Raise & Rise   Conference & Pitch Competition

Presented by Disruption Ventures and The Scotiabank Women Initiative

In collaboration with Disruption Ventures, The Scotiabank Women Initiative™ hosted its premiere RAISE & RISE event – a virtual pitch competition and conference that offered women entrepreneurs the chance to win a cash investment of $25,000 and more. The conference portion of RAISE & RISE was led by top industry leaders and offered meaningful discussion to women entrepreneurs about how to "raise" capital and "rise" as successful entrepreneurs.

Congratulations to our winner Ashwaq Al-Hashedi, Founder & CEO, INViCARE who was awarded the Grand Prize from the pitch competition! 

Ashwaq Al-Hashedi

The virtual conference took place on December 15, 2020 and included the following speaker line-up:

  • Janie Béïque, Executive Vice-President, Investments, Fonds de solidarité FTQ
  • Vickie Joseph, Founder, V Kosmetik | Co-founder, Groupe 3737
  • Marie-Josée Richer, Co-founder, PRANA | “Dragon”, Radio-Canada’s “Dans l'œil du dragon’’
  • Michele Romanow, “Dragon”, CBC Dragons’ Den
  • Jessica Bruder, Award-winning journalist 


Six finalists competed in front of our panel of expert judges, comprised of successful entrepreneurs and business executives:

  • Jennifer Ivens, CEO, Canscan Tech
  • Marisol Labrecque, CEO, Technologies Ecofixe inc.
  • Aliyeh Rasoolizadeh, CEO, Triple F Group
  • Ashwaq Al-Hashedi, Founder & CEO, INViCARE
  • Clara Duvernay, Co-founder, AWL-E
  • Jade Doucet-Martineau, Co-founder & CEO, Puzzle Medical Devices Inc.


Selection Jury

  • Sarah Shapiro, Venture Partner, Disruption Ventures
  • Catherine Parent, Director, Roynat Equity Partners

Feedback Jury

  • Nicole Verkindt, Founder & CEO, OMX
  • Irfhan Rawji, Founder & CEO, MobSquad

Finals Jury

  • Gillian Riley, President & CEO, Tangerine Bank | Executive Sponsor, The Scotiabank Women Initiative
  • Elaine Kunda, Founder and Managing Partner, Disruption Ventures
  • Wils Théagène, Senior Director, Québec, CDPQ
  • Alain Denis, Senior Vice-President – Venture Capital, Fonds de solidarité FTQ


Thanks to all who entered the Pitch Competition!