Canadian insurance giant Great-West Life announced that it is contributing $300,000 over three years to the Creative Destruction Lab in Toronto.
The Creative Destruction Lab offers a nine-month program for science-based tech companies. Founded in Toronto, the accelerator expanded to Halifax, Montreal, and Calgary last year, and created a partnership with D-Wave to launch a quantum computing program.
“With Creative Destruction Lab, we’re looking to foster the next great innovations in health and financial technology,” said Ben Harrison, VP of Innovation at Great-West Life. “Our industry is changing, and we want to be at the table with disruptive entrepreneurs helping scale their businesses and learning from their ingenuity. We’re looking for creative ideas and partnership opportunities with the potential to transform how we do business and improve the financial, physical and mental well-being of Canadians.”
CDL said that its Toronto graduating ventures raised over than $46 million over the course of the program last year. Currently, over 100 companies are enrolled in CDL-Toronto this year.
“At the Creative Destruction Lab, we are privileged to work with many innovative leaders across different industries such as financial technology,” said Sonia Sennik, executive director of CDL-Global. “Great-West Life is enthusiastic to collaborate with our ventures in pursuit of innovative breakthroughs for their company and customers. We are excited to have their support.”
Great-West Life has made several connections within the FinTech space; the company is one of the backers of FinTech-focused Portag3 Ventures, and the latter is an investor in Diagram, which invests in insurtech and healthtech. Great-West Life has been piloting Diagram portfolio company Dialogue’s solution since last year.
“We are excited to be a part of an ecosystem where corporate partners invest in supporting innovative companies that improve health and well-being,” said Andrea Palmer, CEO of Awake Labs. “We look forward to the opportunity to collaborate with industry leaders, like Great-West Life, to become a global leader in mental health care solutions.”