Southern Ontario Spotlight - September 2022

Southern Ontario Spotlight

FedDev Ontario’s focus on economic development

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On September 30, 2022, Canada will pause for the national commemoration of Truth and Reconciliation Day - a day of recognition and remembrance for those who have suffered and a day to honour all the lives that were lost at residential schools.

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Making Headlines

FedDev Ontario welcomes Minister Filomena Tassi

FedDev Ontario welcomes Minister Filomena Tassi

On August 31, Prime Minister Justin Trudeau announced the Honourable Filomena Tassi as the Minister Responsible for the Federal Economic Development Agency for Southern Ontario. Born and raised in Hamilton, southern Ontario is the place Minister Tassi calls home. She has dedicated her professional life to advocating for our families and supporting our businesses and our communities. She will now continue this important work at FedDev Ontario.

Minster Helena Jaczek assumes the role of Minister of Public Services and Procurement Canada. During her tenure at FedDev Ontario, Minister Jaczek helped create jobs and economic growth in southern Ontario by championing the delivery of regionally tailored programs and services.

FedDev Ontario congratulates Minister Jaczek and Minister Tassi on their respective new roles. We are excited to work together with Minister Tassi as we continue to provide vital support to small and medium-sized businesses across the region.

 
Support for southern Ontario tourism operators

Support for southern Ontario tourism operators

September 27th was World Tourism Day, a day to focus on the tourism industry across Canada and to celebrate the rich, diverse experiences this country has to offer. The Government of Canada’s $500-million Tourism Relief Fund is helping tourism-oriented businesses and organizations recover from the pandemic and prepare for future growth. FedDev Ontario is delivering nearly $120 million of tourism relief funding across southern Ontario.

This past summer, the Agency made several investments in the tourism sector totaling nearly $10 million, including a contribution for Ottawa’s Capital Pride, a not-for-profit organization that hosts the city’s annual Pride Festival celebrating the rich and diverse 2SLGBTQI+ community in the National Capital Region. This investment helped Capital Pride create and install interactive artwork created by members of the 2SLGBTQI+ community within the city. In the Greater Toronto Area, a FedDev Ontario investment was provided to the operators of the Toronto Caribbean Carnival to modernize the event, expand offerings and enhance visitor experience. With this investment, the Toronto Caribbean Carnival developed an app to enhance the visitor experience, updated its website to support online ticket sales, and will host Caribbean Carnival-themed events throughout the year showcasing culinary experiences and artisan and vendor marketplaces. In addition, a Government of Canada investment was announced for five arts and culture projects in the GTA area, where recipients will produce creative and cultural events, showcasing the works of local artists and attracting tourists and artists back to the GTA. This funding includes a non-repayable contribution for the Scotiabank CONTACT Photography Festival to create an installation of a series of 22 outdoor public art projects and develop a website to feature the artistic works online.

In Sarnia-Lambton, funding was announced for the Victoria Playhouse, a 400-seat state-of-the-art theatre in the centre of downtown Petrolia that attracts over 40,000 visitors annually. With this funding, the theatre will extend its season from three to six weeks and add digital screens to enhance the visitor experience. In London, a Tourism Relief Fund investment announced for the London Children's Museum will allow them to adapt the top floor of the historic Kellogg’s cereal factory into its new 35,000 square foot venue, where children can explore science, art, technology, nature, history, and culture in a state-of-the-art educational space featuring eight immersive, interactive exhibits.

Investments such as these help strengthen communities across southern Ontario, bringing people together to celebrate Canada’s cultural heritage, creating good jobs, and helping local businesses thrive.

 
Government of Canada provides support for major festivals and events in southern Ontario

Government of Canada provides support for major festivals and events in southern Ontario

Festivals and major events (such as sporting events, exhibitions, etc.) are a cornerstone of Canada’s tourism sector. The Government of Canada’s Major Festivals and Events Support Initiative (MFESI) is a $200-million fund supporting major festivals and events across the country that were impacted by the COVID-19 pandemic.

