
$2.2M USD total funding over 1 round.
Funders Club, Lachy Groom, Y Combinator, Pioneer Fund, Tribe Capital, AME Cloud Ventures, and Garage Capital.
"The founders have great experience in the space and great network." - Craig Hunter, Angel investor
$357.5M USD total funding over 6 rounds.
Andreessen Horowitz, Venrock, Union Square Ventures, Accomplice, and Coatue.
At Dapper Labs, our people are our greatest strength. We’re proud to have a diverse team of creators and founders who flourish in an environment of personal autonomy, where professional growth is encouraged. We value our culture and diversity above all else, regardless of where you came from, what you studied, or who you used to work for. Titles and years of experience don't matter to us – impact, authenticity, and values alignment do.
Derrick Fung, Darren Fung, Cameron Dearsley, and Akhil Gupta
$56.2M USD total funding over 4 rounds.
Rogue Insight Capital, New Enterprise Associates, Ganges, HOP Capital, Highland Beta, White Star Capital, RBC Capital, Sierra Ventures, and Portag3 Ventures.
We provide an inclusive and connected space that allows each individual team member to flourish by empowering them to live by our culture principles of Passion, Grit, Humility, and Hustle. We believe in creating ownership and shared accountability by building, fostering, and leveling up our community of top-tier talent, and have a lot of fun while doing it! We find a great balance in all we do and work to make Drop a better product and a better place to work together.
Frédérick Lavoie, Julien Cousineau, and Yves-Gabriel Leboeuf
$19M CAD total funding over 4 rounds.
Inovia Capital, Luge Capital, InnoStart Capital, National Bank of Canada, Conconi Growth Partners, Panache Ventures, and Intact Ventures.
"Strong founders with a big opportunity" Isaac Souweine (Real Ventures)
Geotab’s core values are at the heart of everything we do. Starting as a family company 21 years ago, our staff, commonly referred to as Geotabbers, maintain the original entrepreneurial spirit. Geotab’s mission is to operate ethically and responsibly by always doing the right thing, no matter the cost or effort involved.
"They are a global leader in telematics, crushing it, and flying under the radar of most folks." Mike Sfalcin of Yaletown Partners
Frederic Lalonde and Joost Ouwerkerk
$423.7M USD total funding over 10 rounds.
GS Growth, Brightspark Ventures, Capital One, Inovia Capital, WestCap, Citi Ventures, Investissement Quebec, OMERS Ventures, and Caisse de Depot et Placement du Quebec.
Hopper’s success in innovation stems from a workplace culture specifically designed to foster innovation across all departments and levels. As the company began to scale, we did not merely define the culture that already existed but instead took the opportunity to deliberately design it so that anyone across all functions could be a leader if they built out the proper business case and used the company’s transparent leadership principles to guide decision making. The core of Hopper’s culture is based on trusting our employees. Our leadership model empowers individuals to make decisions that are locally impactful, and drive the business while creating value for our customers.
"Scaling quickly, definitely a company to look out for as impactful developments continue to arise" Boris Wertz of Version One Ventures
Drew Millington, Matt Loszak,and Simon Bourgeois
$20M CAD total funding over 5 rounds.
Tribe Capital, Struck Capital, and Y Combinator.
At Humi, taking good care of our people is in our DNA and we take it seriously. Every person is different. It is our responsibility to acknowledge, encourage, and empower everyone to be themselves.
Daniel Eberhard, Jonathan Bixby, Joshua Bixby, and Mike Benna
$138M CAD total funding over 7 rounds.
Drive Capital, TTV Capital, Portag3 Ventures, National Bank of Canada, Greyhound Capital, Adam Felesky, and Scott Lake.
IPO at $115M CAD
"A very resilient company with strong growth" Mike Sfalcin (Yaletown Partners)
Jennifer Arnold, Damian Tran, and Victor Tay
MinervaAI’s culture is built on saying what we mean, meaning what we say and being impeccable with our word. We are responsible for our words and actions and its impact on others. There is no room for disrespect and discrimination but infinite room for diversity and daring. We like our policies, processes and procedures tight and to the point. We always ask ‘what problem are we trying to solve before we create solutions. Our value is measured by the efficiency and efficacy with which our clients can identify and disrupt financial predators.
Andrew Chau, Jeff Adamson, and Kris Read
$50M CAD total funding over two rounds.
Valar Ventures, Tobias Lütke, Thomvest Ventures, Maple VC, Inovia Capital, Golden Ventures, FJ Labs, District Ventures Capital, and Afore Capital.
