How to Qualify for IRAP Business Innovation Access Program (BIAP)

Professor having discussion with college studentsThe Industrial Research Assistance Program (IRAP) launched a new funding incentive for small businesses called Business Innovation Access Program (IRAP- BIAP). Launched in April 2014, BIAP is an R&D funding voucher administered by the National Research Council of Canada (NRC) as a new program in IRAP’s funding portfolio. The program is suited for small and medium sized enterprises (SMEs) in Canada who need to access business services or technical assistance at Canada’s leading research institutions and publically-funded research organizations. The program will help pay for research, technology, and business development services at universities, colleges, and research institutions that have the existing resources that align with your business’ research needs. The goal is to establish partnerships whereby students and researchers gain valuable real-world problem solving experience through tackling business problems.

IRAP Business Innovation Access Program (BIAP): Company Eligibility

Similar to other IRAP programs, to be eligible you must be an incorporated, for-profit SME located in Canada with 500 or less employees. This program is suited for SMEs who do not have the internal research and development resources required to conduct short R&D projects, thus leveraging existing institutions’ resources and expertise.

IRAP-BIAP Canadian Small Business Grants: Eligible Expenses

The IRAP- BIAP program funds short-term research projects that businesses have identified as an impediment to commercialization of their products. IRAP-BIAP funding is suitable for:

  • Product optimization
  • Process development, analysis, or optimization
  • Specialized testing
  • Market research
  • Market strategy development
  • Competitive analysis
  • Business strategy development

Businesses must be working with a research contractor that NRC will fund through the voucher program. This includes post-secondary research institutions, research organizations, and centers of excellence.

Small Business Grants through IRAP-BIAP: Additional Details

SMEs can apply for up to $50,000 in vouchers for their R&D project to access research resources. Applications are accepted on an ongoing basis and approval from the NRC takes up to one month. Businesses should identify a project that is approximately 3-6 months in length and requires technical assistance.

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