Government Funding: Highlights from the 2015 B.C. Budget

Learn how your business may benefit from new funds proposed in the Province of British Columbia’s most recent annual Budget.

Highlights

  • Aerospace: Re-affirm the Government’s commitment to provide $5M over five years to further expand the Province’s aerospace cluster.
  • Agriculture: Commit an additional $2M to the Buy Local Program to help farmers and food processors promote their products.
  • Cleantech and the Environment
    • Provide $22M over three years for an incentive program for the cement industry to produce cement in a cleaner manner.
    • Provide up to $27M over five years in conditional incentives to encourage cement producers to meet or beat new emissions intensity benchmarks.
  • Digital Media
    • Expand the Digital Animation or Visual Effects tax credit to include post-production film activities.
    • Extend the Interactive Digital Media tax credit to 2018 to continue offsetting the cost of developing video games and other digital media products.
  • Export: Invest up to $3M over three years to draw more shipping companies to Vancouver.
  • Healthcare and Life Sciences: Provide up to $12.5M to the Canadian Cancer Society to establish a world-class Cancer Prevention Centre in Vancouver.
  • Mining
    • Provide $31M over three years to support mining and the ongoing development of a liquefied natural gas (LNG) industry.
    • Extend the mining flow-through share tax credit for one year. This credit provides an incentive for mineral exploration.
    • Extend the new mine allowance for four years.
  • Skills
    • Redirect $40M to support post-secondary training for high-demand jobs.
    • Provide $5.4M for Aboriginal skills training.
    • Extend training tax credits for employers and apprentices to the end of 2017, and extend the enhanced credit that provides an additional 50% for First Nations individuals, people with disabilities, and their employers.
  • Venture Capital: Increase the budget for the Small Business Venture Capital Tax Credit Program by $3M for one year. This allows for up to $10M in additional equity financing for qualifying new corporations in 2015.

Keep reading FundingReport and using the Portal’s free Funding Search Tool for updates on the implementation of each of these new measures.

FundingAwards – Who got Funded – Week of Feb. 23

Overall Disbursements: Funding from federal and provincial governments reached $39.9M this week, compared to $89.2M last week.

Top Sector: Arts and Culture is the top sector this week, attracting $26.3M, 66% of the total amount disbursed.

Top Region: Ontario is the top province this week, attracting 39% of the total amount disbursed.

Top Recipients in Ontario:

  • Industry: Héroux-Devtek receives $7.05M from the provincial government to grow its aerospace landing gear business with a new manufacturing facility in Cambridge.
  • Hospitals, Universities, Research Centres & Industry Associations: No new awards this week.
  • Charities, Non-Profits & Public Sector: Massey Hall receives $8M from the federal government to support its revitalization project.

Funding Disbursed by Industry Sector:

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Funding Disbursed by Province:pros03

Active Funding Programs this Week:

  • Arts Fund
  • Canada Arts Presentation Fund
  • Canada Arts Training Fund
  • Canada Book Fund
  • Canada Cultural Spaces Fund
  • Canada’s Victims Fund
  • Fonds conjoncturel de développement (FCD)
  • Fonds de diversification économique de la MRC des Sources
  • Fonds de diversification économique du Centre-du-Québec et de la Mauricie
  • Programme Aide aux immobilisations
  • Programme d’aide aux entreprises du livre et de l’édition spécialisée
  • Programme québécois des infrastructures
  • Quebec Economic Development Program
  • Western Diversification Program (WDP).

To receive daily reports on which organizations received funding in Canada, subscribe to The Funding Portal’s FundingAwards™ service.

