Since 2012, the Build in Canada Innovation Program (BCIP) has allowed businesses and inventors the ability to bolster their innovative technologies by selling and testing them with the Canadian government. This first procurement program enables businesses to overcome pre-commercialization gaps and use the government as their first possible customer and testers of their technology. BCIP enables further efficiency and effectiveness in the government while providing businesses with a contract of up to $500,000 for most streams, or $1,000,000 if the contract adds value to Canada’s military forces. To date 136 projects have been awarded, helping to strengthen the abilities of the Canadian government and providing an innovative edge over international countries.
Recent changes to the Build in Canada Innovation Program have resulted from the federal government listening to participant input about the program. This article will outline two significant changes which will allow for even greater success in coming years.
Build in Canada Innovation Program (BCIP) Improvements for 2015
Changes have been made to better serve the needs of both innovators and the testers of technology. Current improvements to BCIP will allow for easier and more frequent submission of applications through:
Update 1: Continuous Intake for Proposal Submissions
Previously in the Build in Canada Innovation Program, submissions had an intake period with a clear deadline, however businesses provided feedback that this limited intake window did not align with their development or commercialization timelines, making the program ineffective for them.
In the 2015 program update, innovators will be able to submit their proposals at any time. This means that completed projects which are ready to be sold to the government will not have to wait for months. This means the faster testing of projects and a decrease in the amount of time taken for innovators to receive feedback.
Update 2: Innovators Able to Sell More for Testing
Innovators historically had one buyer that would purchase their product through this program. Under new improvements, innovators will be able to sell their technologies to multiple federal departments. This will allow innovators to receive more value for their project while allowing several government departments to test and implement the technologies for enhanced national benefit. For example, a product that was positioned for the transportation department may also be suitable for the military, requiring unique testing to ensure its suitability for that new sector.
Getting Started with Build in Canada Innovation Program
If you have a technical innovation that may be of use to the Government of Canada, you are encouraged to get started with this program. While recent changes have impacted the call for proposals process, the program’s demand categories and project priority areas remain the same. View Mentor Works’ previous update blog on BCIP to learn about the project types that are being considered for government purchase. You may also contact Mentor Works directly to discuss your fit for this program and to explore the next steps of selling your innovative project.
Resources for Innovative Small Businesses
As a first procurement program, BCIP does not provide government funding such as other common programs. Exploring Canadian small business grants may be a better option for many businesses looking to create innovation to use for internal advantages. Explore our comprehensive list of Canadian government grants and loans, and download our free resource on comparing funding types to learn about the unique differences between the programs. We also hold frequent informational webinars to teach business owners how they can maximize their cash flow.
Learn More About the Build in Canada Innovation Program