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Venture Spotlight

Co-founders of 1 Million Teachers, Rizma Butt and Hakeem Subair

1 Million Teachers

Co-founded by MMIE'17 grads Hakeem Subair and Rizma Butt, 1 Million Teachers (1MT) focusses on the most under-resourced communities across the world and empowers teachers to enhance learning outcomes for students through various reward-based teacher professional development programs.

1MT currently facilitates the professional development of teachers in 17 African countries and Pakistan. In 2018, they formalized a partnership with Queen’s University’s Faculty of Education to leverage the university’s teacher education expertise and to help develop 1MT’s program framework and content.

1 Million Teachers Website
Co-founders of Matidor, Sean Huang and Vincent Lam


Co-founded by Sean Huang (left), MMIE'21, and Vincent Lam, Matidor is a YC-backed project management software for projects where you need to see what's happening live on a map. Matidor’s interactive map interface uniquely meets the needs of field professionals: geospatial and project information relating to physical locations can be readily seen and understood by both technical and business audiences thanks to its intuitiveness and connectivity.

Matidor's goal is to empower better sustainable practices and improve productivity for people working in the field.

Matidor Website
Old Son's Distillery Canadian whisky

Old Son's Distillery

Old Son's Distillery is an Ontario based operation focusing on craft whisky. Founded in 2017 by Evan Powell (MMIE'20) and Kevin Potts, the duo set out to open an environmentally sustainable distillery, pairing distilling with nature. Their mantra of Old Craft, New Tradition is a romantic nod to the farmhouse distillery of old and the exciting prospects of what can be. The distillery's first release, Stiff Upper Lip is a new take on the familiar flavour of Canadian Whisky. Stiff Upper Lip has been accepted into the LCBO's Small Distillers Program, and is available for purchase online through the LCBO. Please enjoy it responsibly, and with great emotional fortitude.

Old Son's Distillery Website
Founder and CEO Didier Ramazani shows off the Verxil website


Verxil, Inc. is an organization incorporated and based in Toronto, Canada. Founded in 2019 by Didier Ramazani (MMIE’21), Verxil’s goal is to provide an online marketplace where students & local businesses can create their own personalized store to sell any first/second hand product/service. Although the platform mainly targets students, it also enables local businesses (with or without online presence) to sell their products to a wider market. Verxil’s unique platform is tailored to make the user’s experience as close as possible to a face-to-face meeting. The platform provides a chat section where both the seller and the buyer can interact and negotiate on the price or the state of the item etc.

Furthermore, Verxil is also a job search engine (Verxil Career) and a financial literacy platform (Verxil Learning) that is catered toward students. It not only provides smaller vendors and merchants with reaching a larger consumer base and offer products and specials, but also provides consumers with more choices, savings and online rewards for their loyalty.

Verxil Website
Grace and Nelly organizers teaching skills in Zimbabwe

The Grace & Nelly Project

In 2016, Ruvimbo Chimutsa (MMIE'20) founded The Grace & Nelly Project (G&N), a non-profit organization dedicated to reducing poverty in rural communities in Zimbabwe through the empowerment and education of women and girls in these communities. G&N provides girls with reusable menstrual pads to ensure they stay in school while also providing women and girls with skills-based training so they can start their own ventures or find employment. G&N also advocates for period equity and the removal of barriers to access to menstrual products, and the dispelling of myths tied to menstruation.

In 2021, G&N launched a pilot program, Healthier Happier Periods, a social enterprise in Canada, which makes and sells reusable menstrual pads. Each purchase of a G&N pad goes towards subsidizing the cost of pads sold in rural communities in Zimbabwe and providing pads to girls in school for free. Sales also fund G&N's programs and services for girls and women in those areas, to give them the opportunities they need to succeed as entrepreneurs, in their education, or in other areas of their lives.

Grace & Nelly Website
Founder of Mobility Innovation Lab, Jaspal Singh

Mobility Innovation Lab (MIL)

Founded by MMIE’21 graduate Jaspal Singh, Mobility Innovators is the platform created by Mobility Innovation Lab (MIL), which focuses on bridging the gap between a city’s authorities, operators, and industry organizations with new-age technology firms and ideas in mobility and transportation, cleantech and smart cities space.

MIL helps cities, authorities, and operators discover new ideas and connect with their peers across the globe to achieve enterprise digital transformation, organize innovation challenges and build partnerships. For startups and growth-stage companies, MIL helps to find mentors, product and go-to-market advisory, growth funding, and international expansion.

MIL Website
Esther and Aditi at the Culture Snacks booth

Culture Snacks

Culture Snacks is a start-up social enterprise that brings the community together through snacks; their goal is to create a sense of cultural diversity and inclusion through food, while creating a marketplace for small ethnic food vendors. Co-founded by Esther Adewuyi and Aditi Uzagare, both MMIE’22, Culture Snacks tries to bridge the gap between people and ethnic food vendors. While pursuing their MMIE degrees, they connected over the rich and mixed culture of Toronto, and decided to share their favorite international snacks with the rest of Canada.

Culture Snacks’ mission is to help small food vendors and women-owned ethnic food vendors grow their businesses, expand their market sizes beyond the ethnic food community, and give customers a marketplace where they can enjoy a healthier snack option or share their favorite taste of home with friends.

A can of VIBE Hard Kombucha

VIBE Hard Kombucha

Co-founded by MMIE'21 grads Nicolas Stefan & Jesse Mastrangelo, VIBE Hard Kombucha is a beverage alcohol company pioneering the hard kombucha industry in Canada. With evolving consumer taste and nutrition preferences, hard kombucha is a trendy, tasty, and fun alternative to seltzers. VIBE's flagship flavour, Strawberry Basil is made using cold brew teas and fermented in large upcycled oak barrels. Organic Ontario-grown strawberries are mixed with subtle hints of fresh basil and tart lemon. Fruity, crisp, and lightly sparkling, it's perfectly paired with charcuterie boards or grilled veggies. In a world full of soda, be a kombucha.

VIBE on Instagram