This past summer, FedDev Ontario made several significant MFESI investments across southern Ontario totaling almost $50 million. This started in July with support for the Stratford Shakespearean Festival of Canada (Stratford Festival) to recover from the impacts of the pandemic, expand operations and extend its season to produce a total of 10 plays, which will result in positive economic impacts for the Stratford-area tourism and hospitality sectors. Funding was also announced to support the return of Tennis Canada's National Bank Open tournament, as well as support for the Boots and Hearts Music Festival, Canada’s largest country music festival. This funding will enable event organizers to safely welcome visitors, while providing economic and job benefits to businesses across the region.

FedDev Ontario also announced investments to support the return of two important Toronto events: the Canadian National Exhibition (CNE) and the Toronto International Film Festival (TIFF). These investments, delivered through the MFESI, supported the strong return of both events following the pandemic. FedDev Ontario support allowed the CNE to modernize its digital presence and on-site offerings such as new heritage-themed programming, a new pyrotechnics and drone stage, and a new structure at the Kids World pavilion. A non-repayable investment in TIFF allowed the festival to increase the number of indoor venues used for screenings, support the return of the Street Festival and surrounding events, as well as implement enhanced health measures to keep visitors safe. Also announced was support for the Niagara area’s Shaw Festival - one of the world’s leading repertory theatre companies. After pandemic-related closures and show cancellations, this MFESI investment will help the Shaw Festival return to its pre-pandemic scale with 13 shows, a new concert series and Fairground and Shawground events.

Most recently, FedDev Ontario announced funding for Golf Canada to support the return of the CP Women’s Open and the RBC Canadian Open tournaments. With this funding, Golf Canada improved its digital presence, enhanced on-site offerings and safely accommodated more attendees, while providing economic and job benefits to businesses across the region.

 
Investments in the aerospace and air transportation sectors

Investments in the aerospace and air transportation sectors

The aerospace sector continues to be at the forefront of the manufacturing industry, providing skilled employment and rich export capabilities in regions across the country, and regional airports play important role in the movement of people and goods across the country. The Government of Canada is committed to supporting the ongoing recovery and long-term success of companies operating in the aerospace and air transportation sectors through the $250 million Aerospace Regional Recovery Initiative (ARRI) and the $206-million national Regional Air Transportation Initiative (RATI).

FedDev Ontario announced over $2.6 million for Downsview Aerospace Innovation & Research (DAIR), a notforprofit organization working to build a physical aerospace innovation hub, at Downsview Park in Toronto. FedDev Ontario representatives toured the Toronto Metropolitan University Aerospace Engineering Centre, the site for the next phase of DAIR hub physical expansion, as well as the Bombardier Centre for Aerospace and Aviation, and later sat down for a roundtable discussion with representatives from leading aerospace manufacturing firms to hear about current priorities and ideas on creating a more globally competitive Canadian aerospace sector. This ARRI investment for DAIR will help fund projects that will support the government’s initiative to a greener future and will help SMEs enhance operations to meet customer needs and become more competitive in the global supply chain. Also announced was a non-repayable contribution of over $2.8 million for four southern Ontario airports: Kingston Airport, Cornwall Regional Airport, Huronia Airport and Arnprior Airport. This RATI investment will help these facilities perform crucial upgrades, including upgraded security and surveillance equipment, new runway lighting and terminal updates to adapt to a post-COVID environment.

 
FedDev Ontario President Nancy Gardiner visits leading southern Ontario accelerators

FedDev Ontario President Nancy Gardiner visits leading southern Ontario accelerators

In August, FedDev Ontario President Nancy Gardiner attended tours and roundtable discussions at two prominent southern Ontario Regional Innovation Centres (RICs) (and past FedDev Ontario funding recipients) to hear about recent developments in Canada’s innovation ecosystem.

Ms. Gardiner toured ventureLAB and learned about the company’s current interest in Innovation, Science and Economic Development Canada’s $150 million Semiconductor Challenge Callout. Due to the current shortage of semiconductors, often used in products such as automobiles, consumer electronics and medical devices, the Government of Canada is seeking large-scale ideas from industry and other ecosystem players that address how Canada can build on existing R&D and manufacturing strength to position the country as a critical global supplier of specialized semiconductors manufacturing.

