Strategic Innovation Fund Supports Ontario Automotive Manufacturers

The Government of Canada has recently announced funding support for 11 automotive research and development projects which will have a lasting impact on the sector. Each of the awarded businesses will leverage research grants through the Strategic Innovation Fund (SIF), a newly launched program which seeks to offset a portion of costs for highly-innovative R&D and investment projects.

Through the Strategic Innovation Fund, each awarded business will receive up to 50% of project costs in Canadian government grants.

The Strategic Innovation Fund is a 5-year (2017-2021) Canadian government funding program designed to support the growth and expansion of the country’s most innovative companies. It offsets the costs of research, development, and commercialization activities with federal funding, and helps companies integrate disruptive technologies to improve products and services. This program offers both repayable and non-repayable funding support.

Automotive Research Projects Awarded the Strategic Innovation Fund

The Strategic Innovation Fund (SIF) has recently announced its support of 11 innovative automotive research projects. Successful applicants involved in this announcement include:

  • JP Bowman Ltd. ($2,657,500): Creating a prototype of third-generation advanced high-strength steel B pillars, which are the main vertical bar between driver and passenger doors. This will make vehicles lighter, safer, and more fuel efficient.
  • Blue Solutions Canada Inc. ($9,043,135): Developing a high-performance, low-cost lithium metal polymer for batteries in passenger vehicles. This will lead to smaller, more efficient batteries with improved storage capacity.
  • SWITCH Materials Inc. ($8,257,600): Developing and implementing an advanced glazing technology to make vehicles lighter and, as a result, more energy efficient.
  • Nova Steel Inc. ($7,436,750): Developing second-generation advanced high-strength steel (AHSS) and integrating technologies to make its plant more efficient.
  • AGS Automotive Systems ($7,009,438): Producing lighter composite materials for design and commercialization of high-stress, high-performance automotive parts such as bumpers, battery trays and front suspension tower systems.
  • Sciemetric Instruments Inc. ($2,927,538): Advancing its product to meet next-generation needs of manufacturers, ultimately improving quality while lowering cost.
  • Lakeside Plastics Ltd. ($1,100,250): Developing an innovative molding processes for lightweight and more environmentally friendly vehicle materials.
  • Marwood Metal Fabrication Ltd. ($953,500): Developing a new manufacturing process using carbon fibre to produce lighter and stronger roofs.
  • Abraham Innovation Systems Inc. ($701,669): Developing technology that can inspect and repair painted vehicle bodies without human intervention.
  • Synergx Technologies Inc. ($782,401): Creating a non-contact 3D glass inspection system that is precise, accurate and timely.
  • Meridian Lightweight Technologies Inc. ($347,840): Building a high-strength magnesium joint to replace existing steel shock towers. This can reduce vehicle weight by up to 57% and improve fuel efficiency.

Read More: Strategic Innovation Fund Awards $1.1M to Lakeside Plastics Ltd.

SIF: Canadian Government Funding for Research and Development

The Strategic Innovation Fund (SIF) is a government grant provided through the federal Government of Canada. Its main purpose is to support Canadian businesses investing in innovative products, processes, and services. Through cost sharing assistance, the program helps offset a portion of costs related to researching and implementing new automotive technology.

The Strategic Innovation Fund provides Canadian businesses with up to 50% of eligible research expenses. This expands project budgets and enables investment into highly innovative technologies.

Automotive firms investing in next-generation technologies are encouraged to apply for the program during the planning phase of their project. Not sure what types of innovative projects might be best suited towards your company’s strengths? Download the Top Trends in the Canadian Automotive Sector white paper to get the process started.

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Jeff 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.

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