Venn Innovation, the New Brunswick startup hub, has added five early-stage startups to its Venn Garage incubator via its latest open pitch day — up from two companies from the previous, November pitch competition.

Beginning last year and so-far held online because of COVID-19, the Open Pitch Competitions require entrepreneurs to submit a five-minute video pitch and answer 10 minutes of questions from the judges, who included Venn staff and Garage alumni. Companies from across New Brunswick are allowed to apply, with the top candidates being chosen to pitch.

The winning companies will receive mentorship and coaching, support with tech validation and setup, and access to the Venn’s Private Cloud — a data storage system with a focus on security and GDPR compliance.

“Through our work at the Venn Garage, we aim to demonstrate New Brunswick’s entrepreneurial power backed by tech innovation capabilities,” said Venn’s Program Manager for Startup Services, Alicia Grayeb, in a press release.

“This round of pitches was very promising. Apart from the solid business pitches, it was evident they had a strong passion for their ideas, and an eagerness to learn and accomplish their goals.”

Here’s a look at the five startups:


Renelle Allain and Joseph Grieco

CHOOZ is building a dating app that will use a series of analytical questions and a compatibility score to help users assess their suitability as romantic partners.


Moussa Sinon, Gabriel Samadoulougou and Francis Niyomwungere

Took-Go is building technology to help businesses develop, manage and promote their products and services, with a focus on customer data privacy.


Alexia Bourgeois 

Wander is developing technology to help users choose travel destinations and activities. The platform will use artificial intelligence to match users with personalized recommendations based on preferences they input.


Ahmed Farooq

ShopTok is an e-commerce platform for celebrities and social media influencers to sell cosmetic products, with the company providing inventory and logistics services.

Maureen Blacquiere

Blacquiere is an entrepreneur working to help small businesses market themselves online via in-person and virtual training sessions for website development, social media and buildings sales funnels.