Advice from entrepreneurs, for entrepreneurs

LaunchPod, a NEXT Canada podcast, brings you stories, advice and education from Canadian entrepreneurs… from all walks of life. Whether you’re scaling your own businesses or thinking of taking the leap into founder life, we’ll provide the inspiration and know how. We’re turning over every stone to bring you a diverse array of wisdom from the people building game-changing companies, solving wicked problems and changing the definition of entrepreneurship. Tune in, get inspired, take the leap.

Episode 21:

Class of 2020 – How to leverage mentorship and marketing to grow your early-stage startup


In this episode, Joe Canavan interviews Next AI Class of 2020’s Jennifer Arnold, Co-founder & CEO of MinervaAI in conversation with her mentor Laura Curtis Ferrera – SVP Marketing, Canadian Banking, Global Wealth Management and Global Banking and Markets at Scotiabank, one of NEXT’s Transformational Partners. MinervaAI predicts who poses money laundering and terrorist financing risk to banks. They provide automated, accurate and audit-proof AML investigations at a fraction of the cost of compliance. You’ll learn how to approach big banks with fintech, marketing tactics for early-stage founders, tips for commercializing a AI-enabled fintech company, and more.

Episode 20:

Class of 2020 – How to turn a great idea into a great business with Jesse Abrams


In this episode, NEXT CEO Joe Canavan sits down with Jesse Abrams, Co-founder and CEO of Homewise and part of our Next Founders 2020 cohort. Homewise automates the mortgage process online, enabling clients to apply in minutes to get the best mortgage from over 30 banks and lenders. Listen in to learn how to turn a great idea into a great business, how to raise “smart money” and why to avoid “dumb” money, build a strong team and why Fintech is such a fast growing vertical in financial services.

Episode 19:

Class of 2020 – The intersection between Indigenous values and entrepreneurship


What makes a founder? Learn from Chip McCrimmon and his mom, AJ Bird. Chip is part of our Next 36 program and co-founder and CEO of Falcon X – they provide add on technology for local landfills to help them reduce pollution by capturing, separating, and purifying greenhouse gas emissions. We dig into the role AJ has played in shaping his ambitions and the important role that culture plays in shaping founder values.

Episode 18:

Breaking into entrepreneurship and the business of renewable energy with Eddy Chiang


NEXT CEO Joe Canavan sits down with one of our class of 2020 entrepreneurs, Eddy Chiang, CEO & Co-founder of Moment Technology. Moment is a start-up striving to provide greater access to renewable and reliable energy storage. They create battery units that can be used in a variety of applications and are currently focused on storing energy for off-grid, end of grid customers and plan on powering remote communities in the future. Learn about Eddy’s journey to entrepreneurship, the opportunities in renewable energy storage and what the future holds for Moment.

Episode 17:

Insights for tomorrow: Hiring, talent, co-founders and acquisitions with Jaclyn Ling and Shums Kassam


In this episode, we sit down with Jaclyn Ling and Shums Kassam, Co-founders of Hatchways, a digital platform that helps new grads, self-taught programmers, and career shifters get their first jobs in tech. The pair met while going through our Next 36 accelerator and have stood by each other for years, from building and selling their startup BlynkStyle, to working at Kik together and now building Hatchways. They share insights on hiring and talent, nurturing co-founder relationships and making the decision to sell your startup.

Episode 16:

Finding resilience in a time of crisis pt. 4 with Jordan Jacobs


From our “Power of Entrepreneurship” speaker series featuring Joe Canavan, CEO at NEXT Canada and Jordan Jacobs, Co-founder and Managing Partner at Radical Ventures. They explore building VC-founder relationships and discuss AI startup opportunities that could be a reality even in today’s climate. Jordan is a seasoned AI leader and commercialization expert, having co-founded Layer 6, the Vector Institute and acting as Director of CIFAR. Learn how to weather a storm and navigate your startup through crisis.

