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The CDPQ-HEC Montréal Going Global Program

A unique training program that combines training, networking and coaching.


Free for selected businesses

Applications open from September 4 to December 8, 2017. Enrolment limited to selected applicants.

Three evening, 5 p.m. to 7 p.m.

Nine breakfast, 7 a.m. to 9 a.m.

Course given in French

Espace CDPQ
Starting January 10, 2018, ending April 4, 2018

Three evening: January 10, February 21, April 4, 2018
Nine breakfast: January 17, 24, 31, February 7, 14, 28, March 14, 21, 28, 2018

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The International Growth of SMEs program, a joint initiative of la Caisse de dépôt et

placement du Québec and HEC Montréal, has been developed to address the following


  • What strengths do SMEs need to develop to be ready, willing and able to go global?
  • What’s the secret to deciphering the global environment and new business cultures?
  • How can you select the best strategy for entering a foreign market?
  • How can you differentiate your product or service in the international marketplace?
  • How can you optimize your supply chain and achieve operational excellence on a global scale?
  • Which business and financial risks are the most critical for SMEs as they expand into the world arena?
  • Drive, determination, engagement, leadership… How can a leader and an executive team prepare themselves to face the new management challenges that come with global expansion?

Is this for you?

  • Are you running a small or medium-sized business and looking to conquer new markets abroad?
  • Are you wondering what strategy to adopt and how to prepare your business for this challenge?
  • Are you hoping to guide your team through the transition by embracing an influential, strategic leadership style?
  • Would you like to learn from world-respected experts and business leaders who have been particularly successful in their efforts to go global?
  • Then, yes, this program is for you!

Special features

  • Program that caters exclusively to SME leaders determined to explore and capitalize on new business opportunities in foreign markets.
  • Led by a high-calibre team of HEC Montréal faculty members.
  • Inspiring stories from entrepreneurs and executives who have “been there” and met the challenge of going global head on.
  • Jam-packed with content that extends beyond a traditional seminar, this program will take participants on a learning trajectory geared specifically to their needs so that they can PLAN, EXECUTE and LEAD this game-changing transformation.
  • The formula combines training, networking and coaching opportunities to allow you to fine-tune your ability to utilize the right growth strategy and share your newfound knowledge with your closest colleagues.

"As part of our strategy to help Quebec businesses expand into global markets, la Caisse is proud to contribute to this unique education program that supports entrepreneurs as they implement their strategic plans for international growth."

Christian Dubé, Executive Vice-President, Quebec, Caisse de dépôt et placement du Québec

"We are delighted to be teaming up with la Caisse and to see our faculty members join with seasoned practitioners to help our entrepreneurs flourish by taking advantage of promising business opportunities and bringing made-in-Quebec solutions to the rest of the world."

Michel Patry, Director, HEC Montréal

Coordinator and Instructor

Jean-François Ouellet
Jean-François Ouellet
Fellow, CIRANO, PhD (Marketing), Postdoctoral Fellowship (Innovation Management)
Associate Professor, HEC Montréal

Guest Speakers

Audry Larocque is the president and CEO of iPerceptions, a global leader in improving customer experiences through data analytics. A serial entrepreneur, Mr. Larocque’s long list of achievements include co-founding Neuralitic, Cilys and Deuteron. He is also an active mentor and serves on the board of directors of Seevibes. 

Tatiana Bossy is the co-founder of Le Grand, a company specializing in high-end food products marketed primarily through big-box retailers. After studying history and literature at Concordia University and dabbling at the Institut de tourisme et d’hôtellerie du Québec (ITHQ), Ms. Bossy and her husband, Bernard Le Grand, founded the company in 1997. Le Grand has since enjoyed a great deal of success, and its products have found an appreciative clientele in Quebec – Le Grand’s primary market, as well as elsewhere in Canada and the United States. 

Yvon Brind’Amour worked at Lafarge, a French multinational specializing in the manufacture of building supplies (cement, concrete and aggregates), for 14 years, during which time he served as CFO for the Americas and senior vice-president of investor relations. He holds a bachelor’s degree in accounting from the Université du Québec à Montréal and an MBA from the Université de Sherbrooke. He currently runs his own consulting firm, Yvon Brind’Amour Conseil Inc., and sits on the board of the Guido Molinari Foundation and the Kieff Antonio Grediaga Foundation. 

