Futurpreneur and RBC Award $80,000 to Eight Entrepreneurs

August 31, 2022

TORONTO, Aug. 29, 2022 (GLOBE NEWSWIRE) — Eight budding young entrepreneurs across Canada were each awarded $10,000 to launch their dream business. The awards, provided by Futurpreneur and RBC, are offered as part the free digital workshop series Rock My Business. The series is designed to teach participants about testing the viability of their business, how to develop a solid business plan, and better understand cash flow.

Selected from over 100+ applications – the following eight awards of $10,000 were awarded to participants from across Canada:

  • Five Youth Entrepreneur Awards for entrepreneurs aged 18 – 29
  • One Emerging Black Entrepreneur Award for a Black entrepreneur aged 18 – 39
  • One Emerging Indigenous Entrepreneur Award for an Indigenous Entrepreneur aged 18 – 39
  • One Emerging Entrepreneur Award for an entrepreneur aged 30 – 39

“Futurpreneur brings to life the most aspirational and fundamental elements of entrepreneurship,”said Mark Beckles, Vice President, Social Impact & Innovation at RBC. “By opening up access to mentorship, online resources, and general knowledge sharing this program speaks to the very spirit of entrepreneurship. RBC is proud to support these leaders in their journey.”

The three-part Rock My Business series started in 2017 and has been funded by RBC Foundation in support of RBC Future Launch, the bank’s 10-year $500 million commitment to empower Canadian youth for the jobs of tomorrow. Since July 2020 the series, which includes business coaching from resident entrepreneurs, has equipped over 8,000 young, aspiring entrepreneurs with the skills, confidence and knowledge needed to develop a launch-ready business plan.

Supporting aspiring entrepreneurs in Canada, the Rock My Business workshop series helps future business owners better prepare to launch their small businesses. The workshop series takes place every other month, and interested participants can visit the Rock My Business page on Futurpreneur’s website to sign up for the next available workshops. Participants who attend the Rock My Business Plan and Rock My Business Cash Flow workshops may be eligible for Futurpreneur’s next round of awards.

Details of the 2022 award recipients can be found below:

