BlogIdol 2011 – my first article

At last I got around to actually write something for BlogIdol 2011! The contest ends in a week, but I still hope to accomplish something in the remaining time.

Programs that help you fund your IT projects

If you are looking for funding to develop an IT product or hire people, here are some useful federal and/or provincial programs that may help you. SR&ED is one of the most important ones, but there are others as well, and they can make all the difference in the development of your business.
Read the rest of the article on the Blogging Idol website

Government Services for Business: Information Fair and Workshops

Special Feature: Innovation Information Forum
4141 Living Arts Dr., Mississauga
Feb. 8, 2011

Announced in the 2010 Budget, the Canadian Innovation Commercialization
Program (CICP) is a $40 million program that aims to promote innovation
and support the development of Small and Medium Enterprises (SME) in
Canada. This pilot program provides funding for purchasing and testing of
pre-commercialized innovative goods and services by Government of Canada
departments.

The purpose of the Innovation Information Forum is to provide an overview of
the Canadian Innovation Commercialization Program (CICP) and other similar
programs, including the National Research Council’s Industrial Research
Assistance Program (NRC-IRAP), Natural Sciences and Engineering Research
Council of Canada’s (NSERC) Engage and Interaction Grants, and the Canada
Revenue Agency’s (CRA) Scientific Research & Experimental Development
(SR&ED) Tax Incentive Program.

Register here

OMDC Interactive Digital Media Fund 2010 – Round 2 announced

The second round of the Interactive Digital Media Fund for 2010 has been announced by the OMDC. The deadline for applications is 5pm on September 20, 2010. The guidelines for this round have been posted on the OMDC website. Successful applicants will receive a non-refundable contribution up to $150,000 to a maximum of 50% of the project budget. For this round, all applications will need to be submitted via the OMDC Online Application Portal. Register your company for access to the Online Application portal here.

Websites sell incorrect info on government grants. Where can you get the right info?

Websites sell incorrect info on government grants. And, to add insult to injury, they would charge you for that.

Where can you go for the correct information on grants and loans? I have good news for you. Canada Business Ontario provides the information for free. Their website is a single source for information on all grants and loans. Just select from the list what you want to do (e.g. “Hire or train people”), et voila: a list of all government grants you are entitled to!

In addition to that, CBO can do marketing research for you and many other things that your start-up business may need. Everything is free! If you need some business-related information they cannot provide, they will refer you to someone who can. (The referral is free as well!)

CBO contact information

My article for Blog Idol contest: Resources for technology-related startups in Toronto, Ontario, Canada

This article contains some useful information that I inevitably accumulated over the past few years, as a SR&ED consultant and as someone who has recently started a business. It might save you some time that took me to figure out all this. Good luck with your startup!

Various camps, startup drinks, green drinks

Startup entrepreneurs and people who has been there and done that regularly meet to have a drink, exchange battle stories, get a sound advice and find a potential business partner or even an angel investor. Startup Drinks is a simple concept: a grassroots effort to make sure startup folks get in touch and stay in touch.

The same refers to Green Drinks which is a casual, monthly forum for environmentally-oriented individuals to have a few drinks, mingle and toss around ideas.

By the way, the next Green Drinks together with Startup Drinks will happen on May 26 at Grace O’Malleys – 14 Duncan Street, Toronto, from 5:45 to 9:00.

Various camps are also held in Toronto every month. See the description of some in this article. The admission to them is affordable or free. (Some impose a nominal fee to ensure that people who register do indeed show up, and your admission pays for your first drink.) Among other nice get-togethers, I should mention Product Camp and Girl Geeks Dinner.

Democamps

Democamps are such an important feature in the life of Toronto technology scene that it is worth a separate mention. An evening of beer, cocktails and tech demos for designers, developers & marketers, Democamp became quite an institution. It was conceived in Toronto, but now there are democamps in other cities and towns, too.

http://democamp.com/

Creative spaces for independent entrepreneurs

When you work from home, it is very difficult to concentrate! Independent business owners know that better than anyone. Besides, sitting between the four walls tends to get lonely. Because of that, several creative spaces opened in Toronto. Their founders, entrepreneurs themselves, formed a community of like-minded people and opened spaces downtown, offering reasonable monthly rates in a comfortable space. Born from the feeling of collaboration and connection found at events such as BarCamp and tech conferences, coworking is the social interaction of independent entrepreneurs, consultants, freelancers, developers, and writers out of their homes and cafes and into a creative space. A coworking facility is the shared office space for these individuals, where they can work independently in a social way. Rachel Young and Wayne Lee cofounded Camaraderie. Tonya Surman founded Centre for Social Innovation at 215 Spadina, and CSI recently acquired another building in the Annex to expand their space.

(Read more at BlogIdol website…)