Startup YMM

Wood Buffalo Economic Development Corporation launches Startup YMM!

Wood Buffalo Economic Development Corporation (WBEDC) is excited to announce the launch of Startup YMM.

A girl wearing an apron stands smiling and sketching at a wooden workbench

 The goal of Startup YMM is to help entrepreneurs navigate through each stage of their venture by providing educational programs, building community, and creating spaces where entrepreneurs can work on their ideas and be inspired by each other.

“Startup YMM will help the region harness the ingenuity and technical expertise that exists here and foster a culture of innovation and entrepreneurship,” says Mayor Don Scott. “This small business incubator will be a source of incredible opportunity for the people of our region, especially students and youth.”

The Startup YMM concept was identified by the Wood Buffalo Regional Innovation Network as a key priority to accelerate the growth of businesses in the region, and WBEDC was tasked with operationalizing it to bring the idea to life.

“The time is now for businesses to reinvent themselves, be innovative or change business models to be better prepared for the future, and we want to encourage and support this change,” says Kevin Weidlich, President & CEO of WBEDC. “The launch of Startup YMM is an important step in growing entrepreneurship in this region." “With the ever-changing environment of COVID-19 and impacts of the flood to our physical space, we had to adopt a new strategy. Like any entrepreneur faced with a challenge, we pivoted our plans and are excited to be opening the doors to Startup YMM virtually," says Natasha Hartson, Director of Entrepreneurship & Innovation for WBEDC. "We see an opportunity to bring people together digitally and to connect in unique and creative ways online."

Starting today, Startup YMM will be accepting virtual memberships. Together, members will begin to build a community of like-minded individuals who can provide each other with inspiration, support, and resources throughout their entrepreneurial journey. Membership includes a welcome kit, access to a private Slack community, exclusive member events and preferred pricing on programs and events.

To learn more about Startup YMM and to sign up for a virtual membership, visit