TORONTO, ONTARIO--(Marketwire - Feb. 19, 2013) - The Honourable Gary Goodyear, Minister of State for the Federal Economic Development Agency for Southern Ontario (FedDev Ontario), today announced a significant Government of Canada investment that will support 24 innovation projects in the Greater Toronto Area.
"Our Government understands that small businesses and entrepreneurs play a crucial role in job creation and Canada's competitiveness," said Minister Goodyear. "This investment will boost business innovation, skills and product development in the Toronto area, creating new full-time jobs and greater economic diversity within the region."
This funding supports business innovation with projects and companies that are developing software and digital media technologies, completing research for medical treatments and diagnostic tools, improving food production and processing, and encouraging Ontario entrepreneurs through mentorship and business incubators.
Through FedDev Ontario's Investing in Business Innovation initiative, up to $9,438,833 will be invested in 16 projects to support product development and commercialization for start-up businesses. Funding from FedDev Ontario has also been leveraged to attract up to $33,941,667 in additional financing for the projects - primarily from angel investment and venture capital financing.
Up to $5,950,000 is also being provided through FedDev Ontario's Prosperity Initiative to support three projects that contribute to building an economic advantage in southern Ontario. The projects will include upgrades in technology and expansion of food processing capacity, as well as mentoring and support for students and recent graduates developing and commercializing digital media for mobile devices. FedDev Ontario funding for these projects have been leveraged to attract up to $19,400,000 in private sector investment.
Through FedDev Ontario's Youth STEM initiative, up to $1,795,000 will support development and delivery of two new projects to encourage young Ontarians to pursue education and careers in science, technology, engineering and mathematics. The projects, created and delivered by not-for-profit organizations and their partners, will reach up to 28,350 students across southern Ontario with a variety of engagement strategies including in-school programs, mentorships and online activities.
FedDev Ontario is also contributing up to $1,256,000 through the Scientists and Engineers in Business initiative. This funding will support three commercialization fellowship programs that will allow STEM graduate students in sciences, technology, engineering and mathematics fields to commercialize their research, and improve their business management skills. In total, these projects will leverage up to $2,035,350 in matching seed capital. These fellowship programs help entrepreneurs with innovative ideas to launch start-up businesses and leverage private investment.
It is expected that a total of up to 813 high-value, full-time jobs will be created in the Toronto area during the course of these projects with an additional 197 jobs by 2017.
For more information on these projects and FedDev Ontario initiatives, please see the backgrounder.
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.
A Backgrounder is available at the following address: http://media3.marketwire.com/docs/backgrounder_eng_0219.pdf