Grants for Women Entrepreneurs

The J. Armand Bombardier Excellence Grants for the Next Generation of Women Entrepreneurs were designed to promote the role of women in different sectors of economic and community development, and to recognize the excellence of projects led by women in these sectors.

The J. Armand Bombardier Foundation is proud to announce the winners of the second edition of the Grants : 

  • The Janine Bombardier Grant was awarded to Marie Delannoy from le Cartel, a company specialized in the field of fashion and textile creation, whose goal is to democratize art through clothing;

  •  The Claire Beaudoin Grant was awarded to Érica Lebrun-Gauvin from Mme L’Ovary, a young company that offers women’s underwear designed specifically to replace disposable tampons, sanitary napkins and pantiliners;

  • The Huguette Fontaine Grant for the Technological Innovation Sector was awarded to Ashwaq Al-Hashedi from Invicare, a biotechnology company that has successfully developed patent-pending two-dimensional nanotechnology with scientifically proven dental implant disinfection and bone healing properties. 
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WORTH $10,000 EACH, THE EXCELLENCE GRANTS FOR THE NEXT GENERATION OF QUÉBEC WOMEN ENTREPRENEURS RECOGNIZE ANNUALLY THE WORK OF 3 WOMEN ENTREPRENEURS WHOSE BUSINESS WAS CONSTITUTED WITHIN THE PAST 5 YEARS.

Created in honour of the 3 women founders of the J. Armand Bombardier Foundation, who retired in 2018 after 53 years of engagement, the grants focus on the following fields: 

  • The Janine Bombardier Grant addresses the cultural and creative field
  • The Claire Beaudoin Grant addresses the processing and manufacturing field
  • The Huguette Fontaine Grant addresses the technological innovation field

Application form

  • Incorporated private companies: at least 50% of the company must be owned by a woman or a group of women
  • Social economy enterprises (NPOs and cooperatives): the entrepreneur must be the founder or co-founder
  • The entity must have been constituted for at least one year with a maximum of 5 years
  • The entity’s head office is in Québec
  • The entrepreneur resides in Québec
  • The entrepreneur is a Canadian or permanent resident
  • Applicants not released from a bankruptcy judgment
  • Projects of a discriminatory nature
  • Projects of a sexual, religious or political nature
  • Ad hoc event projects
  • Projects related to illicit or recreational drugs 
  • Bar or discotheque projects
  • Student projects: internships and university projects
  • Research and development projects
  • Self-employed workers
  • Projects for which the main value-added activities are outside Québec

JANINE BOMBARDIER GRANT

Intended for women entrepreneurs active in the cultural or creative field.
Eligible sectors: 

  • Architecture
  • Design
  • Digital arts
  • Literature and publishing
  • Museology
  • Theatre arts
  • Visual and audiovisual production 
  • Visual arts

CLAIRE B. BEAUDOIN GRANT

Intended for women entrepreneurs active in the processing and manufacturing field. 
All sectors are eligible.

HUGUETTE B. FONTAINE GRANT

Intended for women entrepreneurs active in the technological innovation field.
Eligible sectors: 

  • Artificial intelligence
  • Biotechnology/health
  • Electronics
  • Engineering
  • Information and communications technology
  • Robotics

The criteria that can shed light on the excellence of the applications submitted pertain to:  

  • The quality and soundness of the business model
  • Viability and coherence
  • Consolidation / growth potential
  • Roots in the community, partnerships 
  • The distinctive and innovative nature of the project 
  • The social impact of the business
  • Demonstration of the grant’s value added in the project

Deadline: December 31st, 2020 at midnight

The documentation required is specified in the application form, to which you may attach all your files. 

If you prefer, we can also receive your files via our secure WeTransfer site

Launch: October 1st, 2020

Delivery of applications: December 31st, 2020

Study of applications: from February to March, 2021

Announcement of the winners: April 30, 2021

Official presentation:  May 2021 

Can I submit my application if I am under 18 years of age?
No. Entrepreneurs who submit their application for the grant must be over 18 years of age at the time their candidacy is evaluated.

