Access regional funding programs for your business

When searching for government funding, many business owners and executives focus their search on funding programs that cater specifically to their industry sector, but there are also a wealth of regionally-oriented funds from which Canadian businesses can benefit.

These programs are often open to businesses in any industry sector, and are meant to promote job creation and new business opportunities within a specific region.

The first place to start your search for regional funding programs is at the federal level of government, where there are several regional agencies that aim to promote economic development across the country. These include:

  • FedDev Ontario: which administers the Southern Ontario Prosperity Initiatives and the Eastern Ontario Development Program Extension, among other programs,
  • Federal Economic Development Initiative for Northern Ontario (or FedNor): which offers financial support for businesses through small business loans and funding for research and development (R&D), among other programs,
  • Western Economic Diversification Canada: which administers the Western Innovation (WINN) program for SMEs (this fund is expected to accept a new round of applications in the fall),
  • Canada Economic Development for Quebec Regions: which provides funding for startups, productivity, export, innovation, and tech transfer,
  • Atlantic Canada Opportunities Agency (ACOA): which administers the Atlantic Innovation Fund, the Business Development Program and the Innovative Communities Fund, and
  • Canadian Northern Economic Development Agency (CanNor): which administers several programs, including the Strategic Investments Northern Economic Development (SINED) initiative.

Businesses seeking funding should also consider provincial programs, such as the Eastern Ontario Development Fund and the Southwestern Ontario Development Funds in Ontario. Finally, businesses located in large cities may also be eligible for lesser-known municipal funding programs.

The Funding Portal Search Widget makes it easy for businesses to find all the funding programs that are open to their business, thanks to its comprehensive coverage of all 4,500 federal, provincial and municipal funding programs in Canada. Try a search today or order a FundingSources report to have the portal’s experts identify the top 10-25 funding programs for your business.

FundingSources – Must Reads

This week’s Must Reads from Funding Agencies and Industry Associations

  • EDC: General Electric (GE) Canada and Export Development Canada (EDC) announced they are working together to identify and introduce innovative and globally minded Canadian companies into the supply chain of two GE Canada divisions in Peterborough, Ontario.
  • Finance Canada: Finance Minister Joe Oliver announced the members of his Economic Advisory Council.
  • University of Waterloo: Ten University of Waterloo startup companies will pitch their businesses for a share of $100,000 in grant funding at the Velocity Fund Finals on Thursday, July 24. The rewards include four $25,000 prizes as well as workspace at Velocity.

FundingAwards – Who got Funded – Week of July 14

Overall Disbursements:  Funding from federal and provincial governments drops to $19.8M this week, compared to $89.1M last week.

Top Sector: Manufacturing is the top sector this week, attracting $8.4M, 42% of the total amount disbursed.

Top Region: Nova Scotia is the top province this week, attracting 33% of the total amount disbursed.

Top Recipients in Ontario:

  • Businesses: No new awards this week.
  • Hospitals, Universities, Research Centres & Industry Associations: No new awards this week.
  • Charities, Non-Profits & Public Sector: Softball Canada receives $150,000 from Sport Canada’s Hosting program to host the 10th International Softball Federation (ISF) Junior Men’s World Championship.

Funding Disbursed by Industry Sector:


Funding Disbursed by Province:


Active Funding Programs this Week:

  • Aboriginal Languages Initiative
  • AgriInnovation Program
  • AgriMarketing Program
  • B.C. Job Creation Partnership
  • Building Communities Through Arts & Heritage
  • Business Development Program
  • Canada Arts Presentation Fund
  • Canada Cultural Spaces Fund
  • Development of Official-Language Communities Program
  • ecoENERGY Innovation Initiative (ecoEII)
  • Employment Program
  • Growing Innovation Program
  • Mineral Incentive Program
  • Museums Assistance Program
  • New Horizons for Seniors Program (NHSP)
  • Quebec Economic Development Program (QEDP)
  • Skills & Partnership Fund
  • Sport Support Program
  • Vive l’Acadie Community Fund

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

QP Briefing: Ubisoft to expand Toronto studio, adding another 470 jobs

By John Valorzi

French multinational video-game maker Ubisoft is more than doubling its Toronto development centre and adding another 470 jobs with a $543-million expansion, helped with money from the Liberal government.

The company ─ which makes the Assassin’s Creed series and has more than 9,200 employees worldwide ─ announced the planned expansion Thursday, confirming it would grow its current Toronto workforce of 330 people to about 800 by 2020.

Ubisoft came to Ontario in 2010 in a deal that saw the former McGuinty government commit $263 million in subsidies to leverage a 10-year, $800-million investment from the company to build a video-development centre from scratch in Toronto.

“The studio has created many big milestones since we opened the doors,”Yannis Malat, CEO of  Ubisoft Canada, told a news conference Thursday.

