On Wednesday, FedDev Ontario announced a commitment of more than $1 billion, with the goal of fostering startup and not-for-profit growth in Southern Ontario.
The government will also be dedicating $100 million, over three years, for innovative projects in rural Southern Ontario.
The funding, which will be spread out over a period of six year, is being committed to three streams: Business Scale-up and Productivity, Regional Innovation Ecosystem, and Community Economic Development and Diversification.
“Canada’s rural communities play an essential role in the economic development of our country.”
The Business Scale-up and Productivity stream provides no-interest repayable contributions for startups looking to go global and grow. Startups could receive between $500,000 to $10 million per project, for up to 35 percent of eligible project costs.
The Regional Innovation Ecosystem stream is aimed towards not-for-profit organizations, and is meant to support the entrepreneurial talent of women, indigenous people, and young entrepreneurs. The not-for-profits will be eligible to receive non-repayable contributions ranging from $500,000 to $10 million per project, for up to 50 percent of eligible project costs.
The Community Economic Development and Diversification stream is geared towards businesses or not-for-profit organizations in small communities. Businesses will be able to receive no-interest, repayable contributions ranging from $250,000 to $5 million, for up to 50 percent of eligible project costs. While not-for-profit organizations will be eligible for non-repayable contributions.
The announcement was made by Minister Navdeep Bains, head of Innovation, Science, and Economic Development and the minister responsible for FedDev Ontario.
“With this new funding, FedDev Ontario will continue to scale-up innovative businesses, strengthen innovation networks, and boost economic growth in local communities to create good, middle-class jobs in one of Canada’s most vital economic hubs,” Bains said.
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Earlier this month, FedDev provided a repayable contribtion of $3.9 million to Conavi Medical Inc., a Toronto-based company developing medical technology. Last year, FedDev contributed $2.2 million to the Northumberland Community Futures Development Corporation, in order to support tech startups in rural Eastern Ontario.
“Canada’s rural communities play an essential role in the economic development of our country,” said Bernadette Jordan, minister of rural economic development. “This $100 million in dedicated funding from FedDev Ontario will create more opportunities to drive growth, support businesses, and attract talent to southern Ontario’s smaller and rural areas, resulting in stronger communities and a better quality of life.”
Applications for funding are accepted on an ongoing basis. Bains also announced an engagement process, in which Ontarians are invited to submit ideas and feedback regarding ways to increase participation of underrepresented groups, challenges in the economy, and ways to assist rural areas with innovation and growth.