Spark Innovation Centre has announced applications are now open to its third annual Ignite Competition. The organization made the announcement at an Innovation Celebration held in partnership with 360 Incentives and SAP Canada on August 13th in Whitby, Ontario.
Two start-up companies will be awarded $25,000 to use towards their business plans. Along with the monetary prize, the two winners will be given free office space in The Loft and will also join Spark Centre’s Thrive Accelerator Program which offers significant advisory and business support services to achieve a faster market entry.
Spark Centre continues its strategic focus on youth entrepreneurship and accordingly, Ignite will continue to include the Student Entrepreneur category for a second year, giving away $5,000 to a post-secondary entrepreneur along with automatic inclusion into Spark Centre’s Winter Youth Accelerator Program.
Start-up businesses located anywhere within Canada are eligible to apply, but winners must establish their business within Durham Region.
One of the 2014 Ignite winners, Tiko 3D, has since gone on to close one of the all-time most successful Kickstarter campaign, raising $3.5 million CDN. Tiko 3D is now co-located with Spark Centre at The Loft and continues to work with the organization as part of the Thrive Accelerator Program.
“Spark Centre is an awesome support network that takes tech savvy entrepreneurs and gives them a foundation upon which they can grow their company,” says Matt Gajkowski, Founder & CEO of Tiko 3D and 2014 Winner of Ignite. “Winning Ignite and working with Spark Centre has helped us go from prototype to product to a viable business.”
“Ignite has become without a doubt the biggest contributor to our clients’ success,” said Dennis Croft, President & CEO of Spark Centre. “The competition is designed as a journey with a series of public pitch competitions, and then concluding with a 30 minute public boardroom pitch. While the winners receive Ignite specific winnings, the bigger success has been the number of angels and funding interests which have resulted.”
Applications for the Young and General Entrepreneur categories must be received by 5:00pm on September 11th. Student Entrepreneur applications will be extended until 5:00pm on September 18th. Please visit ignitedurham.ca for more information on the application process, eligibility criteria, and important dates.
Check out what past Ignite winners have been up to since the competition.