Ecommerce Accelerator Launches in Canada With 10 Companies

By Bruce Harpham Friday, May 7, 2021

eCommerce North, a six-month business accelerator program, has launched in Canada. The business program starts in May and will conclude with a demo day for startup participants in November 2021. The eCommerce North accelerator accepted 10 startup business founders into its first cohort.

The program is a partnership between Elevate and Moneris, a payment processing company. Founded in 2017, Elevate is best known for running business events focused within the technology industry. Elevate is well connected with the business community. The organization’s founders board includes executives from TD Bank, Facebook, Moneris, and Salesforce. Unfortunately, Elevate canceled planned events for the business community due to the COVID-19 pandemic.

“For 20 years, we have seen the strength, resilience, and passion of Canadian small businesses, and it has never been more tested than over the past 12 months. Helping Canadian entrepreneurs transition to a digital future isn’t just a business goal, it’s the right thing to do,” said Angela Brown, Moneris’s president and CEO. Moneris was created as a joint business between Royal Bank and the Bank of Montreal in 2000.

A businesswoman surrounded by boxes of ecommerce orders.

10 Startup Company Participants Join

The first eCommerce North cohort welcomes ten startup business companies. The Toronto-based program includes a majority of companies from Ontario, Canada's largest province by population. However, there are company founders from Quebec like Montreal-based QuoteMachine as well. The eCommerce North program has also welcomed ecommerce startup company participants from British Columbia, such as DropCommerce and Satya.

Multiple Ecommerce Business Models

eCommerce North encourages several types of business models, including a direct-to-consumer company. Kabo offers fresh dog food delivered directly to a customer's home, while Cooks Who Feed produces handcrafted aprons. Silk and Snow, an ecommerce company established in 2017, offers mattresses and bedding products to consumers. The bedding ecommerce company plans to compete against established bedding ecommerce brands like Casper by focusing on sustainability and transparency.

In addition to the consumer market, the eCommerce North program also encourages B2B ecommerce companies that produce software. QuoteMachine offers software to ecommerce retailers to improve their profitability by automating quotes and invoices. DropCommerce, based in Victoria, is a platform that connects ecommerce stores with brands in the United States (US) and Canada. DropCommerce offers integrations with well-known ecommerce business technology platforms like Shopify and BigCommerce.

Business Networking

Networking is a crucial benefit of the eCommerce North accelerator program. Startup company founders will have the opportunity to build relationships with company leaders such as Bruce Nanton, COO at Moneris, and Razor Suleman, who founded I Love Rewards before starting Elevate. Through Elevate, startup business owners will have the chance to meet leaders from Facebook and Salesforce.

Diversity Goals

Beyond a focus on the ecommerce business, the accelerator program also considers several diversity objectives. Elevate and Moneris, the backers of the accelerator program, have stated that 50% of founders will be female, and 30% will come from minority groups. Furthermore, the business accelerator program has promised to run a dedicated French-language startup cohort in 2022. Lack of support to women business owners is a long-standing problem. A 2019 Bank of America report found that only 42% of women entrepreneurs believe they have equal access to capital.

About the Author


Headshot of Bruce Harpham

Bruce Harpham is an author and marketing consultant based in Canada. His first book, "Project Managers At Work," shared real-world success lessons from NASA, Google, and other organizations. His articles have been published in CIO.com, InfoWorld, Canadian Business, and other organizations. Visit BruceHarpham.com for articles, interviews with tech leaders, and updates on future books.

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