Canadian startup news of the week (5/24/20)

Welcome to BetaKit’s startup stories of the week! Here, you will find the week’s most important news, features, and editorials published on BetaKit. If you prefer this update hit your inbox every week, make sure to subscribe to the BetaKit Newsletter using the form at the bottom of this page.

Top Stories of the Week

Shopify to offer business account, card, and rewards program with new Shopify Balance(BETAKIT)

“COVID completely changed everything we were doing; it was a massive pivot by the company.”

Government expands criteria of $40,000 small business CEBA loan program(BETAKIT)

The program will now be available to businesses with sole proprietors, those that rely on contractors, and family-owned businesses that pay employees through dividends rather than payroll.

Shopify moving "vast majority" of employees to permanent remote work(BETAKIT)

Shopify has announced that it is now a “digital by default” company, meaning the majority of its employees will permanently work remotely.

Report: One-quarter of Canadian startups have made layoffs amid COVID-19(BETAKIT)

Thirty-nine percent of startups have postponed their next raise amid the crisis.

Nearly half of Canadian tech companies report decrease in value due to COVID-19, survey finds(BETAKIT)

While many tech companies have seen a decrease in value, companies operating mainly in healthtech, cloud, remote work, and learning sectors have seen some positive impacts related to the pandemic.

Latest Funding, Acquisitions, and Layoffs

  • Sensibill secures $5M in debt financing (Read here)

  • ARTMS Products raises $26.4M Series A (Read here)

  • Platform Calgary receives $30,000 from federal government (Read here)

  • Women Entrepreneurship Strategy (WES) Ecosystem Fund receives $15M from Government of Canada (Read here)


Last chance to register: CFO 3.0 Breakthrough Finance webcast(SAGE)

In Canada, 7 in 10 financial decision-makers are responsible for driving digital transformation in their business. It has never been more important for Finance Leaders to stay informed with the latest trends impacting their role, company, and industry.

Join us for this live webcast as Finance experts discuss how the responsibilities of the CFO have evolved and how they are playing a key role in leading their businesses during a disruptive and ever-shifting landscape.


Jeremy Hedges, CEO of The Canadian Shield, explains the process of pivoting one business while launching another one in the middle of a pandemic.


Luke Vigeant (Inkblot Therapy) and Brett Belchetz (Maple) share how their telehealth startups changed before and after COVID-19.

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Caitlin Hotchkiss

Caitlin Hotchkiss

Content coordinator, social media smartypants, wordsmith, Human Workflow™. Exists primarily on coffee, cat pictures, German dance metal, and pro wrestling. I will fight for your right to the Oxford comma.

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