DMZ, Rogers Cybersecure Catalyst launch cybersecurity-focused accelerator

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Two Ryerson University programs, the DMZ and Rogers Cybersecure Catalyst have launched a new accelerator for scale-up companies in the cybersecurity space.

Companies will have access to the DMZ’s investor network and $500,000 worth of business services.

The Catalyst Cyber Accelerator will be located in Brampton, Ont.’s Innovation District and is supported by a number of private and public organizations. The federal government is supporting the accelerator through FedDev Ontario, as well as the City of Brampton. Absent from the list of public sector backers was the Ontario government.

Rogers, Royal Bank of Canada, Herjavec Group, Torys LLP, Amazon and Siemens Canada will join a “corporates-in-residence” program at the accelerator and provide mentorship to companies.

“The Catalyst Cyber Accelerator will make a concentrated effort to successfully grow businesses tackling diverse issues in the industry and will work to elevate the narrative around our national cybersecurity ecosystem,” said Abdullah Snobar, executive director of the DMZ.

The accelerator will leverage the DMZ’s accelerator programming, which includes mentorship on product strategy, talent acquisition, investment attraction, and growing sales and marketing. Companies in the accelerator will be able to access the DMZ’s network of investors, as well as free desk space and $500,000 worth of business services.

To be considered for the first cohort, companies must be dedicated to solving a cybersecurity problem using technology. The business must have a minimum of $20,000 in monthly recurring revenue and demonstrate that recurring revenue for at least four consecutive months.

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The accelerator is now accepting applications to its first cohort, which will begin programming in May. Applications close on March 25. Rogers Cybersecure Catalyst and the DMZ are recruiting companies from across Canada. The organizations will be holding information sessions in cities across Ontario, Quebec, Alberta, British Columbia, New Brunswick, Nova Scotia, and Newfoundland.

“With funding through FedDev Ontario, the new Catalyst Cyber Accelerator will provide Canadian cybersecurity scale-ups with the skills and resources needed to grow and compete, while contributing to increased safety in the digital economy,” said Mélanie Joly, minister of economic development and official languages.

The new accelerator comes three months after former Premier of New Brunswick Brian Gallant joined the DMZ as its first government relations mentor for entrepreneurs, as well as its expert in cybersecurity, among other key areas.

The launch of the cybersecurity accelerator coincides with the news that Mastercard is investing more than half a billion dollars in a global technology centre in Vancouver focused on cybersecurity, AI, and the Internet of Things.

Image source Unsplash. Photo by Annie Spratt.

Isabelle Kirkwood

Isabelle Kirkwood

Writer, globetrotter, drone pilot & David Attenborough enthusiast