New Round of Federal Funding to Kickstart Lab-to-Market Commercialization

The Honourable Rona Ambrose, Minister of Public Works and Government Services Canada and Minister for the Status of Women, visited Innovate Calgary this week to make a special announcement regarding the Canadian Innovation Commercialization Program (CICP) and I had the pleasure of attending on behalf of Cybera. The CICP was created by the Government of Canada in 2010 to help kickstart businesses and help them move innovative products and services from the lab to the marketplace. DataGardens, a former Cybera pilot project, was one of the first companies to successfully qualify for CICP funding.

The minister's visit this week was to announce the program's second call for proposals (CFP), worth $8 million. In support of this, a National Web Bidders Conference will be held on Tuesday, July 19, from 1:00 – 3:00 pm EST to provide an update on the program, details of the CFP, and to allow applicants to ask questions. This session will be available online. If you are interested in participating, you must register online on July 19. To download the CFP, click here or to see of CICP is right for you and your business, visit the Program Specifics page.

Congratulations to two other Alberta companies who were successful in receiving first-round funding from the CICP: Trusted Positioning and Synodon.

This announcement is just one of the many exciting initiatives currently supporting enterprise in Canada. Last month Cybera partnered with the Startup Canada Campaign, a nation-wide initiative that celebrates and supports entrepreneurialism. There are currently 70 partners across Canada, and many more expected to join this summer. It's an excellent fit with Cybera as we are working to connect with and support Alberta innovators through our pilot project program and other cyberinfastructure services. Interested in joining the campaign? Partnership is free as they are looking to work with anyone and everyone who supports entrepreneurs in Canada. Partners represent a diverse spectrum of enterprise support, such as the Canadian Venture Capital Association, the Canadian Association of Business Incubators, CATAlliance, ACCT Canada, the BC Innovation Council, Start Me Up Ryerson, Community Futures Saskatchewan, Impact, Centre for Social Innovation, and Young Social Entrepreneurs of Canada.

It is fantastic to see our government and so many organizations coming together to support entrepreneurs and innovation across Canada. What do you think…. is it working? Have you noticed a difference in your startup community? Have you received a leg up from one of these programs? If not, what else needs to be done? Share your opinion below!