Bertin Nadeau has enjoyed a prolific career in both the academic and the business spheres. He has a DBA from Indiana University and taught at HEC Montréal from 1969 to 1976. In the early 1980s, he went into business and acquired the organ building firm of Casavant Frères. During this time, he also served as President and CEO of the Unigesco management company – a position that resulted in his taking over the leadership reins of Provigo from 1989 to 1993. He has since resumed his teaching duties at HEC Montréal, where he has been an adjunct professor since 1997. He holds honorary doctorate degrees from Queen’s University, Université de Moncton, Université Sainte-Anne and Bishop’s University.

In 1985, Réjean Landry joined the multinational Lallemand, where he served as VP Finance and Administration for 25 years. During this period of rapid growth, Lallemand extended its reach to over 40 countries worldwide. The company currently has a workforce of 2,800 employees. Among Mr. Landry’s responsibilities in this capacity were accounting, controls, IT, finance, taxation management, general administration, and acquisition strategy and implementation. Today, he continues to work part-time for Lallemand as an advisor and senior VP in charge of executive training. His previous experience was acquired in the retail food industry, where he was the financial manager for a co-op. Prior to this, he was as a financial services officer with the Canadian Armed Forces, which included an assignment for the United Nations and a training position at the Royal Military College Saint-Jean.


Mercadex experts

Jean-Luc Serre
MBA (Finance and International Marketing), HEC Montréal; GDip (Administration), B.SP (International Trade Relations)

Consultant, Globalization Strategies, Mercadex International
Mr. Serre is an expert in international management with over 30 years in the marketing, finance and business development fields. He has held executive positions in several industries and worked extensively abroad, and he draws on this experience to contribute to the development of the businesses he advises. As a consultant in globalization strategies for Mercadex International, he provides support to project management teams and senior executives of numerous SMEs in Canada and around the world.

Guillaume Cariou
MSc (International Management), HEC Montréal

Managing Director Mercadex International
Mr. Cariou joined Mercadex in 2006 as an international market analyst. He was subsequently promoted to senior analyst and head of international studies and strategies before being appointed Managing Director. In addition to his duties at Mercadex, Mr. Cariou teaches foreign trade at Centech, a business incubator created by the École de technologie supérieure. During the course of his career, he has conducted a number of studies for firms looking to break into foreign markets and contributed to market research in the fields of international education and the environment.

Jean-Paul David
MBA (Marketing and International Management), HEC Montréal

Founder and President, Mercadex International
Mr. David has over 30 years of hands-on experience in marketing, finance and international business strategy. In 1994, after working in the financial sector for nearly a decade, he founded Mercadex International Inc., a consulting firm dedicated to contributing to the growth of businesses in international markets. In addition to serving as President of Mercadex International, he teaches international business at HEC Montréal, the École de technologie supérieure (ÉTS) and the IMBA program at the Université Jean-Moulin/Lyon 3 in France. Mr. David is an internationally published author of a number of books and articles on globalization strategies.

Gabriel Éthier

Senior Advisor, International Business Development, Quebec Global 100 CEO Network
Mr. Éthier is a senior advisor with the Quebec Global 100 CEO Network, whose mission is to support the global expansion of prominent Quebec-based firms. Prior to this, he served as Vice-President, Strategic Development, at Textron Financial Corporation in Toronto. Throughout the course of his career, he has occupied high-level positions with Transamerica Commercial Finance, Bombardier Capital and Desjardins, where he was involved in operational management and the development of the commercial and international financing units. Among Mr. Éthier’s credentials are the prestigious Queen’s Executive Program and certification through Mercadex, making him an excellent partner for businesses looking to maximize their bottom line and sustainability as they expand into the global marketplace.

Geneviève Meloche
PhD (International Communication)

Ms. Meloche is a consultant in globalization strategies with Mercadex International and president and founder of StrateG international. She has a solid background in business development and international project management in more than 30 countries in Asia, Latin America, Africa and the Middle East. She has worked with companies of all sizes as well as several Canadian NGOs. She is fluent in English, French and Spanish and has a basic knowledge of Japanese. In addition to providing consulting and market analysis services, she offers a wide range of customized training solutions in international management and intercultural negotiation. Ms. Meloche is also certified with Mercadex as a business coach for executives looking to explore international markets with a focus on profitability and performance.

