International Pre-seed Funding

The McGill Dobson International Pre-seed Funding Program provides a unique opportunity for our founders to connect with an international ecosystem of investors, business experts and government trade partners with the aim of securing funding and business development opportunities that will drive their next phase of growth.

The program will focus on expansion across North America East Coast and West Coast, Europe and Asia.

  • Showcases Quebec's emerging innovation stemming from all faculties at McGill and in collaboration with 24 universities.
  • Creates visibility for our Quebec based startups’ brands, products and services.
  • Lays the groundwork for a post-pandemic wave of economic growth, trade opportunities and job creation.
  • Furthers knowledge and skills through our Funding Bootcamp before embarking on virtual and in-person events in 20+ cities, as well as delegations to New York City, Boston, San Francisco and London.

View the program brochure

 

The International Startup Funding Program

The International Startup Funding Program consists of two parts:

1. Funding Bootcamp: a founder learning and development program

  • Pitch Practice Lab
  • Funding bootcamp & Refresher
  • One-on-one coaching and mentoring
  • International Strategy Lab

2. International Startup Tour

Mix of virtual and in-person events open to investors and business experts across four territories: NORTH AMERICA - EAST COAST | NORTH AMERICA - WEST COAST | EUROPE | ASIA

  • Virtual Interactive Showcase Live Demo Days
  • Investor Panels / Pitch presentations 1-1 investor meetings

All events, unless specified as virtual, will take place in person as long as Covid-19 Public Health measures allow it.

Funding Bootcamp

The Funding Bootcamp is a founder learning and development program that includes:

  1. Pitch Practice Lab
  2. Funding Bootcamp & Refresher
  3. One-on-one coaching and mentoring
  4. International Strategy Lab
January 12-13, 2022

Pitch Practice Lab

Pitch practice sessions with a presentation coach and business expert panel.

  • Refinement of pitch structure
  • Delivery Skills
  • Audience
  • Engagement
January 14-28, 2022

Funding Bootcamp & Refresher

(Fridays from 12-1:30 p.m.)

Guest VC’s work with participating startups on developing a roadmap to improve funding outcomes.

  • Structuring more investable projects
  • Defining the investment merits
  • Optimizing the fundraising process Improving the terms of investments
February 7-11, 2022

One-on-One Coaching

Review of business plan and fundraising strategy, as well as individually targetted areas of development.

February 18, 2022

International Strategy Lab

Guest experts and trade officers work with participating startups on developing a roadmap for international market expansion.

  • Define the goals and desired outcomes for their inter­national outreach
  • Identify market opportunities
  • Discover how their own values relate or differ to those of the target culture
  • Fine-tune their pitch to better engage with their target audience

    International Startup Tour Events

    February 3, 2022

    International Startup Tour Launch - Montréal

    Hosted at McGill University, this special event will welcome Montreal’s investment community and startup ecosystem.

    February 21, 2022

    Virtual Dobson Showcase - Eastern Time

    An interactive virtual exhibit space where investors and members of the business community can meet and engage with Dobson’s most promising startups.

    February 22, 2022

    Virtual Dobson Showcase - Pacific Time

    An interactive virtual exhibit space where investors and members of the business community can meet and engage with Dobson’s most promising startups.

    February 23, 2022

    Virtual Dobson Showcase - London Time

    An interactive virtual exhibit space where investors and members of the business community can meet and engage with Dobson’s most promising startups.

    February 25, 2022

    Virtual Dobson Showcase - Hong Kong Time

    An interactive virtual exhibit space where investors and members of the business community can meet and engage with Dobson’s most promising startups.

    March 9-11, 2022

    International Startup Tour New York City

    Hosted in NYC, this special event will welcome New York’s investment community and startup ecosystem.

    March 15-17, 2022

    International Startup Tour Boston

    Hosted in Boston, this special event will welcome Boston’s investment community and startup ecosystem.

    March 23-25, 2022

    International Startup Tour San Francisco

    Hosted in Silicon Valley, this special event will welcome San Francisco’s investment community and startup ecosystem.

    April 5-7, 2022

    International Startup Tour Europe

    Hosted in London, this special event will welcome Europe’s investment community and startup ecosystem.

    March 14 - April 30, 2022

    International Startup Tour Investment Meetings

    One-on-one follow up meetings with investors

     

    *Dates are subject to change.

    Program Application

    Ideal participant profile

    To be considered for the Dobson International Pre-Seed Funding Program, your startup must meet ALL of the following criteria:

    • You have successfully completed the McGill X-1 Accelerator Program and/or the McGill Dobson Cup within the last five years (since 2016)
    • Your startup can demonstrate significant milestones achieved, with strong early traction in the form of pre-seed funding and paying customers
    • You are currently pursuing a round of fundraising that is tied to specific measurable business goals and have an interest in developing opportunities in the U.S. and in Europe
    • Your startup is incorporated and headquartered in Canada.

    How to apply

    1. Read the program outline carefully to confirm that you can commit to ALL the program activities.
    2. Write your five page startup plan using the fillable Microsoft Word template and convert it into a pdf document. Plans that do not use the template will not be accepted. 
    3. Make a short video of your team presenting your startup (1’30” maximum) unlisted on YouTube or Vimeo. Fill in the online application form, attach your pdf startup plan and add the link to your video.

    Important

    A commitment towards attending all the bootcamp workshops tour events and executing all the project work is required and failure to do so may result in withdrawal from the program

    Specific program dates may be subject to change Only one delegate from your team will represent your startup at International in person events, and will be required to have legal travel documentation and meet any public health guidelines related to travel

    For all in person events taking place at McGill, participants will be required to follow the McGill guidelines and policy on vaccine passports.

    Candidates must apply online by Sunday, November 28 th at 11 59 PM.

    Have questions about the program? Contact Kika Armata for more information: kika.armata [at] mcgill.ca

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