2018 NACO Summit Recap
October 26, 2018 / Source: GTAN
The 2018 NACO Summit welcomed GTAN Angels to the largest Angel conference in Canada. This three day festival, designed to cultivate networking and education for the tech community, included hundreds of speakers — from Al Gore to Wyclef Jean — and brought some of North America’s top investors and CEOs to Toronto.
Using the international focus of the 2017 Summit in Montreal, NACO and Elevate Tech Fest partnered up for this year’s event in order to provide a wide array of educational content and speakers for both investor and investee.
“It’s the biggest event I’ve been to. I believe there were 700 investors there. It was interesting to discover that the club is that big,” said investor John Chambers.
Day One began at the Elevate main stage where multiple speakers shared information and other events took place. First was the Elevater Pitch event where AI startups competed for the attention of investors, international media and global tech leaders and $1M in funding.
Awards were also given out during the Summit with a GTAN investee company walking away with some acknowledgement of their own. Zoom.ai, a chat based productivity software company, took home two of the most important awards of the night: Most Promising Startup of the Year and the New Startup of the Year award.
Throughout the Summit, the educational focus added its own value, drawing in hundreds of interested companies and investors.
“There were a lot of different perspectives to consider, and each one of them had merit,” said David Rich, an entrepreneur and investor who attended the event.
As the last day wrapped up, Elevate Celebrate brought guests and speakers together for an opportunity to socialize and share ideas. The Elevate Investor Zone brought Canada’s top startups together with North America’s top investors in a matchmaking style event. From their own self-created profiles, startups were matched with investors and given the opportunity to meet with one another in the hopes of opening up opportunities.
“I made a couple of great finds for my clients,” said Brian Hunter, President of North Spring Capital Partners.
Benton Leong of GTAN expressed a similar thought. “You get some great ideas from meeting Angels from across the world and exchanging ideas with them. You learn from them — and they learn from us. That was one of the best things that happened at that meeting.”
The final day ended with sessions in the Elevate Talent track at MaRS, NewCo Toronto and Startup Open House, all designed to expose new opportunity and draw in talent.
“I recommend people consider attending,” said Chambers. “It’s very worthwhile. You’ll become a much better Angel investor and learn a lot about Angel investment.”
To find out more about what happened at this year’s NACO Summit as well as the upcoming dates for next year, please visit NACO Canada’s website.