Module 1: Understanding the international business environment 
Nicolas Vincent

  • Beyond borders and outside your comfort zone: Anticipating economic, institutional, social and regulatory differences from one country to another
  • Recognizing, decoding and interpreting key signs to avoid pitfalls and maximize performance in the global environment
  • Making sense of current economic issues and challenges and understanding their potential impacts on SMEs looking to expand globally
  • Better grasping the role and power of various global players (governments and central banks) that influence the economic environment for SMEs

Module 2: Growth strategies and globalization 
Jean-Luc Serre

  • Expansion, exporting and globalization for SMEs: Making the decision to grow
  • Competitive strengths and assets to leverage national and international markets
  • Diagnosing sources of value creation: Choice of imposing or adapting an existing business model
  • Strategies and approaches for international growth: Direct investment, partnership, collaboration, joint venture, takeover, etc.
  • Developing and implementing a strategy for going global: Which approach is best?

Module 3: Operational excellence 
Jacques Roy

  • Key levers and best practices for achieving operational excellence on a global scale
  • Optimizing your supply chain: A must for going global
    • Using KPIs to maximize performance
    • Managing procurement in foreign markets, especially in countries with a significant price differential
    • Managing relations with suppliers and service providers
    • Optimizing transportation, warehousing and distribution operations
  • Risk management, incoterms and trade compliance

Module 4: International marketing and commercialization 
Jean-François Ouellet

  • What characterizes international marketing strategies?
  • Selecting the right market entry strategy
  • International marketing and cultural sensitivity: Application vs. adaptation
  • Communication, promotion and negotiation strategies
  • New channels and “Marketing 2.0”
  • The role of branding

Module 5: Business risks, financing and financial strategy 
Jacques Lemay

  • Various sources of organizational and business risk in the global environment
  • Financial assessment: A tool for measuring profitability and risk
  • Relevance, benefits and limitations of various sources of funds
  • Financial strategy and risk management

Module 6: Leadership, executive team and talent management
Alain Gosselin

  • Lessons learned by business leaders who have gone global
  • Applying transformational leadership at a critical moment
  • Taking your team’s performance to the next level
  • Tips for world-class SMEs: How to attract, develop and retain top-notch talent
  • Taking stock of existing skill sets in intercultural management

A unique training program that is divided into three parts: TRAINING, NETWORKING and COACHING.



  • EMBA-inspired teaching style that is dynamic, hands-on and practical, where participants are actively encouraged to share their thoughts and experiences.
  • Six training modules over six months (1 day per module).
  • Facilitated by six HEC Montréal professors and business leaders, all of whom have been selected for their expertise, superior teaching skills and complementary styles.
  • Divided into three blocks, which constitute the pillars of the learning process.



  • Facilitated by HEC Montréal.
  • Opportunity to meet other business leaders up against similar circumstances.
  • Encourages participating SMEs to share best practices and benefit from mutual support.
  • Compelling range of one-of-a-kind activities designed to help SMEs continue to gain a better understanding of the challenges associated with international growth, including Observatoire PDG, seminars run by Executive Education HEC Montréal and the National Bank | HEC Montréal Institute for Entrepreneurship, Carrefour Logistique seminars, Mosaic’s “5@8 créatifs,” the “Meet a CFO” series and HR leadership talks.
  • Fosters links with HEC Montréal’s consulting teams to support globalization-oriented initiatives, through the MBA, MSc internship and Campus Abroad programs.
  • Access to HEC Montréal’s international alumni network of ambassadors and delegates, active in more than 25 countries.


  • One day of individual coaching with an experienced professional to map out the key elements of an action plan for growth in the global market.
  • Series of exclusive webinars to complement the training content, led by recognized experts in various technical fields, e.g., doing business in Asia or Mexico; standards and certification; taxation, legal and customs considerations; and managing currency risk.
  • Wealth of electronic resources for each training module is available: Web interviews, articles, evaluation grids, resources, financing, business opportunities.

Participants in all of our seminars will receive a certificate of completion from Executive Education HEC Montréal.

Program registration

All registrations must be accompanied by a letter of intent that includes a brief description of the following:

  • Participant’s firm (number of employees, sector, main products/services, recent sales performance/growth)
  • Competitive advantages that differentiate the business from its rivals
  • Motivating factors underlying the decision to go global (why now?) and short-term outlook.

All letters must be sent to

An individual meeting with preselected participants will be incorporated into the registration process to go over the program’s objectives and applicants’ expectations

For more information

Chantal Bruneau
Chantal Bruneau
514 340-6010

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