Francophone Ignition Contest and Entrepreneurs’ Gala represent “biggest entrepreneurial evening of the year”


SUMMERSIDE – Jan. 31, 2019 – The Acadian and Francophone Chamber of Commerce (CCAFLIPE) and RDÉE Prince Edward Island proudly proclaim that Saturday, March 16, 2019, will be their “biggest entrepreneurial evening of the year”. For some time now, they’ve been busily preparing the numerous aspects of this joint event.

“This festive and formal evening of entrepreneurial recognition, which combines the finals of the 2019 Francophone Ignition Contest and the 2019 Acadian Entrepreneurs’ Gala, will present to the gathered crowd the accomplishments and economic contributions of some 22 entrepreneurs, businesses, organizations and individuals,” says gala coordinator Raymond J. Arsenault. “We’re therefore inviting everyone to participate to help us honor and recognize all of these great people.”

Those who attend can expect several changes this year, including the way the evening unfolds, the hosting, the presentation of Gala finalists and the layout of the banquet room. Details will be released over the next few weeks. The Francophone Ignition Contest will also present a few cosmetic additions.

Tickets for the entire evening, which takes place at the Centre Belle-Alliance in Summerside, are now on sale for $40 each (tax included). They can be purchased until March 8 at the Wellington Rural Action Centre, the Centre Belle-Alliance in Summerside and the RDÉE PEI office at the Carrefour de l’Isle-Saint-Jean in Charlottetown.


In exchange for their ticket, people will first get to attend the grand finale of the new Francophone Ignition Contest (formerly named the Dragons’ Contest), starting at 5 p.m. in the building’s gymnasium. Three finalists will each get seven minutes to present their entrepreneurial project proposal in an animated style similar to pitches seen on the TV shows “Dragons’ Den” and “Shark Tank”.

Three Atlantic Canadian judges (whose names will soon be announced) will then select a winner who, at the end of the evening, will receive a large $25,000 cheque to help get his or her business project off the ground. This money comes from Innovation PEI’s Ignition Start-Up Fund. The winner will also get free memberships to three Island Chambers of Commerce (Summerside, Charlottetown and Acadian) and free business courses from the Collège de l’Île.


The second part of the evening, which takes place in the Entre-deux-mers Room, will of course consist of the Entrepreneurs’ Gala. Participants will enjoy a delicious three-course meal of spinach salad, chicken bruschetta with potatoes and vegetables, dessert, wine, coffee and tea. A vegetarian option is available upon advanced request. A cash bar service will also be offered.

Then, once the audience has seen their audio-visual biographies, the 19 Gala finalists will each get a Chamber certificate. Eight of them will receive awards in categories such as 2018 Young Millionaire of the Year (for a participant from last summer), 2019 Young Enterprising Person of the Year, 2019 Social Economy Business of the Year, 2019 Business Personality of the Year, 2019 Immigrant Entrepreneur of the Year, 2019 Distinguished Entrepreneur of the Year and 2019 President’s Award of Excellence.

At the end of the evening, draws for a few door prizes, including a few quite valuable ones, will be made. One person will also receive a $100 cash prize.


The RDÉE and the Chamber of Commerce are extremely pleased to announce that the Atlantic Canada Opportunities Agency and Innovation PEI are both returning as sponsors for both portions of the evening.

The CCAFLIPE is particularly pleased to announce that Evangeline-Central Credit Union is returning as a Gala sponsor for a 14th consecutive year. “The credit union is without a doubt one of our most faithful community sponsors, so we thank its management from the bottom of our heart,” said Arsenault. “This year, the credit union is sponsoring the 2019 Young Enterprising Person of the Year Award, which, for a first time, has five finalists.”

Other sponsors will be announced in coming weeks.


Raymond J. Arsenault, right, Acadian Entrepreneurs’ Gala coordinator, accepts a $1,000 sponsorship cheque from Alfred Arsenault, general manager of Evangeline-Central Credit Union. At the same time, they launched the sale of tickets for the Acadian and Francophone Chamber’s “biggest entrepreneurial evening of the year”, which combines the finals of the 2019 Francophone Ignition Contest and the Gala.
For more information:
Raymond J. Arsenault
2019 Acadian Entrepreneurs’ Gala
902-854-3439, Ext. 231