News room > Press releases > 2013 > Thanks to a gift from the National Bank, HEC Montréal is creating the Institute for Entrepreneurship National Bank | HEC Montréal

Thanks to a gift from the National Bank, HEC Montréal is creating the Institute for Entrepreneurship National Bank | HEC Montréal

Thursday October 31, 2013

Montreal, October 31, 2013 – HEC Montréal is pleased to announce the creation of the Institute for Entrepreneurship National Bank | HEC Montréal, thanks to a $10 million donation announced last January by the National Bank as part of the Campus Montréal fundraising campaign.

Institute for entrepreneurship

The Institute, to be devoted to entrepreneurship, entrepreneurial takeovers and business families, will give students from the Campus Montréal institutions (HEC Montréal, Polytechnique Montréal and Université de Montréal) and the business community access to tools and the opportunity to attend events to encourage and support the creation and takeovers of businesses, by helping to develop innovative entrepreneurs. The Institute will offer activities revolving around education, research, spinoffs and networking, as well as training.

“The National Bank has supported the growth and success of local businesses’ since it was founded more than 150 years ago. So it was a natural step for us to join with HEC Montréal to create this Institute,” explains Louis Vachon, President and Chief Executive Officer of National Bank. “Starting from our combined strengths, we can do more to help develop people and their talents. This is essential to a dynamic entrepreneurial culture in Quebec.”

“The Institute for Entrepreneurship National Bank | HEC Montréal confirms the key role of the university community in creating and transferring knowledge regarding entrepreneurial management,” agrees HEC Montréal Director Michel Patry. “Together, the National Bank and HEC Montréal are building an institute of entrepreneurship that has no equivalent in Canada.”


An Institute at the heart of entrepreneurial growth

The Institute for Entrepreneurship National Bank | HEC Montréal will have four roles:

  1. An observatory of Quebec entrepreneurial trends and good practices. The goal of the Observatory is to serve as a platform for discussion and sharing information, for everyone interested in issues related to entrepreneurship, SMBs and family businesses. The Observatory is intended to become a key source of statistics, information and knowledge. In keeping with this ambition, the Observatory will be associated with the Fondation de l’entrepreneurship to produce and share new data, drawing on the complementary expertise of the two institutions.

  2. An idea accelerator. This aspect of the Institute will be of interest mainly to undergraduate students enrolled in the very promising Rémi Marcoux Entrepreneurship Track, which focuses on business creation, takeovers and the growth of family businesses. The accelerator will offer personalized support and mentorship by experienced businesspeople. In addition, students will receive financial support.

  3. A centre for knowledge transfer and customized training. The Institute will offer seminars on the themes of entrepreneurship, entrepreneurial takeovers and managing family businesses. In addition, training given by HEC Montréal faculty and experienced businesspeople will provide valuable tools for entrepreneurs, potential successors and other professionals concerned. Case studies, presentations and first-hand accounts by business leaders will give participants a chance to draw on real-life business situations and develop skills they can apply immediately in their professional lives.

  4. A networking and event space. The Institute will organize many public activities, from symposia to networking opportunities and a competition for new entrepreneurs, Les Médaillés de la relève. All these events will be opportunities for students, faculty and entrepreneurs to forge bonds and discuss common interests in a comfortable atmosphere, while encouraging the development of a culture of entrepreneurship.

“Entrepreneurial initiatives will no longer be limited to a select few,” says Luis Cisneros, Associate Professor with the Department of Management at HEC Montréal and Director of the Institute for Entrepreneurship National Bank | HEC Montréal. “The Institute will offer new training and nourish and share knowledge in this field, as well as creating bonds among students, faculty and entrepreneurs. By bringing together in one place all the players needed to develop creative start-ups and entrepreneurial takeovers, this ecosystem we are creating will provide an ideal setting to address the entrepreneurial challenges of today and tomorrow.”



About National Bank of Canada

With $187 billion in assets as at July 31, 2013, National Bank of Canada (, together with its subsidiaries, forms one of Canada’s leading integrated financial groups, and was named among the 20 strongest banks in the world by Bloomberg Markets magazine. The Bank has close to 20,000 employees and is widely recognized as a top employer. Its securities are listed on the Toronto Stock Exchange (TSX: NA). Follow the Bank’s activities via social media and learn more about its extensive community involvement at and


About HEC Montréal

A world-class French-language business school with an emphasis on multilingual teaching, HEC Montréal has over 12,000 students and trains more than 7,000 executives and managers from all industries every year. The School holds numerous accreditations and offers some 40 academic programs at all levels of university education. With 280 professors and researchers trained at the world’s most prestigious universities, HEC Montréal boasts cutting-edge management teaching and research. Some fifty research units, including 25 chairs—7 of them Canada Research Chairs—give the School its reputation for innovation, attracting students from close to 140 countries. HEC Montréal was Canada’s first business school and has trained over 71,000 students in all fields of management since its founding in 1907. | Facebook | Twitter | LinkedIn


About Campus Montréal 

Campus Montréal is the umbrella organization bringing together HEC Montréal, Polytechnique Montréal and Université de Montréal for a joint fundraising campaign. These three institutions make up the biggest Francophone university complex in the world, and the leading centre of university research in Canada. The institutions that make up Campus Montréal are in the top one per cent of the world's best universities. John Parisella is Executive Director of the Campus Montréal major fundraising campaign, with Louise Arbour, Hélène Desmarais, Geoffrey Molson, Michael Sabia and Thierry Vandal serving as co-chairs. With a goal of $500 million, this is the most ambitious fundraising campaign ever launched by French-language university institutions. To date, the Campus Montréal major campaign has raised over $200 million.


National Bank of Canada: Claude Breton, Assistant Vice-President, Public Affairs, 
514 394-8644

HEC Montréal: Marc Tulin, Public Relations Adviser, 514 340-6298 or