News

Winner of $25,000 Social Enterprise Pitch Competition announced at Discovery

May 24, 2017

L-R Dr. Tom Corr, President and CEO of OCE, Michael J. Nobrega, Chair of the OCE Board, Antoine Heuty Founder and CEO of Ulula, Reza Moridi, Minister of Research Innovation and Science.
TORONTO, May 16, 2017 /CNW/ - Today the winner of the annual Social Enterprise Pitch Competition was announced at Ontario Centres of Excellence's Discovery conference.

The competition was held as part of Discovery's third annual Social Enterprise Zone at the Metro Toronto Convention Centre in partnership with the Ministry of Economic Development and Growth (MEDG).

Twenty-four social enterprises from across the province were selected to be featured in the Zone this year. Eight social enterprise ventures with a scalable business model at an early or growth stage were also selected from a pool of applications specific to the competition to pitch live at Discovery for the $25,000 award based on their demonstrable and measurable social/environmental impact across various sectors, including clean technology, education and social technology, and health and wellness.

This year's winner, Ulula was announced during the annual award presentations. 

Ulula is a software and analytics provider for businesses seeking to measure and monitor human rights violations in global supply chains. Ulula leverages simple mobile technologies to turn worker voices into business intelligence to advance the creation of more transparent and ethical supply chains.

"Congratulations to Ulula and all the finalists! This Discovery social enterprise competition is a terrific platform for Ontario's high-growth social entrepreneurs to showcase their innovation and potential," says Brad Duguid, Minister of Economic Development and Growth. "I look forward to seeing their companies grow, make an impact, and create real change for people and communities."

The award package includes $10,000 from MEDG, a $5,000 award from the Business Development Bank of Canada (BDC) and a $10,000 legal-services package from Norton Rose Fulbright to assist with the further development of their social enterprise.

"The entrepreneurs we see each year as a part of the Social Enterprise Zone and Pitch Competition are driven by a desire to see innovation have a social impact, and in turn, create a better world for all of us," says Dr. Tom Corr, President and CEO, OCE. "Congratulations to Ulula on a well-deserved win, and we look forward to seeing their company grow along with their ideas."

Named Canada's Best Trade Show in 2010, 2011, and 2016, and celebrating 12 years of bold, new ideas, OCE's Discovery is Canada's premier innovation showcase. It brings together the best and brightest minds in industry, academia, investment and government to showcase leading-edge technologies, best practices and research in the areas of energy, fintech, cleantech, the environment, advanced health, digital media, information and communication technologies and advanced manufacturing. The annual conference and showcase attracts more than 3,500 attendees and 500 exhibitors.

For more on Discovery, visit www.ocediscovery.com.

About Ontario Centres of Excellence (OCE) Inc.

OCE drives the commercialization of cutting-edge research across key market sectors to build the economy of tomorrow and secure Ontario's global competitiveness. In doing this, OCE fosters the training and development of the next generation of innovators and entrepreneurs and is a key partner with Ontario's industry, universities, colleges, research hospitals, investors and governments. A champion of leading-edge technologies, best practices and research, OCE invests in sectors such as advanced health, digital media and information communications, advanced manufacturing and materials, and cleantech including energy, environment and water. OCE is a key partner in delivering Ontario's Innovation Agenda as a member of the province's Ontario Network of Entrepreneurs (ONE). Funded by the Government of Ontario, the ONE is made up of regional and sector-focused organizations and helps Ontario-based entrepreneurs rapidly grow their company and create jobs.

SOURCE Ontario Centres of Excellence Inc.  

For further information: Media Contact: Andrew Robertson, Manager, Media Relations, t: 416.861.1092 x 1092, andrew.robertson@oce-ontario.org