Knowledgehook named BNN’s Top Disruptor of Season 3


TORONTO, Ont. (June 2, 2016) – Knowledgehook was today named Top Disruptor of BNN’s original series about tech innovators, The Disruptors.

Knowledgehook, a software company that analyzes the academic performance of math students in real-time play to recommend alternative teaching practices, was one of 38 companies to this season pitch their business concept to hosts Bruce Croxton and Amber Kanwar.

“We’ve been watching The Disruptors since founding Knowledgehook in 2014 and following many of the companies they report on,” CEO Travis Ratnam says. “We’re excited and humbled by this acknowledgement.”

Startups profiled on each segment of BNN’s The Disruptors, a weekly, half-hour program that airs at 7 p.m. on Thursdays, compete each season for the Top Disruptor title.

Following tonight’s appearance, Knowledgehook will be given the opportunity to pitch Croxton’s investment company, Round 13.

Winning the Top Disruptor title comes less than a month since Knowledgehook received Google’s Game Changer Award at the tech giant’s annual Demo Day in Silicon Valley.

To date, more than 6,000 Ontario math teachers have begun zeroing in on each students’ key misunderstandings after reviewing predictive insights which Knowledgehook software generates.

Early results from Knowledgehook suggest that at least 1 in 6 Ontario students in Grade 9 Applied Math are struggling to understand ratios. Knowledgehook unpacks their misunderstanding and suggests how teachers can address it.

The finding, which echoes those of Ontario’s 2015 standardized tests, is based on analysis of more than 2,400 anonymized users between September and April 2016, accurate to within 95% confidence, and a margin of error of 2.5%.

Knowledgehook was founded by Travis Ratnam, Lambo Jayapalan, Arthur Lui and James Francis.

The team is grateful for the support of mentors from Communitech’s Rev and the Accelerator Centre’s AC JumpStart programs.

AC Grad Intellijoint Surgical wins the Shopify Grit Award

TORONTO (May 31, 2016) – At today’s Action Entrepreneurship Canadian Summit in Toronto, Futurpreneur Canada and Shopify announced Intellijoint Surgical Inc. as the winner of the Shopify Grit Award. The award celebrates the kind of business success that comes from having “true grit” – creativity, ingenuity and resilience when faced with challenges.

“Futurpreneur has helped launch thousands of businesses and we are honoured to be 1 of 3 recipients of the prestigious 20th Anniversary Awards,” said Armen Bakirtzian, Co-Founder and CEO, Intellijoint Surgical Inc. “Business owners across this country face countless challenges, and we are humbled and extremely proud to represent the hard work and determination it takes to succeed.”

The team at Intellijoint Surgical started out as three graduates from Waterloo University with no medical background or entrepreneurial experience who set out to undertake a major challenge – creating a medical device and putting it on the market. They overcame many obstacles to create a surgical device that is FDA-approved, has a Health Canada medical device license, and has been used successfully over 350 times across North America. In just six years, they’ve gone from one desk at the Accelerator Centre in Waterloo to 10,500 square foot facility and have hired 22 people.

“Starting a business takes dedication, hustle and a desire to succeed. We’re excited to support the next wave of entrepreneurs, especially the incredibly talented team at Intellijoint Surgical,” said Harley Finkelstein, COO of Shopify.

“Starting a business can be challenging for anyone without entrepreneurial experience, but putting a medical device on the market is a huge test of resilience,” said Scott Bowman, Senior Director, Ontario, Futurpreneur Canada. “The team at Intellijoint Surgical have proven that determination and persistence are one of the greatest contributors to entrepreneurial success.”

The Grit Award was one of five awards that Futurpreneur presented today. Other awards included the Clearwater Entrepreneur of the Year Award, the BDC Mentorship Award, the Youth Business International Beyond Borders Award and the RBC Community Partner Award. These awards are one way the organization is celebrating its 20th anniversary, by recognizing top Futurpreneur-supported entrepreneurs and the people and organizations that support their success.