Submit your project

The Covid19 crisis has disrupted the value chain of the cultural and creative industries. But you have an idea to weather the storm. It’s maybe vague, a little rough around the edges. But it’s there. And it’s got you in its grip. 

With the Genesis program, you will put your concept to the test and explore it from every conceivable angle. With peers and potential clients, you will move forward to face the crisis.

The creative industries have often demonstrated their adaptability and resilience in the face of major changes. They must now adjust their offer to the new business context dictated by social distancing. Zú is bringing them together so that they can quickly develop clever solutions to navigate current changes. An 8-week ideation program will allow you to test your concept and start creating a concrete solution, or to adapt your existing solution. With your peers and in collaboration with potential clients you will meet one of these two challenges:

  • Create new technological tools to humanize the virtual world, that are adapted to the realities of social distancing

  • Develop innovative entertainment formats that will transpose the emotional power of physical experiences to our new digital world

Challenge 1: Adapted technological tools (The containers)

The digital tools we use were designed to complement physical exchanges. Social distancing now forces us to interact through a screen. How can we break down this 5th wall and create engaging technological tools that can fill in for physical interactions? In this challenge, your solution is an innovative tool that facilitates and humanizes virtual social exchanges (Networking, parties, crowd events, informal interactions, next gen conferences, etc.)

Challenge 2: Innovative entertainment formats (The content)

We are entering a summer like no other. Entertainment companies can no longer bring their community together outdoors or indoors as they did before. In the midst of a crisis, how can they maintain ties with their community and keep the flame alive in the minds of their consumers? For this challenge, your solution is a type of innovative content or a distancing tool that allows emotions to be experienced at a distance, and whose entertainment potential rivals previous gatherings (apps, live performances, games, exclusive entertaining content, digital festivals, etc.).

The Genesis program

Centered on design thinking and lean startup methodologies, Genesis is an 8-week program created to support projects in the start-up phase, to bring an idea to a viable concept and connect it with potential customers. During several iterative sprints, you will learn, apply and develop your idea, relying on users, field experts and peer support from your cohort. We focus on achieving key objectives and results, which will help you design and deliver a value proposition or a preliminary prototype to customers.

Program format

  • Duration: 8 weeks
  • 5 projects selected per cohort

Participant engagement expected per week:

  • Week 1: 35 hrs  
  • Weeks 2 to 8: 10 hrs / week

What Genesis offers: 

  • Privileged access to the Zú network and industry partners
  • 40 hours of collaborative workshops and presentations
  • Support to adapt your solution or experience to the context of the crisis
  • The collaborative creation of a winning value proposition and a development roadmap for your project, to overcome the crisis
  • 1 tailor-made program, which adapts to your pace

Should I apply?  

In the pivot phase, you have identified a problem, thought about a solution, but you must clarify its validity, its implementation, and its potential in the context of the current crisis. Do you want to develop your idea into a concept and re-define your business plan? Is your business address in Montreal? This program is for you.

Apply even if you are not based in Montreal – you will join our community and be considered for future opportunities at Zú.

What’s in it for me?

Where it all begins

Your idea will go through a series of sprints, each of which will further refine your project and dramatically accelerate the creation of a roadmap for product development and industry connections.

Selection criteria

  • Team or individual ready to invest for 8 weeks
  • Respond to one of the two challenges

Procedure for the call for projects

  • May 18, 2020: registration opens
  • June 7, 2020: registration deadline
  • June 16-17, 2020: interview with shortlisted projects
  • June 19, 2020: incubation offers are sent out
  • June 29, 2020: start of the program
  • August 21, 2020: end of the program

Your guides


The guides at Zú aren’t afraid to go into uncharted territory with the startups that they mentor.

They are all experts in their fields and are here because of their infectious energy and desire to pass on their skills, know-how and experience.

    The stations


    The program gives you access to our Specialist Stations.

    This is where you can recharge your batteries and fill up on expertise. If you have questions, resource people are on hand to answer them with clarity and precision. Whether you need support with legal service, accounting, financing, artificial intelligence or communication, a specialist will see to it that you have the assistance you need.

      Program details - Genesis-Collectif - Tools title

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      Program details - Genesis-Collectif - Tools description
      Program details - Tools list - Genesis-Collectif

      The 5G TELUS Lab: An experimental hub

      Discover the 5G TELUS Lab


      You want to bring your idea to life? It’s simple: make your way to the TELUS Lab 5G and get to it. This is an experimental space fitted with cutting-edge technological equipment. Use the 5G technology available exclusively in the lab to push the limits of digital creativity and reinvent the future.
      • XR/VR room

        Level Z4 – a production suite for immersive content (virtual, augmented or mixed reality projects)


      • Production room #2

        Level Z4 – production and video editing room


      • Production room #1

        Level Z4 - production and video editing room equipped with a ProTool station for audio editing