Fellows Directory

Janet Bannister

Staircase Ventures

Janet is the Founder and Managing Partner of Staircase Ventures.  Staircase recognizes that founders are the bedrock upon which companies are built and therefore provides unparalleled dedication to accelerating founders’ development and performance.  

Prior to launching Staircase Ventures, Janet was Managing Partner at Real Ventures, one of Canada’s largest and most active early-stage investors.  

Janet is very active in the Canadian tech ecosystem; she is the Co-Chair of C100 and on the Boards of Communitech in Waterloo, Vector Institute in Toronto, and Ivey Business School.  She is also a mentor at Creative Destruction Lab.

In 2004, Janet launched Kijiji.ca and grew it to become one of the most visited websites in Canada.  Subsequently, she led the Kijiji Global business, launching the website in new countries and accelerating growth in North America, Europe, and Asia.  Janet also spent four years at eBay in Silicon Valley where she helped transform eBay from a Collectibles to a mainstream marketplace.  She started her career as a Brand Manager at Procter & Gamble and then joined McKinsey & Co. where she was an Engagement Manager.  She also founded and built a successful consulting business and was CEO at a venture-backed start-up prior to joining Real Ventures

Education, Personal, and Fellowship

Janet received an HBA (Honours Business Administration) degree from Western University's Ivey Business School in Canada, where she was awarded the Gold Medal for the highest standing in her graduating class. Janet also received a Western Athletic Letter for her participation on the Varsity Cross Country, Track and Field, and Nordic Ski teams. She was on the Canadian National Triathlon team for 3 years and represented Canada at the World Championships. Kanet is happily married and has a 15-year-old son, who is the light of her life.

A member of Class 24, Janet served her fellowship at Real Ventures under the mentorship of Founder and Parter John Stokes.