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Speed Date


You do not want to miss this opportunity!!!!

How often do you get to meet an entrepreneur to pick their brain in a friendly and relaxed atmosphere?

Sometimes all a future entrepreneur needs is a mentor and a nudge in the right direction. This event brings together future entrepreneurs and entrepreneurial leaders in the community. You will have 15 minutes to ask an entrepreneur your burning questions. Meet entrepreneurs from various sectors.

This event is offered in partnership with the following organization who are helping to connect mentor-entrepreneurs of various fields with you.

and in collaboration with

La Jeune Chambre de Commerce de Montreal and the
CEDEC – who will connect artist-entrepreneurs with you in the context of ArtWorks.

Cocktails will be served. Door prizes.


Our Speed-date partners :

Sandrin Abaziou

President and Founder of Kosy.ca

Sandrine is passionate about everything that relates to real estate and specially rental properties. In 2008, she was called to work in Europe and remained 5 years abroad. Having to rent her property from there, she was exposed to the market of property rental in Montreal and noticed a massive gap between what is done in Europe and what is offered in Montreal.

Her passion for the entrepreneurial course, while completing her Bachelor in Business at the John Molson School of business confirmed her desire for entrepreneurship. Her professional experience, described by 4 years as Account Executive at Yellow Pages Group in Montreal and Ottawa, Sandrine also developed an appetite for business development that led a specialty in new client development. Her experience at Yellow Pages, allowed her to develop very strong competencies in online marketing as well as acquiring many business development skills.
In Europe, Sandrine worked as an Underwriter for a specialized Insurance Company where she had to analyze large companies listed on the Stock market in order to insure their Directors and Officers. By studying the European market, Sandrine saw how business was done in Europe. Along with developing strong negotiating skills, she obtained a valuable perspective on global business development.

With these many diverse experiences and a new vision, Sandrine decided to return home to Montreal and develop a web platform that specialized in Canadian property rentals.
Kosy.ca, online since April 4th 2014, offers a new way to find a place to live in Canada. This new web platform is conceived to facilitate the communication between the future tenants and owner. Kosy.ca specialises in the rental property market. It offers a simple, clear and easy way to search for an apartment, a condo or a house, conveniently from a desktop computer or a smartphone.

Yacine Amrani

CPA/CMA, CFO Herd Wisdom

Whew that’s a lot of C’s!
And all well-earned.

The Herd’s Uncle Scrooge (that’s Uncle Picsou here in Quebec) is a master of financial transformation, a necessary skill in order to avert his allergy to squandering even a penny. Yacine is a startup pro, most recently having overhauled the entire financial model for a Montreal based start-up during their migration from a service-based company to a product-based company. Blessed with the ability to simplify even the most complex financial situations, Yacine’s background as a stellar CFO, controller, and project manager gives him a special combination of tools to attack the challenges facing a new startup. Fast and frank is the name of the game in startups, and these are attributes that come naturally to Yacine.

Courtesy of RESO – Sud-ouest de Montréal


Jennifer Barron
JB Strategic Consulting

Jennifer’s career and life journey have led her across Canada and back again—from her roots in Ontario—to British Columbia—and then to La Belle Province in 2013, where she currently resides in Montréal.

Having worked in several senior-level marketing-communications roles, Jennifer brings 16 years of experience helping organizations build and protect their brands and meaningfully engage with stakeholders. Some of the high-profile companies she has worked with include Microsoft, LG, TELUS, Intel, ATI Technologies, Yellow Pages Group, Nature’s Path Organics, Whole Foods Markets and Lesley Stowe’s Raincoast Crisps.

Today, she is an independent marketing-communications consultant for clients such as Pratt & Whitney Canada, Sierra Wireless and Valeant Pharmaceuticals, as well as a certified coach having completed Concordia’s Professional and Personal Coaching Certification Program in the spring of 2014. As a coach, she focuses on supporting her clients to successfully transition through their professional and personal challenges to achieve their goals, live authentically, and make their dreams reality. She is also realizing her own dream of becoming bilingual.

