BMO Financial Group wants to ensure that the next big idea gets the support needed to ensure the idea come to fruition and will ultimately benefit Canadian consumers. By partnering with the DMZ at Ryerson University, one of Canada’s largest business incubators, BMO hopes to identify innovative minds geared toward creating new technologies, and then provide support to their start-up enterprises.
The program, called “BMO Presents: The Next Big Idea in Fintech,” will provide up to six selected startups with:
- A four-month placement at the DMZ, the leading university-based incubator in North America;
- An exclusive opportunity to pilot their technology with BMO; and
- Introductions to venture capital groups that may be willing to take the startup to the next level.
“The evolving needs of customers are driving a push for innovation and an acceleration of the development of new technologies,” commented Cameron Fowler, Group Head, Canadian Personal and Commercial Banking, BMO Financial Group. “Talented entrepreneurs need opportunities, resources and the right environment for their ideas to succeed. We look forward to collaborating with DMZ and these new leaders of Canada’s innovation industry.”
Fintech companies from across Canada are invited to apply before May 20 for one of the six placements, which will be awarded to the companies judged to be most likely to benefit from a period of incubation at the DMZ. After four months, each of the six startups will present their company to a panel of judges, mentors and industry leaders to earn an opportunity to test their market-validated product, service or solution. BMO will invest in the winning technology, with the goal of incorporating it into their roster of products and offerings.
“Ryerson and BMO have a history of successful partnerships, and we are especially proud to launch BMO Presents: The Next Big Idea in Fintech program to provide Canadian fintech startups with the stellar support needed to drive growth,” opined Abdullah Snobar, DMZ Executive Director. “At a time when technology in the financial sector is growing rapidly, the DMZ is committed to fueling the success of emerging entrepreneurs through invaluable partnerships such as the one with BMO.”
Since opening in April 2010, the DMZ and Ryerson Futures Inc. – its affiliated accelerator program – have incubated and accelerated 240 startups, which have collectively raised more than $168 million in funding and fostered more than 2,152 jobs.