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  • Capital Outlook: Canada’s Startup Ecosystem

    “Saturated by US VCs with Big Room to Grow”

    There is a growing and encouraging startup landscape maturing in Canada but technology entrepreneurship has yet to create a robust innovation startup ecosystem. There are many positive signs that the startup community is beginning to flourish. Across the nation you’ll find a healthy funnel of startups throughout the Startup Lifecycle, but Canada still faces many issues in this sector such as talent migration, access to capital, and risk tolerance.

    Although there are exceptions, innovation is not traditionally Canada’s strong suit. The Conference Board of Canada gives the country a “D” for innovation with particularly low marks for seed/venture capital. However, there are an increasing number of tech startups and resources to support them including incubators, accelerators, workspace programs, and financing sources.

    Baltimore Harbor

    photo credit: Maggie Clausen


    The geographical startup ecosystem, in which I currently reside, Baltimore, would best be described as one that is 'emerging'. While it has the potential to become an established ecosystem, currently, Baltimore only houses 345 technology startup companies in its metropolitan region. This number is relatively low compared to an established ecosystem like Boston whose city is home to 1,647 self-identified startups. Despite the low number of startups that are established in Baltimore's ecosystem, the city is home to some rather well known startups such as Bill Me Later, Comcast, Parking Panda and Uber

    The following is an analysis of the Providence Startup Ecosystem by WV Academy member David Correa.

    Providence Rhode Island

    Photo Credit: "Providence" by Doug Kerr

    The startup ecosystem in Providence is bigger than most people would think it is. It has one of the biggest and most renowned accelerators: BetaSpring. It is also a shorter distance away from Boston than what Silicon Valley is from San Francisco. It also has a huge pool of talent coming from the many universities around the area. Of course we cannot go without mentioning the powerful connection that represent Brown and RISD where more often than not, art meets science.

    Brown University

    photo credit: "Brown University" by thurdi01

    The proximity of Boston is a great advantage for Providence since it provides the presence of accelerators, VC and of course, angel investors. Several Brown startups have emerged from this powerful connection. Chime, which not many people remember now, was a tool that allowed students find what was happening in town. Ventfull, now emerging, is connecting students with the university and their events.

    Ventfull app

    The startup scene in Providence is emerging and with a thriving potential. It has the most important factor which is the presence of great founders and it is starting to see bits and pieces of the other startup ecosystem components.


    David Correa is a member of the current WV Academy cohort. Want to learn the secrets of startups from VC's and founders? Apply for the next WV Academy cohort today.

    You can follow David on his Medium blog:


    Welcome to Episode 1 of the If You Build It Startup Podcast! In this episode, we interview Tom Kuegler: General Partner of Wasabi Ventures, founder of two successful Internet startups (SNT and SpinBox), and bourbon connoisseur. 

    Questions covered in Episode 1:

    What is a startup? What differentiates a startup from a regular business? Is a regular business still a startup? 

    What are some examples?

    How is this different from a J O B?

    What kind of people succeed in startups? What kind of people do you look for when you’re investing?

    Who should NOT do a startup?

    What are the advantages and disadvantages of doing a startup?

    What are the different roles they can come in at, and does this vary between different stages of company?

    What’s the best way to get involved in the startup ecosystem?

    Philadelphia City Hall by Michale Righi

    Philadelphia, the home of early inventors and innovators such as Benjamin Franklin, does not cease to keep innovating. The startup scene in Philadelphia is rapidly growing, and the environment is providing the necessary backbone for many successful startups. Philadelphia, similar to Paolo Alto, New York, and Boston, has a multitude of Universities backing startups, numerous startup organizations aimed to fuel startups, Angel Investors and VCs investing in early stage startups, and a tech & healthcare hub providing human capital resources necessary for startup success.

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