Paul Blanchard
CEO, Herd Wisdom

An expert in the development of web-based HR technology and services, Herd Wisdom co-founder Paul Blanchard has been working in the HR space since 1993 when he started developing custom software applications for psychometric testing delivery by HR professional services firms. In the early 90’s, he developed one of the first testing tools for industrial/organizational psychologists. With the founding of HR Alloy, now Iscopia Software, Paul was able to translate his deep understanding of the diverse and complex needs of HR professionals into tailored, easy-to-use technology solutions. Around here, he’s known as Mr. Powerpoint. This busy bee manages multiple projects with ease, given his attention to detail – and keen ability to lay it all out in a Powerpoint presentation.

Courtesy of RESO – Sud-ouest de Montréal

Emmanuel Cameron
Strategic Marketing Advisor, JCCM

Emmanuel Cameron est un professionnel du marketing stratégique et du commerce international, spécialisé dans la mise en marché de nouveaux produits et la mise en place de processus d’affaires en contexte d’entreprise en démarrage et de PME. Son expertise s’appuie sur de solides bases universitaires grâce à une maîtrise obtenue avec mention d’excellence à HEC Montréal, dans laquelle un outil d’aide à la décision stratégique fut conçu pour l’industrie mondiale du vin. Il compte une expérience de 6 ans dans l’analyse de marchés et la direction d’équipes de projet auprès d’entreprises de divers secteurs dont l’agroalimentaire, l’industriel, l’académique, les industries des services, du détail et du commerce en ligne.

Emmanuel Cameron is a strategic marketing and international trade professional, specialized in the marketing of new products and the development of business processes in the context of start-ups and SMEs. His expertise is based on strong academic foundations through a master’s degree obtained with honors at HEC Montreal, where a strategic decision aids tool was designed for the global wine industry. He has 6 years of experience in market analysis and management of project teams with companies from various sectors including food processing, industrial, academic, service industries, retail and e-commerce.

Courtesy of JCCM

Déborah Cherenfant

Founder, Mots d’Elles
Creative Director, Coloré Design

Mots d’Elles Plus qu’un blogue, Mots d’Elles est une plateforme d’informations destinée aux femmes d’affaires. Portraits, actualités, événements et ressources s’y retrouvent pour un répertoire incontournable pour les femmes leaders.

Coloré Design est une marque d’accessoires chic-urbains de mode et déco faits à Montréal de tissus traditionnels importés.

Courtesy of JCCM

Vanessa Cherenfant

Founder Elysia,
VP Entrepreneurship
Jeune Chambre de
commerce de Montréal

Vanessa Cherenfant is a travel enthusiast and process engineer who created Elysia, a tech startup, after experiencing first-hand the frustration around travel planning and research especially when it came to experiential travel. Industrial Engineer with a specialization in business strategy and technological innovation, She previously headed strategic initiatives for Bombardier Business Jet and worked as a consultant with major firms focusing on human centric processes to improve efficiency and bring more value to the customers. She has been an entrepreneur in various organizations, heading teams of up to 30 people in the launch of successful initiatives.

Courtesy JCCM

Jennifer Cook
Founder, Cats in the Bag design
Strategic Visual Designer

For over twenty years, Jennifer R. Cook makes it no secret that she is always on the creative prowl. So much so, she started Cats in the Bag Design (design le Chat est dans l’Sac). Since 1991, her business has paired many happy customers with satisfied clients through a combination of market research, strategic planning, her extensive experience in graphic design, and intensive knowledge of the creative solutions her clients seek.

Ever curious and eager for new opportunities, Jennifer relocated to Montreal in 2009 to shake up her career. But, a series of events shook up her life instead, giving way to the creation of What my Coffee says to me/What my Tea says to me daily art project. The famous quotes and encouragements, coupled with unique designs, brewed an internet fandom cheered on by followers and coffee/tea companies alike.

She often professes to have lost four of her nine lives in the last twenty years, becoming somewhat of an expert of always landing on her feet. For this reason, she is grateful for each and every chance to help others succeed, especially through strategic graphic design or simply by bringing a smile to everyone’s day with her daily inspired illustrations.

