NEW CXC Speakers Announced: Entrepreneurs Going Global Panel

Ottawa, ON – August 11, 2020 | This September as part of the fully-digital 2020 Canadian Export Challenge (CXC), Startup Canada is welcoming a number of prominent speakers to our regional “Entrepreneurs Going Global” panels. 

These public figures and community leaders were hand picked by Startup Canada to give CXC attendees valuable insights and to help them take their start-ups global. A few prominent panelists include:    

George Stroumboulopoulos – Ontario Panelist Speaker

George is a television and radio interviewer, director, actor, writer and media producer. Very well known across Canada’s media landscape, he is the host and executive producer of The Strombo Show (CBC Music) and House of Strombo with Apple Music. George was the host and executive producer of the CBC talk show George Stroumboulopoulos Tonight and the prime-time news show The Hour and Stroumboulopoulos on CNN. He has also hosted The NewMusic (MuchMusic), Live in Toronto (102.1 The Edge) and anchored Hockey Night in Canada. 

From Oprah to Maya Angelou, The Tragically Hip to Ice Cube, and from Prime Ministers to Presidents, George has been a leading voice for over 25 years in connecting audiences with the people they admire most. He is an 11 time Gemini and Canadian Screen Award winner and Juno nominated filmmaker. George is the first Canadian ambassador for the United Nations World Food Programme, is on the Canadian Board of Directors for Artists for Peace and Justice, and started the George Stroumboulopoulos Music Therapy Scholarship.

Theresa Corazon Laurico – Prairie Panelist Speaker

Theresa is an award-winning entrepreneur, global leader, speaker and movie producer. She is the founder of the SociaLIGHT Conference, an annual event that brings together over 1,000 start-ups, entrepreneurs and community leaders to inspire individuals to use their businesses as a force for good and to promote the triple bottom line – people, planet and prosperity. She was recently nominated for the annual Women of Influence Canadian Entrepreneur Awards and was named a 2020 Women Entrepreneur Icon. After a life-changing accident of being hit by a bus and surviving, Theresa’s message is one of faith and resilience.

Tareq Hadhad – Atlantic Panelist Speaker

Tareq was a Syrian refugee who moved to Canada in 2015 on a community-based sponsorship with his family and is now living in Antigonish, Nova Scotia. He is the founder of Peace by Chocolate, the recipient of Startup Canada’s National Newcomer Entrepreneur Award, named one of the Top 25 Immigrants in the Maritimes and was selected by Google as the National Hero Case for 2018. 

In 2012 the Hadhad home and factory, which had been shipping chocolate treats across the Middle-East for more than 20 years, was destroyed – forcing Tareq and his family to seek refuge. As a former medical student, he joined medical relief efforts after arriving in Lebanon. Upon arriving in Canada, Tareq was focused on rebuilding his family’s company, creating jobs in his community and helping to support the local economy. Passionate about peacekeeping and entrepreneurship, he has been invited to share his story across Canada and internationally. Tareq’s journey is now being made into a feature film.       

Nicole McLaren – British Columbia & North Panelist Speaker

Nicole is an award-winning Indigenous entrepreneur from British Columbia. She founded Raven Reads, a subscription box that includes literature and goods from Indigenous authors and entrepreneurs from across North America, that is the only product of its kind with a social purpose – to promote positive relationships between Indigenous and non-Indigenous peoples. Nicole is also the founder of the Indigenous Women’s Business Network, a non-profit which provides support for Indigenous women to start and grow a business.  

Register Today!

Bruce Croxon and Michele Romanow, Canadian entrepreneurs and cast members of the CBC’s Dragons’ Den, will also be announcing the winners of this year’s Canadian Export Challenge.  

Think your start-up has what it takes to compete in the 2020 Canadian Export Challenge? Not ready to pitch but want to gain valuable insights from our prominent speakers? Visit now to send in your pitch application or register to attend. See you there!

Regional CXC Dates:

Entrepreneurs are encouraged to apply and submit video pitches until September 9th, 2020

Visit for tips on how to prepare for your pitch or to learn more about CXC 2020.

For more information please contact:

Paul O’Brien
Digital Marketing & Communications Coordinator



Bridget O'Shaughnessy

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