UCeed is a group of four early-stage investment funds, backed by philanthropic support, accelerating UCalgary and community-based startup companies to advance problem-solving research, create jobs and fuel the economy. The UCeed Child Health & Wellness Fund is supported by the generous donations through the Alberta Children’s Hospital Foundation. Serving a robust pipeline of enterprises, the UCeed Child Health & Wellness Fund is Canada’s first early-stage investment fund for child health.
UCeed is a pre-seed and seed venture investment program that:
- Delivers key programming to bridge the gap for innovations coming out of research that require additional support to develop and scale.
- Accelerates commercialization, new innovation and businesses, primarily by UCalgary and community start-up companies.
- Provides business development support and programming to become investor-ready, quicker.
- Reinvests returns back into the program ensuring an evergreen source of funds and a legacy that continues to propel innovation and development.
How does UCeed work?
Innovate Calgary and UCalgary are the sole shareholders of UCeed and responsible for managing the fund designed for pre-seed and seed investments in early-stage start-ups. Decisions are supported by an experienced advisory committee comprised of some of Calgary’s most successful and respected leaders in business, science and health start-ups. Each UCeed investee company is paired with at least one mentor to provide advice and coaching, monitor milestones and ensure proper governance mechanisms are in place to maximize their probability of success.
The end goal is to help support the investee company to become investor-ready for sophisticated groups including Creative Destruction Lab-Rockies, other angel investors, large granting agencies and venture capital firms. Returns generated from UCeed-supported companies will be reinvested into the Fund, spurring a perpetual cycle of UCalgary innovation, commercialization and success that will deliver significant health and economic benefits to Albertans.
It’s time to fuel home-grown ingenuity and leverage Alberta’s robust entrepreneurial ecosystem to help solve health problems for children.
Guiding principles for child health & wellness investments:
- High degree of current or future applicability to child health.
- Line of sight to advancing impact to child health.
- Impact realized within a reasonable time frame.
- Clear and credible plans to pursue a viable child health target market.
A different kind of ROI
UCeed is not your typical investment program. Offering forward-thinkers the opportunity to make a charitable donation towards the development of a new generation of entrepreneurs, the UCeed Child Health & Wellness fund will build a pipeline of start-ups and get innovative child health-focused technologies to market faster. The return on investment is realized when young lives are changed – and even saved – by the inventions and interventions discovered with support from the Fund. To date, eight investments have been made from the UCeed Child Health & Wellness Fund – Trexo was one of the first with an investment of $300,000.
“UCeed’s network and expertise in the commercialization of medical devices has helped us navigate the complex challenges that come with any health care startup. We are very fortunate to have UCeed partner with us.” – Manmeet Maggu, Founder and CEO
Trexo Robotics has designed a novel, wearable robotic device designed specifically for children with walking impairments and can be used by children as young as 18 months old. The design consists of two wearable legs which transform a passive walker into a fully powered robotic device. Their design can accommodate a wide range of conditions and needs and be adjusted in height so that children can continue to use it as they grow. Involvement with UCeed has provided this company with investment along with guidance that has seen them through important milestones on their entrepreneurial journey. With their device, they are making a powerful impact on the community, helping families and children living with disabilities.
9-year-old Nina was the first child in Calgary to benefit from the wearable robotic technology. She experienced improvements in head control (a key component of balance), appetite, digestion, interaction with others, and much better sleep. Just as importantly, walking for the first time brought Nina tremendous happiness.
We invite you to invest in our kids
Children urgently need more health solutions designed specifically for them. Illness and injury during their vulnerable developmental years put them at higher risk of long-term consequences. Through the UCeed Child Health & Wellness Fund, your generous support will be directed toward the creation of innovative therapeutic interventions and technologies that can drastically alter their life-long wellness and potential.
A strategic philanthropic investment into UCeed will drive innovation, talent development and our economy. UCeed will propel UCalgary, the City of Calgary and Alberta as a global leader in entrepreneurship, technology development, venture creation and industry diversification. Your investment will leave a lasting legacy supporting future generations and their bold ideas. For more information, please email us!
Stepping Into the Future
Last fall, eight-year-old Rowan walked with the help of robotic legs and loved every minute of it. Rowan has cerebral palsy, lacks control of his muscles and has used a wheelchair his whole life. At least, that was his reality until last September, when he was able to try new Canadian-made technology called Trexo, the focus of donor-funded clinical research at the Alberta Children’s Hospital.
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