Wesley and Mary Nicol Charitable Foundation

Wesley and Mary Nicol Charitable Foundation

November 22, 2007 11:00 ET

Fourth Annual National Wes Nicol Entrepreneurial Award Celebrates Canada's Young Entrepreneurs

OTTAWA, ONTARIO--(Marketwire - Nov. 22, 2007) - The fourth annual national Wes Nicol Entrepreneurial Award kicked off its competition today at 14 leading Canadian universities. This prestigious contest champions young entrepreneurs, developing the next generation of visionaries to drive the Canadian economy.

The Award celebrates entrepreneurial spirit, great business ideas, drive and enthusiasm, recognizing that excellent business ideas can come from students in any discipline. The top six teams will pitch their business ideas to some of Canada's top entrepreneurs in an exciting award ceremony to be held at the Chateau Laurier in Ottawa on May 6, 2008.

Participating schools include Carleton University, University of Ottawa, Acadia, University of Toronto, and University of British Columbia.

Wes Nicol is thrilled to announce that the Keynote speaker for the 2008 Award Ceremony will be Frank McKenna, Deputy Chair TD Bank Financial Group, and former Canadian Ambassador to the United States and premier of New Brunswick.

Mr. McKenna will be following in the footsteps of illustrious entrepreneurs Sir Terrence Matthews, Leonard Lee, Founder of Lee Valley Tools, and Eric Sprott of Carleton University's Sprott School of Business, who all willingly supported the Award in past years.

Accepting the invitation, Mr. McKenna said: "Entrepreneurs are a fearless lot. They see opportunity where most see nothing. They take risks when most do nothing. Through their character and conviction, our nation has grown and prospered. This entrepreneurial spirit is now on display with a new generation of Canadians. We must encourage their ambitions and recognize their success. That is a key aim of the Wes Nicol Entrepreneurial Award and one reason I'm so pleased to support this exciting initiative."

New this year is a regional competition, established due to the growth in the number of participating universities and colleges. Seven schools from Southwestern Ontario compete for $50K in cash and prizes in the Nicol LaunchPad $50K Venture Creation Competition, designed to assist in narrowing down the growing number of teams vying to attend the National Award competition in Ottawa.

About the Wes Nicol Entrepreneurial Award

The Wes Nicol Entrepreneurial Award was established in 1997 by Wes Nicol, a successful Ottawa-based business leader, and became a national event in 2005. The competition offers students a true-to-life situation that reflects the real-world pressures an entrepreneur faces to get financial backing and support.

Fourteen Canadian universities have already signed up for the 2008 Award. The top six teams will go on to the finals in Ottawa. In 2009, the Award will be expanded to include ten more universities and three more regional competitions across Canada.

2008 participating universities are Acadia University, Brock University, Carleton University, University of Guelph, McMaster University, University of Alberta, University of Manitoba, University of Ottawa, University of Toronto, University of Victoria, University of Western Ontario, Wilfrid Laurier University, University or Waterloo and York University.

More information on the Wes Nicol Entrepreneurial Award is available at http://www.nicol-award.com

More information on the Nicol LaunchPad $50K Venture Creation Competition is available at http://www.launchpad50k.ca/

Contact Information