L-SPARK Celebrates Some Rewarding Portfolio Developments

For the team at L-SPARK, the Quarter flew by in a hurry. And as usual, it was an eventful few months. For example, announcements from the following portfolio companies provided some key highlights:

  • EssayJack was acquired by Vancouver-based Ed-Tech firm Wize.
  • HeyDay was acquired by global social media management leader Hootsuite in a CAD$60.0M deal.
  • Brokrete secured USD$3.0M in external funding from a group of investors.

The team also expanded the set of mentoring and support services they offer to Accelerator cohort companies through a partnership with local digital marketing agency Sidi.io. While the entrepreneurial journey should correctly be focused first on defining and building that initial ‘minimum viable product’ for the chosen audience(s), knowing when and how to start ramping up the marketing engine properly to turn those audiences into paying customers is no less of a challenge. Being able to leverage the expertise and services of “a marketing agency for startups”, as Sidi likes to promote themselves, is now another benefit for entrepreneurs who join one of the L-SPARK Accelerators.

And speaking of those Accelerators, as noted in the previous issue of Q, the application process for the 8th cohort of the L-SPARK Enterprise SaaS Accelerator was opened up in Q2. The all-important Pre-Selection Dinner and Selection Day events were scheduled to take place this Quarter. And leading up to the date, with the progress being made in the battle against COVID-19, the team was eager to understand whether a return to holding these events in person would be successful or not. Like most all other events of late, these key sessions had been forced to be conducted virtually over the last 18 months.

The only way to find out — contact the targeted attendees directly and gauge their individual comfort levels. The great news was an overwhelmingly positive interest in getting together in-person once again! As a result, September 20th and 21st saw the team welcome partners, founders and investors in-person for the first time since March 2020. The event was hosted at the Brookstreet Hotel in Ottawa and it was every bit as engaging as ever. In fact, some said the energy and enthusiasm was beyond what was hoped for.

Perhaps a symptom of being caged up for many months, but regardless, the L-SPARK team was very pleased. And they look forward to what the rest of 2021 has in store for this resilient and determined start-up community! l-spark.com