McGill X-1 Weekly Recap Series | Week 6 (2016)

As we move on from the halfway point of the McGill X-1 Accelerator, its now time for our startups to focus on smoothing out creases in their business models and dedicate their focus to preparing their companies for our Montreal Demo Day on September 7th – the most anticipated event of the summer.

This week was particularly crucial for the startups as they had their second board meeting, to discuss how far they’ve come since their first, 3 weeks ago. Upon breathing a sigh of relief after their board meetings, the teams also had the chance to attend Montreal Startupfest and become better acquainted with the Montreal entrepreneurship community. To find out more about this week’s X-1 adventures, keep on reading!

Francis Davidson, CEO of Flatbook
Francis Davidson, CEO of Flatbook

The first speaker of the week was actually a special Sunday addition to the schedule as Francis Davidson, co-founder and CEO of Flatbook, graciously insisted on spending at least an hour with each startup to breakdown any challenges they’re currently facing. So, the week kicked off early with incredible advice from the CEO of one of the fastest growing, Montreal-born startups.

Nathon Kong - Founder & CEO of Tailor2Go
Nathon Kong – Founder & CEO of Tailor2Go

Early Monday morning, we were met with another esteemed Dobson entrepreneur, Nathon Kong, founder and CEO of Tailor2Go, who’s incredible story charmed us all. Nathon joined us for the weekly ‘Grilled by a CEO’ session in which the startups must pitch to a CEO and receive feedback on any aspect of their pitch. Staying true to his fashion forward business, he even provided some style advice to our startups to make sure they are putting their best foot forward in preparation for demo day.

Laurent Macherpa - Founder & CEO of Floop Technologies
Laurent Mascherpa – Founder & CEO of Floop Technologies

Next, we were joined by Laurent Macherpa, CEO of Massive Finger, and Co-founder and CEO of Floop Technologies. With his expertise in application and product development, he held an in-depth discussion on developing your MVP – Minimum Viable Product, and important considerations for presenting your MVP to potential investors, clients, and the public.

Jeff Baikowitz - Entrepreneur & McGill Dobson Judge Mentor
Jeff Baikowitz (pictured right), Entrepreneur & McGill Dobson Judge Mentor visiting McGill X-1 startups alongside McGill Professor Nii Addy from the Desautels Faculty of Management

On Tuesday, the startups met Jeff Baikowitz. successful entrepreneur, philanthropist, and co-founder of over 15 businesses. As he is a very active member of the McGill Dobson community, as a Judge-mentor to many McGill Dobson Cup startups, we were glad to have him share his story with the X-1 startups this time around. His expertise in food related business also proved to be invaluable as 3 of our startups are currently working on startups in different areas of the food industry.

Professor Peter Younkin from the Desautels Faculty of Management
McGill Professor Peter Younkin from the Desautels Faculty of Management meeting with FRSH

Our last speaker before the board meeting and Startupfest, was Professor Peter Younkin of the Desautels Faculty of Management here at McGill. As a professor of strategy & organization, he provided insight on MVP development as well as creating a roadmap for implementing business plans.

Although this week felt particularly short as the teams had some time to spend away from their desks, it was perhaps one of the busiest weeks thus far. As expected, the summer is zooming by, and we’re loving it!

For a recap on the McGill Dobson team’s experience at Startupfest and an understanding of what to expect from Startup centred events, be sure to come back to the Chronicles very soon. In the meantime, if you haven’t done so already, check us out on Facebook, Twitter, and Linkedin.

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.