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Ontario focusses on cutting-edge technology in $46M program


Ottawa, ON – The Ontario government has launched a new commercialization program focussed on bringing cutting-edge research to market. The four-year, $46-million market readiness program will provide companies with financial support, training and management expertise.

The Ontario Centres of Excellence (OCE) and the MaRS Discovery District will deliver the program across the province, starting in the fall.

“For almost 20 years, the OCE has helped move great ideas from ‘mind to market’ through support of research, industrial collaboration and the commercialization of cutting-edge science and technology,” says Mark Romoff, OCEs president and CEO. “The market readiness program will help us expand the work we’re doing and lead to even more made-in-Ontario innovation success stories.”

Also announced was funding for 16 projects that will link companies, colleges, universities and research institutions to develop cutting-edge technologies. The funding will be provided through the government’s $31.4-million Ontario Research and Commercialization Program (ORCP).

Projects funded include:

BioDiscovery Toronto & Toronto Technology Transfer. Project will build the Toronto network for technology transfer for life sciences, physical sciences and information technology. They will provide a focal point for industry to access one of North America’s leading biomedical research centres, including a single window into the eight academic health science centres in Toronto. Lead: University of Toronto. Partners: Centre for Addiction and Mental Health, Hospital for Sick Children, Mount Sinai Hospital, Ryerson University, St Michael’s Hospital, Sunnybrook Health Sciences Centre, Toronto Rehabilitation Institute, University Health Network. Funding: $5,600,000

Ottawa Technology Transfer Network. An Eastern Ontario technology transfer network will be established with collaboration from PARTEQ Innovations of Kingston. This investment will help integrate six institutions and three industry-focused organizations into one network that will transition technologies to the private sector, and leverage research expertise in the Ottawa/Kingston regions to help get new technologies to market. Lead: University of Ottawa. Partners: University of Ottawa, Ottawa Health Research Institute, Children’s Hospital of Eastern Ontario, University of Ottawa Heart Institute, Algonquin College, National Capital Institute of Telecommunications, Ottawa Life Science Council and Ottawa Centre for Research and Innovation. Funding: $2,908,508.

Expanding Commercialization capacity in the Kingston Region. The PARTEQ innovations technology transfer model will be expanded to all research institutions and two private sector research facilities in the Kingston area. The main focus will be on better connecting the research base at Queen’s University and other institutions to industries in Eastern Ontario. Lead: PARTEQ Innovations at Queen’s University. Partners: Kingston General Hospital, Royal Military College of Canada, St Lawrence College, DuPont Canada, Novelis Global Technology Centre. Fuding: $2,200,000.

C4 Technology Transfer Offices, A Southwestern Ontario network for technology transfer will be expanded. It will leverage the expertise of associated regional innovation networks and other organizations to build strong linkages with the private sector. The network will also include a process to link business and engineering students to companies to help bring products and services to market. Lead: McMaster University. Partners: University of Guelph, University of Waterloo, University of Western Ontario, University of Windsor, Wilfrid Laurier University, The Lawson Health Research Institute, The Robarts Research Institute. Funding: $3,899,531.

Ontario Partnership for Innovation and Commercialization (OPIC). A provincial network for technology transfer, comprised of seven universities, will be developed and linked to technology transfer expertise in Toronto (through Technology Transfer Toronto). These universities will leverage their local regional innovation network to help transition technologies to the private sector. Lead: Ryerson University. Partners: Brock University, Lakehead University, Laurentian University, Nipissing University, Trent University, University of Ontario Institute of Technology. Funding: $1,600,000.

College Network for Industry Innovation. A provincial network will be established with 10 Ontario colleges to help small companies solve technical problems, adapt new technologies, and develop or improve new products and processes. Lead: Seneca College. Partners: Algonquin College, Centennial College, Conestoga College, Fanshawe College, George Brown College, Humber Institute of Technical and Advanced Learning, Niagara College, St Clair College, Seneca College, Sheridan Institute of Technical and Advanced Learning. Funding: $3,500,275.

Ontario Society for Excellence in Technology Transfer (OnSETT). A provincial training and internship program will be established and delivered across 31 member institutions. In addition, these members will have access to industry expertise to help them transition technologies to the private sector. The program will facilitate sharing of expertise and resources across the province. Lead: Parteq Innovations at Queen’s University. Partners: McMaster University, Mount Sinai Hospital, Ottawa Health Research Institute, Queen’s University, The Hospital for Sick Children, The University of Western Ontario, University Health Network, University of Guelph, University of Ottawa, University of Toronto, University of Waterloo. Funding: $2,205,000.

Talent First Network. This network will provide talented students and companies with the training, tools and methods required to help move technologies to private sector companies who can get them to the marketplace. Lead: Carleton University. Funding: $1,116,500.

Strengthening Ontario’s Industry Capacity in Photonics. The Ontario Photonics Innovation Network (OPIN) will: engage and promote the photonics industry sector, act as a gateway for industry to Ontario’s research institutions, and act as an advisor for innovative companies that wish to bring innovative ideas before investors. The photonics industry includes areas such as fiber optics, laser technology and imaging. Lead: Ontario Photonics Innovation Network. Funding: $300,000

Regional Innovation Development Program (RIDP). Project will build business development capacity in Ontario’s key technology clusters (Waterloo, Ottawa, and Toronto). Initiative will work to integrate technology transfer and commercialization, and also build collaborations between the information and communications technology sector and research institutions. Lead: Ottawa Centre for Research and Innovation, with help from Communitech and the Innovation Synergy Centre. Funding: $3,400,000.

Promoting Economic Development in the Medical and Assistive Technologies and Information and Communication Technologies Sectors. Health Technologies Exchange will implement developmental research projects that can further the commercial application of new discoveries in the medical and assistive technologies, and information and communication technologies sectors. Lead: Health Technologies Exchange. Funding: $600,000.

Building Commercial-ization and Investment Capacity in Ontario’s Agri-Food, Life Sciences, and Bio-Products Sectors. BioEnterprise will undertake commercialization activities that focus on the agri-food, life sciences, and bio-products sectors. Key features of the program will include: working with entrepreneurs to assist with business planning and financial strategies, and building stronger sector linkages between small and medium-sized businesses and research institutions. Lead: BioEnterprise Corporation. Funding: $900,000.

Ontario Internship Program. This program will place students and new graduates in Ontario technology companies over the next three years. Lead: Ontario Centres of Excellence with Vitesse Re-Skilling. Funding: $1,200,000.Southwestern Ontario Industry Engagement. TechAlliance will develop programs that will connect entrepreneurs to researchers to: help start new ventures, conduct market research to determine the potential saleable value of technologies and assist small and medium-sized companies with business plan development. Lead: TechAlliance. Funding: $700,000.

C3 Network. This program will establish a student mentorship program and engage industry in the new media sector. Lead: New Media Business Alliance. Funding: $300,000.

Industry Receptor Capacity. The Ontario Centre for Environmental Technologies Advancement (OCETA) will bring together research institutions and industry to collaborate on research and development to help address technical issues in the development of a technology. The parties will develop strategies to commercialize products that address Canadian environmental priorities. Lead: Ontario Centre for Environmental Technologies Advancement. Funding: $1,000,000.