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January 5, 2017 1:38 PM

Conestoga entrepreneur profiled in national media

Renish Kamal, a participant in Conestoga’s Enterprise Catalyst program and CEO of Fidget Toys Ltd., was recently profiled in Maclean's magazine. The young entrepreneur turned to Conestoga when she needed help kick-starting a business idea for the Footsie - a foot roller that alleviates stress and increases concentration in children with autism.

The Enterprise Catalyst program is offered through Conestoga’s Centre for Entrepreneurship (C4E) and provides expert resources to help individuals start and grow their business. Kamal worked with college advisors to develop a prototype of the Footsie and acquire funding.

The prototype was developed with help from students in Conestoga's Woodworking and Embedded Systems Development programs, and advisors alerted her to the Communitech Women Entrepreneurs Bootcamp where she secured $25,000 in funding. Kamal also completed The Accelerator Centre’s AC JumpStart program which is delivered in partnership with Conestoga and provides access to $30,000 in seed funding and expert mentorship. As a participant with C4E, Kamal was also invited to participate in the college’s 2016 Pitch Day competition and secured an additional $3,000 for her startup.

Kamal developed the Footsie with her nephew in mind who she has watched struggle with autism. In the Maclean's profile, Kamal explained her toy helps with motor skills and increases blood circulation in the feet while most fidget toys for autistic children are handheld. She has tested the product in a number of children’s centres and has a patent pending on the design. Kamal also reported that she has secured thousands of international pre-orders for the Footsie.

Visit Maclean's for the full profile.

For more information about entrepreneurship programs at Conestoga, visit the C4E website

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