"We are a team of high-achievers, dreamers and doers, set on innovating the best solutions. We look for ambitious, talented and passionate people who want to move fast, drive forward fresh ideas, and make a lasting impact in Canada’s banking and the FinTech industry. At Neo Financial you will have the opportunity to be a part of a growing, high performance team culture where we encourage everyone to bring their best ideas forward and grow their careers. We provide you with the autonomy to solve problems as they arise, define how you want to make an impact, and the freedom to create your own path."
"Exceptional founders with strong track record who are looking to disrupt big industry in Canada." - John Cappuccitti of Velocity "They offer a unique opportunity to be part of a growing, funded challenger bank in Canada with a real debit, credit product and an ambitious vision." Alex Tong of Information Venture Partners
Eytan Bensoussan and Justin Adler
$32.5M CAD total funding over 4 rounds.
Redpoint, Conconi Growth Partners, Tom Williams, Heron Rock Fund, Battery Ventures, Hedgewood, Ferst Capital Partners, and DMZ.
"Growing company in a space that needs disruption, well-funded, and hiring for growth. Founders are superb!" - Karim Gillani of Luge Capital
Sean Merat, Sohrab Merat, and Vahid Mirjalili
$2M USD total funding over 2 rounds.
N49P, Luge Capital, Impression Ventures, Finance Montréal, Plug and Play, Builders VC, Sway Ventures, Holt Accelerator, and Inovia Capital.
Collaborative, diverse and inclusive. We all have a voice and input to all current and future projects. We reward performance and hold ourselves and others accountable on our goals while having each others' back. Resilience is in our core values, we see every challenge as an opportunity to learn and grow.
Craig Follett and Adam Meghji
Peggy's goal is to support and uplift underrepresented artists, all over the world. Given this, true to the artists and galleries that we work with, we strive to create a team the reflects that customer base, Peggy's culture inherently values diversity, international perspectives, and storytelling - because art at the end of the day is about the people, meaning, and stories behind it.
"A great founding team with past success and an interesting market opportunity" - John Cappuccitti of Velocity
$7.8M CAD total funding over 2 rounds.
BDC Venture Capital, MaRS Investment Accelerator Fund, Luge Capital, GreenSky Capital, CIBC Innovation Banking, Inovia Capital, and Innovation Grade Capital.
Adrien Caranta, Johan Rosell, and Wilfred Valenta
$3.7M CAD total raised over 2 rounds.
Whitecap Venture Partners, Courtside Ventures, Ndamukong Suh, and Alate Partners.
We are building something really big and believe in the greater vision. We adapt to challenges and pivot to overcome problems. We move swiftly and iterate even faster.
"They have a disruptive idea with good market timing" - Isaac Souweine of Real Ventures
Aadil Kazmi, Maraz Rahman, and Zeeshan Hamid
$22 CAD total funding over 3 rounds.
Inovia Capital, Golden Ventures, Forerunner Ventures, Shopify, Trucks Venture Capital, Golden Ventures, Side Door Ventures, and Panache Ventures.
We aim to create the best place to work where you work with the smartest people who act as owners to create magic for our customers. We trust that each of our employees will do what needs to get done using good judgment and a data-driven approach.
"They're putting up some great game in a huge industry" - Craig Hunter, Angel investor
Hanif Joshaghani, Tiffany Kaminsky
$103.6M USD total funding over 8 rounds.
Inovia Capital, TELUS Ventures, Ignition Partners, Finance Montreal, Markus Frind, Impression Ventures
"Passionate and mission-driven founders, rapidly scaling SaaS company and amazing talent coalescing in/around the company." -Alex Tong, Information Venture Partners
Brett Huneycutt, Michael Katchen, and Rudy Adler
$1.1B CAD total funding over 9 rounds.
Ryan Reynolds, Aubrey Graham, Michael J. Fox Foundation, Inovia Capital, Greylock, Meritech Capital Partners, TVC, Redpoint, Sagard Capital, and Two Sigma Ventures.
Our team of over 600 employees works collaboratively to build the best possible experience for our clients, and then make it even better — we ship fast, then improve it. Everyone is a maker and an owner: that means no layer of bureaucracy or red tape, and rigorously prioritizing to avoid meeting-packed days. We even have a dedicated meeting-free day each week, so everyone has the time to think, create and innovate, without interruptions.
"Grew from being a very small company to being one of Canada's largest fintech companies. They're expanding into new lines of business, and there are lots of opportunities to work on interesting projects" - Karim Gillani of Luge Capital "They are one of the most interesting fintech companies in Canada" - Boris Wertz of Version One Ventures
We would love to hear from you on companies
that should be in our next cohort