Episode 15:

Finding resilience in a time of crisis pt. 3 with Jenn Patterson, Arjun Mali and Bin Liu


As our community of over 600 entrepreneurs face more uncertainty than ever, we want to share stories of resilience and resources to help as many startups as possible. Listen in as we talk to the co-founders of Mapinhood, a free navigation app that provides you, the pedestrian, with personalized routes and actionable data in real time for safe, convenient and memorable trips. Co-founders Arjun Mali and Bin Liu, part of this year’s Next AI program, share their story on how they set out to create a safer world for the visually impaired and how they’ve pivoted to help even more people navigate a socially distanced world.

Episode 14:

Finding resilience in a time of crisis pt. 2 with Jenn Patterson, Mike Cheng and Jaclyn Ling


As our community of over 600 entrepreneurs face more uncertainty than ever during the COVID-19 crisis, we want to share stories and resources to help as many businesses as possible. Listen in as NEXT Canada CMO Jenn Patterson talks to two NEXT alumni: CEO & Co-founder of Lumen5,, Michael Cheng, and CEO & Co-founder of Hatchways, Jaclyn Ling. They share their wisdom on navigating these challenging circumstances, including communication tools and how tips on how to pivot your business.

Episode 13:

Finding resilience in a time of crisis pt. 1 with Jenn Patterson, Daniel Rodic and Emily Lonetto


As our community of over 600 entrepreneurs face more uncertainty than ever during the COVID-19 crisis, we want to share stories of resilience and resources to help as many businesses as possible. Listen in as NEXT Canada CMO Jenn Patterson talks to Next 36 alum Daniel Rodic, Head of Market Development at Clearbanc and Emily Lonetto, Head of Growth at NEXT alum venture Voiceflow as they try to navigate these challenging circumstances and provide wisdom and hope for those in the trenches.

Episode 12:

Scaling bootstrapped startups with Michael Cheng


Learn from NEXT alumni, CEO and Co-founder of Lumen5, Michael Cheng, as he sits down with fellow alumni, Visha Vijayanand to demystify bootstrapping. Michael has launched more than a dozen businesses – his most recent venture prior to Lumen5, Sniply, was just acquired in a multi-million dollar deal. In this episode, he shares his insights on bootstrapping a startup, including the benefits, downfalls and how to scale a bootstrapped startup.

Episode 11:

The art of entrepreneurship and sustainability with Lindsay Lorusso and Jeanne Beker


In this episode, our CMO Jenn Patterson sits down with Next Founders alum, Co-founder and CEO of Nudnik, Lindsay Lorusso and Jeanne Beker, Style editor at The Shopping Channel, creative director, author and all around Canadian icon. They discuss Jeanne’s career path, how they’ve helped each other grow, building a sustainable startup and the future of fashion. Learn about mentorship, the importance of sustainability in modern startups and how entrepreneurship can be seen as an art.

Episode 10:

Laying the foundation for growth and mental wellness with Marie Chevrier and Shonezi Noor


In this episode, learn from the Sampler team, CEO & Founder Marie Chevrier and Chief of Staff Shonezi Noor. NEXT Canada CEO Joe Canavan sits down with the NEXT alumni to discuss their relationship, the importance of a strong team, growth and how to maintain mental wellness as an entrepreneur building a startup, and a human building a life.

Episode 9:

Unpacking serial entrepreneurship with Michele Romanow and Daniel Rodic


Today we sit down with serial entrepreneur Michele Romanow to learn about what it takes to come up with great ideas, how to recover from failure and why the decision to exit is as personal as the choice to have a baby. Michele explores her entrepreneurial journey with her friend and NEXT Canada alumni Daniel Rodic, who recently joined Clearbanc as Head of Market Development. He’ll share insights on what makes Clearbanc a great workplace and what Michele does to ensure culture scales as they experience rapid growth.

Episode 8:

What it takes to scale and retain talent as a Canadian startup


On November 28th 2019, NEXT Canada held a reception welcoming our finalists for Next 36 – an accelerator program for aspiring entrepreneurs. To kick it off, we treated them to inspiring talks from some of Canada’s top entrepreneurs. Get a behind-the-scenes glimpse as Joe Canavan, CEO at NEXT Canada, sits down with Jordan Banks, President at Rogers Media, to talk about what it takes to scale and retain top talent in Canada.