Ms. Gardiner also met with leaders at MaRS Discovery District, a Toronto-based not-for-profit innovation hub that supports more than 1,400 entrepreneurs and high-growth firms to grow and scale their businesses. After an extensive tour of the facility, Ms. Gardiner learned of the recently-launched Climate Impact Accelerator program, a MaRS initiative in partnership with KPMG, designed to speed up the decarbonization of large corporations. The fee-for-service program will leverage KPMG’s network of clients who are looking for commercial-ready innovations to reach their climate targets. Ms. Gardiner also learned of the firm’s First Adopter Network (FAN), a partnership with the University of Toronto to create a digital space where Canada’s medium and large enterprises can source home-grown solutions from startups in many different sectors of the innovation ecosystem. The next phase of FAN will focus on advancing cleantech partnerships, which is in line with MaRS’s ongoing national initiative to accelerate clean tech adoption and exports by building sustainable markets for clean technology. In addition to those climate projects, Mission from MaRS: Climate Impact Challenge has wrapped up its first phase. The special initiative provided 10 ventures with tailored advisory services, including a carbon reduction assessment, as well as coaching on strategic sales, financing and partnerships.

FedDev Ontario remains focused on supporting innovative projects that align with clean and inclusive economic growth, a key priority for the Government of Canada.

 
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FedDev Ontario recipient news and updates

BEP-funded Scale Up Immersive accelerator lab welcomes second cohort
BEP-funded Scale Up Immersive accelerator lab welcomes second cohort

BEP-funded Scale Up Immersive accelerator lab welcomes second cohort

Scale Up Immersive is an accelerator lab aimed at increasing the capacity of Black content creators and producers working in the immersive media space. A $3-million non-repayable contribution from FedDev Ontario delivered through the Black Entrepreneurship Program (BEP) Ecosystem Fund allowed the partnership between OYA Black Arts Coalition (OBAC), Canadian Film Centre’s Media Lab (CFC Media Lab) and Dark Slope Studios to launch the three-month program in February 2022. With an initial cohort of 11 founders of Black-owned content creation and production companies., the program provided hands-on mentorship and networking opportunities, access to industry experts, workshops, and access to Dark Slope’s state-of-the-art production facilities.

Due to the success of the initial cohort, the partnership recently announced that it is accepting applications for the second cohort of the Scale Up Immersive accelerator lab. The five-month virtual/in-person hybrid program will feature 10 founders of Black-owned media production companies, and will once again provide mentorship and industry expert consultations and intensive workshops, as well as a group rapid prototyping component, valued at $50,000.

The deadline to apply to the second cohort of Scale Up Immersive is October 7, 2022, with the accelerator slated to start mid-November 2022.

 
Southern Ontario Fund for Investment in Innovation (SOFII) program celebrates 10th anniversary
Southern Ontario Fund for Investment in Innovation (SOFII) program celebrates 10th anniversary

Southern Ontario Fund for Investment in Innovation (SOFII) program celebrates 10th anniversary

The Southern Ontario Fund for Investment in Innovation (SOFII) is a $55- million loan program that supports high-growth, innovative small and medium-sized enterprises (SMEs) in rural and urban communities by offering loans of $150,000 to $500,000 to support all aspects of growth challenges. Established in 2012, with funding from FedDev Ontario, SOFII is delivered by Community Futures Eastern Ontario (CFEO) and Community Futures Western Ontario (CFWO).

The program recently celebrated its 10th anniversary in eastern and western Ontario, with both CFDCs highlighting several impressive results from their decade in operation. CFEO delivered over $50.2 million in funding since the program’s inception, with 4,104 jobs created, 1,756 jobs maintained, and over $120 million in matching funding. CFWO delivered $34.4 million in funding with 1732 jobs created and 1768 jobs maintained, and over $80 million leveraged in matching funding.

Southern Ontario Community Futures Development Corporations are trusted delivery partners in advancing and diversifying the southern Ontario economy through funding opportunities and business services that support innovation and growth. FedDev Ontario congratulates CFEO and CFWO on their continued success!

