Feds launch $1.26-billion fund for business
“It’s really about helping companies grow and compete not only within Canada, but globally as well,” says minister Navdeep Bains
The federal government has launched a $1.26-billion fund to support innovative businesses from all sectors of the economy grow and bring their products to market.
The aim of the Strategic Innovation Fund, which was announced in the 2017 federal budget but started accepting applications Wednesday, is to attract and support business investments across all industries.
“It’s really about helping companies grow and compete not only within Canada, but globally as well,” Minister of Innovation, Science and Economic Development Navdeep Bains told the crowd at CanmetMATERIALS, Canada’s largest research centre dedicated to metals and materials, on Longwood Road South.
The fund, whose budget spans five years, is designed to support the commercialization of Canadian products and services, the “scaling up” of small- and medium-sized businesses, attract investments and foster collaboration between the private and public sectors, the Mississauga-Malton MP added.
Despite the announcement being made in Hamilton — a city Bains said has “transformed remarkably” and diversified its economy — there are no promises local projects will receive any of the money, he said.
But the city has “a lot of potential” when it comes to its advanced manufacturing, life sciences and clean technology sectors, Bains added.
“Hamilton is an ideal location where you have creative people, where you have innovation taking place, where you have traditional sectors and new emerging sectors,” he said.
The program will offer a mixture of repayable and nonrepayable contributions to industrial and technological firms across Canada.
Philippe Dauphin, the director general of CanmetMATERIALS, shows Minister Navdeep Bains a sample of steel from the rolling mill lab.