“To see how Ubisoft Toronto has grown over this short period of time and what it has achieved is not just a testament to the talented team we have attracted but also to our the partnership with the Ontario government.

“We look forward to strengthening our partnership as we continue to grow.”

Premier Kathleen Wynne said the majority Liberal government remains “committed to partnering with business to create jobs,” as it tries to revitalize the province toward advanced manufacturing and the knowledge economy.

“Our government is investing in smart partnerships, which will have lasting benefits for our people and our economy,” the premier said after touring the development centre in the Dupont and Landsdowne area of central Toronto.

The Liberals struck a partnership with Ubisoft in 2010, getting a commitment from the company to invest $800 million over a decade to build its Ontario operations.

The 28-year-old French company, which has major operations in Quebec, opened a production studio and other operations in Toronto four years ago. It also partnered with Sheridan College to set up a Screen Industries and Research Training Centre to train animators for the interactive digital media industry.

The Liberal government has long touted its partnerships with business to help restructure the economy, which has lost more than 300,000 jobs since the 2009 recession, mainly in traditional sectors such as steel, autos, forestry and food processing.

In its budget, the government announced a 10-year, $2.5-billion jobs and prosperity fund to subsidize new investments. The budget bill got second-reading approval by the house on Thursday and is expected to pass by the end of next week.

Brad Duguid, minister of economic development, employment and infrastructure, also toured the Ubisoft centre and said the Liberals have helped create or keep 10,000 jobs with their subsidy programs in the past year.

He noted the digital media production sector now employs 16,000 people and generates more than $1 billion annually for Ontario’s economy.

“This investment is an example of what we need to do to build strong clusters in the next-generation economy,” Duguid said.

Besides its Assassin’s Creed franchise, Ubisoft is also known for other internationally popular games such as Just Dance, Tom Clancy’s video game series, Rayman and Far Cry.

The company operates a global network of studios and business and had sales in fiscal 2013 of more than $1.25 billion.

Subscribe to a free two-week trial of Queen’s Park Briefing to access daily articles, including:

Ontario reintroduces Jobs and Prosperity Fund under Budget 2

The Government of Ontario reintroduced yesterday its proposed 10-year, $2.5 billion Jobs and Prosperity Fund as part of its new Budget.

“We will use this fund to partner with businesses to encourage new investment that creates jobs here in Ontario,” said Finance Minister Charles Sousa. “And we will make investments in training so people have the skills to keep our industries at the leading edge of innovation. This will help their businesses grow and it will help them hire more people.”

The fund will aim to improve the Province’s ability to attract significant new business investments, as well as strengthen its strategic sectors and stimulate economic growth.

As previously reported, funding is expected to flow primarily to key industry sectors, such as advanced manufacturing, agri-food and agri-products, and information and communications technology (ICT). Specific fund objectives will be supporting business investment in job creation, innovation, productivity, and going global.

The fund’s $250 million per year budget will include $40 million earmarked to help the agri-food and agri-processing sector double its annual growth rate and create 120,000 new jobs by 2020.

Other measures reintroduced in yesterday’s provincial Budget include an investment of $30 million to create a new Life Sciences Seed Venture Capital Fund, and $5 million to create a new Trillium Advanced Manufacturing Network.

Learn more about these initiatives and read the portal’s original report on the Budget published in May.

FundingAwards – Who got Funded – Week of July 7

Overall Disbursements:  Funding from federal and provincial governments grows to $89.1M this week, compared to $62.8M last week.

Top Sector: Arts, Culture and Community is the top sector for the second week in a row, attracting $31.3M, 35% of the total amount disbursed.

Top Region: Alberta is the top province for the second week in a row, attracting 41% of the total amount disbursed.

Top Recipients in Ontario:

  • Businesses: Tech company Tri-D Technology receives a $500,000 loan from the Southern Ontario Fund for Investment in Innovation (SOFII) to scale up its current operations.
  • Hospitals, Universities, Research Centres & Industry Associations: Canadian Seed Growers’ Association receives $836,000 from the federal AgriMarketing Program to develop a rapid data management system for seed crop certification.
  • Charities, Non-Profits & Public Sector: No new awards this week.

Funding Disbursed by Industry Sector:

Sectors 14

Funding Disbursed by Province:

Pros 14

Active Funding Programs this Week:

  • AgriMarketing Program
  • Atlantic Innovation Fund (AIF)
  • Community & Employer Partnerships
  • Development of Official-Language Communities Program
  • Housing First
  • Quebec Economic Development Program
  • Recreation Facility Development Program
  • Small Craft Harbours (SCH)
  • Southern Ontario Fund for Investment in Innovation (SOFII)
  • Western Diversification Program

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