Ajay Malhotra
IMPACT INVESTING

Ajay Malhotra

#93

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Angel Investor | Managing Partner at Canada Startup Company

The importance of innovation – Ajay Malhotra

“This world’s not made by people who give up. It’s made by people who kept going.”

ABOUT

An Experienced Entrepreneur and Angel Investor with Startup mentorship experience at MaRS Discovery District (world’s largest urban incubator) and Toronto Business Development Center ( Canada’s first Incubator ) and more.

Having been in the Startup Visa Ecosystem for 4+ years, we have leveraged our 10 divisions, mentors, advisors and strong due diligence to help over 65 international companies with over 216 founders enter into the Canadian market successfully through the Canada Startup Visa Program.

Canada Startup Co’s Venture Studio has worked with immigrant entrepreneurs:
– From 20+ countries in the world ?
– From over 35 different industries
– Working with both RCICs and Immigration Lawyers
– With various senior management, professional, startup or business ownership experience
– Understanding and navigating the Peer Review and Judicial review processes
– Advised, mentored and introduced founders to connections and partners in Canada

He’s been a serial entrepreneur invested-in and growing companies in Enterprise Software, Home Building, Fin-Tech, Algorithmic Trading, Digital Advertising, Enterprise Software, Virtual Reality and more.

Being the “best in the world” is not just a cliche with him, it’s practise – Ajay was a national level table tennis player, then the first person in a country of a billion people to have dual principal level certifications on IBM Lotus Domino. His last few exits were the world’s most flexible workflow engine and the worlds most configurable ERP system framework (core engine).

Ajay moved to Canada in 2009 after spending 10 years in USA. Today, he invests all him time and energy supporting Immigrant Entrepreneurs. CSC guides, mentors, invests-in and supports Immigrant Entrepreneurs in making things happen for them and their families in their new Country of Canada.

REQUEST INTRODUCTION Arrow

THE FULL INTERVIEW

Ajay Malhotra

The full #OPNAskAnAngel talk

Jeffery: Welcome to the Supporters Fund Ask An Angel. I’m your host Jeffery Potvin. Let’s welcome our investor for today and that is Ajay Malhotra. Thank you very much for joining us today Ajay.
Ajay: very welcome Jeffery, such a pleasure to be here.
Jeffery: Well we’re super excited not only because you’re here today to talk about all the great things you’re up to, but we actually get to work with you usually on a monthly basis through York Angels. and I enjoy actually working with you because I think you asked some great questions and you really know how to tackle the startup community. so we’re going to get a lot out of today’s conversation. So glad you’re here and maybe the best way for us to start is if you could share a little bit about your background from the Comp Sci side of things. I think you’ve been to many schools. you’ve done a lot of great things in it. It’s amazing. you’re kind of like a jack of all trades. you’ve done a lot of stuff. So, I’m excited to share all of that. but maybe, a little bit on the background too on the businesses that you’ve worked for and now kind of where you’re at today with Canada Startup Company.
Ajay: absolutely! Um, “Jack of All” usually comes with a caveat, right? It also means master of none. but i think i took my masters pretty uh early on, right in terms of getting mastery in one subject. so i used to be one of the leading programmers. in fact India’s number one programmer. On Lotus Notes and Dominance, I was the highest certified person in the country, before I left the country. In terms of background, yes, I have my Computer Science education. I have a bachelor’s in Commerce, as well as a master’s in IT. and Then I did a couple of courses in Artificial Intelligence and Financial Markets from Stanford. and you know it’s been a learning experience. It’s been a journey. So what I’ve always done is really taken on new things and then figured out what I need to learn. You know what I need to get under my belt to be able to achieve what I need to achieve in that scenario. and that’s one of the things i look for in founders too, people who have that attitude of throwing their hat over the wall and then figuring out how to climb it.
Jeffery: That’s awesome.
Ajay: I mean that’s pretty much it. Yes, I’ve worked in a few different countries. I’ve worked in Malaysia, worked in Singapore, and in Seoul, South Korea. i’ve worked in Washington DC, in Silicon Valley, San Jose California. and then i’ve worked in Miami extensively. and now about 12 years in Canada. Yeah, I’m old. You can’t even tell.
Jeffery: I swear to god, you look like you’re 25 to 30 years old.
Ajay: But you’re kidding Jeffery. you’re a great liar.
Jeffery: no, the video will prove this well. So Ajay, in this experience that you’ve built up, not only bouncing from different countries, working for a lot of big business and of course going through and getting educated in all these different sectors which I love, because I’m the same. I just love education. I love learning and I know the world’s trying to change the way we are learning and how you learn. and oh, you don’t need a degree. You don’t need an mba. just go out and get real life experience. I’m not sure I really believe in that. I really do think that a lot of our habits and a lot of our learning abilities come through education, from structured education. It really does help. so now, kind of fast forward through the education system. and you’ve really dived a lot into that comp sci and deep tech. Can you give us a little bit more of a better view of when you were working for motor oil, when you’re working in these companies, how did that experience really shape what you’re doing today?
Ajay: Oh yeah! So can I agree to disagree on one point though? I totally believe in the education system. I actually used to work for a company called NIT, which was India’s largest company. in fact, the world’s largest company by the number of people trained. I used to be part of the curriculum development side of things before I jumped on to being the Lotus Notes expertise side of things. and one of the things that we realized is education can only build a base, right? and then from there on, you need to leap up to any level of achievement that you want to get. today we hired a lot of co-op students from the University of Waterloo. We actually run a very successful co-op program and we realized that some of the smartest candidates still do not have specialist knowledge to get stuff done right. but at the same time, i’ll come to your point as well. but at the same time, i am a big believer in what Khan Academy or Sal Khan believes in, which is to avoid “Swiss Cheese Education”, you know. so just like swiss cheese, you have so many holes. so the goal is to avoid that, to make sure that you’re kind of complete in terms of your education. So I think some form of a degree or some form of a curriculum gives you that complete compos