Episode 7:

How to scale a startup in an emerging market


Our Alumni Success Officer, Visha Vijayanand, sits down with Braden Ream, Next 36 alumni, CEO and Co-founder of Voiceflow and Emily Lonetto, their Head of Growth. They discuss their recent raise, the importance of a strong team and scaling a startup in an emerging market. Learn how to work with investors, retain top talent and set a growth strategy from the team that raised over $5M just one year after graduating from the Next 36 program.

Episode 6:

How to embed giving back into your business model


In this episode, we welcome Jen Couldrey, Executive Director at The Upside Foundation, and Ben Zifkin, Founder and CEO at Hubba. Ben has built a reputation as a founder who values giving back and paying forward his success – whether volunteering his time as a mentor or sitting on the board of the Upside Foundation. Over the years, Jen and Ben have built a movement within the Canadian startup ecosystem, amassing an army of over 250 founders who have pledged a percentage of their equity to their favourite charity through The Upside Foundation. Tune in as Jenn Patterson, CMO at NEXT Canada, chats with them about why startup founders should think about embedding giving back into their business model from day 1.

Episode 5:

How to find business applications for AI and scale your startup


Professor Ajay Agrawal interviews Ron Glozman about how he has used AI to build better Insurance products and solutions. Ajay Agrawal is Academic Director at NEXT Canada and the Geoffrey Taber Chair in Entrepreneurship and Innovation Professor at the Rotman School of Management. Ajay taught Ron how to launch and scale a business while completing Next 36 in 2015. Today, Ron is CEO and Founder at Chisel AI and Ajay sits on Chisel’s board of directors as a trusted advisor. They create solutions to allow insurance brokers and carriers to automate time consuming and error prone back office tasks and help them save 80% or more in operating costs. Listen to learn more about how Ron got to where he is today and what he’s learned about himself as a founder along the way.

Episode 4:

Using tech for good with Tagg Jefferson


In this episode, two Next 36 alumni sit down to talk entrepreneur to entrepreneur. Co-founder of Poche Posh and NEXT Canada’s alumni success officer, Visha Vijayanand, is in conversation with the Founder and CEO of GridCure, Tagg Jefferson to talk about building a business around a meaningful mission, using tech for good and how Tagg plans to achieve his moonshots.

Episode 3:

Working with a VC to scale your startup with Janet Bannister and Bryn Jones


NEXT Canada CMO Jenn Patterson is in conversation with two accomplished entrepreneurs, Janet Bannister and Bryn Jones. After transforming eBay and then founding Kijiji, Janet decided to pivot to helping other entrepreneurs realize their potential as Partner at Real Ventures. Bryn joined the Real portfolio in 2016 and, with invaluable support from Janet, has since gone from seed stage to series A. Listen on to learn how the two have worked together to see Bryn through the highs and lows of launching and scaling a business.

Episode 2:

Raising capital and building an accelerator with Reza Satchu and Daniel Rodic


Picking up where we left on with episode 1, NEXT Canada alum Daniel Rodic, Co-founder and CEO of Exact Media, will continue his conversation with his former professor and NEXT Canada’s founder Reza Satchu. Reza has successfully co-founded, built, managed and sold 3 companies and is currently Managing Partner of Alignvest. He’ll share his insights on fundraising, why being liked is the kiss of death, and what it took to build Canada’s first accelerator.

Episode 1:

Becoming a serial entrepreneur with Reza Satchu and Daniel Rodic


For our first episode, NEXT Canada alum Daniel Rodic, Co-founder and CEO of Exact Media, will reconnect with his former professor and NEXT Canada’s founder Reza Satchu. Reza has successfully co-founded, built and sold 3 companies and is currently Managing Partner of Alignvest. In part 1 of his story, he’ll share his insights on  growing up as an immigrant in Canada, his journey to Wall Street and the ins and outs of mentorship.



Head of Market Development, Clearbanc; Next 36 Alumni

CMO, NEXT Canada

CEO, NEXT Canada

Alumni Success Officer, NEXT Canada; Next 36 Alumni; Co-founder, Poche Posh

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