Startup Canada announces Margaret Magdesian as the 2018 Canadian Export Challenge Pitch Competition at Startup Canada Day on the Hill

Ottawa, ON  – October 18 2018 | Startup Canada, the national rallying community and voice for Canadian entrepreneurs, along with UPS Canada®, Export Development Canada, and the Canadian Trade Commissioner Service announced today, at Startup Canada Day on the Hill, the winner of the 2018 Canadian Export Challenge.

Margaret Magdesian, Founder and CEO of ANANDA Devices , winner of the 2018 Canadian Export Challenge received a  grand prize of $10,000 in capital as well as $100,000 in support resources from partners. ANANDA Devices is a Montreal-based company that combines expertise in organ-on-a-chip and stem cells technology to develop mini brains and mini spinal-cords-on-a-chip, enabling more efficient testing of drugs directly on patients’ derived tissues.

“It is so nice to see so many people involved in innovation and in the Startup world who are trying to help us, we really feel supported by Canada,” said Margaret Magdesian, Founder and CEO of Ananda Devices. “I know we can deliver, but now we are asking for help to make Canada a major player.”

“I can invision Ananda Devices becoming a household name, a name known in hospitals and care facilities globally. With their exceptionally innovative technology and drive to steer away from animal-testing, their product is set to become a global game-changer in health-tech,” said Victoria Lennox, CEO of Startup Canada. “We know Margaret and her Team will represent Québec with pride in Ottawa in October at the final pitch competition.”

The Canadian Export Challenge is a platform to foster a national dialogue to promote Canadian entrepreneurs to own the global innovation and entrepreneurship podium while equipping entrepreneurs with collateral and support to leverage Canada as a launchpad for global market entry and growth. Earlier this Fall, the challenge took place in Toronto, Calgary, Montreal, Halifax and Vancouver, offering sessions, panels, networking and regional pitch competitions to Canadian entrepreneurs.

This is the inaugural year of the Canadian Export Development challenge and is the first time it has been a part of Startup Canada Day on the Hill. Startup Canada day on the Hill is Canada’s largest national entrepreneurship event convening leading entrepreneurs, innovators, investors, industry executives, and government representatives annually to raise the bar for Canada as a globally competitive innovation nation. The final showdown was hosted by Dr. Sean Wise, Host of the Naked Entrepreneur, presented by Ryerson University, and was judged by Paul Gaspar, Director of Small Business, UPS Canada, Nicole Verkindt, Founder and CEO, OMX, W. Brett Wilson, O.C., entrepreneur, investor and philanthropist, Justine Hendricks, Vice-President of Working Capital Solutions, Export Development Canada and Jeff Cates, President and CEO, Intuit Canada.

For more information and to schedule interviews, please contact:

Maddie Stiles
Media Relations, Startup Canada

About Startup Canada

Startup Canada is the national rallying community and voice for Canada’s 2.3 million entrepreneurs. Since launching in 2012, Startup Canada has grown to represent more than 200,000 entrepreneurs and 50 grassroots communities from coast to coast to coast. Through digital programs and flagship events, Startup Canada is the network promoting, inspiring, educating, connecting and giving a voice to Canada’s entrepreneurs; supporting them to start, operate and scale businesses that build a better Canada for the world today and for future generations. For more information, visit

About Startup Canada Day on the Hill

Startup Canada Day on the Hill is the largest annual national entrepreneurship event convening entrepreneurs, innovators, investors, industry executives, and government representatives annually to raise the bar for Canada as a globally competitive innovation nation. Attendees will show the world that Canada is a nation of entrepreneurs and advance Canada as a leading global destination for entrepreneurship, innovation and investment. For more information, visit

About UPS Canada

UPS (NYSE: UPS) is a global leader in logistics, offering a broad range of solutions including transporting packages and freight; facilitating international trade, and deploying advanced technology to more efficiently manage the world of business. Headquartered in Atlanta, UPS serves more than 220 countries and territories worldwide. The company can be found on the web at and its corporate blog can be found at To get UPS news direct, follow @UPS_Canada on Twitter.

About EDC

Export Development Canada (EDC) helps Canadian companies of all sizes go, grow, and succeed in their international business. As a financial Crown corporation, EDC provides financing, insurance, bonding, trade knowledge, and matchmaking connections to help Canadian companies sell and invest abroad. EDC can also provide financial solutions to foreign buyers to facilitate and grow purchases from Canadian companies. For more information about how EDC can help your company, call us at 1-888-434-8508 or visit

About the Canadian Trade Commissioner Service

The Canadian Trade Commissioner Service (TCS) is Canada’s largest network of international business professionals – specialists with field access to global business opportunities to help Canadian companies succeed in markets spanning the globe. With over 120 years’ experience, the TCS is the go-to service for international business expertise and helps Canadian companies navigate the complexities of international markets with on-the-ground assistance available in over 160 cities worldwide. Counting with a network of more than 1,300 Trade Commissioners working globally, whom a large majority are locally engaged experts in their market, the TCS also includes the Regional Business Network, which provides on-the-ground client service across Canada through 5 Regional Office hubs and Client Service Satellite offices co-located with partners in every province of Canada. By delivering tailored advice, the TCS helps Canadian businesses gain market insight, find new opportunities, connect with key contacts, resolve business problems, in order for Canadian businesses to make better and timely decisions, propelling them to global growth. For more information, visit