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Economy and entrepreneurship

7th edition of the Cooperathon

December 12, 2022

On Thursday, December 1, the Cooperathon Gala was held at Zù in Maison Alcan. The Cooperathon is a platform for generating impactful entrepreneurs that was jointly presented by Desjardins and Montreal NewTech, and the Gala offered the perfect backdrop for awarding the winners of the 7th annual Cooperathon and celebrating their achievements.

The projects presented during the Grand Pitch on November 15 were all very promising. Each of the 35 teams that entered showed a genuine commitment to tackling challenges based on the themes of human health and the health of the planet while building a convincing case for the feasibility and viability of their solutions. We’d like to acknowledge the remarkable juries that had the difficult task of selecting the winners. We’d also like to highlight the outstanding commitment of the challenge partners—Microsoft, KPMG, Desjardins, ZoneAgtech and Genome Québec—which succeeded in stimulating the entrepreneurial ecosystem by drawing attention to issues that concern us all. Finally, we’d like to recognize the essential role the mentors and experts play by making themselves available to support the teams as they brainstorm for ideas then bring those ideas to life.

The Cooperathon has 2 team categories for participants to choose from. The Alpha Team journey gives participants the opportunity to learn about entrepreneurship by creating their own team after one or more pre-competition activities, while the Beta Startup journey is for developing startups with a working prototype that want to market or pivot.

Here is the list of 2022 Cooperathon winners :

  • Cooperathon Grand Prize – Beta Startup ($20,000 cash): HOP Tech
    Provides IOT machine learning applications for identifying and stratifying patients with respiratory disease, type2-diabetes and heart failure.
  • Cooperathon Grand Prize – Alpha Team ($10,000 cash): Aqua Preserve
    Complements the use of a 4K underwater camera with intelligent facial recognition to monitor invasive species in lakes and rivers.
  • Open Innovation Prize ($5,000 cash + $2,000 in time by our community partner Esplanade): BioSAM
    Developed a proprietary beneficial fungus which could reduce phosphate use and help wheat producers save money.
  • Artificial Intelligence Prize ($5,000 cash): Simmunome
    Uses AI to transform physiological systems into computational models to facilitate and to accelerate therapeutic and preventive drug discovery.
  • Ontario-Atlantic-West Canada Impact Prize ($5,000 cash) + Equity, Diversity & Inclusion Prize ($3,000 cash): Gaia’s Gift
    Aims to be an intelligent platform by using AI and facial recognition to enable untrained users to assess their infant's respiratory health.
  • Team Engagement in Cooperathon Prize ($2,500 cash): Smart Traffic Light DynaMo
    Provides safe and scalable AI-based adaptive traffic signal control to alleviate the social and environmental tolls of urban road network congestion.
  • Audience Impact Prize ($2,500 cash): Nova Food
    Is a mobile application that provides consumers with a dashboard about how the food they buy can impact their budget, health, and the environment. 
  • Mentor Engagement Recognition: Mathieu Lachaîne

What they said about their involvement in this year's Cooperathon:

"Once again this year, the key players in innovation in Quebec and Canada have come together to offer solutions to the contemporary issues we all face. Gathered together at Cooperathon 2022, we and our exceptional partners had the privilege of supporting start-up founders who are both brilliant and inspiring. This year’s competition has just ended, and at Desjardins we’re already thinking about how we’ll continue to support impactful entrepreneurs! Congratulations to all the teams ... and stay tuned!"

Mathieu Bélisle
Director, Innovation and Emerging Business Opportunities, Desjardins

"Another colorful competition with a theme that makes sense given the current context. As a co-presenter this year, KPMG is proud to support entrepreneurship that aims to increase the positive impact on the planet and on humans. We're honoured to be at the forefront in supporting innovation and leveraging our firm's expertise to foster the development of these startups.

Congratulations to this year's Alpha and Beta cohort!"

Nada Belhadfa,
Account Managere and KPMG Cooperathon Lead