U of Ottawa creates entrepreneurial training program
June 2, 2021
OTTAWA – The University of Ottawa and Wesley Clover International have launched Alacrity Ottawa, a new technology business program. Together, uOttawa and Wesley Clover will educate, train and support engineering graduates with mentorship and investment opportunities aimed at fostering a pipeline of new Canadian tech startups.
The collaborative program will leverage the Wesley Clover Alacrity model of start-up founding and funding, which has been deployed around the world and combines the expertise, resources and networks of Wesley Clover (and its local L-SPARK technology Accelerator) with uOttawa Faculty of Engineering’s inaugural Master’s degree in Entrepreneurial Engineering Design (MEED), a two-year program beginning in September 2021 at the University’s main campus.
“Together we will offer an exceptional learning experience that combines our new engineering degree, our deep industry research partnerships and our satellite campus located in the Kanata North tech hub with the expertise, track record and global networks of Wesley Clover,” said Sylvain Charbonneau (pictured), vice-president, research at uOttawa. “The Alacrity Ottawa program will build long-term synergistic relationships between entrepreneurs and investors that will have significant economic and social impact for Ottawa and Canada.”
As students move through the two-year program, they will spend time at the uOttawa Kanata North campus and intern with local tech companies, many of which are in Kanata North, home of Canada’s largest tech park.
Alacrity Ottawa will focus on developing solutions and startups that target 5G+ networking, cybersecurity, artificial intelligence, transportation and healthcare innovation.
Given the University’s research strengths in these areas and their relevance to many of the companies in Kanata North, Alacrity Ottawa will initially focus on healthcare by addressing challenges and opportunities in the digital MedTech space.
Application areas will be expanded over time. Successful applicants will form teams to tackle identified industry challenges and teams with viable and potentially scalable solutions will be presented to appropriate investors. If a match is made, teams will secure funding to form a new company and start their journey as a new technology start-up.
Alacrity Ottawa is engaging with corporate partners to enhance the funding opportunities and to further support this latest addition to the Alacrity ecosystem.
Terry Matthews, chairman of Wesley Clover, said: “We have been building the Alacrity ecosystem around the world for a number of years now, and I am pleased to replicate the successful partnership here in our home city. As technologies of all sorts advance at unprecedented rates, the commitment of the University of Ottawa to play an ever-more relevant role, combined with the experience of the Alacrity technology and business teams, make this a timely initiative that is sure to bring benefit to the city, the Canadian technology landscape, and the aspiring young entrepreneurs who choose to go down this promising career path.”
The MEED program offers aspiring entrepreneurs academic instruction combined with practical business training and experience in the development of new business ideas and the creation of new companies. Through internships at local technology firms and mentorship from world-class advisors and industry experts, uOttawa graduates will gain valuable experience and insights needed to navigate their way to entrepreneurial success.
More than 10 years strong, the Alacrity Global program is a proven approach to educating entrepreneurs, founding new technology startups, and securing funding to scale these new businesses.
Through the Alacrity process, graduates get exposure to an ecosystem that would otherwise be difficult for young entrepreneurs to access, and investors gain opportunities and insights into young ventures that are already supported by a group of experienced advisors in a solid business framework.
Alacrity Ottawa is another example of the strategic initiatives supporting the University’s vision to drive greater innovation through partnership with industry. Successful startups from Alacrity Ottawa will augment Ottawa’s high-tech ecosystem by creating jobs, economic impact and investment. Alacrity Ottawa also complements uOttawa’s existing entrepreneurial ecosystem, which includes programs such as; MakerLaunch, the Entrepreneurship Hub’s Startup and Scaleup Garage and the Ottawa Health Innovation Hub, which will be housed in uOttawa’s new Advanced Medical Research Centre.
About Alacrity Ottawa
Alacrity Ottawa is a technology business program which leverages the Alacrity Global model of start-up company founding and scaling to nurture a next generation of tech entrepreneurs in Ottawa, Ontario, Canada. A collaboration between the University of Ottawa and Wesley Clover International, Alacrity Ottawa will combine the expertise, resources and networks of Wesley Clover and its local L-SPARK technology Accelerator, with the University of Ottawa’s Master’s degree in Entrepreneurial Engineering Design (MEED). The program will educate and train engineering graduates and support them with experienced mentorship and investment opportunities to create the right conditions to launch and scale a pipeline of new Canadian tech entrepreneurs and companies. Visit alacrity.co/ottawa for more information.
About the University of Ottawa
The University of Ottawa is home to over 50,000 students, faculty, and staff, who live, work and study in both French and English. Our campus is a crossroads of cultures and ideas, where bold minds come together to inspire game-changing ideas. We are one of Canada’s top 10 research universities – our professors and researchers explore new approaches to today’s challenges. One of a handful of Canadian universities ranked among the top 200 in the world, we attract exceptional thinkers and welcome diverse perspectives from across the globe.
About Wesley Clover International
Chaired by serial technology entrepreneur Terry Matthews, Wesley Clover International has an enviable track record as a private, global investment management and holding company, with interests in Information and Communications Technologies (ICT) including next-generation Cloud and SaaS applications, fixed/mobile communications, security, customer engagement, analytics and more. The company is active in established and emerging markets, with offices and partnerships in Canada, U.S., U.K., France, Turkey, Dubai, Mexico, Singapore, Hong Kong and Chile.