Alberta Innovates, the crown corporation responsible for promoting innovation in Alberta, has allocated an additional $3.53 million in funding towards the province’s eight Regional Innovation Networks (RINs), nearly doubling its usual annual commitment.
Alberta’s RINs are a group of community-based networks that provide entrepreneurial support to tech businesses across the province. There are eight RINs that span the province, covering specific regions. Annually, Alberta Innovates provides its RINs with $4.32 million in capital. With this new funding, the RINs will receive $7.86 million for 2021 and 2022.
Through this investment, Alberta Innovates aims to increase its support for Albertan tech.
Through this investment, Alberta Innovates aims to increase its support for Albertan tech, identify gaps, and back initiatives that look to accelerate high-potential tech firms across sectors, from the startup to scale-up and growth stage.
“[This] investment is critical to helping our start-ups get on their feet and scale up,” said Doug Schweitzer, Alberta’s minister of jobs, economy, and innovation. “As our tech sector matures, we need to ensure entrepreneurs get the support they need at every step of their journey as they create jobs across the province.”
According to Alberta Innovates, most of this new funding, $3.035 million, will be divided among the province’s eight RINs, while $500,000 will be used to bolster the Alberta Innovation Network (AIN) and support province-wide initiatives.
AIN is a province-wide collaboration between the RINs which intends to strengthen Alberta’s entrepreneurial ecosystem “by sharing assets and delivering programs across the province.” Alberta Innovates said AIN will be governed by the RINs, and “strive for equitable access to programming and network supports.”
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Of the RIN-specific funding, $2.015 million will go towards “the renewal of early-stage support from last year,” while another $1.02 million is dedicated towards scale-up and growth funding.
According to Laura Kilcrease, CEO of Alberta Innovates, this financial support and the AIN “enhance the ability of technology-based small and medium-sized businesses to succeed.”
Image source Wikimedia Commons.