DETAILS

Women of all backgrounds are a powerful force in Canada’s innovation economy

But they’re significantly underrepresented in the area of clean technology. It’s time to change that.

Only one in 10 cleantech founders is a woman.

Only 19 percent of Canadian cleantech companies have at least one female founder.

Women of all backgrounds are a powerful force in Canada’s innovation economy

 

Program objectives

The RBC Women in Cleantech Accelerator has five main objectives:

  1. Seek out the most-promising women entrepreneurs, representative of Canada’s strong diversity.
  2. Enable their dedication to the mission.
  3. Establish a community of women founders to share resources, advice and support, and celebrate successes and overcome challenges.
  4. Support success through mentorship, educational programming and access to market intelligence.
  5. Make timely connections to investors and corporate partners.

Program objectives

Participant benefits

  • A leading business advisor with deep sector knowledge helps build your business and develop your product.
  • Potential opportunity to work with a federal government lab facility that is matched to your specific R&D needs.
  • Significantly enhanced profile through the RBC Women in Cleantech brand, including press releases and cleantech industry events.
  • A curated curriculum designed in collaboration with MaRS subject-matter experts and program alumni, with the goal of helping your company gain an edge in hard-to-crack markets.
  • Introductions to domestic and international investors and corporations.
  • Access to mentor networks through investor showcases and curated events with influential women business leaders and industry experts.
  • Opportunity to build relationships with fellow ventures and accelerator alumni.
  • Potential to participate in the Canadian Tech Accelerators program(s) organized by Global Affairs Canada (Trade Commissioner Service) to introduce you to opportunities in key U.S. markets.
  • Access to market intelligence, capital, talent and communications services offered through MaRS.

Participant benefits

Who are we looking for?

  • Woman-identifying and/or non-binary leaders who are working to commercialize a cleantech innovation with potential for global impact.
  • You are the leader of a business that is registered as a Canadian corporation.
  • You are looking to join a two-year intensive program to help accelerate the growth of your company.

Applications are now open, and will close July 19, 2024 (11:59pm EST). 

Apply Now!
Download our application guide

Who are we looking for?

CRITERIA

Program eligibility

 

  • You identify as a woman and/or non-binary person.
  • You are the main technology innovator or individual leading/co-leading a Canadian business.
  • You are part of a business venture that is registered as a Canadian corporation.

In addition to applicant eligibility, your technological innovation should:

  • Fall under the definition of “cleantech” which, for the purposes of this Accelerator, is defined as “A company that is focused on the creation of intellectual property and new products that protect and/or increase efficient utilization of land, energy, water and natural resources while improving economic performance and reducing the environmental footprint relative to the baseline.”
  • Be proprietary and/or patentable.
  • Have potential to scale globally for major impact.

Fall within TRL3 and TRL5 on the nine-point Technology Readiness Level spectrum:

  • TRL3: active research and development is initiated
  • TRL4: basic testing to validate the technology in a laboratory/controlled setting
  • TRL5: component and/or validation in a simulated environment

Interested in learning more?

Join our applicant webinar on July 3 at 1 p.m. (EST) to learn about eligibility criteria and the application process. As well, former cohort participants will share their experiences and successes with the program.

Register Now!

PARTNERS

In partnership with

RBC

 

MaRS TEAM

Our advisors are some of Canada’s foremost cleantech experts.

Jane Kearns

Jane Kearns

Partner, Evok Innovations

Jane Kearns

Jane is a recognized leader in sustainable innovation and leverages over 25 years of experience in clean technology, sustainability and venture capital. She has co-founded, scaled and exited a renewable energy company.

Prior to Evok, Jane was Vice President, Growth Services and Senior Advisor, Cleantech at MaRS Discovery District, a launchpad for Canadian startups, where she oversaw development and delivery of products and services for 1,100 tech and hard tech ventures.

Jane sits on the boards of Clear Blue Technologies International (TSXV: CBLU) and Decarbonization Plus Acquisition Corporation IV (NASDAQ: DCRD), is an advisory board member for StandUp Ventures and Amplify Capital, and was a member of the Expert Panel on Clean Growth for the Canadian Climate Institute. She is a Cleantech and Energy faculty member at Singularity University, and holds an MBA from Columbia University.

