The University of Waterloo's VeloCity residence looks all set to hold its VeloCity Entrepreneurship Bootcamp (VEB), a first-of-its-kind residence-based program to be launched this summer.
The VeloCity residence is a hybrid amongst residences at the University of Waterloo. Established in 2008 as a residence/"mobile + media incubator", VeloCity looks to provide students demonstrating a streak of entrepreneurial zeal, with the resources, funding, business support and mentorship required to give their ideas a platform to succeed.
And in anticipation of its VEB this summer, the top three student teams have been selected to receive intensive business instruction, and develop their ideas further.
This summer, nine students will live in a rent-free facility at VeloCity, work out of free office space supplied by the Accelerator Centre in Waterloo's research and technology park, and be mentored by some of Canada's most successful entrepreneurs. They'll also be attending comprehensive seminars and workshops to upgrade their business skills.
At the end of the program, these teams will be ready to launch their products and services into the Canadian economy, attaining eligibility for additional funding from the OCE's Centre for Commercialization of Research's new entrepreneur program.
The product of a joint collaboration effort between the Ontario Centres of Excellence's (OCE) Centre for Commercialization of Research, the Accelerator Centre, Communitech and the Impact Entrepreneurship Group, the VEB looks to be the next step in bringing entrepreneurship one step closer to campuses across the country.
Courtest of Exchange Magazine, these are the three teams that have been selected for this summer:
* Aetas Solution
The team is made up of three students at the University of British Columbia: Chris Hughes, computer science; Alexander Jettel, computer science; and Lars Peterson, commerce. They have developed a technology that aims to provide easy access for business owners to schedule appointments and to access their customer database from any online device. A business with this software can access, synchronize and make changes to all the data with mobile devices via a native app (application). Targeting the small business owner, or organizations that work on a collaborative team environment where calendar, appointments and contact numbers need to be shared with a group of colleagues, The team expects to create a set of services and products that provide convenience and simplicity to our customers.
* Group Vestor
The team is made up of three students at the University of Waterloo: Moe Adham, mechatronics engineering; Ahmed Shuhaib, economics; and Jason Wang, computer science. They will work on an online social investing platform, which mixes social networking, virtual stock trading, financial derivatives and real-time server side financial trading. The goal is to allow investors to connect and communicate with users who have the expertise in managing virtual portfolios. The team's target market is disgruntled mutual fund investors, with a low risk aversion. They hope to increase returns for mutual fund investors.
* Altus Tech
The team involves two students at the University of Waterloo and one at Queen's University: Avi Itskovich, computer science, Waterloo; David Villarreal, computer science, Waterloo; and Mark Ally, business, Queen's. They plan to develop a new software app for Apple's new iPad. Their first product, the card framework, targets a market which wasn't as viable on small multi-touch devices, as it's preferred to play cards with life-sized cards. The larger surface really allows card games to shine. The other novel part of the project is that instead of servicing the consumer as many application innovations have been doing in the web age, we are instead working to satisfy the enterprise customer. By the end of the summer the team expects to have reached the third stage of development to create a fully-working card development framework ready for sale and use by developers.