Formerly the IO Pre-Accelerator

Fire up your business with a 10-week bootcamp.


Start it up

You have an idea, but is it viable? Is there a market for it? Can it be the seed of a flourishing tech empire? What’s actually involved in building and growing a tech firm?

Fire up your business with IO Ignition (formerly known as the IO Pre-Accelerator), a 10-week boot camp created for entrepreneurs who want to validate a tech startup idea and create a solid business foundation to build upon.

What you get with the IO Ignition Program →

Ottawa’s busiest boot camp for early stage startups.
Since 2018:




startups supported


women participants from January 2022 to January 2023

Is IO Ignition a fit for me?

Formerly known as the IO Pre-Accelerator, IO Ignition is the trailhead of your venture path, a comprehensive starting point that helps you map out the road ahead and avoid pitfalls and mistakes that may come your way. You should apply if you:

Want to put your
assumptions to the test

Are building a tech or
tech-enabled product

Have started talking to
customers or have initial sales

Want to build your network
with like-minded founders
  • 1
  • 2

“We are humbled and honored to have graduated from cohort 11, and very excited about the next milestones in our journey. It is such a privilege to be a part of the vast network of Invest Ottawa, and to be guided by the program team throughout the 10 weeks. It wouldn’t have been possible without our dear mentor, Laurie Davis. His insights have been key in our journey, and we are looking forward to new heights to reach with his support.”

Ahmad Al-Kabbany
Co-Founder & CEO, VRapeutic

“I’m a testament to Invest Ottawa’s empowerment of entrepreneurs in the capital region of Canada. From being in IO Ignition Program, to having several partnership opportunities with them since, Invest Ottawa has become a significant part of my personal and business success story.”

Jesmine Onyeukwu
Founder, The Organizing Academy

What you get


Real-world expertise

Over ten weeks, entrepreneurs, renowned experts and startup mentors will share the foundational elements behind a successful tech company, including:

  • Master customer discovery interviews
  • Lean startup methodology
  • Legal, accounting and banking
  • Lean product development
  • Sales and growth hacking
  • Financial roadmap: non-dilutive vs. dilutive funding
  • Marketing and building your online presence
  • Pitching your business
  • And more!
Apply →

Woman teaching a group

Two entrepreneurs on a zoom call

Ask the experts

Get one-on-one mentorship time with Invest Ottawa’s Early Stage Advisors — tried-and-true founders who’ve built successful technology enterprises and have stories to tell.

Learn more →

Get in the know

For many IO Ignition graduates the next step in the Venture Path is IO Flex, where you can meet with other startup founders, talk about shared challenges and how to address them, and connect with other stakeholders and influencers from Ottawa’s tech community.

Apply →

Entrepreneur working on their laptop

Pitch Finale

Start mastering the art and skill of pitching your business idea to investors and customers through practice; the IO Ignition pitch finale stage will be your training ground. Pitch live in front of hundreds in the audience including a panel of judges, peers, the startup community, friends, and family. Win the titles of Best Pitch and Crowd Favourite and be awarded additional mentor hours and access to the Accelerator space.

Learn more→

You’re in good company

Meet the cohorts

View all the IO Ignition Companies here →

Startups Profiles


Mindbridge Team

Company Name

Learn More →

Mindbridge Team

Company Name

Learn More →

Mindbridge Team

Company Name

Learn More →

Erin Seegmiller

Have questions?

Erin Seegmiller is happy to help.
Manager, Early Stage Programs | Email Erin


Apply to the IO Ignition Program

Don’t count yourself out, apply today!
The IO Ignition Bootcamp runs quarterly and we accept applications throughout the year!

More Venture Path Programs

IO Flex

Be a part of an enterprising Community.

Learn More →

IO Accelerator

The fast track to success – for companies that are ready.

Learn More →

IO ScaleUp

Tip the balance in your favour.

Learn More →

Thanks to our sponsors



MDK Business

Proud Premier Sponsor of Invest Ottawa