Our goal is to reach 1M Activators10,000 women-led Ventures and a $1B perpetual fund to support women for generations to come.

What is SheEO?

SheEO is a radically redesigned ecosystem that supports, finances, and celebrates female innovators.

Launched in 2015 in Canada, this visionary model is emerging as a leading global innovation that is totally unique. Rather than trying to fit women into the existing models and systems and level the playing field, we are creating an entirely new field.

SheEO pushes the reset button on how to support women on their own terms. We focus on bringing out the best of women by being radically generous to one another. It’s an entirely new values set designed with a feminist lens.

The model brings together 500 women (called Activators) in each year’s cohort, who contribute $1100 each as an Act of Radical Generosity. The money is pooled together and loaned out at zero percent interest to five women-led Ventures selected by the Activators. All Ventures are revenue generating with export potential and are creating a better world through their business model or their product and service. The loans are paid back over five years and then loaned out again, creating a perpetual fund which we will pass on to our daughters, nieces and granddaughters. The 500 women Activators in each cohort become the de-facto ‘team’ of the five selected Ventures bringing their buying power as early customers, their expertise and advice and their vast networks to help grow the businesses.

Our Impact

icon 3,000 Activators
icon 3 Countries
icon 32 Ventures funded
icon Triple-digit annual revenue growth on average

We’ve had 1200 revenue-generating, export-ready, women-led Ventures apply.  Everyone who applies receives personal feedback on their application and at least one Activator offering support to grow their venture.

We see this disruptive model as a pathway to redistribute capital, identify and scale social innovations, bring women into community together to embolden our collective leadership, and a new economic and social model for sustainable communities.

With a Guided Development program (biweekly coaching) added in, the Ventures are deeply supported to accelerate their success in an environment of radical generosity, designed by women for women.

Activators are corporate executives, successful entrepreneurs, emerging women leaders, students, mothers, grandmothers, daughters ranging in age from 14 – 94. Our diversity of age, stage, culture and experience makes SheEO a highly coveted and unique community.

Are you interested in bringing SheEO to your region?

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Team

Meet the core team at SheEO

Vicki Saunders

Founder, SheEO

I’m IN because I want to be part of a radically collaborative community committed to creating a better world.

LinkedIn

Jessy Wang

Director, Activator Growth

I’m IN because we are stronger together, and we need #radicalgenerosity now more than ever.

Leah Meers

Chief Operating Officer

I’m IN because I believe that we all do better when we have a tribe supporting us.

Caitlin Pacini

Operations Manager

I’m IN because it’s time we re-think the norm with #radicalgenerosity

Misha Gallagher

Events Director

Im IN because when RADICAL communities celebrate together, change follows!

Marissa Cuffy

Technology Lead

I’m IN because #radicalgenerosity is a gift, a gift of hope, triumph and positive change for today and tomorrow.

Caring Gibner

Systems Architect

I’m IN because a world for all of us needs to be built by all of us.

Board

The SheEO Board of Directors manages the Radical Generosity Initiative’s fund operations.

Janice Fukakusa

Board Chair. Chancellor, Ryerson University; Chair, Infrastructure Bank; Retired CFO of Royal Bank of Canada

Ms. Fukakusa is Chancellor, Ryerson University.  In addition, Janice serves as a corporate director with extensive banking and financial services experience.  She previously served as RBC’s Chief Administrative Officer and Chief Financial Officer and a member of RBC’s Group Executive responsible for setting the overall strategic direction of RBC., from which she retired in January 2017 following a distinguished 31-year career. 

Janice currently serves on the boards of a number of corporate and not-for-profit organizations, including Cineplex, The Princess Margaret Cancer Foundation as Chair, is Chair of the new Crown Corporation, Canada Infrastructure Bank and Chair, Japanese Canadian Cultural Centre Foundation.

Cathy Bennett

Director, Bennett Group of Companies; Former Minister of Finance, President of Treasury Board and Minister for the Status of Women, Government of Newfoundland and Labrador

Ms. Bennett is a prominent business person in Newfoundland, owning and operating numerous restaurants throughout the province. She was also a significant contributor and fundraiser for St. John’s first Ronald McDonald House. Cathy previously served as the chairperson of the St. John’s Board of Trade and governor of the Atlantic Provinces Economic Council.