Tyler Hamilton

Tyler Hamilton

Senior Director, Cleantech

Tyler Hamilton

Tyler Hamilton is Senior Director of Climate at MaRS and guides all climate-related activities for ventures, corporate partners and investors, including the flagship Mission from MaRS program. He is also on the board of the Ontario Clean Technology Industry Association (OCTIA) and a member of the XPRIZE Brain Trust. Previous to joining MaRS, Tyler spent two decades as a journalist and wrote extensively about Canada’s clean technology sector and global cleantech trends. Most recently he was editor-in-chief of business and sustainability magazine Corporate Knights. He also spent 13 years at the Toronto Star, where he reported on Canada’s energy sector and wrote a popular weekly column on clean energy technologies and trends. In 2011, Tyler authored Mad Like Tesla, a book that examines the various barriers to clean energy innovation and surveys the landscape of some potentially world-changing clean technologies. A recipient of the Cleantech Group’s “Pioneer” award for his early writings on the sector, Tyler was also recognized in 2016 on Canada’s “Clean50” list for his thought leadership on clean energy and climate issues.

Leah Perry

Leah Perry

Senior Manager, Cleantech

Leah Perry

Leah is the Senior Manager, Cleantech at MaRS Discovery District where she works closely with the MaRS cleantech portfolio through all stages of growth, primarily when they are raising capital. Managing MaRS’ Climate investor relationships and leading the MaRS Cleantech VC Syndicate, Leah supports in the preparation of venture investment rounds and connects the MaRS Cleantech portfolio to the capital they require to grow. Leah also leads the RBC Women in Cleantech Accelerator, a two-year cohort program at MaRS aimed to accelerate women-led cleantech ventures. Prior to MaRS, Leah worked at Export Development Canada (EDC), where she spent nearly seven years helping SMEs along their growth journey, including several years on EDC’s Cleantech Team. Leah holds an MBA from the Schulich School of Business, York University, is a Certified International Trade Professional (CITP), and was recognized as one of Corporate Knights' Top 30 under 30 Sustainability Leaders in Canada.

Jenny Yang

Jenny Yang

Senior Advisor, MaRS Enterprise

Jenny Yang

An entrepreneur angel investor, Jenny brings vast experience to the Enterprise team. Prior to joining MaRS, she was co-founder and CEO of Aida (acquired by Vision Critical) and Metafor Software (acquired by Splunk). Jenny also worked for BDC Capital where she led investments in technology startups, and was a consultant with both the Boston Consulting Group and Bain & Company. Jenny holds a bachelor of applied science in electrical engineering from the University of British Columbia and an MBA from INSEAD.

Rick VanSant

Rick VanSant

Senior Advisor, Cleantech

Rick VanSant

Rick is a leader in the Canadian cleantech sector, a serial entrepreneur, and angel investor. He serves as a Senior Advisor to the cleantech sector at MaRS Discovery District. Rick is also a Director of Aclarus Ozone Water Systems, a Director of Sentry Water Monitoring Technologies, an Advisory Board member for the Canada Water Portal, a partner with Toronto based private equity investment group 1440 Capital, and past Chair of the Board of WaterTAP Ontario, the province of Ontario’s water technology accelerator.

Mark Hyland

Mark Hyland

SVP, Marketing, Business Development and Growth

Mark Hyland

Mark Hyland is SVP of marketing, business development & growth, where he is responsible for marketing & communications, content development, product strategy & lead generation and business development. Since 2019, Mark has been advising ventures as an executive-in-residence, and most recently leading business development at MaRS. Mark is an operator, entrepreneur and investor who specializes in starting and scaling businesses. He has over 25 years’ experience in tech and media, including more than 11 years as a sales and marketing executive at Quickplay. Mark is known for driving international expansion and streamlining sales processes. As an investor, he is the general partner for High Park Angels, a fund for early-stage B2B startups. Mark’s early work experience includes a number of firsts: launching web-based advertising in Canada at Shift magazine, expanding the web presence and digital video syndication strategy at CBC, and forging several cross-media interactive TV experiences for programs like Hockey Night in Canada, and social media pioneer ZeD. Mark holds undergraduate degrees from McGill University and Dalhousie University, and an MBA from the Rotman School of Management at the University of Toronto.

