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September 2014 Issue

Western Innovation (WINN) Initiative – New Call for Proposals

In a global economy increasingly driven by innovation, Western Economic Diversification Canada (WD) has announced the next intake of the Western Innovation (WINN) Initiative. Consultations began on September 1, 2014, followed by an application period of September 30 to October 30, 2014.

WINN is a $100 million five-year federal initiative that offers repayable contributions for small- and medium-sized enterprises (SMEs) with operations in Western Canada. The Initiative is aimed at helping SMEs commercialize new and innovative technologies, by moving them from the later stages of research and development to the marketplace.

WINN is another way in which WD is fueling an innovative West. During the first round of this program, 27 projects were supported leveraging close to $24 million in private capital. The second intake will continue to have a direct positive impact on job creation and the economy.

By helping businesses seize opportunities for innovation, WINN will support the creation of jobs and growth in our communities.

More information on the application process can be found at: www.wd-deo.gc.ca/eng/14859.asp


World-Class Research and Technology Development Benefiting Western Canada

David Fissel, President and CEO, ASL Environmental Sciences Inc.; Dr. Kate Moran, President and CEO, Ocean Networks Canada; Minister Rempel; and Eric Johnson, Associate Partner, BC Public Sector, IBM Global Services.
David Fissel, President and CEO, ASL Environmental Sciences Inc.; Dr. Kate Moran, President and CEO, Ocean Networks Canada; Minister Rempel; and Eric Johnson, Associate Partner, BC Public Sector, IBM Global Services.

As the economy continues to recover around the world, the Harper Government remains committed to supporting western Canadian businesses that are showcasing innovation and successfully competing in global markets.

The following success stories showcase how Western Canada is transforming knowledge into innovative products:

Ocean Networks Canada – British Columbia

Created by the University of Victoria (UVic), Ocean Networks Canada (ONC) is a not-for-profit society aimed at building and sustaining Canada’s role as a global leader in the advancement of innovative ocean science technology. With funding from the Western Diversification Program (WDP), ONC will undertake more projects that support research and development in the oceans sector at the ONC’s Innovation Centre.

This initiative is helping industries design, test and operate new products that can be monitored by researchers and users around the world. As a result, nine new technologies were brought to market and over $9.5 million in sales of equipment and services were generated on the global market.

Programs like Smart Oceans BC build the economy while supporting our Government’s commitments to responsible resource development, world-class marine safety, and technology commercialization,” said Minister Michelle Rempel.

Additionally, ONC received a second investment to support the development of the Smart Oceans BC program. This project allows for real-time monitoring of vessels traffic, waves, currents, and water quality. ONC estimates that the global market for Smart Oceans Systems technology will grow to at least $6 billion, by 2020.

University of Saskatchewan Toxicology Centre – Saskatchewan

The Toxicology Centre at the University of Saskatchewan is exploring sustainable, cost-effective and faster methods of oil sands extraction and tailings ponds restoration. Funding from WD enabled researchers to scale up an innovative clean technology – the San-Tek 2000 – from the Centre’s lab to the pilot plant stage and determine its commercial viability.

This technology separates oil from oil sands bitumen and minimizes the water and energy used in the extraction process. It is also effective at settling pollutants called fine fluid tailings (FFT), generated during the current hot water oil sands extraction process. Waste FFT is an issue because the very fine clay particulates can take up to 100 years to settle out.

With the continued demand for oil sands production, the University of Saskatchewan continues to seize opportunities to bring new applications, technologies and processes to market. National and international sales and project trials have already begun with oil companies that are interested in the technology for multiple uses.

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