Black Innovation Programs
Empowering the next wave of Black entrepreneurs
Your ticket to the DMZ Incubator
The Black Innovation Connections program is a 3-month, track-based coaching program that puts high-potential Black founders on the fast track to success and prepares them for the DMZ Incubator.
Much like the Incubator, this program is customized to meet each founder’s unique needs. Connections also provides founders with an added layer of support to address the additional business barriers that Black-owned companies often face, including a $5,000 business grant upon acceptance into the program.
How it works
In the program, founders focus on one track to help them achieve their OKRs (Objectives & Key Results) for that quarter:
Access mentors, investors, pitch deck support, grant writing support and more
Tap into branding, marketing and sales process support, pricing strategies, customer relations, and corporate pilots
Legal & Finance
Get legal startup support in creating agreements, financial models, and business operation processes
Build a robust tech stack and metrics-backed product strategy
Growth & Hiring
Learn how to lead and scale your team, and how to access hiring subsidies/grants
What you get
Over the course of the 3-month program, participating founders will receive FREE access to DMZ supports and members benefits, including:
- Mentorship and coaching from industry experts, Entrepreneurs-in-Residence (EiRs)
- Support from a Program Lead helping you track your progress throughout the program
- Organized peer-to-peer sessions to troubleshoot, share learnings and advice
- Ongoing participation in DMZ’s events workshops, expert panels, and social events
- A $5,000 grant to go towards your business
- Courtesy of Dream Legacy Foundation, access to:
- Office, hotel suite and event space (Dream Suites)
- A marketing consultant
- Loan assessment opportunity through RBC
- Pitch opportunities to a venture committee through Black Innovation Capital, if qualified
Who it's for
Self-identifying Black tech founders with a solid minimum viable product who are looking for mentorship on attracting talent, establishing product-market fit, fundraising, and locking in their first sales.
How to apply
If you are interested in partaking in the Winter 2022 cohort, complete your application by February 1st, 2022.
The DMZ is a leading startup incubator equipping the next generation of leading tech entrepreneurs with the tools needed to build, launch, and scale highly impactful startups. By providing connections to customers, coaching, capital, and a community, the DMZ’s customized approach helps innovators reach the next milestone in their entrepreneurial journey – whatever that might be. Through its award-winning programming, the DMZ has helped more than 600 startups raise $1.48 billion in capital and create 4,500+ jobs. Headquartered in Toronto, Canada with globally-accessible programming, the DMZ has a widely-recognized international presence with offices in Vietnam and India, and partnerships across North America, Latin America, Africa and Asia.
The Dream Legacy Foundation (DLF) is a philanthropic organization that serves as a diversity and an inclusion social thought leader advocating for the millions of talented Black Citizens and historically underrepresented communities. Through collaboration and partnerships, DLF runs innovative programs to boost entrepreneurship within the Black Community. One of its most successful programs is Canada's first Black Innovation Fellowship, a program launched in partnership with leading incubator DMZ, helping Black-founded startups access capital, customers, and a broader entrepreneurial community. Learn more by visiting the DLF website