Canadian Private Financing and M&A News Roundup – Week of Feb. 23

  • Capital Markets
    • AVAC Ltd., a Calgary-based company that invests in promising early-stage ventures, announced the launch of their latest brand, Verdex Capital. Verdex will be AVAC’s agricultural tech investment management arm.
    • AVAC Ltd. announced the first closing of the Finistere Ventures FVII Fund, a new $150M Ag Tech Fund. AVAC is a founding partner in the FVII Fund alongside Bayer CropScience and another global strategic partner. The Fund’s mandate is to identify and invest in world-class technologies across early to growth-stage companies in the agriculture technology (Ag Tech) space.
  • Cleantech
    • TorQuest Partners announced its partnership with management and other co-investors to acquire a majority interest in Nova Scotia-based Envirosystems Inc. from Thornridge Holdings Limited, a privately held investment firm.
    • Ontario-based cellulosic sugar technology company Comet Biorefining Inc. closed a funding round led by French VC firm Sofinnova Partners.
  • Manufacturing
    • The Fonds de solidarité FTQFondaction CSN, and Capital régional et coopératif Desjardins announced the joint acquisition of ATIS Group, a Québec-based door and window manufacturer.
    • La Fiducie du Chantier de l’économie sociale invested $125k in Surbois. The Salaberry-de-Valleyfield company offers wood furniture.
  • Mining and Natural Resources
    • Focus Graphite Inc. received commitments with respect to a brokered private placement offering of units of the Company for total gross proceeds of $2M.
    • Savary Gold Corp. launched a non-brokered private placement financing for total gross proceeds of up to $2M at a price of $0.05 per Unit.
  • Retail
    • Grenville Strategic Royalty Corp. invested $1M in WATCH IT! with an option to advance an additional $1M. WATCH IT! is a Canadian specialty retailer and franchisor offering accessories and watch repair services.
  • Tech and Digital Media
    • Toronto media agency Engagement Labs Inc. intends to raise approximately $6.5M by way of a private placement of $0.50 Units with Cormark Securities Inc. acting as Bookrunner and Lead Agent and including Beacon Securities Limited and Paradigm Capital Inc. as co-Agents, with First Republic Capital Corporation and PowerOne Capital Markets Limited being the primary participants in the selling group.
    • Ottawa-based Mitel acquired software-based networking solutions provider Mavenir in a $560M cash and stock deal.
    • Farmers Edge Inc., a Winnipeg-based company providing precision agriculture and independent data management solutions, acquired GranDuke Geomatics Ltd.
    • MediaCore, a company offering a video platform for educational content, raised $4.5M in Series A financing in a round led by Vanedge Capital.
    • Version One Ventures invested in Waterloo drone technology startup Perceptiv Labs. The financing round totaled $500k and included angel investors.
    • Ottawa cloud software company Klipfolio raised $6.2M from a series-A round led by OMERS Ventures.
    • FundThrough, a technology-driven online lending platform, raised $2.2M in financing. Canadian seed venture fund Real Ventures led the round, which also included Origin Merchant Partners, Five Elements Ventures, Barlow Lane Holdings, Jim Case and Peter Carrescia.
    • Toronto-based SecureKey Technologies raised $19M in Series C financing from current investors, including Blue Sky Capital and Rogers Venture Partners LLC.
    • Moncton-based marketing software app company RtTech Software closed a $3M Series A financing round led by McRock iNFund.
    • Toronto-based investor website company Q4 Web Systems raised $5M in VC from Silicon Valley Bank, Atlas Venture and Plaza Ventures.
  • Telecom
    • Saint-Hyacinthe-based broadband, TV and telecom company Maskatel is merging with Xittel, a telecommunications service provider in Trois-Rivières. The companies are portfolio companies of Birch Hill Equity Partners and Fondaction CSN.

FundingSources – Must Reads

  • CSE: The Canadian Securities Exchange (CSE) announced the launch of the CSE Composite Index. The index is the first established by the CSE and is designed to measure the performance of equity securities listed on the CSE.
  • EDC:  Export Development Canada (EDC) announced up to US$450M in financing for Transnet, South Africa’s sole national rail network operator. The loan will partially finance a US$1.2B contract that Transnet recently awarded to Bombardier Transportation South Africa Limited, for the delivery of 240 TRAXX dual voltage locomotives.
  • OMERS: OMERS, one of Canada’s largest pension plans, concluded 2014 with net assets of $72B, a $7B increase over 2013. OMERS generated a 10.0% return for the year (net of investment expenses), exceeding its long term funding requirement of 6.5% (net), and the prior year return of 6.0% (net).
  • Ontario: Ontario is seeking input to renew the province’s Mineral Development Strategy to attract further investment to maintain Ontario’s place as a world leader in mining.
  • Ontario: Minister Jeff Leal and Minister Michael Chan announced they will be leading a trade mission to China in April 2015. The mission will focus on increasing opportunities for Ontario’s agriculture and agri-food sector in the Chinese market.

