MaRS Introduces the impact 8 venture bootcamp

With a view to boosting the investment pipeline and accelerating innovative, sustainable solutions to social and environmental challenges, the MaRS Centre for Impact Investing is launching a new initiative—impact 8—to fast-track social ventures to a greater stage of investment readiness, help them attract financing and scale their impact.

The impact 8 venture bootcamp targets high-impact entrepreneurs with blended value propositions: social enterprises, social purpose businesses and co-operatives with the potential to turn investment into positive social or environmental impact and financial returns

Impact 8 provides:

  • Skills development
  • Advisory services
  • Mentorship
  • Expanded networks
  • Peer learning
  • Opportunities to pitch to impact investors

The eight-week program is intensive yet flexible, consisting of two days of on-site workshops bi-weekly, select guests speaker and networking events, online programming and one-to-one meetings with mentors and expert advisors.

More details here


Women in business may qualify for grants in Canada

Canadian women looking to start a new business or expand a business should investigate Leadership Grants Organization. This organization allocates grants of up to $100,000 for entrepreneurs and small business owners. New businesses must be ready to launch within six months, and any grants allocated must be used within six months of funding. These grants are especially suitable for women who want to start a home-based business or develop their existing business.

1920 Yonge Street, Suite 200
Toronto, ON M4S 3E2

Other grant programs for women:

Canada Media Fund extends the second round application deadline for the Experimental Stream

On August 31, 2010, The Canada Media Fund ( announced that it will be extending the second round application deadline for the Experimental Stream from October 4, 2010 to November 14. 2010. $27 million is available through the fund this year, with 60% of the fund being allocated to first round applicants and 40% to second round applicants. The first deadline was July 5, 2010, and the CMF expects to announce winning first round applicants in early October 2010. For more information regarding the Experimental Stream, please visit the website.

The Experimental Stream supports the creation of innovative Canadian interactive digital media content and application software. This program is designed to support the research and development of leading-edge content and applications intended to facilitate the distribution of Canadian content.

Projects funded through this program must be developed for commercial use through the Canadian media industry or public use by Canadians. Funding is allocated according to a selective process using an evaluation matrix. For details, read the Experimental Stream guidelines.

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

NSERC/Canada Council for the Arts New Media Initiative

The NSERC/Canada Council for the Arts (Canada Council) New Media Initiative is intended to promote collaboration between scientists and/or engineers and artists, thereby combining creativity with the development and application of new technologies and knowledge.

Scientists, engineers and artists are creating novel and mutually beneficial ways of thinking and working collaboratively across their disciplines, making innovative contributions to science, the arts and industry.

New Media Initiative projects are assessed by peers with expertise in the arts and sciences and/or engineering. NSERC will fund the scientific and engineering research component of the project and The Canada Council for the Arts will fund the artistic component of the project according to the guidelines of the above-mentioned programs.

Projects involving independent new media art creation and related science and engineering research are eligible for support. The NSERC component of the project must be scientifically sound and promise to generate new knowledge or a new technology, or to apply existing knowledge/technology in an innovative manner. The following are not eligible for support under the New Media Initiative:

  • projects that support work created for the cultural industries of commercial new media, radio or television broadcasting;
  • projects whose purpose is to record or document existing artworks or use existing technology in routine applications;
  • projects that focus on the routine application of existing technology or that provide professional or consulting services; and
  • proposals that are principally associated with the acquisition and maintenance of scientific equipment.

Application Procedures, Review Procedures and Selection Criteria

The application deadline for the New Media Initiative is April 15.

Detailed information can be obtained at:

Grants in digital media

If you are planning to develop an application in Flash and make it available for some mobile devices (e.g. cellphones, Blackberry), you might try and apply for this grant sponsored by Adobe:

There is also C3 Ontario program for postsecondary graduates in digital media (DATA members, OCAD and UOIT students):

Government incentives for businesses – resource list

For a refreshed and updated list please visit my business website:
A fresher list of government incentives

The resources are mostly for technology and/or design-related Canadian small businesses (some are applicable to other types of businesses as well).

SR&ED – government refund for companies doing research and development

(Check here for more details on SR&ED or contact me at for further information. I can help your company obtain SR&ED refunds.)

OITC (Ontario Innovation Tax Credit) – rider to federal SR&ED

A comprehensive searchable database of over 250 government programs and services that can help you implement your technology

Export Market Access (EMA) is a cost-sharing grant designed to help small to medium sized organizations take advantage of opportunities in foreign markets beyond the US. You can also get a grant for holding an event if it is export-related.

Federal Grants, Subsidies and Contributions Info-Guide with a special focus on entrepreneurs and start-ups – list of federal and provincial business programs


Ontario Business Program Guide – list of programs with summary information, so you don’t have to check each link separately

City of Toronto incentive programs (plus a limited summary of others)

Ontario New Technology Tax incentive (ONTTI)

Ontario Business Research Institute Tax Credit (OBRITC)

Apprenticeship training tax credit

Other Ontario tax incentives

Canadian tax incentives for creative industries

For a refreshed and updated list please visit my business website:
A fresher list of government incentives