National Bank Donates $2.4M to the Université de Sherbrooke
Propelling young entrepreneurs to new heights
Sherbrooke, le 1 novembre 2018 – Creating a technology company is a demanding process. As is often the case, young entrepreneurs are faced with a mountain of challenges: Protecting intellectual property, devising a marketing strategy, and planning for international expansion, among others.
To help start-ups overcome these challenges, the Université de Sherbrooke (UdeS) has created the Accélérateur de création d’entreprises technologiques (ACET—accelerator for the creation of technology businesses), which provides a unique environment and support network to maximize the opportunities for success of the next generation’s entrepreneurs. Today, the UdeS is greatly pleased to announce the signing of a major partnership with National Bank, an agreement that will enable ACET to strengthen the impact of its service offerings to start-up companies.
“National Bank is proud to announce a $2.4M donation to the Université de Sherbrooke to support its technology accelerator. We are an institution that was founded almost 160 years ago, by entrepreneurs and for entrepreneurs. It is therefore completely natural for us to contribute to economic and social development by accelerating the creation and growth of Canadian technology companies,” stated Louis Vachon, President and Chief Executive Officer of National Bank.
Beyond its commitment of $2.4M, National Bank is contributing to the ACET environment by offering mentorship to entrepreneurs. National Bank will also provide tools and services adapted to the specific needs of technology start-ups.
National Bank’s donation is a part of the Université de Sherbrooke's campaign Promising Futures, Shared Passions. “For the UdeS and ACET, this contribution from National Bank has arrived at the right moment to help us manage the high demand for mentorship of our young entrepreneurs. ACET is in part a victim of its own success,” explained the Rector of the Université de Sherbrooke, Professor Pierre Cossette. To him, “It goes well beyond a donation. It is a strategic partnership that enables companies supported by ACET to take advantage of the expertise and specialized services of National Bank.”
For Ghyslain Goulet, President-CEO of ACET, this partnership is essential to the pursuit of his organization's mission: “To date, thanks to long-term partnerships, we have supported more than 80 business projects led by young academics dreaming of entrepreneurship. Today, thanks to National Bank, ACET will be able to pursue its action plan to stimulate technology entrepreneurship and enable companies receiving support to grow and flourish on a national and international scale.”
Over the years, ACET has acquired a solid reputation and extensive expertise in the start-up and development of technology companies, due mostly to the research of students and professors from the Université de Sherbrooke. Since its creation in 2011, ACET has supported 80 business projects in various technology sectors with these projects generating over 260 jobs. ACET is a part of the Université de Sherbrooke’s Innovation, Partnership, and Entrepreneurship strategy, which supports the entrepreneurial environment in Sherbrooke and across Québec.
About National Bank of Canada
With $258 billion in assets as at July 31, 2018, National Bank of Canada, together with its subsidiaries, forms one of Canada's leading integrated financial groups. It has more than 23,000 employees in knowledge-intensive positions and has been recognized numerous times as a top employer and for its commitment to diversity. Its securities are listed on the Toronto Stock Exchange (TSX: NA).
About the Promising Futures, Shared Passions campaign
The Université de Sherbrooke's Promising Futures, Shared Passions campaign ended on October 18 and resulted in the collection of over $115M, including the donation from National Bank. This sixth campaign is the most ambitious philanthropic achievement since the creation of the Université de Sherbrooke. As a result of this historic campaign, major projects have been launched with benefits across all spheres of society.
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Judith Lavallée, Communications Advisor
Graduate Relations Department
Communications Department | Université de Sherbrooke
819-578-9976 | Judith.Lavallee@USherbrooke.ca