Beth Horowitz

Former CEO of AmEx Canada; Director, HSBC Bank Canada; Board Member, Art Gallery of Ontario, Catalyst Canada, Harvard Business School Alumni

Ms. Horowitz is a respected global executive with over 15 years of board experience, including HSBC Bank Canada, and over 20 years of experience at American Express, including President & CEO of Amex Canada, Inc., & Chairman, President & CEO of Amex Bank of Canada.

Tayyaba Khan

Board Secretary. Associate, LaBarge Weinstein

Tayyaba is an associate with LaBarge Weinstein’s Corporate, Commercial and Securities group. Tayyaba obtained her Juris Doctorate from the University of Ottawa, where she graduated Cum Laude. She also has a Bachelor of Arts (Honours) in Economics and Statistics from York University. 

Prior to law school, Tayyaba spent three years working as a Senior Associate in Securities Valuation at State Street Global Services.

Julie Barker-Merz

Senior Vice President Southwestern Ontario Division, BMO Financial Group

Ms. Barker-Merz is a long-standing and strong supporter of women in business, sport and the community, a proud 2015 recipient of the International Alliance of Women (TIAW) top 100 world of Difference awards, as well as one of Canada’s Top 50 to watch in Wealth Management in 2016. Throughout her 20+ year career with BMO, Julie has earned the reputation of being a leader who executes with pace, courage and excellence, inspiring teams to come together towards a common vision. In her current role, Julie oversees the retail and business banking business across 11 markets, 150 branches and 1300+ team members throughout south western Ontario.

Patrice Mousseau

Founder and CEO, Satya Organics Inc, SheEO Venture

Patrice Mousseau had a successful career as radio and television host, news anchor, and journalist. She became a conscious entrepreneur when her daughter developed eczema and needed help.

Now, Patrice is the owner/creator of Satya Organics Inc., providing NPN approved, certified USDA organic products to serve those with skin conditions, who those want a legitimate alternative to steroid products.

Patrice is also a single Mom and a member of the Fort William First Nation.

Vicki Saunders

Founder, SheEO

Vicki Saunders is an entrepreneur, award-winning mentor, advisor to the next generation of change makers and leading advocate for entrepreneurship as a way of creating positive transformation in the world.

Vicki is Founder of SheEO and #radical generosity a global initiative to radically transform how we support finance and celebrate female entrepreneurs

Vicki has co-founded and run ventures in Europe, Toronto and Silicon Valley and taken a company public on the Toronto Stock Exchange.

How are SheEO operations funded?

At SheEO we are working to create a new model which is simple, adaptable and low maintenance. We don’t do traditional sponsorship. We are not a charity. We are not a cause. We are looking for win-win relationships that are strategic and aligned with our mission. We have an extremely lean team and are designed to keep it that way. We have the ambitious desire and intention to rollout globally with a very small team.

In our first year, SheEO was launched into the world with the support of BMO and a small group of passionate, highly talented people. Joanna Gassman, a recently retired senior executive at BMO approached Vicki in Vancouver after an event and said, “we should support you”. She introduced us to Julie Barker-Merz, Senior Vice-President, South Western Ontario Division, BMO who made it all happen. Our entire first year of operations was funded by BMO and then Freshbooks came along to join as a supporter. Our entire backend infrastructure was designed by Grantbooks. Our website and communications were conceived in partnership with Johnson Fung. Our program was designed by over 150 women and men in our network from around the world. It was a highly collaborative effort that was executed by a parade of supporters.

In 2016, BMO came back again and covered our operations and we began to charge our Activators a 10% fee. We partnered with Philanthropic Ventures Foundation in Oakland, California to provide our administration/structure in the United States.

In 2017, we are funded by individuals and organizations that are committed to our mission. We have a goal of being sustainable through Activator fees at scale. In the meantime, we are bootstrapping with private contributions from highly aligned, early adopters who believe in our work.

We anticipate iterating our funding model over time to adjust to the needs of our growth and we will continue to share our thinking and our learning as we go.

SheEO Canada Fund financial statements are audited annually and are available here:

2015 Audited Financial Statements

2016 Audited Financial Statements

 

Read our Whitepaper to learn about how Radically Generous Women are Creating a New Economic Model!

by Vicki Saunders, SheEO founder & Barbara Kivowitz, SheEO Activator

Download Whitepaper