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The future HEC Montreal downtown building will bear the name of Hélène Desmarais

Wednesday March 24, 2021

 

Montréal, March 24, 2021 – HEC Montréal is proud to announce that its future home in the downtown business district will be named the Hélène Desmarais Building, in recognition of this Quebec businesswoman’s unflagging commitment to her alma mater and a donation of $7 million by the Paul and Hélène Desmarais family. This gift, the most generous in the School’s history from an individual or family, will go toward the construction of the building. Starting in the fall of 2022, the Hélène Desmarais Building will help the School foster collaboration and exchanges among professionals, entrepreneurs and academics.

This is an important step for HEC Montréal: the first time in its history that it has given a name to one of its buildings.

“For over 30 years, Hélène Desmarais has made an exceptional contribution to the School’s renown and to developing future generations of managers. Associating her name with this new building is a way of underscoring the important and constantly growing role of women in entrepreneurship and the business world,” says HEC Montréal Director Federico Pasin. 

“The new downtown building will let HEC Montréal continue to play its role as a global hub of scientific advances. I share the School’s ambition to capitalize on its internationally recognized fields of expertise and to act as a driving force in supporting businesses as they take on the challenges of technological transformation. This close and agile collaboration with industry will be founded on practical expertise in the economic world and in-depth knowledge of the technologies shaping our future,” says Hélène Desmarais, who was the first woman appointed to chair the School’s Board of Directors, in 2003.

The focus in the Hélène Desmarais Building will be on training for practising professionals, such as the MBA, EMBA and executive education programs, which draw experienced professionals from all over the world. The School will be more accessible to executives and professionals working in the downtown business district, helping to transfer knowledge to organizations and improve the skills of the business people who power the Quebec economy.


Fundraising goal within reach

“The HEC Montréal Foundation is pleased and privileged that Paul and Hélène Desmarais are supporting the cause of HEC Montréal. Their aim has always been to encourage the School to join the ranks of the top institutions in the world, by training tomorrow’s leaders,” says Michel Patry, President and CEO of the HEC Montréal Foundation.

With this gift, the HEC Montréal Foundation has already reached 60% of its objective, i.e. $24 million of the $40 million target, to support the construction of the downtown building. Different initiatives will be launched over the next few months, as it continues its “Powering the Heart of Business” campaign by appealing to the HEC Montréal community and the general public.


New building to open in the fall of 2022

The new building in the downtown business district, set next to St. Patrick's Basilica, is now under construction and is to open in the fall of 2022. In addition to the programs for practising executives and professionals, the Hélène Desmarais Building will house branches of several research and knowledge transfer centres and the School’s entrepreneurship and innovation facility, along with a conference centre and other community services.

See the video on the future building

For more details on the future building

For more details on how the future building is progressing

For more details on the “Powering the Heart of Business” fundraising campaign

 

Information
Émilie Novales
HEC Montréal
Senior Media Relations Advisor
emilie.novales@hec.ca
438 520-3536


News room > Press releases > 2021 > The future HEC Montreal downtown building will bear the name of Hélène Desmarais