Sévrine Labelle, General Director of Lab Excelles. (Photo: with kind permission)
The Business Development Bank of Canada’s Lab Excelles will tap 25 organizations across the country, including seven in Quebec, to distribute the $100 million it plans to invest in women-founded companies.
These partners were chosen “for their experience in working with women entrepreneurs and their experience in working with companies with social impact, because it is in these types of companies that we want to invest directly,” commented this morning Sévrine Labelle, General Director of Lab Excelles.
According to Sévrine Labelle, a first company has already benefited from the laboratory’s support, the Quebec-based company Ora Médical, with a sum of $250,000. Lab Excelles hopes to invest in around a hundred companies across Canada in a few years. The first phase of this initiative has a budget of $35 million.
To make the best decisions, Sévrine Labelle therefore relies on collaboration with established organizations in the sector and close to entrepreneurs. “We wanted to create a space for collaboration between BDC and organizations that are on the ground and truly at the beginning of women’s entrepreneurial journeys. “We therefore selected 25 partners in Canada, a mix of incubators, accelerators, financial angel groups and asset management offices, who are typically the ones who write the first check to an entrepreneur,” says -She.
Seven of these 25 partners are from Quebec. These are the Montreal Business and Innovation Center (CEIM), Anges Québec, Evol, Cycle Momentum, Centech, Zu and Esplanade Québec.
“To receive investment from the lab, the company must be recommended by one of these incubators. We rely on the expertise and experience of these local organizations to identify the most promising companies. Those with the greatest growth potential, but also those with the greatest potential for social impact. Or who offers the most original solutions to some of the social problems we face,” concludes Sévrine Labelle.
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