ELLEvate Women Entrepreneurs:

Turn your vision into a thriving business!

Want to launch a business or bring your venture to the next level? Not sure where to start?

About ELLEvate Women Entrepreneurs

Through ELLEvate Women Entrepreneurs, YES Employment + Entrepreneurship provides actionable support to help more women participate in Quebec’s entrepreneurial ecosystem. We provide the tools and resources needed for women to launch and grow their businesses successfully.

What the program offers

YES’s ELLEvate Women Entrepreneurs program offers networking opportunities, speaker events, coaching, mentorships, workshops, and an annual Pre-Accelerator program. Together, we can broaden opportunities for women in entrepreneurship.


1. How do I know if ELLEvate Women Entrepreneurs is for me?

If you’re a woman living in Quebec, and you’re curious about becoming or developing as an entrepreneur (in any industry), you can learn new skills and find new opportunities with ELLEvate.

2. How can I get involved?
Sign up for an event, find a coach, or apply for our Pre-Accelerator when applications open each spring. Whatever stage you are at in your business, you can find opportunities to network and upskill with ELLEvate.
3. Do I have to be under 40 to participate in ELLEvate events?

No, ELLEvate is open to any woman over the age of 18. Diversity in background, thought, and lived experience is a strength. We encourage people of diverse backgrounds to participate in events and apply for the Pre-Accelerator (such as members of racialized or newcomer communities, members of the LGBTQIA+ community, or those with disabilities or special needs, among others).

4. What is the ELLEvate Pre-Accelerator?

Each year, we look for 10 women-led startups from any sector. If you have a feasible idea or product and think you have what it takes to grow your business, you can apply. The women selected for the Pre-Accelerator will receive intensive support and training over a 3-month period that culminates in a pitch competition with cash awards to help fuel the future of the most promising women-led startups in Quebec. For more information, or to view the criteria to apply, read more here or register for one of our weekly information sessions.

5. How can I connect with other women entrepreneurs and role models?
Through ELLEvate, you can connect with networks of entrepreneurs and find potential partners or mentors. You can make use of the ELLEvate Facebook group, attend our regular events, or access opportunities to connect through business coaching. If you would like to be matched with a mentor and receive at least one hour of support, your business coach can set that up for you.

“SAP’s pillars of focus align strongly with YES’s work,

particularly when it comes to driving change in equity, diversity and inclusion in Quebec’s entrepreneurial landscape. We recognize the value of experimenting to ultimately lead to better solutions. We also recognize that you can’t build great solutions unless you bring diverse thinking around the table. Both as the Managing Director for SAP Labs Canada and as a Montreal-based female leader, I am very proud to be associated with YES.”

Cindy Fagen
Managing Director, SAP Labs Canada

“One thing that really stood out for me was how interactive and personalized the program was, considering the fact that it was virtual.”

Illandra Page

“Our weekly coaching sessions kept us accountable, and our Coaches planned and measured our progression through the program.

They posed thought-provoking questions and they offered seasoned advice, as well as a fresh perspective. We covered tough topics, like “what is your business’ why” and “what are your unique value propositions”.”

Laura Blom
Oceanica Skincare

Sign up to get business support through ELLEvate

Need business advice?

Let’s transform your vision into reality! Get in touch to find out more.

Call 514.878.9788 ext. 316 or email Jayna Patel, Entrepreneurship Services Coordinator at [email protected]

15 + 7 =

If chosen for the ELLEvate Women Entrepreneurs Pre-Accelerator, you will have access to:

Seasoned Business Advisors
Exclusive Programming
Awards and Funding
A Community Peer Network

Meet Taylor Pogue, 2021’s pre-accelerator winner

Taylor Pogue is the Founder of Buttery Foods, a ready-made meal service that provides busy families with delicious, well-balanced meals. Taylor came out as the grand winner of the 2021 edition of the demo day, and like Julie her predecessor, also benefited from the top $10,000 award.

Taylor’s favourite quote is by Oprah Winfrey: “I believe luck is preparation meeting opportunity. If you hadn’t been prepared when the opportunity came along, you wouldn’t have been lucky”. Like Oprah, Taylor believes that “the only way to reach your dreams is through hard work and grit, so that when the opportunities arise, you’re ready to run with them.”

Meet Julie Tzeng, 2020’s

pre-accelerator winner

Julie Tzeng is the Founder of Arshae, a footwear startup that is redesigning the lifecycle of shoes. Julie emerged as the big winner of the ELLEvate Women Entrepreneurs Pre-Accelerator Demo Day in 2020, taking home the top award of $10,000.

Julie says “Entrepreneurship is a huge rollercoaster. ELLEvate really helped support me through the amazing cohort of peers, business coaches and mentors. We celebrated wins and problem-solved through challenges together. When I think of my award, I think of the people who walked every step of the way with me to demo day and beyond. It’s also the first award I’ve won for Arshae and it’s extremely validating”.

Join our mailing list at the bottom of the page to be notified when applications for our next ELLEvate Women Entrepreneurs Pre-Accelerator open.