Go Back


Waterloo, ON

Sign up for startup news at Waterloo


How to start a startup at Waterloo

Student Groups

Entrepreneurship Society

Student entrepreneurship group that aims to build inclusive innovation by exposing students of all faculties to Waterloo's entrepreneurial ecosystem.

UW Blueprint

Building and promoting technology for social good. Blueprint partners with non-profits to provide technology services such as websites, mobile applications, analysis tools---free of charge.

Product Vision Club

Student product club that aims to foster product leadership and perspective among engineering-­focused students at Waterloo regardless of their career path.

Data Science Club

UW's community for those who want to learn and talk about data science.


UW's UX and product design community.

CS Club

Promoting knowledge and interest in Computer Science at UW.

St. Paul's Greenhouse

A community for innovators who want to create social or environmental change.


Tech+ is a student organization that aims to support students, from all backgrounds, to be confident, knowledgeable, and empowered to pursue a career in the tech industry


Student group posting Events & Articles bridging the diversity & inclusion gap in startups and venture capital at Waterloo.

Hack the North

Student organization that runs Canada's largest hackathon.


Progam for product managers, developers, and designers to level up their skills / build a product cross functionally over 8 weeks

Accelerators and Incubators


An exceptional incubator program for early-stage, pre-seed tech startups that offers exceptional resources including state-of-the-art labs and workshops, expert mentors and programming (see Hackathons and Competitions section for more details).

Fierce Founders

Holds a bootcamp for female entrepreneurs starting out as well as an intensive track for female founded companies with less than $5 million USD in investment - may qualify to receive matching seed funds of $50k.


Laurier's incubator run by the Schlegel Centre - provides support, mentorship and resources to startups founded by Laurier students, alumni and community members at the Waterloo and Brantford campuses.

Launch Waterloo

A non-profit start-up venture that will create and curate STEAM-powered programming to harness the creativity and curiosity of the community's youngest members. It will include Co-Lab - a youth innovation lab.


A resource for tech companies in the Waterloo Region that helps them to scale revenue and increase international sales by providing mentorship and connections. Also provides access to a job board and provides assistance in finding funding.


An entrepreneurship incubator based that provides mentorship, community and funding to founders in Canada. The program selects 36 university students per year to work in an intense program and receive advice from Canadian business experts.

Hackathons and Competitions

Hack the North

A 36-hour long hackathon run by a Waterloo student organization - 1200+ students from around the globe travel to Waterloo to hack annually in September.


A free engineering hackathon, beginners welcome.


Has hosted Canada's first and largest beginner-focused hackathon at the University of Waterloo since 2017.

Velocity Concept $5K Grant Pitch Competition

Includes a round of semi-finals and a round of finals to compete for a $5K check.

Velocity Fund Pitch Competition

Canada's premier early-stage startup competition - Three times a year, early-stage startups compete to receive $50K investments from the Velocity Fund. Early-stage startups in health tech may also be eligible to compete for an additional $50,000 investment from the Velocity Health Tech Fund.

ETH Waterloo

Cryptocurrency hackathon where leading minds from all over the world  collaborate together on decentralized applications using Ethereum.

Quantum Valley Investments Problem Pitch Competition (https://velocity.uwaterloo.ca/problempitch/) invites teams of up to four students to choose an important industry problem and thoroughly research its history, scope, and impact. Students pitch their findings to a panel of judges to compete for a share of up to $30,000 in grant funding.

Code/Design to Win

Annual competition held by Communitech in Kitchener with $12,000 in top prizes.

Additional Resources

Conrad School of Entrepreneurship and Business

Entrepreneurship hub at Waterloo.

E-Launch Awards

Awarded to the winners of a pitch competition among students in the E Co-op program. Up to five scholarships of $5,000 are awarded each term.

Norman Esch Entrepreneur Award

Provides a minimum of six awards, ranging in value from $5,000  -$10,000 each, for student teams enrolled in the Faculty of Engineering's Fourth-Year Capstone Design Project. The awards are open to student teams from all departments within the Faculty of Engineering.

Norman Esch Enterprise Award

The Norman Esch Enterprise Co-op Awards are awarded to engineering students in the Entrepreneurship Co-op program. Up to five scholarships of $5,000 are awarded each term.

Norman Esch Capstone Design Award

Provides a minimum of six awards, ranging in value from $5,000-$10,000 each, for student teams enrolled in the Faculty of Engineering's Fourth-Year Capstone Design Project. The awards are open to student teams from all departments within the Faculty of Engineering.

Soft Landing Program

Help take your business global - the Canadian Digital Media Network's Soft Landing program offers qualified, mature startups and scale-ups exposure to business opportunities outside of Canada. The goal of the program is to support Canadian tech driven companies to open new markets, close international sales, secure investment and connect with new partners abroad.

Notable Courses

BET 100 | Foundations of Entrepreneurial Practice.

BET 300 | Foundations of Venture Creation.

BET 340/BET 310 | Essentials of Entrepreneurial Planning and Execution.

BET 320 | Entrepreneurial Strategy.

BET 350 | Customer Experience Design.

BET 400 | Early-Stage Venture Marketing.

BET 420 | Entrepreneurship for Social Impact.

BET 450 | Leadership.



University-focused venture fund investing up to $2M in emerging startups launching from the university scene.

Velocity Graduate Student Startup Fund

A unique opportunity for graduate students to turn their research into a startup - first place is $20k, second place is $10k, and third place is $5k to help take your research to market.

Open Sky Ventures

For both tech and non-tech companies - provides consulting, mentoring, and funding to high-potential entrepreneurs and startups.

Quantum Valley Investment

Focusing on the commercialization of breakthrough technologies in Quantum Information Science.

Front Row Ventures

Student-run fund backing Canada's most promising student founders.

Student Venture Fund

SVF will allow students to evaluate founding management, complete market research, value companies, conduct thorough due diligence, recommend and make investment recommendations, work with other angel and institutional investors, and manage a portfolio of investments in early stage companies.

Romulus Cap

Early stage fund focusing on deep tech companies.

Sign up for startup news at Waterloo