Fund advances opportunities for internationally-oriented entrepreneurs to get off the ground.
OTTAWA, Nov. 17, 2015 /CNW/ - Startup Canada (StartupCan.ca) and Export Development Canada (EDC.ca) today launched the Adam Chowaniec Memorial Fund for Global Entrepreneurship. The Fund invests in high-impact initiatives that advance the prospects of Canada's globally-oriented, entrepreneur-led companies.
"Adam was a champion of entrepreneurs who made an immense contribution to Canada's business community," said Benoit Daignault, President and CEO of EDC. "We're proud to honour his memory by partnering with Startup to invest in entrepreneur-led initiatives across the country."
Dr. Adam Chowaniec was a former Chairman of the Board for Startup Canada as well as a board member for EDC. Mr. Chowaniec was known in Canada's tech community for his involvement in starting, growing, and selling more than a dozen companies. He was a champion of the grassroots entrepreneurship movement in Canada, and of high-growth export companies. He died in February 2015 following a battle with cancer.
"Adam believed entrepreneurs need to think big and go global," said Startup Canada CEO Victoria Lennox. "He also believed that with the right mentorship, network and team around a technology, Canadian entrepreneurs could compete more aggressively in the global market. This Fund directly invests in initiatives that support entrepreneurs in learning about and accessing global opportunities."
The announcement was made Nov. 17 during Startup Canada's #EveryEntrepreneur Tour stop in Ottawa, which connected entrepreneurs with new opportunities to start and grow their companies, and provided a platform for entrepreneurs to voice needs and calls-to-action to advance entrepreneurship in Canada.
Applications for the Fund are open to Canadian entrepreneurs, groups and organizations that support export-focused startups and small businesses. Successful applicants will be granted up to $3,000.
Projects will be adjudicated by the following individuals:
- Claudia Chowaniec, wife of the late Adam Chowaniec
- Paul Gaspar, Small Business Director at UPS Canada
- Sir Terry Matthews, Founder and Chairman of Wesley Clover International
- Jason Myers, CEO of Canadian Manufacturers and Exporters
- Debbie Weinstein, Partner at LaBarge Weinstein LLP
- Victoria Lennox, CEO of Startup Canada
- Paul Day, Vice-President of Investments, Export Development Canada
Adjudicators will consider need, impact and the prospect of the initiative to enhance entrepreneur connectivity to global export training, mentorship or infrastructure; global customers, finance, industry anchors, talent; and, global markets.
Applications close February 3, 2016 and winners will be announced the week of February 22, 2016. Visit www.startupcan.ca/adam-chowaniec-memorial-fund-for-global-entrepreneurship to apply.
About Startup Canada
Startup Canada is a grassroots network of entrepreneurs working together to build an environment for entrepreneurship in Canada. Through online platforms, grassroots Startup Communities and cross-sector initiatives, Startup Canada is advancing entrepreneurial momentum and a culture of entrepreneurship, as the voice of Canadian entrepreneurs.
About Adam Chowaniec
Adam was a one-of-a-kind visionary, entrepreneur, and trailblazer who inspired and influenced the lives of those around him. Recognized for his leadership, business excellence and innovation, Adam was a leading champion of entrepreneurship and high-growth export companies. Believing fiercely in going global, the value of mentorship, and the fundamental importance of culture, he became the founding Chairman of Startup Canada in May 2012. An investor in the next generation of companies, Adam also offered his time and expertise generously, including his membership on the Board of Directors for Export Development Canada.
EDC is Canada's trade finance agency, providing financing and insurance solutions locally and around the world to help Canadian companies of any size respond to international business opportunities. As a profitable Crown corporation that operates on commercial principles, EDC works together with private- and public-sector financial institutions to create greater capacity for Canadian companies to engage in trade and investment.
SOURCE Export Development Canada
For further information: Kathryn Forrest, Communications and Marketing Manager, Startup Canada, 1-844-782-7801 ext. 106, [email protected]; Phil Taylor, Spokesperson, EDC, 613-598-2904, [email protected]