Courtesy of CEDEC

Lav Crnobrnia
Co-founder, Cloud Horizon

Lav finished a 3-year Electrical Engineering Technologies DEC from Dawson and went on to Concordia to get a Computer Engineering diploma. He decided after a year that engineering is not for him so he switched and graduated from Concordia with a Business degree in Finance. He then worked at GE Capital for 2 years before starting his own business.

The first “version” of the business was focused on cloud computing. He did this for a year and didn’t like it very much even though the business was doing well. He then switched to trying to make a software-based product called MyPhoneKey. After a falling out with one of the co-founders, he went back to Cloud Horizon and re-started the company as a web and mobile development shop in early 2012. At that time it was just me and my CTO in the company. Today there are 12 people working in two offices, one in Montreal and the other in Belgrade, Serbia.

Courtesy of CLD – Centre Ouest / Développement économique Saint-Laurent

Philip A. Cutler
President & CEO, GradeSlam –
Executive Director, Laurus Summer Camp

Born and raised in Westmount, QC, Philip has dedicated the greater part of his adult life to building and growing businesses in the education and child care sectors. In 2009, while studying at McGill’s Faculty of Education, Philip began his first tutoring service, Laurus Educational Services. Since then he has consistently looked for opportunities to introduce new educational businesses. In 2012, he launched Laurus Summer Camp, Montreal’s first and only lifestyle summer camp. LSC has grown into becoming one of Montreal’s premiere summer day camps for children of all ages.

GradeSlam, Philip’s latest initiative, is a support hub for students looking for help with their classes. It features hundreds of free tutorial videos, as well as 24/7 online tutoring from certified tutors through their proprietary online tutoring platform. Launched in spring 2014, GradeSlam’s easy to use platform has already been used by thousands of students across North America.

Philip’s other interests include sports, food and fun.

Courtesy of CLD 3 Monts

Saïd Hini
Loyer Express

C’est quand Saïd rencontre des difficultés pour payer son propriétaire qui habite loin qu’il commence à imaginer un système qui les avantagerait tous les deux. Son passé en Génie, Informatique et Électronique lui permettra de commencer à développer la solution intelligente que l’on connaît aujourd’hui comme Loyer Express.

Courtesy of CDEC CDN/NDG

Tristan D. Lalla
Award-Winning Actor

Tristan D. Lalla is an award-winning actor, and Dawson College Professional Theatre honours graduate. Selected credits include (THEATRE): A Raisin In The Sun, Othello, The Tempest, The Mahalia Jackson Musical, Man of La Mancha, the Canadian Premiere of David Mamet’s RACE, Glengarry Glen Ross, I AM I, Urban Tales, The Mid-Life Crisis of Dionysus, A Midsummer Night’s Dream, Much Ado About Nothing, Sal Capone: The Lamentable Tragedy Of; (FILM/TV): How She Move, RED 2, Brick Mansions, White House Down, Betty & Coretta, Exposed, Blue Mountain State, Funkytown, Crisis Point, Superstorm, Tangled, The Bitter End, Cubed, Happy Slapping; (VIDEO GAMES): Assassin’s Creed 4 Black Flag, Assassin’s Creed Freedom Cry, Assassin’s Creed Liberation HD, Assassin’s Creed Rogue, Assassin’s Creed Pirates, WatchDogs, Far Cry 2, From Dust, Deux Ex Human Revolution.

Courtesy of CEDEC

Claude Lauzon
Director, CDEC CDN/NDG

Un parcours de carrière orienté sur le développement local

Directeur de la Corporation de développement économique communautaire de Côte-des-Neiges/Notre-Dame-de-Grâce (CDEC CDN/NDG) depuis la fondation de cette dernière en 1992, soit il y a plus de 20 ans, il a donc veillé aux premiers balbutiements, au développement et au rayonnement de la CDEC. Sa carrière professionnelle a progressé de pair avec l’évolution de la CDEC sous l’enseigne d’un engagement indéfectible et d’une implication entière. Claude Lauzon est résident de Côte-des-Neiges depuis 1984. www.cdeccdnndg.org

Agent de projet (1988-1992) au bureau du député d’Outremont, monsieur Gérald Tremblay alors ministre de l’Industrie, du Commerce et de la Technologie. Durant cette période, il a élaboré des projets touchant le milieu communautaire et a participé à leur mise en œuvre, s’initiant du coup aux problématiques et aux pratiques du développement local, tout en se familiarisant avec le réseau d’acteurs et d’intervenants du milieu.