What should I do if I reside outside Québec but I intend to establish my business in Québec?
An entrepreneur who submits an application for the grant must meet all the eligibility criteria. She must therefore reside in Québec and her business must be based in Québec at the time her application is submitted. 

What legal forms of business are eligible?
Incorporated companies and social economy enterprises (NPOs and cooperatives). 

What legal forms of business are ineligible?
Sole proprietorship (self-employed worker), general partners (GP), limited partnership (LP), joint venture, association or group of persons, trust operating a commercial enterprise and co-ownership syndicate, foundations, and insurance mutuals.

I am a woman and my associates are men. Is my business eligible?
Yes. The company, the cooperative or the NPO must have at least one woman founder/associate. She files the grant application and will be the recipient of the grant if her application is selected. 

Is a subsidiary, branch or division of a company eligible? 
To be eligible, the company must appear in the Québec Enterprise Register and have a Québec Enterprise Number (NEQ). In addition, it must prove that it has a real activity and generates revenue and expenses. 

I have not obtained my permanent resident status yet. Am I eligible?
No. The entrepreneur must be a Canadian citizen or hold permanent resident status. 

Must I work full time in my business to be eligible for the grant?
There is no eligibility criterion requiring the entrepreneur to work full time in the business. However, she must prove her ability to carry out the project and move it forward.

Must I have sales to be eligible?
No, but the more advanced the project is, the more the perception of the risk is reduced. 

My business was constituted more than 5 years ago. Am I eligible? 
No. The business must have been constituted 5 years ago or less. 

My business was constituted less than 1 year ago. Am I eligible? 
No. The business must have been constituted for at least 1 year. 

What are the eligible sectors of activity?
Please, refer to the information above. 

When can I expect to receive an answer?
Within 3 months of the candidacy submission deadline. 

Can I file again next year if my application has been refused?
Yes, the same application can be submitted more than once, as long as the project fulfills our eligibility requirements.

In what ways must my application stand out to be chosen?
We look at the following criteria:

  • The quality and soundness of the business model
  • Viability and coherence: consolidation/growth potential and partnerships
  • The distinctive and innovative nature of the business
  • The social impact
  • The value added of the grant for your project

Who will evaluate my application?
The first triage is done by the Foundation’s staff who ensures that the application complies with all the criteria. A Grant Award Committee composed of 5 persons analyzes the applications and issues a recommendation. This committee is composed of experts in financial management of companies, women entrepreneurs, and family members. The Board of Directors and the founders of the J. Armand Bombardier Foundation, Janine Bombardier, Claire Beaudoin and Huguette Fontaine, make the final decision.

What documents must be included in the application?

  • The questionnaire
  • The entrepreneur’s CV
  • The organization chart of the company, the NPO or the cooperative
  • Your audited financial statements for the past 2 years (or commented by a professional accountant)
  • Budgeted financial statements over 2 years, including: the quaterly cash budget, an income statement, a balance sheet. 
  • Optional : a short video (max of 2 mn) presenting your business plan, your team, the impact the grant will have on your business. 

Do you communicate with the persons who are not selected?
Yes. All the candidates will be informed by email of the status of their application.

Why was my project refused?
Even if you meet all the eligibility criteria, this does not guarantee you will be awarded a grant. There are many applications and 3 grants are awarded annually.  

"The grant will allow us to carry out our educational mission, which aims to break the taboo surrounding menstruation and act to reduce waste by investing in our social projects, and thus increase the outreach of our initiative to the rest of Canada. "
Érica Lebrun-Gauvin, Mme l'Ovary
"The grant will be used towards optimization of the scale-up manufacturing process. This fund will allow us to transfer our production from the current semi-automated process to the fully automated one, and increase the shelf life of our products."
Ashwaq Al-Hashedi, Invicare
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