JOLT is a technology accelerator dedicated to building high-growth web and mobile companies that promise to transform the way consumers and enterprises interact with technologies.
At JOLT, our goal is to dramatically improve your startup’s execution and time-to-market. We work closely with entrepreneurs from initial product launch through the next stage of company development and fundraising.
In four months, JOLT participants will focus intently on their product’s market readiness. You’ll participate in workshops, meet one on one with advisors every week, and attend special speaker events where you can network with industry experts, partners and potential customers in your market.
How do we do it? Our partners and mentors have started and run some of the most successful technology, communications and entertainment companies in Canada. We’ve pulled together expertise from the creative arts, design and technology sectors, and combined it with MaRS’ business-building experience to deliver one of Canada’s most unique accelerator programs.
For complete details, see Program.
Susan McGill, Co-founder & Executive Director, JOLT
Sue McGill is a startup mentor and advocate for innovation. A builder of technology companies and brands, Sue has advised and been actively involved in over 200 startups in the emerging technology space, with hands-on experience at DWL (acquired by IBM), MySpace and JUICE Mobile. Throughout her career, Sue has lived in Silicon Valley and Toronto, and has worked as an executive in major public companies, including CanWest, Yahoo! and RIM. For the past two years, she has been driving MaRS’ efforts in the consumer mobile, social and web space. She sits on the advisory boards of several leading Canadian startups and runs JOLT as Executive Director.
Sarah Katyal, Program Manager, JOLT
Sarah Katyal is passionate about the intersection of digital technology and social change, and has been recognized by the Harvard Business School and Chatelaine magazine as one of the leading voices for young entrepreneurs. Sarah has worked with tech-based startups in building their brands and market strategies globally, and has also mentored several young entrepreneurs who are now participants of world-class incubators like Y Combinator. Sarah has been involved in a number of early-stage ventures and innovative youth entrepreneurship projects across Canada and globally, including the Impact Entrepreneurship Group, Kumarii, DrinKup and Brave Commerce (acquired by Rogers Media Inc). Sarah holds a bachelor of business administration from the Schulich School of Business.
Krista Jones, Co-founder, JOLT and ICE Practice Lead, MaRS
Krista is a passionate technologist and builder of tech-based businesses. She uses her deep technical, operational and marketing expertise to help tech-based startups design innovative business models. Krista has actively advised over 350 startups and currently leads the MaRS IT, Communications and Entertainment practice, which has worked with over 1,300 ventures. Throughout her career, she has worked at companies of all sizes and has been an executive at Personeta (an Israel-based, venture-backed software startup), Metronet (the most successful startup competitive local exchange carrier in Canada), Nortel and MTS Allstream. Krista and her husband own a children’s technology educational franchise that fosters early innovation and creativity in robotics, animation, digital art and video game design.
Barry Gekiere, General Partner, JOLT Fund LP
Barry Gekiere has over 25 years experience in senior management positions in venture capital, private equity and operating companies. Prior to joining MaRS, Barry was a Partner at Ventures West for over 13 years, making early-stage technology investments in IT, communications, cleantech and medical device companies. He has served on the board of the Canadian Venture Capital & Private Equity Association and various private and public companies. Barry has an HBA in business administration from the University of Western Ontario.
Kerri Golden, General Partner, JOLT Fund LP
Kerri Golden is an experienced investor, entrepreneurial executive and mentor to startup companies. She has more than 25 years of experience in a variety of high-growth technology businesses, and has been active in securing financing of over $1 billion in equity and debt. From 2000 to 2008, she co-managed the VC fund, Primaxis Technology Ventures, and has served as a director, officer or advisor for a number of ICT startups, including her current roles as CFO at SeaWell Networks, board member at Creative D and general partner for JOLT Fund L.P. Kerri has held senior roles in both the mobile (Rogers Wireless and Bell Mobility) and entertainment industries (Alliance Atlantis Communications). She earned her CA while at KPMG and holds an HBA from the Richard Ivey School of Business.
The JOLT team is supported by a large group of exceptional leaders from many of Canada's top companies. For details, see JOLT Network.
JOLT Fund LP
The JOLT Fund LP provides program participants with seed capital while generating a market-rate return for its limited partners. Featuring representation from all areas of the MaRS community, the JOLT Fund limited partners bring to the program a broad range of experience and a singular passion: accelerating company development through a combination of capital and mentoring support.
Our limited partners include volunteer mentors and advisors, the MaRS board of directors, angel investors, corporate partners, and the founders of our client companies, many of whom have enjoyed successful exits of their businesses.
