Government of Canada Supports Technology Development in Ottawa

For immediate release
March 18, 2013

Ottawa, Ontario — The Honourable Gordon O'Connor, Member of Parliament for Carleton – Mississippi Mills, on behalf of the Honourable Gary Goodyear, Minister of State for the Federal Economic Development Agency for Southern Ontario (FedDev Ontario), today announced Government of Canada investments of up to $3.67 million to support six start-up technology development companies in the Ottawa area.

"Our government continues to support the drivers of growth and job creation – innovation, investment, education, skills and communities," said Minister O'Connor. "Investments like the ones announced today will help start-up businesses increase their international market share and create jobs in the Ottawa area."

Through FedDev Ontario's Investing in Business Innovation initiative, the contributions will support the following six innovative companies:

  • Up to $984,667 for BLiNQ Wireless Inc., developer of hardware for the enhancement of wireless networks;
  • Up to $950,000 for eSight Corp., developer of assistive technology for people with low vision;
  • Up to $500,000 for Impakt Protective Inc., developer of helmet sensory technology to measure the risk of concussion;
  • Up to $500,000 for Magor Communications Corp. and
  • Up to $450,000 for Fusebill Inc., developers of business application software platforms;
  • Up to $287,500 for ThinkRF Corporation, developer of hardware for wireless radio frequency analysis.

FedDev Ontario funding for these projects will leverage up to $9.8 million in angel investment and venture capital financing.

The companies expect to create up to 123 high-value, full-time jobs in the Ottawa area during the course of these projects, with an additional 202 jobs by 2017.

For more information on this project and the Investing in Business Innovation initiative, please refer to the backgrounder.

Investing in Business Innovation is designed to boost private sector investment in start-up businesses to accelerate the development of new products, processes and practices and help bring them to market. The Government of Canada is focusing on a portfolio of early-stage businesses that are recognized by the investor community as having the potential for high-growth and a net long-term economic benefit for southern Ontario. The investor community includes accredited angel investors from recognized angel investor networks in southern Ontario registered with the Network of Angel Organizations – Ontario and venture capital providers who are member of Canada's Venture Capital & Private Equity Association.

Created in 2009, FedDev Ontario supports the southern Ontario economy by building on the region's strengths and creating opportunities for jobs and economic growth. The Agency has launched a number of initiatives to create a Southern Ontario Advantage and place the region in a strong position to compete in the global economy. These initiatives are designed to encourage partnerships and support projects that help the region's businesses and communities become more competitive, innovative and diversified. To learn more, please visit www.FedDevOntario.gc.ca or call 1-866-593-5505.

As outlined by the Prime Minister, the Government of Canada remains focused on what Canadians care most about: their families, the safety of our streets and communities, their pride in being a citizen of this country, and their personal financial security.

Follow us on Twitter @FedDevOntario

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For more information, contact:

Stephanie Thomas
Press Secretary
Office of the Honourable Gary Goodyear
613-960-7728

Media Relations
FedDev Ontario
416-954-6652


Backgrounder

Contributions to Ottawa Area Technology Developers

FedDev Ontario is investing up to $3,672,167 in repayable contributions to six Ottawa area start-up technology development companies under its Investing in Business Innovation initiative.

BLiNQ Wireless Inc. is receiving up to $984,667 to complete development and commercialization of its backhaul self-organizing network (B-SON™), a system that can fundamentally change the way mobile network operators deliver services in urban areas. BLiNQ pioneered B-SON™, which provides cost-effective and timely enhancement of mobile data networks through small devices installed on utility poles or buildings below the roofline, thus extending coverage of the network. FedDev Ontario funding for this project has enabled the company to attract up to $4 million in venture capital investment from Summerhill Venture Partners, Business Development Bank of Canada Venture Capital and New Venture Partners. The company expects to create up to 10 high-value, full-time jobs during the course of the project with an additional 19 jobs by 2016.

eSight Corp. is receiving up to $950,000 to complete development of its wearable electronic assistive technology, designed specifically for people with low vision. These innovative glasses maximize the effectiveness of a user's remaining eyesight by modifying what they are viewing through the use of an HD video camera. The glasses have been designed and developed in collaboration with leading medical practitioners and researchers. Funding from FedDev Ontario has enabled the company to attract up to $3.4 million in angel investment from members of Boston Harbor Angel, Capital Angel Network, the Golden Triangle AngelNet, and Angel One Investor Network. The company anticipates creating up to 25 full-time jobs during the project with an additional 65 jobs by 2016.

Impakt Protective Inc. is receiving a contribution of up to $500,000 to develop new features and conduct R&D and market research for its sensory technology systems, which measure the risk of concussion. A sensor attached to an existing helmet delivers alerts to a paired tablet or smartphone reporting the force of an impact that could cause a concussion. This technology responds to the growing concern about head injuries in sports and allows coaches to monitor their players' risk. Funding provided by FedDev Ontario has enabled the company to attract up to $1 million in angel investment from members of the Capital Angel Network. The company expects to create up to three highly skilled, full-time jobs during the course of this project, with an additional seven jobs by 2017.

Magor Communications Corp. is receiving a contribution of up to $500,000 to develop a version of its visual collaboration workspace – a dynamic alternative to the traditional video conference – that will be more accessible to small businesses. This new version of Magor's software solution will also allow the company to expand its reach with the option of distributing the technology through telecommunications partners to their existing customer base. This technology facilitates visual collaborative workflow at a distance without the need for expensive hardware and network infrastructure. FedDev Ontario funding for this project has enabled the company to attract up to $1 million in angel and venture capital investment from members of the Southwestern Ontario Angel Group, and Wesley Clover International Corporation. The company expects to create up to 12 high-value, full-time jobs as a result of this project.

Fusebill Inc. is receiving up to $450,000 to develop enhancements and complete commercialization of its automated recurring invoicing, billing, and bill payment software platform for subscription-based companies. Fusebill's software platform is an efficient solution that allows small- and medium-sized subscription businesses to manage their customer base with more functionality and at a reduced cost in comparison with existing software platforms. FedDev Ontario funding for this project has enabled the company to attract up to $900,000 in venture capital and angel investment from Covington Funds and members of the Capital Angel Network. It is anticipated that the company will create up to 49 high-value, full-time jobs in the Ottawa area as a result of this project.

ThinkRF Corporation is receiving a contribution of up to $287,500 to enhance and upgrade its software-based, wireless radio frequency (RF) receiver for improved compatibility with mobile devices on 4G LTE and next generation wireless networks. RF technology has many applications: for example, it can be used by: mobile network operators to optimize connectivity and troubleshoot services; by government agencies to monitor and enforce licensed bandwidth use; and by defense contractors to support secure military communications. The company's RF intelligence product, which combines the capabilities of a digitizer, analyzer and receiver in one device, costs less than other currently available technologies. It is expected that this project will increase the company's exports and significantly improve its market share in international markets. FedDev Ontario funding for this project has enabled the company to attract up to $575,000 in angel and venture capital investment from members of the Capital Angel Network and the Wesley Clover International Corporation. The company expects to create up to 15 high-value, full-time jobs during the course of the project with an additional 130 jobs by 2017.

Investing in Business Innovation

Investing in Business Innovation provides improved access to financing for start-up businesses, boosts private sector investment in start-up businesses, and helps accelerate the research and development of new products and ideas and bring them to the marketplace.

The initiative addresses the development and commercialization challenges faced by start-up businesses in southern Ontario by helping them to obtain angel and venture capital investments in the development of their businesses.

For more information, please refer to www.FedDevOntario.gc.ca.