No Fixed Amount

Type of Program:

Grant & Loan


The Regional innovation ecosystems (RIE) Stream aims to create, grow and develop strong and inclusive regional ecosystems that support business growth and innovation, as well as the entrepreneurial environment necessary to foster more innovative regional economies and increase the competitiveness of small- and medium-sized enterprises (SMEs).

Comments on Funding:

Funding is up to 75% of the eligible and supported costs. On an exceptional basis, FedNor may consider funding up to 100% of eligible and supported project costs.

For projects involving redistribution of funding to SMEs, the ultimate recipients (SMEs) must provide minimum 50% cash contribution. The maximum disbursement of a contribution that provides funding to SMEs as their ultimate recipient is capped at a maximum of $25,000 per

SME under a FedNor project with a not-for-profit organization.
Government stacking up to 100% is allowed for the Regional innovation ecosystems Stream.

When It Ends:



Rolling deadline


  • Not-for-profit organizations (e.g., sectoral associations, universities, colleges, and angel networks);
  • Business Accelerators and Incubators (BAIs);
  • A group of eligible recipients (e.g., alliance) that include not-for-profit organizations, small- and medium-sized enterprises (SMEs), post-secondary educational institutions, social enterprises; or a group or an alliance such as an industry association or consortium;
  • Municipalities and all other municipal-type organizations;
  • Indigenous organizations such as Indigenous-led not-for-profits and organizations that include but are not limited to First Nations as represented by their Chief and Council, Tribal Councils, Indigenous Representative Organizations, Métis and Inuit organizations, and Settlements as well as Indigenous/First Nation/Métis Settlement owned businesses;
  • Crown corporations provided that the financial assistance is not or will not be used to fund the corporation's capital or ongoing operational requirements;
  • Ontario government departments, crown corporations or organizations or any other entity created by the provincial government or a provincial department.
  • To be considered eligible, project benefits must accrue to Northern Ontario.
  • All eligible applicants must be legal entities capable of entering into legally binding agreements.

Applications Steps:


Phase 1: Submit an Application for Financial Assistance providing key contact and project information;

  • Applications can be completed and submitted electronically, or printed and sent to the nearest FedNor office.
  • Applicants will receive written or electronic confirmation that their Application has been received.
  • The results of the Application review will be communicated to applicants electronically or in writing.


Phase 2: Upon initial evaluation, FedNor will provide an electronic or written decision on whether the project should proceed to Phase Two. If selected to proceed, applicants will be invited to submit a Phase Two Detailed Application and provide supporting documentation. Applications will undergo a due diligence process where they are assessed against a number of factors.

Documentation Needed:

  • Evidence of project funding.
  • Managerial, technical, operational and financial capacity to achieve the project's stated objectives in a timely manner.
  • Market/industry demand (e.g., how the project addresses a significant gap in the market; global opportunity to be seized within Canada; and evidence that Northern Ontario is uniquely positioned to capture market share).
  • A viable project plan with achievable outcomes, supported by verifiable cost estimates.
  • Applicants may also be required to demonstrate how their project will be self-sustaining upon the completion of the project. For project proposals that will result in the creation of a new ongoing program/service, applicants may be required to demonstrate the financial sustainability of the new program/service beyond the project completion date (i.e., sustainable business model and/or a plan for generating revenue in order to grow or maintain service levels.

About the author 


Maurice (Moe) Muise learned the ins-and-outs of government while an employee of the Government of Canada in Ottawa for 10 years. His current focus is helping small businesses in Ontario to identify and maximize government grants to grow their business.
Click here to learn more about Moe's background and how he can help your business.


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