S.M. International Group Inc., Georges Laoun Opticien, Jean-Pierre Desrosiers and Michelle Cormier honoured at the Prix Arts-Affaires de Montréal 2010

MONTREAL, May 3 /CNW Telbec/ - The Co-Chairs of the Honorary Committee for the Prix Arts-Affaires de Montréal, Michel Leblanc, President and CEO of the Board of Trade of Metropolitan Montreal, and Louise Roy, President of the Conseil des Arts de Montréal, announced the four winners of the 2010 edition this evening.

This year, prizes were awarded to S.M. International Group Inc. (Large Enterprise category), Georges Laoun Opticien (SME category), Jean-Pierre Desrosiers (Arts/Business Personality category) and Michelle Cormier (Business Volunteer category). The jury also wanted to point to the significant support of another small business. Quincaillerie DeLorimier received a citation of excellence for its outstanding contribution to Coop les ViVaces.

The Prix Arts-Affaires de Montréal, an initiative of the Board of Trade of Metropolitan Montreal and the Conseil des Arts de Montréal, recognize companies and individuals who have provided outstanding support to Montréal arts organizations and who are actively involved in culture. The awards raise awareness among the business community about the crucial role cultural organizations play in the city's development and encourage partnerships between the business and arts communities.

"The quality of the nominations submitted for the Prix Arts-Affaires de Montréal shows the depth of the partnerships that have been formed between people who are passionate about art and culture," said Louise Roy, President of the Conseil des Arts de Montréal. "Both for the artists and for their business allies, this is first and foremost a human journey that is part of a partnership effort and a dynamic of sharing. This mutual enrichment is one of the keys to success of these collaborations."

"The candidates and winners of the Prix Arts-Affaires de Montréal embody the best practices that let everyone benefit from the positive effects of a diversified cultural sector," said Michel Leblanc, President and CEO of the Board of Trade of Metropolitan Montreal. "I encourage businesspeople to draw inspiration from their accomplishments and their passion and become candidates in the years to come!"

A new guide for investing in the arts

"In spite of solid support from the public sector, many arts organizations continue to suffer from a lack of funding," said Mr. Leblanc. "The time has come to give culture the opportunity to diversify its sources of revenue. The economic recovery is continuing, and businesses increasingly have the means to invest in cultural organizations."

"To help the business community understand why and how to support culture, the Board of Trade of Metropolitan Montreal has created the guide The Art of Investing in Culture. This tool presents the advantages of supporting the creative core of our city and fiscal measures for society's challenges."

You can consult the guide at www.ccmm.qc.ca/art-investir-culture.

The winners

The winner in the Large Enterprise category is S.M. International Group Inc., sponsored by the Festival du nouveau cinéma. A visionary organization, S.M. International Group Inc. has contributed to the development and visibility of local culture by supporting the Festival du nouveau cinéma and many other arts organizations for a number of years.

The winner in the SME category is George Laoun Opticien, sponsored by OBORO. This company has a "very clear vision" of its commitment to the arts in Montréal. In addition to having entered into a long-term partnership agreement with OBORO, this role model for the Montréal business community is actively involved in cultural organizations in a variety of fields.

In the Arts/Business Personality category, the prize is awarded to Jean-Pierre Desrosiers, a partner at Fasken Martineau, sponsored by Angèle Dubeau & La Pietà and Laure Furey Productions. A true advocate of arts and culture, Mr. Desrosiers is generous with his time and energy. Organizations large and small and recognized and little-known artists alike count on his support.

This year a new category was added: the Business Volunteer award, recognizing a member of the business community's contribution to culture. The award was presented to Michelle Cormier, Vice-President and CFO of TNG Corporation, sponsored by the Orchestre Métropolitain. Since she became chair of the board of directors in 2006, this accomplished businesswoman has played a major role in revitalizing the orchestra.

The jury was made up of Anne-Claude Bacon, Curator of the collection at Hydro-Québec, Pierre Dufour, General and Production Director of the Opéra de Montréal, Florence Junca-Adenot, professor and researcher at UQAM's École des sciences de la gestion, Francine Léger, Vice-President Creative at Vasco Design International Inc., and Yves Sheriff, Senior Artistic Talent Scout at Cirque du Soleil.

About the Board of Trade of Metropolitan Montreal
The Board of Trade of Metropolitan Montreal is made up of some 7,000 members. Its mission is to represent the interests of the business community of Greater Montréal and to provide individuals, merchants, and local businesses of all sizes with a variety of specialized services to help them achieve their full potential in terms of innovation, productivity, and competitiveness. The Board of Trade is Quebec's leading private economic development organization.

About the Conseil des arts de Montréal
A dynamic partner of Montréal artistic creation, the Conseil des arts de Montréal supports and recognizes excellence in professional artistic creation, production, and distribution through financial support, advice, and cooperative and development actions. For over 50 years, the Conseil des arts de Montréal has contributed through its actions to the development of "Montréal, cultural metropolis."


For further information:

Sylvie Paquette
Coordinator, Media Relations
Board of Trade of Metropolitan Montreal
Phone: 514 871-4000, extension 4015

Christian O'Leary
Director of Communications and Development
Conseil des arts de Montréal
Phone: 514 280-3991

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