Internap Acquires Montreal-based iWeb Technologies for $145 millions

iWeb/Internap 5754iWeb Technologies, a Montreal-based web hosting company, has been acquired today for $145 million by Internap Network Services Corporation (NASDAQ: INAP). This one of the biggest acquisitions in the year of a Canadian tech company and is a testament to the success of iWeb's founders, Eric Chouinard and Martin Leclair. Started 17 years ago at the early beginning of the Internet industry, iWeb's first success was in shared hosting catered to the french-speaking market, of course for Quebec websites but soon the French market as well. It then launched dedicated servers, which proved to be its major commercial success for years to come. iWeb was soon registered on TSX.v and at one point was considered as the Canadian Rackspace, with cheaper electricity compared to other countries, new data centers opening, and well-run operations. However, new technologies came, such as Slicehost/Linode's VPS first, and then the cloud computing wave. In recent years, iWeb   Read more…


Great news for FounderFuel applicants: $50k investment instead of $25k

Great news for FounderFuel applicants: $50k investment instead of $25k 4969FounderFuel just announced today that accepted applicants to the FounderFuel program for the spring 2013 and forward will get $50,000 instead of the past $25,000. In exchange, the Montreal-based startup accelerator will ask for 9% equity instead of 6% equity. The $50,000 comes up with the existing advantages and offers that the program offers, such as its large network of mentors, as well as  the additional $150k from the BDC for venture-ready startups at the end of the program.  Ian Jeffrey (@ianmtl), general manager of FounderFuel, shares with us a few details about the news. @mtw: Hey Ian, can you share with us news about the latest cohort? We saw the news about the teams going to California, any other updates? Ian Jeffrey: Yes. We just announced that FounderFuel teams will now receive a $50K investment on Day 1 of the program (vs. $25K in the past) in exchange for 9% of   Read more…

Can Twitter predict stock markets?

Can Twitter predict stock markets? 4872Like weather, stock market prediction has always grasped imagination. If you can get one step ahead, through fast computers, superior intuition or advanced interfaces, you could beat other traders and get superior returns. The development of social media, mainly Twitter and Facebook, where hundreds of millions of users announce their small and big daily victories, vent their frustration or relay trends is a gold mine in many ways. StockTwits was ahead in this vision, with a consumer-facing tool that would allow investors to discuss on an online community and track different stocks. This is just the beginning though. What if you could surface sentiments from Twitter and use the data as a key decision-making tool? That's the challenge taken by OODA Technologies and qmetrica with their new product called MarketSense.io. The foundation of the new twitter prediction tool is based on Dr. Johan Bollen's research (Twitter mood predicts   Read more…


Venture Investments in Montreal – Web, Mobile, Gaming, Media from 2005 to 2012

inovia_logo 4704Check out iNovia's announcements this week: Bomoda, a Chineese fashion startup, Top Hat Monocle, a startup in education gamification, AppDirect, cloud computing for millions of SMBs, and 33Across, which is in social graph. You can see more comments here to get context about those investments. What I was interested though was to get the big picture. The following is the list of VC (Angel, VC and a few Equity) in Montreal. As you can see, iNovia leads the pack, in total $ investments, diversity of portfolio, total number of participants. Of course, they've been around longer than most VC funds, but the announcements have been very consistent over the years. Real Ventures, Rho Canada have been also very active in 2011 and 2012. If you see something missing, do send an email or tweet @mtw ! Note: investments by Anges-Quebec, Bolidea and a few others missing   Read more…


FounderFuel launches 11 new startups; applications now open for 3rd cohort

FounderFuel launches 11 new startups; applications now open for 3rd cohort 4648FounderFuel graduated 11 teams May 23rd, at Monument National. AccelerateMTL was scheduled in the same day and CVCA in the same week, and it's in a room full of investors, "alumni", and entrepreneurs that the startups delivered their pitches to potential investors. Like in the first cohort, what stands our from FounderFuel cohorts is their solid and great delivery. Points are nailed, there are no vague statements, and everything is communicated to make the audience understand it's a big idea getting traction. Interestingly, many, if not all of them, pivoted during FounderFuel, in order to address those big ideas, and also make sure they have a unique angle (and a chance to succeed!). What stands out also from other presentations you might see at other events such as MTL NewTech is startups asking explicitly for funding. This time, startups were more ambitious, perhaps encouraged that the BDC would   Read more…


$50,000 investment for a startup at the upcoming International Startup Festival

$50,000 investment for a startup at the upcoming International Startup Festival 4526The International Startup Festival organizers, Phil Telio, Alistair Croll, and other partners, such as Anna Goodson, has announced yesterday they will invest up to $50,000 in a startup present at the startup summer festival. The startup festival aims to explore the business side of startups, and with the goal of making connections happen between investors and entrepreneurs, it's good to see that the promise goes beyond keynotes, speechs and elevator pitches, and that they actually promise to invest $50,000 in a startup. Generally, there are lots of VC funds and angel investors in a conference, but there are no advertised guaranteed deals, and conference-goers hear about deals after the conference. Here, the festival becomes a place for startup transactions. Perhaps in a few years, we will have a "Startup trade market", where startups get bought and sold? Read more   Read more…

Buy a 10x software developer: its the best investment you can make…

technology 4509Editor's note: Post by Jake Hirsch-Allen (@ jakehirschallen). Jake is currently Director of Business Development for Wall Street Survivor and consults on business development for the Multiplicity Accelerator and several Montreal, Ottawa and Toronto-based tech startups. Having practiced international criminal and intellectual property law, he has founded health technology and startup development organizations and currently consults for Incentives for Global Health. ...or at least that's Venkatesh Rao's argument in his recent Forbes.com article, "The Rise of Developeronomics." His article combines 3 memes that I believe are transforming our economy. They will move the focus of commerce to software and to the individuals that create it. Rao's opening paragraphs capture the first meme well, describing the hard time we're all having with where to put our money these days. He contrasts the current situation with the theory in evolutionary biology that reciprocal altruism and cooperation first appeared as   Read more…


What’s the value of hackathons and hackathons? Interview with Charles Morand from the BDC

What’s the value of hackathons and hackathons? Interview with Charles Morand from the BDC 4506In the past 6 months, we've seen several initiatives in Montreal, such as HackingHealth, the cloud robotics hackathon, Startup Weekend. These events are open to anyone and is a good opportunity to start a project. Participants and partners also love the intensity and the fact that there's a prototype and a (glimpse of) a business at the end of the weekend. What's often missing from these events is guidance to teams about what's next for them, in terms of becoming a viable startup. It's often a hit or miss, before they become ready for launch, VC or angel funding. It's with this in mind that I discussed with Charles Morand, a senior analyst at the Business Development Bank of Canada or the BDC, involved in the "Anges Financiers" event, and also at Startup Weekend. Charles Morand also mentored teams at the event, and I wanted to see what was   Read more…


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