Social Enterprise Zone and Pitch Competition

Social Innovation Showcase


Ontario Centres of Excellence (OCE), in partnership with the Ministry of Economic Development and Growth (MEDG), hosted the third Social Enterprise Zone and Pitch Competition at Discovery 2017 on May 15 and 16.

Twenty four Ontario-based companies exhibited their social innovation on the Discovery show floor, giving them access to experts, industry, government funders, impact investors and networking opportunities.

Further, eight social enterprise companies pitched live for a $25,000 award package in the Social Enterprise Pitch Competition on May 15. The award package included a $10,000 award from MEDG, a $5,000 award from the Business Development Bank of Canada and a $10,000 legal services package from Norton Rose Fulbright to assist with further development of their business.

Showcase Companies:

  • 3D4MD
  • Attollo SE Inc.
  • Empower
  • Flashfood Inc.
  • Free Geek Toronto
  • Fresh City
  • Genecis EnviroTech Inc.
  • Green Story Inc.
  • Growing North
  • Gryllies
  • Link2Feed
  • Microbiate
  • Mimetics Inc.
  • modgarden
  • Peggy Sue Collection
  • Pueblo Science
  • Suncayr
  • SuraiTea Inc.
  • Textbooks for Change
  • The Growcer
  • Toronto Tool Library
  • Ulula
  • Wully Outerwear

Panel Discussion: New Frontiers of Impact Investing


  • Balinder Rai – Senior Business Development Manager, Ontario Centres of Excellence


  • Joanna Reynolds – Centre for Social Impact, Smith School of Business


  • Craig Ryan – Director, Social Entrepreneurship, BDC

  • Narinder Dhami – Managing Director, LEAP Centre for Social Impact

  • Gavin Armstrong, Ph. D. – President & CEO, Lucky Iron Fish

  • Trish Nixon – Investment Director, CoPower

Pitch Winner

Pitch Finalist Companies


The judging panel for the competition included members of the investment community and leaders in the social innovation community.


  • Balinder Rai, Senior Business Development Manager, Ontario Centres of Excellence


  • Adam Spence, MaRS Centre for Impact Investing

Judging Panel

  • Melissa Smith, Senior Account Manager, BDC

  • Maya Medeiros, Lawyer, Patent and Trademark Agent, Norton Rose Fulbright

  • Saadia Muzaffar, Founder, TechGirls Canada

  • David Borcsok, Fund Manager, RBC Generator Fund

  • Assaf Weisz, Co-Founder and Director, Purpose Capital