By Nathan Rudyk
I don't cut a sponsorship cheque for many causes without thinking hard about whether the money will really, truly, make a difference. But when Victoria Lennox asked me to contribute some cash to Startup Canada, it was the easiest decision I've made in a long time.
You see startups aren't just a neat thing, they're the only thing.
Contrary to what debt-ridden governments in the "developed world" like to tell us, "stimulus" doesn't do anything more than smooth over economic speed-bumps. And as we're seeing in the Eurozone, without a fundamentally sound (i.e. enterpreneur-driven) economy based on revenue creation versus money-printing and distribution of depreciating fiat currency, there's no basis of real (wealth creating) stimulus. There's only a declining standard of living and the systematic crushing of hopes and dreams via financial repression.
At market2world, we do our bit by attracting investment to Canada via ConsiderCanada.com (a brand we created for Canada's large cities), the Ontario Technology Corridor, the Ontario Food Cluster and the Ontario Clean Technology Alliance. For years we've promoted the companies and products of entrepreneur-led companies across the country. And on our home turf, we created Global Enterpreurship Week Ottawa with our friends at Invest Ottawa.
But because they usually can't afford us, we don't often get the chance to work directly with freshly minted startups. And that's why Startup Canada is so important. On May 2, this national entrepreneur-led non-profit movement will launch its flagship venture, Startup Canada Communities, trailblazing a new approach to supporting entrepreneurs – from the bottom-up.
Startup Canada Communities provides entrepreneurs with access to mentors, workspace, and funding to start and grow their businesses and to connect with other startup founders. Local networked Web sites and grassroots entrepreneur-led events and activities will unite and strengthen each startup community.
The project will initially pilot in 15 communities across Canada in 2013 to develop and refine the model. The first 15 pilot communities are St. John’s, Fredericton, Charlottetown, Quebec City, Montreal, Ottawa, York Region, London, Kingston, Winnipeg, Calgary, Lethbridge, Smithers, Prince George, and Langford.
To find out more, on May 2nd check out Startup Canada Communities. Tell em Victoria sent ya!
(Nathan Rudyk is President and CEO with market2world communications inc., the public relations and product marketing agency for global innovators.)