Richard Bozzato

Richard Bozzato

Executive in Residence

Richard Bozzato

Scale-up Experience: Head of Drug Development at Allelix Biopharmaceuticals

  • Successful product development partnership with multinational Pharma
  • Team member raising venture capital financing and eventual IPO
  • Early-stage research through to clinical development
CSO at ApoPharma
  • Growth of drug development programs from 10 staff to over 200.
  • Successful regulatory approval and marketing authorization
Noteworthy:
  • Founder of Advanced Regenerative Medicine and Tissue Engineering Consortium - industry-academic partnership
  • Integrated multi-site contract manufacturing and clinical development facilities
Ask me about:
  • Biotech strategic partnerships
  • Therapeutics product development strategies
  • VC interactions and financing
  • Product licensing (in-/out)

Harvey Coleman

Harvey Coleman

Senior Advisor, Cleantech

Harvey Coleman

Harvey has been advising cleantech ventures at MaRS for more than 10 years, with a more recent focus on climate change prevention and adaptation. He has 40 years of experience in the IT industry. During his career he ran Global Sales Support and Marketing Strategy for the Olivetti Group and was Managing Director of the Acorn Group PLC, a computer manufacturer and fledgling designer of the ARM chipset. In Canada, he was the CEO of Olivetti, Dell, and EVP of GEAC, a multiproduct global software company. Throughout his career he also founded and held senior roles in several start-ups. His main focus as Senior Advisor at MaRS has been helping ventures establish their Product Market Mix and Go to Market Strategies, as well as helping them take this through to repeatable scalable sales.

Asvini Keerawella

Asvini Keerawella

Program Director, National Programs

Asvini Keerawella

Asvini leads our Grow stage programming at MaRS which includes the Growth Acceleration & Capital Programs, where alongside Dennis Ensing, Chief Venture Advisor & VP Growth she developed the GAP and Series A capital programs. Prior to that she was part of the founding team for the Women in Cleantech Challenge where she co-designed the MaRS flagship cohort program. Before joining MaRS, Asvini worked at Oracle Canada where she headed projects that introduced customized software solutions to improve operational efficiency and client management processes. Asvini has an MBA from the Schulich School of Business, York University, and a B.A. in Economics from the University of British Columbia. Ask me about:

  • Accessing investor readiness support & investor introductions at MaRS
  • Accessing post-Series A stage scaling support

Jon Dogterom

Jon Dogterom

Senior Advisor, Cleantech

Jon Dogterom

Jon is an experienced founder, executive, and board member of private and public entities in energy, mobility, and alternative fuels. He was formerly the Senior Vice President of Venture Services at MaRS. Prior to leading the Venture Services Team, he was the Managing Director of the Cleantech Practice. He is also the founder of the MaRS Advanced Energy Centre.

Prior to joining MaRS, he led business development for Hydrogenics Corporation (now Cummins) through the launch of the company’s fuel cell and hydrogen generation divisions. He also co-founded Sustainable Energy Technologies (now Eguana Technologies), a leading Canadian provider of power electronics for the solar power industry. He has also served on the Energy Transformation Network of Ontario, on the Board of Directors of the Ontario Clean Water Agency, and on the investment committee for Arctern Ventures fund 2.

NEWS

Must-read stories from the Canadian cleantech community

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MaRS launches its most extensive RBC Women in Cleantech Accelerator

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MaRS and RBC Tech for Nature launch RBC Women in Cleantech Accelerator

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Here are 10 female entrepreneurs set to revolutionize Canada’s cleantech scene

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MaRS announces new RBC Women in Cleantech Accelerator cohort

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Here are 10 female entrepreneurs set to revolutionize Canada’s cleantech scene
CURRENT AND PAST PARTICIPANTS

Meet the 2022-2024 RBC Women in Cleantech Accelerator Cohort

Meet the 2021-2022 RBC Women in Cleantech Accelerator Cohort

Interested in joining the cause? Want to learn more?

Contact Poonam Patel, Senior Program Manager at MaRS: ppatel@marsdd.com.