Carleton University has received more than $1 million as part of the federal government’s recently announced $52.4 million Scale-Up Platform.
Carleton plans to use the investment to help fund a new lab that supports student entrepreneurship.
Last month, Prime Minister Justin Trudeau announced that Communitech, MaRS Discovery District, and Invest Ottawa were receiving a collective $52.4 million through FedDev Ontario to help them support Ontario scale-ups. Earlier this week, the Ottawa-based university announced that it has received $1.08 million of that, a portion of the Invest Ottawa’s $16.9 million funding amount.
Carleton plans to use the investment to help fund a new lab that supports student entrepreneurship. Disruptive Technologies Lab is being built as part of the university’s newest building, which is currently under construction. The new Institute for Advanced Research and Innovation in Smart Environments (ARISE) building is set to be a 40,000 square foot “living laboratory”, housing research into clean technology, health technology, and information and communication technology.
It is set to house five faculties, spanning Science, Engineering and Design, Business, Public Affairs and Arts, and Social Sciences, which are meant to work collaboratively on 5G wireless, smart cities, and data analytics.
“ARISE is intended to become a living laboratory that will allow students to obtain marketable skills and become entrepreneurs through early-stage commercialization development and facilitating interactions with companies of all sizes,” Carleton University stated.
Disruptive Technologies Lab, being built in ARISE, with the $1.08 million, is meant to help students and researchers develop ideas into proof of concepts. The lab plans to work with entrepreneurial teams to explore the market potential of those ideas. Carleton noted that the Disruptive Technologies Lab will also help create working prototypes for viable projects. From there teams will graduate to the startup phase in a regional incubator.
Carleton is not the only university to benefit from the FedDev scale-up program funding. Similar to the way Communitech manages and distributes the Waterloo region portion of the $52.4 million to organizations including the University of Waterloo Velocity, and Wilfrid Laurier University’s Launchpad, Invest Ottawa is doing the same for the Ottawa region.
The $52.4 million investment is essentially the new approach to the federal government funding of innovation hubs, which was formerly distributed as CAIP. The funding is being given, through FedDev, directly to MaRS, Communitech, and Invest Ottawa to help them develop programs, but with the mandate to help scale 30 Ontario companies, helping them to achieve revenues of $100 million or more, by 2024.
To date, Carleton is the only organization named that is receiving a portion of Invest Ottawa’s funding, however, each of the three hubs are all meant distribute a portion of their funding to smaller communities in Ontario, helping create access to scale-up programming, advisory services, and support.
While each hub has built out its own plan for how the funding will be used, they will work together to implement these programs, with the mandate of creating 18,000 jobs. Funding will also help add more physical spaces and lab resources for deep tech companies, such as those at Velocity, Waterloo Accelerator Centre and now Carleton.
Image courtesy Montgomery Sisam