The Next 36 in Toronto has chosen its 2016 cohort of 38 young innovators.
Over 80 percent of finalists have already founded at least one business, says the organization. The successful group was chosen after a national selection weekend of interviews as well as workshops led by Canadian entrepreneurs, including Bruce Croxon, Dan Debow, and Razor Suleman.
Supported by more than 300 business leaders across Canada, including W. Galen Weston and Jimmy Pattison, The Next 36 provides academic instruction and founder development, business mentorship, and venture building.
“Each year the finalist pool seems to gets stronger,” says Peter Carrescia, managing director of The Next 36. “We now allow all 38 of our successful finalists to choose their own co-founders and this additional flexibility has helped us attract more applicants with an existing track record of entrepreneurship than ever before.”
Completed applications were up over 20 percent this year, with more than 1,100 students and recent grads applying from 44 institutions across the country, plus top U.S schools, including Harvard and the Parsons New School for Design. This year’s finalists came from disciplines including computer science, engineering, and medicine.
N36 entrepreneurs will spend the next eight months building their companies with the support of their mentors, an academic program, a pool of business advisors, and access to up to $50,000 in seed capital. Mentors include Janet Bannister, general partner at Real Ventures and former head of Kijiji Canada, and Andy Yang, CEO of 500px.
Universities represented in N36’s 2016 cohort include École Polytechnique de Montréal, the University of British Columbia, and the University of Waterloo.