  • Marie-Renée Grondin, Timininous – Emerging Entrepreneur Award
    Location: Quebec
    Timininous is a Quebec-based company that designs and manufactures merino wool thermal clothing and accessories for infants and toddlers so they can keep warm while joining their families on winter adventures. Merino wool is a sustainably-sourced renewable fibre that is also biodegradable. Founder Marie-Renée Grondin’s mission is to promote a more sustainable and socially-conscious shopping approach by creating products that are durable and multifunctional, allowing families to buy less, but invest in higher quality.
  • Benjamin Feagin, AgriTech North – Emerging Indigenous Entrepreneur Award
    Location: Ontario
    AgriTech North is a first-of-its-kind, indoor vertical farm in North-western Ontario, growing fresh produce year-round at wholesale capacity. The company addresses rising food insecurity and environmental challenges by utilizing innovative hydroponic and aeroponic technology in a soil-less environment that also uses 90% less water, and no chemical pesticides, herbicides, or fungicides. Their social mission is to reduce fresh produce costs in far north Indigenous communities by 25% and simultaneously increase its availability in communities without year-round access.
  • Murielle Bien-Aimé, KOMANDŌ – Emerging Black Entrepreneur Award
    Location: Quebec
    Based in Montreal, KOMANDŌ is a clothing company that creates stylish and eco-friendly underwear for anyone who identifies as a woman, as well as a range of gender-neutral streetwear attire designed to empower individuals and encourage them to be themselves freely and fully.
  • Elisabeth Turcotte, Déniche Ton Chien – Youth Entrepreneur Award
    Location: Quebec
    Déniche Ton Chien is a pet-pairing app that can be compared to the Tinder dating site. To help match adopters with their ideal pet, the app provides details about the top three dog breeds most compatible with their personality and lifestyle. An AI algorithm filters the database of more 110 dog breeds available in Quebec to recommend the top three that align the adopter’s wants and needs. The client can also learn more about the different breeds and understand their needs and personality traits before making a commitment to adopt.
  • Marie-Ève Aubry, Albéric – Youth Entrepreneur Award
    Location: Quebec
    Albéric is a clothing brand that helps consumers creatively build a conscious and modern wardrobe where each piece is meaningful and serves a purpose. The designer’s ethos focuses on responsible design and manufacturing practices to minimize her production’s impact on the planet and small communities. By implementing a non-traditional pre-order model, the company is able to promote all aspects of the circular economy and ensure that every piece is unique and feels like a limited edition.
  • Lital Zaslavsky, Something Better – Youth Entrepreneur Award
    Location: Ontario
    Something Better is a company dedicated to reinventing the children’s healthy snack category. Most of commercial children’s snacks simply aren’t made with kids in mind. The nutritious snacks bore them, and the confectionary snacks don’t nourish them. Dry granola bars may not compromise for an indulgent brownie and parents don’t feel comfortable feeding their kids indulgent brownies every day either. So Lital and Daniel are launching Something Better to bridge that divide, and make a delicious snack kids love, with a nutritional profile parents will cherish. They are currently formulating their first product with plans of officially launching by the end of 2022.
  • Thomas Clark, Altrene – Youth Entrepreneur Award
    Location: Ontario
    Altrene offers a truly sustainable skincare line called “Insekt”. Its products are crafted with sustainably sourced insect-derived extracts among other natural ingredients, creating a unique formulation with exceptional skin and environmental benefits. Operating as an online store through its website and other third-party platforms, Altrene offers, at launch; a Face Cleanser, Face Moisturizer and Face Oil. Beyond personal care, Insekt promotes sustainable, cleaner business practices that contribute to a circular economy and the preservation of our planet.
  • Will Wang, Terra Optima Labs Inc. – Youth Entrepreneur Award
    Location: Ontario
    Terra Optima Labs Inc. strives to create circularity in the food industry by converting food wastes to soil, to grow more food, sustainably. Their objectives are to reduce negative environmental impacts from soil degradation, ease food insecurity, and address the enormous amount of food waste that Canada generates per year. Terra Optima is developing and testing technologies that leverage natural organisms and technology to transform food and organic wastes into soil amendment blends that increase crop yields, restore soil vitality, and sequester carbon. These processes are odourless, efficient, and integrate directly within supply chains and create valuable products for agriculture and soil remediation.

About the Rock My Business Workshop Series:
Futurpreneur and RBC Future Launch proudly present Rock My Business, a free, virtual, three-part workshop series that will help you develop your idea, get started on your business plan and create a viable cash flow for your business – all while connecting with like-minded entrepreneurs in your community and across Canada. If you need direction to develop your business idea, have a strong business idea OR recently launched a small business that you’d like to grow, register today for our next series of workshops. Participants who complete at least two of the workshops are eligible to receive one-on-one coaching for free from our Entrepreneurs in Residence, helping you strengthen your idea and business plan further.

About Futurpreneur
Futurpreneur has been fostering the entrepreneurial passions of enterprising diverse young entrepreneurs across Canada for over 25 years. We are the only national, non-profit organization that provides financing, mentorship and resources to aspiring business owners aged 18-39. More than 16,500 young entrepreneurs, spanning every province and territory, have successfully launched their business with Futurpreneur’s support. Their main street businesses help drive Canada’s inclusive economic prosperity in communities from coast to coast to coast. Futurpreneur is a founding member of the G20 Young Entrepreneurs’ Alliance, the Canadian member of Youth Business International, and the Canadian host of Global Entrepreneurship Week. staging.futurpreneur.ca | Connect with us on Instagram, LinkedIn, Twitter and Facebook: @futurpreneur

Justin Young
Idea Workshop, on behalf of Futurpreneur
E: justin@ideaworkshop.ca
T: 416-738-5360

Cole Crawford
Stellick Marketing Communications, on behalf of RBC
E: ccrawford@gotoguys.net
T: 416-953-8577