L-R: Funmi Oyapero, Bentley Chen, Tom Corr (President and CEO, OCE), Ali Fard (Co-founder and CEO, Hexa), Nathaly Arraiz Matute (Electrical Engineer , InteraXon), Joshua Varkey, Michael Nobrega (Board Chair, OCE), Emalie Santos, Brock Babin and Dillon Anderson

Six high school entrepreneurs were announced as winners of the Young Entrepreneurs, Make Your Pitch competition at this year’s Discovery conference.

Presented by Ontario Centres of Excellence (OCE) and the Government of Ontario, the competition has showcased high school entrepreneurs from across Ontario for the past seven years. Students applied to the Young Entrepreneurs, Make Your Pitch competition by submitting their business ideas online via a two-minute video and 20 students were chosen as finalists from online voting and judges’ scores.

Each finalist was awarded a trip to Toronto to pitch their ideas live at Discovery 2019. From those 20 finalists, the following six were chosen as the winners:

  • Brock Babin of Kapuskasing for the company Northern Edge (Conseil Scolaire de District du Nord-Est de l'Ontario)
  • Funmi Oyapero of Etobicoke for the company Goddess Girl Cosmetics (Father Henry Carr Catholic Secondary School)
  • Dillon Anderson of Callander for the company D Target Hockey School (West Ferris Secondary School)
  • Emalie Santos of Mississauga for the company Elements of Fun (St. Joseph Secondary School)
  • Joshua Varkey of Windsor for the company Geogen (Assumption Catholic High School)
  • Bentley Chen of Markham for the company The Shop – Youth Auto Sourcing (Markville Secondary School)

The winners each received reserved entry to the Ontario Summer Company program, a $750 education voucher, a Hexa Eclipse tablet projector, and a Muse brain-sensing headband from InteraXon.

“I’d like to congratulate this year’s winners, finalists, and participants of the Young Entrepreneurs, Make Your Pitch competition,” said Dr. Tom Corr, President and CEO, OCE. “Every year, we continue to be amazed by the talent, creativity, and entrepreneurial spirit of Ontario’s high school students. Their imaginative and practical pitches have shown us that the future of this innovative province is in good hands.”

Named Canada’s Best Trade Show in 2010, 2011, 2016, 2017 and 2018 and celebrating 14 years of bold, new ideas, OCE’s Discovery is Canada’s premier innovation showcase. It brings together the best and brightest minds in industry, academia, investment and government to showcase leading-edge technologies, best practices and research in the areas of energy, fintech, cleantech, the environment, advanced health, digital media, information and communication technologies and advanced manufacturing. The annual conference and showcase attracts more than 3,600 attendees and over 500 exhibitors.

Finalists videos for the 2019 Young Entrepreneurs, Make Your Pitch competition can be viewed at www.makeyourpitch.ca.

For more on Discovery, please visit www.ocediscovery.com.