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canadian entrepreneurs in life science

Valley Ready Program


CELS Valley Ready (VR) program is designed to immerse new Canadian Life Science companies into Silicon Valley start-up ecosystem so that they may become more effective in achieving their local business objectives.  The program applies CELS experience and best practices from successful Bay Area accelerator programs. The comprehensive program involves several stages including home based and Silicon Valley area activities for a thorough immersion experience. Participants will build their knowledge from the content, workshops and mentor sessions as well as form effective relationships that are important to navigate the Bay Area start-up ecosystem.

Activities will focus around: 

    • Mentorship: 1 on 1 coaching with accomplished mentors matched to participants needs  
    • Workshops: message refinement, pitch development & presentation, path to commercialization, growth and scaling, legal, regulatory
    • Meetings: panel discussions and networking with investors, strategic/corporate partners and future customers


  1. Work with startups to perfect their presentation and positioning

  2. Mentor startups to become “Valley Ready” (meet investor and customer expectations)

  3. Improve and develop startups visibility in Silicon Valley

  4. Opportunities to develop key relationships (advisors, clinical institutions and strategic partners)

  5. Build your Silicon Valley “Rolodex”






Pre-Trip Preparation

Silicon Valley Trip #1 

Silicon Valley Trip #2

Post Trip Review

2 weeks before SV Trip

4-6 weeks post Trip #1

3 and 6 months post Trip #2

Orientation session: 

  • Understand participants and their goals 

  • Submission of desired contacts

Initial mentor session (remote)

Day 1

  • 1:1 mentor sessions

  • Pitch workshop (feedback)

 Day 2

  • Workshops (ie: financing, commercialization) 

 Day 3

  • Speaker & panel discussions 

  • Live pitch event  

  • Networking reception

Day 1

  • Workshops (ie: legal, scaling)

  • Pitch practice 

Day 2

  • Speaker & panel discussion

  • Live pitch event

  • Networking reception


Ongoing: 1:1 mentor sessions and business development meetings


  • Performance review: milestones and  metrics


(dates to be confirmed)

Feb 2020

Mar 2020

Apr 2020

May 2020

June 2020

Sept & Dec 2020

  • Application period open (close: Feb 28/2020)

  • Participant interviews and selection

  • Pre-Trip Webinar

  • Pitch Deck reviews

  • SV Trip #1

Interim follow-up and coaching

SV Trip #2

Individual follow-ups

Post trip assessment


(All prices are quoted in US Dollars)

Enrollment:  Participants must complete an application form and receive a nomination with their submission. All startups being considered will be interviewed by the CELS selection committee.  This is to ensure a high quality cohort class for a rich and dynamic experience.

Program Fee / Company: $2,000 


Not Included

  • Up to 2 members of the participating startup

  • All programming, associated materials and catering during scheduled events (Trips #1 and #2) 

  • Each additional team member participation in SV Trip #1 and #2:  $250 USD

  • Travel and accommodation are not included and are the participants sole responsibility

  • No guarantees of funding or engagement with any financial parties

CELS Contacts

Program Committee:

  • Joanne Fedeyko, CELS Director, Finance

  • Hatim Chraibi, CELS Director, Marketing

  • Seena Vajed, Program Manager

  • Richard Ayllon, CELS, Director

Contact:  info@cels-sfo.com



40+ …

# of direct connections  

50+ …

# of Silicon Valley mentors 


# of applications


# investors, angel groups, strategics, executives and influencers

12 …

# of companies selected 

“We are closing our seed round in December 2019 that includes a prominent Silicon Valley investor!  ...your event last year connected me to Dion, who became an Advisor, who then made an intro to our Silicon Valley investor!” 

-2019 Canadian Program Participant

© 2017 Canadian Entrepreneurs in Life Science. All Rights Reserved.