The Week in Canada engaged more than 200 different organizations, who hosted more than 500 GEW event across the country and reached millions of people from coast to coast. Thanks to the Canadian Youth Business Foundation (CYBF), the official Hosts of GEWCanada, a national advertising and media campaign also reached tens of millions of Canadians. Highlights included:
Entrepreneurial Showcase with His Highness, The Prince of Wales
It was the networking opportunity of a lifetime for more than 20 CYBF entrepreneurs from all across Canada. As part of the Royal Visit to Canada, and a prelude to GEW Canada, His Royal Highness, The Prince of Wales visited with the successful young business owners at a national entrepreneurial showcase held in the 2010 Olympic Winter Games Athletes Village in Vancouver, British Columbia. His Royal Highness interacted and meet with a wide variety of young entrepreneurs, in fields ranging from energy intelligence and CO2 emission control innovation to gourmet chocolate, from wet weather gear to ground-breaking security monitoring technology. The Premier of British Columbia, the Honourable Gordon Campbell and representatives from the provincial government, along with business and financial icons including David Aisenstat, President and CEO of The Keg Steakhouse & Bar; Gwyn Morgan, Founding President and CEO ofEnCana Corporation and Tracy Redies, President and CEO of Coast Capital Savings, were also in attendance. Many of the young entrepreneurs taking part in the showcase were also involved in GEW events across the country, both on a regional and national level.
YPreneur Gene Contest
Wanting to champion a Canadian culture of entrepreneurship, nationally successful CYBF start-up PropertyGuys.com decided to help encourage the next generation of young Canadian business owners. A national event, the Ypreneur Gene contest asked entrants to describe why they were entrepreneurial enough to deserve being awarded a $100,000 PropertyGuys.com franchise package. Launched in New Brunswick, contestants from all across Canada submitted videos stating why they were prime carriers of the “Ypreneur Gene. Those videos were voted on through a website, and the top three finalists presented themselves in front of a crowd of more than 700 people at the Barbara Frum Atrium in the CBC building in Toronto, Ontario. Jennifer Howarth of Oakville, Ontario was chosen to be the winner by Jim Treliving and Arlene Dickinson of CBC’s Dragon’s Den and President of PropertyGuys.com, Ken LeBlanc. In addition to the PropertyGuys.com franchise, Jennifer will also be mentored by David Aisenstat, President and CEO of The Keg Steakhouse & Bar.
Hosted by entrepreneurial networking website Sprouter, Sprout Up were free events for forward-thinking entrepreneurs to gather and mind-meld. Sprout Up is made up of three components; an innovation demo, where pre-selected entrepreneurs share innovative business ideas, a guest speaker, and a networking opportunity. The events in Montreal and Toronto offered young new business owners a great chance to get friendly, discuss current trends, and network in a casual, open, and focused setting. Hundreds of people took part in the events, and attendees walked away with new insights, new network connections and actionable ideas for their businesses.
Great Canadian Mentor Challenge
A national online event held throughout GEW, the Great Canadian Mentor Challenge asked industry leaders and experienced professionals from across Canada to contribute their business advice. Available in both English and French, the sites are an online resource for aspiring business owners, showing Canada as a world leader in mentoring young entrepreneurs. Mentoring advice came from all fields, including marketing, non-profit, business, retail, manufacturing, finance and innovation