The Rotman Commerce Entrepreneurship Organization presents our first Fireside Chat of the semester. Fireside Chats promote a casual and inviting atmosphere for Q&A and speaker engagement.
We will be inviting Mike Silagadze, CEO & Co-founder of Top Hat, to come and share his incredible story of how he grew a business to half a million students across 500 universities.
After graduating from the University of Waterloo in 2007 with a degree in Electrical Engineering, Mike worked for 3 years at Miovision Technologies as a Developer. Brieifly working on his Masters while at Miovision, Mike then dropped out to work there full-time. In 2009, Mike went back to the University of Waterloo to start his PhD. It was then that he met Mohsen Shahini, the person with whom Mike would later start Top Hat; a software that allows students to view and manipulate interactive demonstrations on their browsers. In 2010, Mike left Miovision Technologies to pursue his dream by joining the Accelerator Centre at the University of Waterloo. In September, Top Hat launched in 5 universities and was being used by 3,500 students and 15 professors. By 2011, he had graduated from the Accelerator Program, had raised funding from a round of angel investors, and had entered schools in the US. In less than two years, Top Hat had 22,000 active students across 35 unis. In 2012, Top Hat shifted operations from Waterloo to Toronto, and opened a satellite office in San Francisco. Over the next two years, Top Hat attracted various venture capitalists and grew to 100,000 students; 250,000 students; and by 2014, half a million students across 500 universities. Today, Top Hat has 2 million students at over 700 universities with over 180 employees in the U.S. and Canada; these figures are doubling every year.
Rotman Students: Please register on the PORTAL, not here.
The dress code is casual.