Journaliste au Journal Côte-des-Neiges et Actualités Côte-des-Neiges dans les années 1985-1988. Cet emploi lui a permis de découvrir les multiples facettes de Côte-des-Neiges et de Notre-Dame-de-Grâce, tout en développant son sens d’appropriation de ce milieu de vie.

Diplômé en sciences politiques de l’UQAM en 1983.

LP Maurice
LP Maurice

CEO, Busbud

LP Maurice is the CEO & co-founder of Busbud, a venture-backed e-commerce startup focused on intercity bus travel. Previously, LP worked in Silicon Valley at Yahoo, LinkedIn and Radar Networks (acquired) in product management, marketing and business development. LP holds an MBA from Harvard University, a Master’s degree in Corporate Law from the University of Montreal and a Bachelor’s degree in Finance from HEC Montreal. LP is co-director of the Founder Institute in Montreal and managing director of seed investment fund Interaction Ventures. He is also the co-founder of Entrepreneurs Anonymous, Startup Open House and non-profit project GeoDonation. LP mentors at Founder Fuel, Startup Weekend, The Next 36 and Institut du Nouveau Monde. LP is a 2014 NYC Venture Fellow and recently spoke at TedX. He also serves as VP of theHBS Club of Montreal and the Harvard Club of Quebec. LP is based in Montreal and New York City.

Register for LP’s presentation.

tim miller
Tim Miller
Teacher, Non-profit Entrepreneur

Tim Miller holds a Bachelor’s Degree in Exercise Science as well as an MBA from John Molson School of Business. He has founded two community programs whose mission is to help overweight and obese teenagers lose weight and improve their lifestyle. These programs are held in the West Island and at the YH-YWHA in Montreal. Tim has also been a board member of many non-profit organizations including Action Jeunesse Ouest de l’Ile (AJOI) and Accompagnement Benevole de L’Ouest (ABO-VAS). More recently, Tim has been working with a non-profit organization called Athletic Community Centres (ACC Sports) as their Director of Programming. In this role, Tim is working with local communities, schools and sports associations to help increase the level of physical literacy of our youth helping them to become better movers and more active for life. Tim is also a Physical Education and Physical Rehabilitation teacher at Dawson College.

Tim is passionate about Entrepreneurship. He was co-project lead for Eweek 2012. He strongly believes that in order for a new idea to work, 5% is the idea, 95% is the work.

François Poirier
CEO, MakerBloks

François Poirier is an industrial designer who has been working in product development for the past 15 years. He is very passionate about hardware in all its form and how to make it materialize. In February 2013 he developed with a partner, a family-friendly breathalyzer called Sobersmart. It got him to the top three finalists at the Startup Weekend of an International Startup Festival. It brought him to Dublin where he was named one of the 25 Emerging Entrepreneurs of C2MTL.
In April 2014, he joined the Founder Institute to learn how to be a better entrepreneur. Amongst the biggest entrepreneurial accelerators in the world, he started a new startup named MakerBloks, which are small, reactive building block to teach children about electronics. With MakerBloks, Francois graduated top of his class, won judges panels at demo day and was named one of the 3 top startups to be followed by the cyber magazine Les Affaires. He now works to build and launch MakerBloks Company with his team at District 3 and change the way children are introduced to electronic circuits.

Courtesy of JCCM

Irene Pylypenko
Managing Director, FounderDating
Montreal Director, Hacking Health

Irene Pylupenko has a penchant for marketing and business innovation. Irene studied M.Sc. in Computer Science at McGill University where she did data analysis of a large-scale clinical and biomedical study.
Her startup journey started a decade ago with an internet portfolio business, where she managed and marketed 300 websites. She then joined an e-health start-up that built a medical billing SaaS application, and was responsible for customer acquisition. After which, Irene co-founded an e-commerce start-up, with the responsibility of product development and customer acquisition.