The JOLT Fund LP is managed by two volunteer general partners: Barry Gekiere and Kerri Golden, each with vast experience in venture capital fund management and building successful early-stage businesses. Providing expert oversight on the Fund's activities are: Ilse Treurnicht, MaRS CEO, Jim Meenan, Senior MaRS Advisor and Grace Lee Reynolds, MaRS Director of Finance.
If you're interested in learning more about becoming an investor in the JOLT Fund LP, please contact Kerri Golden.
JOLT is fortunate to work with a variety of best-in-class partners. Each has committed time, expertise and services to the companies participating in JOLT.
The Global Accelerator Network consists of almost 40 high quality, independently owned and operated organizations from around the world that use a mentorship-based startup accelerator model. It provides networking opportunities, training, special perks and ongoing support for members of the network. TechStars led the effort to form the Global Accelerator Network in 2010. The Network’s mission is to ensure that 5,000 successful and experienced entrepreneurs and investors will mentor and support 6,000 promising young entrepreneurs from around the world. The goal is to increase their success rate tenfold and create 25,000 new jobs by 2015, as well as a sustained engine for growing these figures over time. For more information, visit www.joingan.com.
Postmedia Network Inc., a wholly owned subsidiary of Postmedia Network Canada Corp. (TSX:PNC.A, PNC.B), is the largest publisher by circulation of paid English-language daily newspapers in Canada, representing some of the country's oldest and best known media brands. Reaching millions of Canadians every week, Postmedia Network engages readers and offers advertisers and marketers integrated solutions to effectively reach target audiences through a variety of print, online, digital and mobile platforms. For more information, visit www.postmedia.com.
Creative & Interactive Arts
The CFC Media Lab provides a collaborative training, acceleration and creative production environment for emerging new media content developers, practitioners and companies. Through its various programs and services, CFC Media Lab has graduated hundreds of industry professionals. Its alumni advance as leaders in the world of interactive media, producing innovative projects and launching state-of-the-art companies. For more information, visit www.cfccreates.com.
Design & User Experience
Jet Cooper is a user experience agency based in Toronto, Canada. The company designs smart, capable and beautiful applications for web, mobile and tablet. They work in a collaborative, iterative and pragmatic process with dedicated project teams. For more information, visit www.jetcooper.com.
Since 2002, The Working Group (TWG) has designed and built web sites, web and mobile applications, and system integrations for clients of every stripe—entrepreneurs, mature businesses, governments and non-profits alike. Based in Toronto, TWG helps organizations build and grow their business online by providing strategic guidance, design expertise and application development. For more information, visit www.theworkinggroup.ca.
PR & Communications
Media Profile is one of Canada’s largest full-service, employee-owned public relations firms, providing the highest standard of communications planning and execution to leading Canadian and international companies, the public sector and not-for-profit organizations. Media Profile offers comprehensive social media strategy and consumer research through subsidiaries MP Thread and MP Insight, powered by CROP Research. Founded in 1985, Media Profile is based in Toronto, with offices in Montreal and Vancouver. For more information, visit www.mediaprofile.com.
Corporate Finance Legal
Fraser Milner Casgrain LLP (FMC) is one of Canada's leading national business law firms, with experience in over 60 areas of expertise. FMC has a team of more than 500 lawyers and offices in Montréal, Ottawa, Toronto, Edmonton, Calgary and Vancouver. Serving the full spectrum of technology clients, including technology creators, users and investors, FMC’s technology lawyers have advised hundreds of technology-related businesses: from startups to large multinational companies; from seed and venture capital funds to financial institutions. For more information, visit www.fmc-law.com/Technology and www.fmc-law.com/Private_Equity_Venture_Capital
Moment Communications Inc. functions as a collective of photographers, artists and filmmakers. It is a body with many parts, each performing a unique function, and each supporting the whole. We encourage, challenge and sharpen one another in an effort to create work that is both communicative and inspirational. We would love to connect with you. For more information, visit www.momentco.com
KPMG LLP, the audit, tax and advisory firm (kpmg.ca), a Canadian limited liability partnership established under the laws of Ontario, is the Canadian member firm of KPMG International Cooperative (“KPMG International”). KPMG International’s member firms have 140,000 professionals, including more than 7,900 partners, in 146 countries.
The independent member firms of the KPMG network are affiliated with KPMG International, a Swiss entity. Each KPMG firm is a legally distinct and separate entity, and describes itself as such. For more information, visit www.kpmg.com
OneConnect is a leading provider of next generation telecommunications solutions in Canada. Based out of downtown Toronto, we specialize in providing Hosted PBX, Voice, VoIP and mobile solutions tailored to your specific business needs. For more information, visit www.oneconnect.ca