McGill X-1 Weekly Recap Series | Week 5 (2016)

We can’t believe how quickly the first half of the X-1 summer accelerator has flown by. The teams are already en route to their second board meeting, even though the first feels as though it was just yesterday. It is incredible to see all of the progress being made, and how ideas are now becoming a reality. To find out who joined our teams to help them realize their visions this week, keep reading!

Véronique Beaulieu-Fowler from the Desautels Faculty of Management speaking to the cohort about Social Media strategy

Kicking this week off, the teams had the pleasure of meeting Véronique Beaulieu-Fowler, the Desautels Faculty of Management’s own Marketing and Communications Coordinator. Veronique is the Faculty’s resident expert on maximizing the potential impact of Social Media on your business and will be coming in on a weekly basis to guide our startups with their marketing endeavours.

Laurent Marion from RBC meeting with Team Appetite

On Tuesday morning, the X-1 startups had the opportunity to meet Laurent Marion from RBC, and proud McGill BCom Alumni. With a depth of knowledge in the area of financials, Laurent shared his insight on pricing strategies and balancing costs with sales. He then followed up by meeting with each of the teams to answer any questions or concerns they had regarding their own financials.

Stephanie Dumas introducing Fundica programs to the X-1 cohort

Next we met with Stephanie Dumas of Fundica, who came to discuss the basics of funding, what to expect when approaching investors, and how to maximize your opportunities to earn the types of funding that your startup needs. Her in-depth presentation revealed many new options which would be very valuable to our startups as funding is one of the most crucial aspects of growth as a new company.

Hicham Ratnani sharing his story about building Frank + Oak

On Wednesday, we were glad to invite Hicham Ratnani, co-founder and current COO & CFO of Frank + Oak. He shared his personal story as an entrepreneur, who’s previous company, MODASUITE, ultimately did not give rise to the level of success he aspired to achieve. By pivoting on this original idea, he and his co-founder transformed the business into the widely successful brand that it is today, Frank + Oak. His inspirational story, gave a great amount of motivation to our startups, and his insights provided valuable guidance.

McGill Professor Sebastien Betermier providing startups guidance regarding financials

On Friday, the teams each met with Professor Sebastien Betermier, who specializes in the area of Finance in the Desautels Faculty of Management at McGill. Professor Betermier took the time to meet with each team individually to learn about their business plans and the feasibility of their financial projections. He closed his session with some important of words of wisdom, advising each team to present their financials in a fool proof cheat sheet.

Week 5 was incredibly exciting, and now that the program is halfway through, it’s going to continue ramping up from here on out. As always, keep up with us on Facebook, Twitter, and back here on the Dobson Chronicles for all things Dobson.


Sanjana Desai

Sanjana Desai is a third year Bachelor of Commerce Student in the Desautels Faculty of Management. Sanjana was previously the Dobson Relations Coordinator (Summer 2016), responsible for all communications between startups, judges, and McGill Alumni.