Introducing Entrepreneur First Toronto

Matt Clifford
30 September, 2019

We’re excited to announce the opening of our newest location: Entrepreneur First Toronto. Applications are open now.

Entrepreneur First (EF) exists because we believe that the world is missing out on many — perhaps most — of its best founders.

We believe that there are at least thousands of people who could start a world-changing companies, but don’t because of where they grow up. For some, starting a company just isn’t on their radar at all. For others, it is, but there are too many barriers that stop them reaching their full potential – from finding the right co-founder to meeting the right investors. By launching a programme in a third continent, we’re a step closer to achieving our goal of giving the world’s most ambitious individuals the tools to build a company wherever they happen to be.

Canada is one of the most exciting places in the world right now for deep tech startups, thanks to its world class universities and thriving venture capital ecosystem. It has four universities in the global top 50 for computer science and six in the top 100, with 600,000+ STEM graduates in Toronto alone.

Toronto is one of the fastest growing tech ecosystems in North America in terms of capital and talent, and the city represents a great opportunity for EF to encourage the next generation of ambitious founders. It’s the home of several world-class technical institutions, including the University of Toronto and the Vector Institute for AI. Last year alone it saw $1.3B of VC investment into the city.

We think it’s a place where talent investing can make a huge impact. We believe that a disproportionate share of the next decade’s deep tech giants will be built in Canada and we want to play a major role in giving the most talented and ambitious individuals the framework they need to succeed.

We’re excited to have François Le Nguyen leading the charge in Toronto as General Manager. François has been a lynchpin of the Entrepreneur First team in Singapore for the last two years. In his role as Form Lead, he’s worked with hundreds of founders and helped build some of our most exciting companies. Previously, François was an early Product Manager at Lightspeed HQ, which had its IPO earlier this year and became one of a growing group of Canadian unicorns. Having grown up and worked in Canada before, François has an incredible network to draw on, in order to build our next location.

“I’m grateful and thrilled to be leading EF’s next expansion into one of the most exciting talent ecosystems I have the privilege of calling home,” François said, “If you’re a scientist, an entrepreneur, an aspiring founder, an investor, an ecosystem builder or anyone who wants to see Talent matched with the right opportunity, I’d love to hear from you.”

EF Toronto will open in early 2020, using the same model that has proved successful in London, Singapore, Berlin, Paris and Bangalore.

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