WINN is a 5 Year $100 Million Initiative to Support Western Canada SMEs


The Western Economic Diversification Canada (WD) is supporting SMEs looking to move their innovative technologies through the later stages of R&D and into the marketplace. The program will succeed in this objective by providing repayable contributions to SMEs through the Western Innovation Initiative (WINN) small business loans program. Of the funding provided through WINN, 20 percent will be provided to small projects requesting $500,000 or less, while the remaining 80 percent will be directed to projects that request more than $500,000 in funding. The maximum contribution per project is $3.5M in funding, while a firm will be limited to a maximum of $7.5M in total funding through WINN over a five-year period.

Goals of the WINN Small Business Loans Program:

  • Commercialize innovative technology-based products, processes and services;
  • Stimulate greater private sector investments in commercialization activities;
  • Increase the number of jobs for highly qualified personnel in Western Canada; and
  • Assist in industry growth.

WINN Small Business Loans: Company Eligibility

In order to qualify for the WINN small business loans program companies must be for-profit and have less than 500 employees. In addition, qualified applicants will meet the following criteria:

  • They will have a viable plan to commercialize a technology-driven, new or improved product, process or service within 3 years of the start of the project,
  • Qualified applicants will have sufficient IP rights to carry out the proposed project and commercially exploit the projects results,
  • They will have provided a current business plan that details the investment opportunity and recent financial statements;

Note: At the time of the application the applicant must disclose all other funding sources including both government and non-government sources. Non-government sources must represent at least 50% of investment into the project.

Specific Sectors Targeted by the WINN Small Business Funding Program

The following priority sectors will be given special consideration for this funding program:

  • Clean Technology/Clean Energy;
  • Digital Economy/New Media/Information and Communication Technology;
  • Value-Added Natural Resources;
  • Health/Life Sciences;
  • Nanotechnology;
  • Value-Added Manufacturing;
  • Aerospace, Defence and Marine;
  • And others.

Continue Learning About the Western Innovation Initiative (WINN)

Get Started     Eligibility Criteria

Recent Western Innovation Initiative (WINN) Blogs:

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