MaRS and Saint Elizabeth announce collaboration to advance entrepreneurship and health innovation

TORONTO, October 26, 2015 – MaRS Discovery District and Saint Elizabeth, a national health care provider, today announced a new collaboration to advance health, business and social innovation in Canada.

Leveraging the strengths of each organization, the partnership will enable innovative companies selected from MaRS’ portfolio to test out their technologies within Saint Elizabeth’s living lab, which includes 8,000 staff working in various care settings across Canada. It will also leverage existing initiatives such as MaRS’ Centre for Impact Investing, HealthKick and EXCITE programs, and Saint Elizabeth’s membership in the Innovation Learning Network.

“Saint Elizabeth has long been a key partner and sponsor on several innovation programs under the MaRS umbrella,” said Zayna Khayat, Senior Advisor of Health System Innovation at MaRS. “This formal partnership will help us achieve our mission of getting innovations to people and families to improve their health and care.”

“MaRS has long provided Saint Elizabeth with connections to Canadian ventures as well as expanding capacity and a global network to advance our social mission of spreading hope and happiness,” said Lesley Larsen, Innovation Seeker at Saint Elizabeth. “I’m thrilled to formalize and deepen our collaboration.”

Saint Elizabeth has been a key supporter of Impact8, MaRS’ social venture accelerator. In 2014, the two organizations teamed up to mentor and support high-potential entrepreneurs in the field of health and wellbeing. Today, Saint Elizabeth continues to work collaboratively with several of the eight ventures – including Komodo OpenLab and The Living Kitchen – to extend their reach with health care clients and staff. MaRS Centre for Impact Investing has also helped Saint Elizabeth develop a framework for assessing and managing its social impact initiatives.

Saint Elizabeth was also the first healthcare organization to implement SoapBox, an employee idea platform and Canadian startup that has received support through MaRS Venture Services and MaRS Investment Accelerator Fund.

On October 27-29, Saint Elizabeth and MaRS are co-hosting an Innovation Learning Network event in Toronto. The sold-out, member-only event will bring a powerhouse group of the world’s leading health systems together to showcase and explore “The Art & Science of Weird Pairings and Random Engineered Collisions.”

Further announcements regarding the partnership are expected in the coming months.

About MaRS Discovery District
MaRS Discovery District (@MaRSDD) in Toronto is the one of the world’s largest urban innovation hubs. MaRS supports promising young ventures tackling key societal challenges in the health, cleantech and ICT sectors. In the last three years, these ventures have raised $1.3 billion in capital and earned $640 million in revenue. In addition to helping startups launch, grow and scale, the MaRS community is dedicated to cross-disciplinary collaboration, commercialization of discoveries and driving ideas to impact.

About Saint Elizabeth
Saint Elizabeth is a national health care provider that has been opening the door to new possibilities and care experiences for more than a century. Recognized as Canada’s largest social enterprise, we employ 8,000 people and visit 18,000 clients every day. Through the Saint Elizabeth Research Centre, our Health Career Colleges and the Saint Elizabeth Foundation, we are helping to make the future of health care brighter and stronger. Learn more at or find us on Twitter at @StElizabethSEHC.

For media enquires, contact:
Lara Torvi
MaRS Discovery District

Madonna Gallo
Saint Elizabeth