Canadian Government Funding Success Cambridge Pro Fab

Cambridge Pro Fab is a leading supplier of steel ducting for the oil, gas and coal power generation industries. As an industry leader in the manufacture of HRSG, pollution control, noise reduction and air filtration systems, Cambridge Pro Fab Inc. has built a diverse portfolio of customers for over 25 years.

The company’s growth over the last several years has been heavily influenced by receiving Canadian government funding for their strategic projects. Included in their successful requests for government funding, the company was able to leverage Ontario Exporters Fund (OEF), Investing in Business Growth & Productivity (IBGP), Export Market Access (EMA), and CME SMART Advanced Technologies for Global Growth, to name a few.

George Figueiredo, President & General Manager of Cambridge Pro Fab recently discussed the government funding process with Chris Casemore, Director of Client Management and Development at Mentor Works. Cambridge Pro Fab has worked with Mentor Works over the last few years to create a Proactive Funding Plan and execute this plan to grow the business.

The following blog reviews how this relationship has led to the manufacturer’s enhanced success.

How did funding help to improve the projects’ scope?

Cambridge Pro Fab’s pursuit of government grants and loans have enabled them to complete several projects outside of what would be possible from internal financing alone. Due in part to their funding wins, such as a up to $2.5 million loan through the Investing in Business Growth and Productivity (IBGP) program, the company has been able to make large-scale investments into equipment such as a robotic welder and six new cranes to increase production.

The purchase of more innovative systems, such as the robotic welder, meant that employees required for these tasks were freed up to perform more sophisticated welds. Cambridge Pro Fab has been able to diversify their service offerings and increase profits as result.

“The quality of equipment we’re buying will allow us to [re-allocate] labour and become more competitive, reduce costs, and increase productivity”
– George Figueiredo, President & General Manager of Cambridge Pro Fab

Had the company not received Canadian government grants and loans, George stated that some of the projects would have been shifted down in priority, their timelines deferred. Instead, government funding helped Cambridge Pro Fab extend cash flow and use less of their working capital.

What was the process of working with Mentor Works?

Cambridge Pro Fab had begun applying for Canadian government funding prior to learning about Mentor Works. Unfortunately, the manufacturer had limited success on their own but knew that there was a greater opportunity available to them. After searching online for a knowledgeable partner, they came to Mentor Works to assist their Canadian government planning and document preparation process.

After reaching out, George was introduced to Alexandra (Alex) Barlow, a Business Development Executive at Mentor Works, who reviewed George’s growth opportunities within the near future.

“She’s very thorough, and very quickly understood the business model and marketing approach we were taking”
– George Figueiredo, President & General Manager of Cambridge Pro Fab

After engaging the Mentor Works team to strategically plan and execute a small business funding strategy on behalf of Cambridge Pro Fab, George was able to remove himself from the process and trust that their funding applications would move forward at an accelerated pace.

“Perhaps the biggest advantage is that I was able to assign the file to another member of my company.”
– George Figueiredo, President & General Manager of Cambridge Pro Fab

From that point, Mentor Works helped to position the organization’s project through the eyes of government funding agencies. This process helped increase the odds of their qualified project being approved for funding.

Are you likely to apply for future small business funding opportunities?

There are several Ontario government funding opportunities that the company will continue to pursue in the near future. While the company’s management team still needs to decide on which projects are highest priority for them right now, they’re confident that they’ll be able to receive critical project funding through their relationship with Mentor Works.

The manufacturer showed significant interest in receiving hiring grants to employ summer students as well as recently graduated post-secondary students. These funding opportunities often cover up to 50% of a student or recent graduate’s wages to a maximum of $14,000 – $20,000 per hire.

These Canadian government funding incentives are an important part of any Proactive Funding Plan and should be considered before hiring or strategic investments are made. If you would like to begin the process of developing a Proactive Funding Plan for your business, please contact Mentor Works today.

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Written by

Jeff Shepherd holds an Honours Bachelor of Business Administration at the University of Guelph. He is passionate about Canadian business, economics, and politics. As Marketing Coordinator for Mentor Works, Jeff educates business leaders about proactive funding strategies.