Archive for the ‘Startups’ Category

Student Start-ups: Success of Velocity

Velocity was created for the purpose of giving students at the University of Waterloo access to resources to turn their innovative ideas into successful start-up businesses. Through Velocity, students at the University of Waterloo are fostered as entrepreneurs through first-hand experience and interaction with successful industry professionals, and are supported with the tools to learn, network, and share ideas with their peers. In 2008, Velocity branched out to create Velocity Residence, which provides an opportunity for University of Waterloo students to engage in their entrepreneurial interests. Students have the opportunity to network with others from a variety of disciplines, and this experience culminates in a one week boot camp where students learn how to solve problems associated with running a business.

Today, Velocity has a total of six interlinked branches: Velocity Residence, Velocity Garage, Velocity Alpha, Velocity Science, Velocity Foundry, and Velocity Fund Finals. These branches support students by giving them funding opportunities, mentorships to help them build their startup businesses, and the equipment necessary to run their start-ups.

Northbridge Consultants has over 20 years of experience assisting clients in digital media and manufacturing companies with grant applications to hire and train recent graduates, secure tax credits, and build their businesses. Notable examples of grants include the ICTC – Career Connect Program, the Youth Employment Fund, and the Canada Jobs grant. Northbridge Consultants assists successful Information and Technology (ICT) startup firms secure the maximum amount of funding from programs such as the SR&ED tax credit program, which gives eligible companies up to a 35% tax credit for R&D work conducted. For companies that want to build their advantage over their competitors, contact Northbridge Consultants and see how we can help you grow your business.

Early Stage Exporters Fund

The Ontario Chamber of Commerce has released a new funding program called Early Stage Exporters (ESE). The ESE program will assist early-stage post-revenue companies to attend international trade shows, participate in outgoing or incoming missions, develop marketing tools, invest in market research, and participate in foreign bidding projects.

The program will fund up to 50% of eligible costs to a maximum of $30,000. The maximum amount of funding available per company is $150,000 and each application can include up to 3 activities.

The eligibility criteria is listed below:

  • Manufacturer in Ontario with an export mandate
  • Incorporated for at least 2 years
  • Minimum of 3 full time equivalent employees
  • Annual sales between $300,000 and $500,000
  • At least one year of reviewed financial statements
  • Operate in one of the priority sectors (advanced manufacturing, aerospace, construction, clean technology, professional services, information communications technology, digital media, and life sciences)

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Start-Up Companies and Government Funding

Start-up companies are a popular topic of conversation these days, especially in Southwestern Ontario. There are many resources for these new companies including government funding and tax credit programs. It is critical that these companies are made aware of programs and services that can help them reach their business objectives.

The Scientific Research & Experimental Development program becomes available to start-up companies once they hire new employees and develop a payroll system. It is critical that new companies develop tracking systems for their R&D work in order to develop a strong SR&ED claim. First-time applicants are more likely to be audited by the Canada Revenue Agency so it is very important that supporting documentation is ready and organized.

Government funding programs become available to companies that can demonstrate revenue, reach 10-15 employees, and develop at least a two year track record of success. It is critical that companies understand the programs that may be applicable to their projects or initiatives on an on-going basis.

Our NorthBridge team of business analysts can help identify eligible projects for both SR&ED and grant funding programs. We also assist with the completion of application information, preparation of financial information, creation of business plans, and required reporting after application submission.

IRAP Announces Support for Early Stage Firms

Accelerators and incubators based in Canada that support the development and growth of start-up companies can receive funding from the Industrial Research Assistance Program (IRAP).  The Canadian Accelerator and Incubator Program (CAIP) will provide non-repayable funding over a five year period to a limited number of qualified applicants.  To ensure that the funding is allocated to the appropriate sector needs, the program will be assisted by a Venture Capital Expert Panel, which will be  assembled by the Minister of Finance.  The National Research Council of Canada (NRC-IRAP) is accepting proposals until October 30, 2013.

The National Research Council of Canada Industrial Research Assistance Program (NRC-IRAP) is Canada’s first-class innovation program that supports small to medium sized enterprises (SMEs). IRAP is integral to the NRC and has been recognized world-wide for its contributions to innovation in Canada.

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IRAP Assists Gener8 With Innovation

Gener8, a technology company based in Vancouver, British Columbia who provides solutions to the entertainment industry, recently received up to $400,000 in funding from the Industrial Research Assistance Program (IRAP).  IRAP, administered by the National Research Council (NRC), assists SMEs with the development and commercialization of innovative, technology-driven, new and improved products.

Gener8 specializes in 3D stereo conversion services, cloud-based data management, and analytics solutions for the entertainment industry. They currently have 150 employees at their Vancouver location and the assistance from IRAP will allow them to hire recent university graduates to continue to help innovate their 3D conversion technology.

“This (funding) will enable Gener8 to develop solutions to complex problems in computer graphics and image processing that are central to our 3D conversion process to ultimately streamline the 3D conversion process” stated Gener8’s COO, Tim Bennison. Gener8 hopes to further enhance their strong reputation in Hollywood. You can see their technology in films such as Harry Potter, Ghost Rider 2, and The Amazing Spider-Man.

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