QP Briefing: Province gives $1 million to Toyota parts maker to create 73 jobs

By John Valorzi

The Ontario government is providing a $1-million grant to a Toyota auto parts unit to help upgrade its factory that supplies components for the Japanese carmaker’s plants in southwestern Ontario.

The Ministry of Economic Development, Employment and Infrastructure said Monday it is providing the grant to Toyota Boshoku Canada to invest in new technology and expand its Elmira manufacturing plant to create 73 new jobs.

The money is coming from the Southwestern Ontario Development Fund, a regional job-creating fund that has been used to help lure new investments in the auto, food processing, technology and other sectors.

Toyota Boshoku designs and manufactures seats and door trims and will now be able to supply Toyota plants in Cambridge and Woodstock with Ontario-made components that were previously imported. The company’s main plant is in Elmira, a community of just under 10,000 people in Waterloo Region about 15 kilometres north of the City of Waterloo. The Liberal government has long supported partnerships with business to create jobs and attract new investments. In the auto sector, it has provided hundred of millions of dollars to help Ford expand its Oakville assembly plant, for Honda to modernize and upgrade its assembly operation in Alliston, as well as for parts makers and other companies in the pivotal auto sector. The Ontario and federal governments also provided more than $13 billion in financial aid to bail out GM Canada and Chrysler Canada and help the two companies avoid bankruptcy in 2009.

The so-called Detroit Three companies – GM, Ford and Chrysler – shut down plants in the wake of the 2009 recession. But since 2010, there’s been over $5 billion in auto industry investment in southwestern Ontario alone, the government says.

At Ford, for example, the company has expanded its Oakville plant by 1,700 jobs to 4,500 workers in the past two years – including an additional 400 announced last Thursday. Canada’s automotive industry is a key sector of the economy, making up 10 per cent of the country’s manufacturing GDP and 13 per cent of total merchandise exports. The industry employs more than 117,000 Canadians directly and another 377,000 indirectly, mainly at assembly and parts plants in Ontario. The province is home to the industry’s main assembly plants – two run by GM, two by Chrysler and one by Ford as well as plants owned by Toyota and Honda.

“Today’s announcement with Toyota Boshoku highlights our commitment to invest with our manufacturing sector to increase competitiveness, attract significant private sector investments and generate economic growth,” said Brad Duguid, minister of economic development, employment and infrastructure.

Norimichi Adachi, president of Toyota Boshoku Canada, said the company “is very proud of the skilled teams and capabilities we’ve developed at our Ontario plants.”

“This new investment at our Elmira location brings in state-of-the-art production technologies and supports in our continual focus on providing the most innovative, high-quality products and outstanding service for our valued customers.”

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Capital Markets and Private Financing: MaRS launches new fintech cluster

Canadian businesses in the financial technology (also called fintech) sector will soon be able to benefit from the creation of a new innovation cluster, MaRS Discovery District, Canada’s largest business incubator, announced last week.

In order to launch the cluster, MaRS has formed strategic partnerships with PayPal and UGO, as well as a future collaboration with Moneris. The cluster will connect fintech leaders with startups to develop next-generation technologies in the areas of payments, financial services, peer-to-peer transactions, alternative lending, and crypto-currencies. Services provided at the cluster, which will be located at MaRS, will include access to investment, rapid validation, product feedback, sales opportunities, and business advisory.

“The industry partnerships announced today signal a desire from senior leaders in Canada’s technology and financial services sector to facilitate innovation and entrepreneurship by partnering with MaRS,” said Salim Teja, Executive Vice President of Ventures, MaRS. “MaRS, which is located within walking distance of Toronto’s financial district, is the natural home for fintech innovation.”

The new fintech Cluster will be led by Adam Nanjee, previously VP of Business Development, Emerging Payments, MasterCard Canada.

According to MaRS, global investments in fintech venture companies represented US$3B in the last five years, and is set to reach US$8B by 2018.

The full range of facilities for fintech startups will be available later this year. Applications to join are currently being accepted.

Are you seeking capital for your growing company? Learn more about featuring your business on the Portal’s new Capital Markets Board.