McMaster University and Innovation Factory are proud to announce the launch of the new campus-linked accelerator, called The Forge, designed to assist youth entrepreneurs in Hamilton. The Forge is a partnership between McMaster University and iF, but will also include contributions from Mohawk College and the greater Hamilton community. The opening of The Forge was announced to the public during McMaster’s Innovation Showcase on November 12, 2014.
The Forge includes dedicated space and programming intended to fast-track the growth of high-potential new ventures that can contribute to the local economy and produce the next wave of technology-driven companies in Hamilton.
It is made possible by Ontario’s Campus Linked Accelerator (CLA) program, and McMaster will receive more than $1 million in funding to provide students, alumni and youth in the Hamilton area. The CLA program was developed to provide youth entrepreneurs access to entrepreneurship and business training, mentors, industry experts, service providers, as well as rapid prototyping equipment, and incubation space. These resources will help early-stage companies develop their business models and gain early customer validation to increase their chances of success.
Having another tool to help drive innovation in the city is welcome news to us at Innovation Factory, as our mission is to be a catalyst for innovation in Hamilton, and The Forge offers even more opportunities to provide support to young entrepreneurs in our region.
The Forge will accommodate 8-12 companies for 6-month cohort periods starting in January 2015. Applications are still open for this cohort! If you are a youth entrepreneur with an innovative new venture, consider applying to The Forge here.
Visit the-forge.ca for more details!