FedDev Ontario Invests into Ontario Innovation Networks

Ontario tech businesses generate good middle class jobs, drive innovation, and improve the overall economic health of Canada. To continue to secure Canada as a leader in tech, the federal government has invested into three innovation networks along the Waterloo–Toronto–Ottawa corridor. These innovation hubs will join forces and implement the Scale-up Platform, which will provide the necessary tools and resources to directly help over 30 Ontario companies scale up, creating thousands of new jobs.

An investment of $52,400,000 in funding from FedDev Ontario will be divided into these three innovation networks, giving businesses the support they need to grow.

FedDev Ontario delivers programs and services to support economic growth and innovation in southern Ontario and helps new entrepreneurs become investment-ready through seed financing and skills development. The three organizations that received funding are some of Ontario’s top innovation hubs: Invest Ottawa, Communitech, and MaRS Discovery District. This investment will allow them to help launch tech start-ups on a global scale. Companies that are supported through the Scale-up Platform will benefit from improved access to capital, advice, mentorship, talent, and greater opportunity to access international markets.

Southern Ontario Receives Over $50M in Funding for Tech

The Waterloo and Toronto innovation landscape alone is positioned as one of the top tech clusters in the world and southern Ontario is amongst only three start-up ecosystems worldwide that demonstrates strength in four of the most in-demand tech areas: advanced manufacturing and robotics, financial technology, life sciences, and artificial intelligence and big data.

The Federal Economic Development Agency for Southern Ontario (FedDev Ontario) has awarded three innovation networks a combined $52.4M in innovation funding.

The Scale-Up Platform will leverage the the unique skills from Invest Ottawa, Communitech, and MaRS Discovery District to help 30 tech companies in southern Ontario grow and reach revenues of $100M by 2024 and contribute to the creation of 18,000 high-quality, skilled jobs. Over 900 businesses overall will benefit through the innovation hubs. It will also strengthen partnerships with post-secondary instructions, giving students a chance to prepare for the next generation of jobs in the tech industry.

The breakdown of funding is as follows:

Invest Ottawa, Ottawa

($16,900,000) Invest Ottawa delivers economic development programs and initiatives that support entrepreneurs, wealth, and jobs in the City of Ottawa and the surrounding region.

Communitech, Kitchener/Waterloo

($18,000,000) Communitech is a public-private innovation hub that supports tech businesses as they start, grow, and prosper and has supported over 1,400 companies.

MaRS Discovery District, Toronto

($17,500,000) MaRS works with startups and partners in four main sectors including enterprise, cleantech, fintech, and health. To date they have supported over 1,200 companies across Canada.

“This critical funding from FedDev Ontario will enable us to leverage these strengths, accelerate the growth and global success of more scaling firms, and help to create high value jobs that fuel our economy.”
– Michael Tremblay, President and Chief Executive Officer of Invest Ottawa and Bayview Yards

FedDev Ontario: Government Funding for Innovation

FedDev Ontario delivers programs in southern Ontario to help companies grow, foster partnerships, and build solid communities. It also offers personalized support to go-getting and established entrepreneurs and businesses. To date, more than 4,500 businesses, collaborators, and organizations have benefitted from FedDev Ontario funding.

Through FedDev’s multiple startup funding streams, businesses can receive repayable contributions from $250,000 up to $10 million per project.

The three streams of funding are the Business Scale-up and Productivity (BSP), Regional Innovation Ecosystem (RIE), and Community Economic Development and Diversification.

FedDev Ontario supports innovative projects in southern Ontario that will:

  • Strengthen key clusters and build on areas of regional innovation strength;
  • Increase the value of exports;
  • Create and maintain highly skilled jobs; and
  • Increase the commercialization of innovative technologies, processes, or products.

Canadian businesses interested in learning about additional funding programs that support early-stage innovative projects, please download Mentor Works’ Canadian Business Funding Guide.

Canadian Small Business Grants and Loans

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Myra Bredin holds a Diploma of Business Marketing at Conestoga College. Her interest in blog writing, social media and event planning makes her excited to be Mentor Works’ Marketing Analyst, where she can use these skills to educate and support Canadian businesses with government funding.

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