One finalist took home the grand prize, but everyone walked away a winner when the Canadian Export Challenge came to a head at Startup Canada Day on the Hill
MISSISSAUGA, ON, Nov. 29, 2018 /CNW/ - (NYSE: UPS) UPS Canada is invested in helping Canadian small businesses grow, collaborating with organizations like Startup Canada and Export Development Canada (EDC) to expand the small business community, encourage export and highlight opportunities available globally. ups.com/mybusiness
The Canadian Export Challenge launched in September, a joint initiative to showcase and support the global ambitions of Canadian entrepreneurs. Global Accelerator events were held across five Canadian cities, including Toronto, Calgary, Montreal, Halifax and Vancouver. Over 100 entrepreneurs came together in each city, to pitch their business idea and compete to become the region finalist. Each finalist was awarded $1,000 in cash and invited to Startup Day on the Hill in Ottawa, to pitch to an elite panel of judges from CBC's Dragons' Den, UPS Canada and EDC.
"This fall, Canada's export and global growth ecosystem united to propel these entrepreneurs to go global by accelerating access to markets, mentors, customers, and capital," said Victoria Lennox, CEO of Startup Canada. "Entrepreneurs from diverse backgrounds and industries are now connected as 'Team Canada' and are benefiting from the support of government, industry, and non-profit partners to scale across borders."
In Canada, less than ten per cent of Canadian small businesses engage in export, but increased buying power internationally has made it important for Canadian businesses to diversify. E-commerce and Canada's diversified trade portfolio are opportunities entrepreneurs can leverage, to scale globally. The Canadian Export Challenge brought together entrepreneurs, industry leaders and business experts to facilitate knowledge sharing and create connections that will help entrepreneurs identify the resources available to them.
"The opportunity to meet and speak with Canadian entrepreneurs in various stages of business growth, to learn more about how we can help them grow, was the reason we launched this initiative," says Paul Gaspar, director of small business at UPS Canada. "As consultants and trusted advisors for our customers, we are focused on offering small businesses support and scalable solutions that meet their needs whether they are a startup or a growing business."
"Small businesses are an important part of Canada's economic engine and we know that when these companies export, they do better, and the whole economy benefits," said Julie Pottier, Vice-President of Commercial Markets and Small Business, Export Development Canada. "The reality, however, is that too few of these enterprises engage in business abroad. The challenge for organizations like EDC, UPS Canada and Startup Canada, is to provide the support and encouragement at home to inspire these companies to take on the world. Together, we were able to achieve this through the Canadian Export Challenge, and we look forward to seeing this cohort of companies go, grow and succeed internationally in the coming years."
The five finalists from each city, included: Francois Byrne, Project Director at Hybrid Power Solutions, Sharmin Habib, Co-Founder at Umay CARE, Margaret Magdesian, CEO at ANANDA Devices, Carmen MacKenzie, co-founder of MacKenzie Healthcare Technologies and Robert Eisses, CEO & Co-Founder of Orbitless Drive Inc. All finalists met for the final pitch in at the Shaw Centre in Ottawa. Ultimately, ANANDA Devices received the grand prize, taking home $10,000 in cash and $100,000 in support from Startup Canada partners.
UPS (NYSE: UPS) is a global leader in logistics, offering a broad range of solutions including transporting packages and freight; facilitating international trade, and deploying advanced technology to more efficiently manage the world of business. Headquartered in Atlanta, UPS serves more than 220 countries and territories worldwide. The company can be found on the web at ups.com or pressroom.ups.com and its corporate blog can be found at longitudes.ups.com. To get UPS news direct, follow @UPS_Canada and @UPS_SmallBizCA on Twitter.
SOURCE UPS Canada Ltd.
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