Imagine a room in this post-recession economy where company after company stood up and said that they were hiring right now for many positions.
If that seems like a dream, it became reality during Montreal NewTech’s Innovation in eCommerce meetup. More than 250 attendees came to watch a host of Montreal startups present themselves, and talk about the growth they needed new employees to power.
There were a bunch of new faces in the crowd. One of the hosts described the gathering as akin to a “Moroccan dinner”—one where you expect 10 people, but then 20 people emerge. There was a feeling that the Montreal startup scene is expanding.
The organizers had stated that their goal was to get as many of the most innovative and exciting e-commerce entrepreneurs as they could under one roof. They certainly succeeded. Compelling presentations followed one after the other, culminating in a panel from some of the leaders of e-commerce in Montreal. Entrepreneurs who had succeeded with multi-million dollar exits, and representatives from Beyond the Rack and Cossette shared their experiences with the crowd.
A selection of the presenting startups showed a diverse, and energetic Montreal startup ecosystem. FreshMint was aiming to change up how food is delivered in the digital realm. With affordable meals set up every day for under ten dollars, the startup promised world-class food (the chef had trained under Gordon Ramsay himself) delivered fresh to anybody in the downtown Montreal core in a matter of minutes.
Mighty Cast introduced the NEX Band, an Internet of Things device designed to modernize the ubiquitous bracelets teens wear around their wrist. It features interchangeable modules that can be traded and inserted into different bracelets, facilitating an ecosystem of trading games. The NEX Band enables young people to embrace the potential of wearable technology.
ThirdShelf presented a mobile application solution that extended out e-commerce to mobile phones, and more importantly, implemented a loyalty program for any users registered in. It was an easy way for businesses to engage their customers on their mobile devices. ThirdShelf delivers on a crucial need for a world that is shifting towards engagement outside of the physical confines of computers.
BonLook presented their e-commerce platform, with their focus on selling custom glasses for women. They’ve created an engaging digital platform that shows the possibility of good compelling user-generated content. They are proud of the blog posters that support them, and photos of happy customers are displayed on the home page.
All these speakers gave a face to the emerging energy that is coming from the Montreal startup scene. Montreal NewTech aims to capitalize by becoming an offline hub for startup enthusiasts. Judging by the number of hires startups were searching for, and the number of people in the crowd, they will not be in short supply.