 
Invest Ottawa’s next-gen smart mobility complex Area X.O launches national tech demo day TCXpo
Invest Ottawa’s next-gen smart mobility complex Area X.O launches national tech demo day TCXpo

Invest Ottawa’s next-gen smart mobility complex Area X.O launches national tech demo day TCXpo

On September 20, Ottawa’s Area X.O, in partnership with Transport Canada and the ISED Innovative Solutions Canada team, held the inaugural TCXpo. It was a day of dynamic and interactive Canadian smart mobility technology demonstrations with 50+ companies held at Area XO’s all-weather R&D complex for next-generation smart mobility, autonomy and connectivity technologies.

Founded and operated by Invest Ottawa, Area X.O is a R&D complex that helps accelerate time-to-market and commercial adoption of next-gen smart mobility, autonomy and connectivity technologies. The complex is integrated with state-of-the-art technology to enable efficient product design, development, testing and product demonstrations. The TCXpo brought together hundreds of innovators, entrepreneurs, technology developers, industry leaders, regulators, smart mobility partners and stakeholders from across the country, including FedDev Ontario representatives.

In 2020, FedDev Ontario provided Invest Ottawa with an investment of $7 million to bring new, globally unique capabilities to Area X.O and create 200 skilled jobs and maintain 230 jobs in the region.

 
Magnet Forensics expands operations to Australia

Magnet Forensics expands operations to Australia

Digital forensics firm and past FedDev Ontario funding recipient Magnet Forensics recently announced it has expanded to Australia. Based in Waterloo Ontario, the rapidly-growing tech business develops digital investigation software that acquires, analyzes, reports on, and manages evidence from computers, phones, IoT devices and the cloud. The company assists more than 4,000 enterprises and public safety organizations in over 100 countries.

This latest expansion will allow Magnet Forensics to access a growing need for cybersecurity firms in Australia, and further strengthen its presence in the Asia-Pacific region, where it currently has teams in Singapore and India. In 2019, FedDev Ontario provided Magnet Forensics with a repayable contribution to help develop its next generation of digital forensics software tools and support the company’s expansion plans.

 
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Social media highlights

As we near #NDTR, start your learning journey by participating in activities focused on teaching the history and impact of residential schools. For more info, visit: National Day for Truth and Reconciliation - Canada.ca

 

Since 2009, FedDev Ontario has committed to delivering impressive results in advancing and diversifying the southern Ontario economy. Our achievements can be seen in southern Ontario businesses that are creating innovative technologies, improving productivity, growing revenues, creating jobs, and in the economic advancement of communities across the region.

We are pleased to have served the region for over the past decade and look forward to many more.

Explore our impact and successes by visiting the link in our bio.

That is why today, MP Jenna Sudds, on behalf of Minister Jaczek, announced that the Government of Canada, through FedDev Ontario, is investing over $600,000 for Diefenbunker: Canada's Cold War Museum.

With this support, the museum will enhance its experiences and exhibition, including a dedicated space to highlight the Indigenous experience during the Cold War. In addition, the Diefenbunker will improve its accessibility and energy efficiency by upgrading its controls and lighting systems.

http://ow.ly/XYcy50JPSgv

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Upcoming Events

Oct 17-19

Toronto Global Forum (Toronto)

Session topics will focus on pandemic recovery as it relates to socio-economic issues such as local consumption habits and standards of living, and their impact on green standards. Other topics include net zero targets, cryptocurrencies and the future of money post-pandemic (contactless payments), resilience of the global economy, and the women's entrepreneurial ecosystem (en français).

Speakers include Navdeep Bains, Hon. Peter Bethlenfalvy, Pierre Cléroux, Trevor Dauphinee, among others.

Oct 26

Small Business Summit 2022 (Toronto)

Hosted during Small Business Month, this event will explore how Canadian small businesses effectively embrace digital disruption.

Oct 31 - Nov 1

Beyond the Barriers (Toronto)

The goal is to unite Ontario’s aerospace research and technology community in order to discuss global, national and regional players in avionics, robotics, and additive manufacturing.

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