Landing in my inbox yesterday was a cool little app Ontario’s Hottest Startups —  a high-level look at nearly 200 players in the Ontario startup ecosystem.

More than just a list, the searchable app, created by Brightlights and ME Consulting, enables startup leaders, funders, and stakeholders to easily check out the startup technology companies in Toronto, Kitchener-Waterloo region, and Ottawa.

Companies were included in the app based on three criteria:  less than five years old, revenue under $5 million and between five and 50 employees.  Each company has a brief description and has been categorized by business sector.  The app is searchable by these criteria plus location.  As well as the search functions, one of the features I found most valuable was the roll-over from each logo to a brief descriptor and direct links to each startup company’s Web site.

According to Mike Fox, founder of Brightlights and a recruiter to high growth technology companies, “It’s a bird’s eye view of the Ontario startup technology marketplace in a clear, concise way.”  The app grew out of a business need to identify who the current players are – and to support companies in the ecosystem to identify each other.  He says the app can be a source  for finding potential partners and competitors.   As well, the app can also be used for statistical purposes – for example number of startups in various categories.

Company data for the app came from 12 separate lists ranging from Industry Canada, industry associations, to Deloitte, coupled with Brightlights and ME Consulting’s own knowledge of Ontario startups.  They categorized and vetted the content by industry experts to fill in any gaps.  Although the information is comprehensive, the creators anticipate a few tweaks to content of this first iteration and plan to issue an update in a few weeks, with future updates semi-annually.

The directory doesn’t rank startups, but lists them in alphabetical order.

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