Press Release: UBC announces first social entrepreneurs to benefit from accelerator program


Seven social ventures, working in sectors ranging from healthcare to urban agriculture, were announced today as the first selected to benefit from the Coast Capital Savings Innovation Hub at UBC’s Sauder School of Business.

Launched in September 2012 with a $1-million gift from Coast Capital Savings, the Innovation Hub supports early stage ventures devoted to solving social and environmental problems using for-profit business models.

Led by Sauder’s ISIS Research Centre, the initiative provides working space, mentoring from faculty, alumni and industry experts, and support from Sauder students paired with ventures as interns. The program aims to accelerate the growth of social ventures, helping them to create scalable and sustainable solutions to social and environmental problems in British Columbia.

The organizations selected for the program are:

Change Heroes: An online fundraising platform that helps people to engage their friends to fundraise for schools and libraries to support education in developing countries.

Connect Health: A pioneering model of integrative medicine, providing effective holistic care by combining the best conventional medicine and complementary approaches.

SeaMarket: An initiative that works to promote and increase the supply of sustainable seafood through branding, marketing, sales, and education.

Shailah Interactive: An affordable gesture-controlled tablet and mobile educational games designed for children with physical disabilities who cannot use a touch screen.

Shift Urban Cargo Delivery: A company transforming goods movement in urban areas by using pedal powered trike vehicles for deliveries in the downtown core, eliminating congestion and pollution.

Green Challenge Waste Management: A waste and recycling management not-for-profit society that provides employment opportunities to people with barriers to employment.

Victory Gardens: An organization providing garden infrastructure for any kind of space, helping people rethink urban areas and bring food to where it didn’t exist before.



About the Coast Capital Savings Innovation Hub
Fully funded to operate for five years, the Coast Capital Savings Innovation Hub will provide a series of one-year programs to early-stage social ventures. Ventures will be coached in approaching investors, preparing a proposal for private funding and closing the deal, and will work closely with student interns as dedicated business consultants for four months of the program.

About ISIS
The ISIS Research Centre at the Sauder School of Business is focused on leveraging business tools to advance social innovation and sustainability, through research, incubation, and application. The core research themes at ISIS are building the low carbon economy, social economy, and economic development with First Nations. The centre's goal is to build intellectual and human capacity by linking knowledge with action to further the field of sustainability and social innovation.

About Coast Capital Savings
Coast Capital Savings Credit Union is Canada’s second largest credit union with total assets under administration of $13.5 billion, 475,000 members and 50 branches in the Metro Vancouver, Fraser Valley, and Vancouver Island regions of British Columbia.  Coast Capital offers one of Canada’s 10 Most Admired Corporate Cultures™.  It is a member of Canada’s Best Managed Companies Platinum Club and is an Imagine Canada Caring Company. To learn more, visit

Media Contacts:
Bethan Williams, Communications Specialist
Sauder School of Business, University of British Columbia
P: 604-822-5273

Divine Agodzo, Manager, Media Relations
Coast Capital Savings
P: 604.517.7549
C: 604.837.6372