Montréal’s creative flair and buoyant energy are essential to its tourism strategy. That’s the starting point for local organization MT Lab, North America’s first startup incubator dedicated to the industry of tourism, culture and entertainment: innovation is key.
A mission for change
Founded in 2017, MT Lab is a joint venture between the UQÀM School of Management, the City of Montréal and Tourisme Montréal. At its essence, MT Lab supports fledgling entrepreneurs whose purpose is to create innovative solutions to various challenges faced in tourism, culture and entertainment.
Their inaugural office in the heart of the Quartier des Spectacles serves as a hub. MT Lab offers a year of incubation for startups that have the potential to innovate in their respective sectors, plus training and conferences with industry leaders, a co-working space encouraging collaboration between startups and partners, as well as demo days where startups get to strut their stuff for potential partners.
Bright days ahead
With its eye firmly set of the future, MT Lab has these goals to attain by 2025:
- Establish both Montréal and the province of Quebec as an international reference point in regards to innovation in its specific fields of interest;
- Become a go-between for local and international startups, in order to better capitalize on the global innovation industry;
- Reinforce its own Montréal space as a convivial meeting place for dynamic entrepreneurial ideas to be exchanged, incubated and supported by MT Lab and its partners.
Among its notable partners MT Lab includes Air Canada, Loto-Québec, Destination Québec, Parc Olympique, YUL Aéroport International Montréal Trudeau, Palais des congrès de Montréal and Tourisme Montréal.
Together with those partners, MT Lab has helped incubate startups including Déjà Vu, Dahub, Radish, Ohrizon, Grey-box, Momentum, MyCantine and Retournzy. They support startups in various fields, including digital technology, artificial intelligence, fintech, virtual/augmented reality, and in many other innovative and collaborative domains, like linked objects, usage innovation and the collaborative/sustainable economy.
Some of their most notable projects include:
- Retournzy’s returnable eating implements service is an eco solution to a growing problem: disposable packaging the restaurant industry. Retournzy offers handsome eating implements and a turnkey management system ensuring they’re sanitized, delivered and picked up in the local participating businesses.
- Locapaq is a curator of outdoor experiences with the intent to make nature accessible to all. With their assistance you can organize outdoor activities with groups and employees by providing specialized equipment, curating trips and guiding offsites that awaken the adventurer in us all.
- Taxymatch is an app that looks to lower unnecessary emissions by enabling people with similar trajectories to pair up their cab rides for lower costs and less pollution.
- Atraktiv is a firm of gamification experts that gets groups inspired through a combination of movement and technology. Think immersive installations, experiential marketing, videogames, augmented reality environments, connected objects and receivers and LED mapping.
- Tempin is a web and mobile platform that enables hiring bodies in fields like hospitality, culture and leisure to find seasonal employees for short to medium-length gigs, in an effort to relieve growing pain points in talent acquisition.
For more information on all the innovative ideas supported by MT Lab, see their full list of projects here.
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