Irene is a passionate community builder: she led a leadership education program at Western University, was on the executive team of TEDxMcGill 2012, is now a managing director for FounderDating — an international private network of startup co-founders, and is the Montreal Director of Hacking Health, an organization with the mission to break down barriers in healthcare.

Courtesy of JCCM

Avery Rueb
Co-founder, Affordance Studio

Avery has been a second language teacher for over 10 years in five different countries. He went back to do His MBA at McGill in order to start a company in language learning. Now he’s on his third venture at Affordance Studio where he is a co-founder designing, creating, marketing and selling serious games to educational and corporate training markets. He has got a laundry list of things NOT to do when starting a company, so please ask him any question you want!

Courtesy of CLD – Centre Ouest / Développement économique Saint-Laurent

Mauro Repacci
Co-founder and CEO, Navut

Mauro is no stranger to the daunting moving process. He’s lived in six different cities within Brazil, the United States, and Canada. His biggest move was back in 2007 when he came to Montreal with just two suitcases. He arrived during a massive snowstorm and knew only one other person in the city. Without knowing enough about the city, Mauro ended up paying way too much for where he was living. After facing this problem head on, Mauro’s natural entrepreneurial spirit kicked in (he had a knack for buying kites at wholesale and reselling to his friends on the beach at age 12) and made it his mission to create a solution for people moving to an unfamiliar city. Everybody deserves to arrive in their new neighborhood confident that it’s the right place for them, which as everyone at Navut knows is an invaluable asset.

Courtesy of RESO – Sud-Ouest de Montréal

Bruce Seidel

Co-Founder, Chief Executive Officer (CEO), emAPPetizer.

Co-Founder, Chief Executive Officer (CEO), is responsible for creating our partnerships and managing our business development activities. His role is to ensure that our partners and users enjoy their experiences and derive value from working with emAPPetizer. He has been in hardware, software and information technology sales and customer care for 30 years. Entering the domain at Matrox Electronics Systems with an Electro-technology DEC, Bruce was eventually promoted to take over the entire sales organization consisting of direct sales, distribution and agents worldwide responsible for generating $500M of revenue. Matrox, a leading manufacturer of graphics and imaging component hardware was the ideal place to hone sales skills. After 10 years, Bruce decided to try his hand at complex software sales with M3i Systems Inc. M3i provided control room and emergency real time applications in several vertical markets. After 15 years it was time to try leading his own company. JCMB Technology Inc. provides electrical network modeling and data maintenance service for the Electric Utility Industry. In 2008, Bruce sold his interests in JCMB to pursue the growing popularity of online sales and marketing.

Courtesy of Développement Économique West-Island -CLD

Elizabeth Stefanka

Founder,Stefanka Lingerie

Founder of Stefanka Lingerie, a tech startup that uses 3D technology to design custom-fit garments. Elizabeth has been an entrepreneur since her childhood. In a quest to enhance an entrepreneurial culture in Quebec, she has written a thesis about innovation and entrepreneurship, while finishing her International Business Master. On the side, she coaches a tech startup from Quebec City and she’s a founder-member of the entrepreneurial conferences Nota Bene (HEC-MBA Association). Spontaneously, she’s dedicated to share and you can hear her say: “Naturally, I like people and they give back to me.” Moreover, she aims to empower ladies through fashion and technology.

Courtesy of JCCM

Marek Zaluski

Web Development/Startup Consultant & Owner of Lab Zed

Marek is “a programmer and hacker at heart” who focusses his aim on connecting entrepreneurs with relevant resources. He is the founder of Lab Zed, a web development consultancy service that dedicates itself to online web products and emerging web technologies. Entrepreneurial spirit permeates everything he does by building innovative, creative projects that are at the forefront of web and mobile technology.

Marek acquired much of his startup experience as Co-Founder of ClassTrak; an online platform designed to helps students stay organized and lets them quickly and securely keep track of homework, exams and grades from any computer or mobile device. This application also serves as a communication device between teachers and the student’s parents.

Last Modified: December 21, 2016