Skip directly to content

To achieve its mission, the Creative Destruction Lab at Rotman is a venture Lab that leverages: 1) the business school's leading faculty and industry network, 2) inventions and talent from the world-class, technology-oriented faculties at the University of Toronto such as Computer Science, Engineering, and the University Health Network, and 3) its location in the heart of Toronto – North America's third largest financial centre and one of the world's most culturally diverse cities.


Discover more about three ventures from our first cohort

MYO from Thalmic Labs will transform how you interact with your digital world

Bionym develops and licenses biometric recognition technologies

Vote Compass is an interactive electoral literacy application developed by political scientists and run during election campaigns.

3 Signs Your Startup May Be Slipping

on Tue, 02/18/2014 - 17:10

Businesses large and small can find it tough to spare a few moments to step back and look at the big picture. But immersed in the little details surrounding new product features and releases, you can easily miss a few telltale signs your startup is starting to spiral.

Luckily, Fred Dawkins has done the legwork for you. Partner of the Creative Destruction Lab, serial entrepreneur and founder of The Old Hide House, Dawkins has turned his past experiences into a series of books about entrepreneurship, the first of which is Everyday Entrepreneur. He recently hosted a number of workshops in

Where finances are concerned, product takes a back seat.

on Wed, 02/05/2014 - 14:40

It's not all in the details.

You’ve validated your product or service, ensured a solid product/market fit, and now undergo continual product improvement and countless iterations. You’ve nurtured the idea since its inception, and you now hope it will near perfection as it wanders the realm of wavering public approval. It’s understandable. But unless people are purchasing, pre-ordering, or subscribing, your iterations, tweaks, and new features are relatively inconsequential.

Businesses are designed to generate cold hard cash – the tried and trusted metric of centuries gone by.

Techvibes' 3rd Annual Canadian Startup Awards

on Tue, 01/21/2014 - 18:56

Yesterday, Techvibes announced the winners of its third annual Canadian Startup Awards. Having narrowed down 2,500 nominations to just 24 finalists spread across six categories, Techvibes received 36,000 votes that determined its crowd-favoured winners – and not without an appearance from a few Creative Destruction Lab affiliates.

Thalmic Labs, Startup of the Year

2013 Graduate, Creative Destruction Lab

With 40% of voters behind them, Thalmic Labs was named Startup of the Year.

Canada's Technology Renaissance

on Fri, 01/17/2014 - 23:08

Once upon a time, Canada had a vibrant technology sector anchored by household names like ATI, Creo, Cognos, Corel, JDS Fitel, Newbridge, Nortel and PMC. The bursting of the "" bubble signaled, in part, the end of an era for that sector of the Canadian business economy. Over time, these Canadian technology industry titans were acquired by foreign companies or were otherwise diminished.

Fortunately, the undeniable impact of Apple's incredible rebirth,'s meteoric rise, Google's continued success, recent IPOs (and strong commercial results) of social media heavyweights

The Creative Destruction Lab Makes an Appearance in Forbes 30 Under 30

on Tue, 01/07/2014 - 16:03

Yesterday marked the release of Forbes’ annual 30 Under 30 rankings, a collection of 450 remarkable individuals whose talents are spread across 15 industries ranging from Education to Science. Host to celebrities like Olivia Wilde and Bruno Mars, athletes like Maria Sharapova, and tech titans like the cofounders of Snapchat, being named in the rankings is no small feat - and we’re proud to congratulate three Creative Destruction Lab-affiliated individuals on their inclusion.

Douglas Lusted, 21, Cofounder, Weston Expressions
30 Under 30, Marketing & Advertising

Douglas and Weston Expressions

Lessons From an Everyday Entrepreneur

on Mon, 01/06/2014 - 12:05

Fred Dawkins, Partner of the Creative Destruction Lab, best known for cofounding the old Hide House in Acton Ontario, recently released Everyday Entrepreneur, the first book in a series about entrepreneurship entitled The Entrepreneurial Edge. In the book, Dawkins shares the key lessons learnt through his own entrepreneurial endeavors – advice that’s 40 years in the making.

Dawkins acknowledges that some individuals are indeed born as entrepreneurs, but believes that the skills of successful entrepreneurs are teachable.

University of Toronto’s Creative Destruction Lab Selects its Newest Cohort

on Fri, 11/29/2013 - 03:25

November 29, 2013

Toronto –– Building on a successful inaugural year which resulted in eight successful ventures creating over $65 million in equity value, fifteen new ventures have been accepted into the second cohort of the Creative Destruction Lab at the University of Toronto’s Rotman School of Management.

Offering its ventures access to unparalleled mentorship, the Creative Destruction Lab has accrued a team of experienced entrepreneurs who have successfully created, nurtured, and harvested value from massively scalable, technology-based businesses.

Some Simple Economics of Crowdfunding

on Mon, 06/17/2013 - 21:01
Research by Creative Destruction Lab's Academic Director and Founder Ajay Agrawal, Christian Catalini (MIT Sloan and Creative Destruction Lab) and Avi Goldfarb (Rotman School of Management) published today by the National Bureau of Economic Research (

Download the full paper

Executive Summary
It is not surprising that the financing of early-stage creative projects and ventures is typically geographically localized since these types of funding decisions are usually predicated on personal relationships and due diligence requiring face-to-face

Creative Destruction Lab's first cohort company Thalmic closes $14.5 Million Series A round

on Thu, 06/06/2013 - 13:38

Thalmic Labs, the first company to launch a product from this cohort of companies is also the first company to raise a Series A round in the amount of $14.5 Million

Announced yesterday, Thalmic Labs has an impressive list of investors that includes G7 members Lee Lau and Daniel Debow.

"Thalmic quickly leveraged the Creative Destruction Lab and raised the majority of their seed capital from the Lab's G7 (coaching and investor group) including some of Canada's leading entrepreneurs like Daniel Debow, Senior Vice President of, founder of Rypple and Rotman JD/MBA graduate, and

How to compete with a non-existent iWatch

on Wed, 06/11/2014 - 16:02

Rotman Professor Joshua Gans writes this June 8, 2014 article for Digitopoly about compteting wearable technologies.