Investing in Business Innovation

Through Economic Action Plan 2013, the Government of Canada demonstrated its continued commitment to workers, families and communities in southern Ontario with the launch of the Southern Ontario Prosperity Initiatives, which includes Investing in Business Innovation (IBI).

IBI provides mentorship, entrepreneurial support and financing to help new businesses grow and succeed. The initiative is designed to foster a more competitive southern Ontario economy by focusing on providing business support to new entrepreneurs, helping them transform their ideas into globally-competitive products and services, and increasing their access to private sector investment and advice.

High-growth businesses and new entrepreneurs are critical to southern Ontario’s competitiveness. Support through IBI increases the potential for businesses to succeed by strengthening angel networks and encouraging the development of partnerships between early-stage businesses and investors so that entrepreneurs have the tools and capital they need to become world-leading innovators.

Who can apply?

IBI funding is available for:

  • Not-for-profit organizations that provide skills development and seed financing to new entrepreneurs;
  • Innovative, early-stage businesses with less than 50 employees to help leverage angel and capital investments; and
  • Southern Ontario-based angel investor networks.

What activities are eligible?

Not-for-profit organizations

This initiative will support the activities of eligible organizations delivering services to entrepreneurs to undertake activities related to providing innovative new entrepreneurs with business skills, education and seed financing to prepare them for investment readiness such as:

  • Business and market development skills programs;
  • Early stage business development programs; and
  • Seed financing programs and support.

Early-stage Businesses

This initiative will support the activities of eligible early-stage businesses to undertake activities related to late-stage development and early-stage commercialization of innovative, unique products and processes (including business development), for example, activities related to:

  • Business development including building high-performance teams; adopting best management practices, processes and systems; and improving governance and investment readiness;
  • Late-stage product development geared towards market diversification and growth;
  • Customer and market development; and
  • Developing and implementing marketing and distribution strategies.

Angel Networks

This initiative will support the activities of eligible Angel Investor Networks to attract more investment and increase the efficiency and effectiveness of investment in innovative, high-growth potential start-up businesses. Areas of focus may include:

  • Outreach;
  • Building capacity;
  • Providing mentorship;
  • Education and resource development; and
  • Coordination and convening.

Important Information

Financial assistance from government programs may have tax implications for your business. It is recommended that advice be obtained from a qualified tax professional.

Please contact us should you have questions or inquiries, or if you do not receive a confirmation email after submitting your application.

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