FedDev Ontario Invests Over $2 million in York Region Accelerator
45 Entrepreneurs in York Region to Benefit from Skills Development Program
April 28, 2017 – Toronto, Ontario – Federal Economic Development Agency for Southern Ontario (FedDev Ontario)
To lead the world in innovation, we need to equip Canada’s workers with the tools they need to succeed in the evolving economy. However, early-stage entrepreneurs often face challenges such as limited business and management skills, and difficulty in securing financing.
Today, Michael Levitt, Member of Parliament for York Centre, on behalf of the Honourable Navdeep Bains, Minister of Innovation, Science and Economic Development and Minister responsible for FedDev Ontario, announced an investment of up to $1.98 million in the York Entrepreneurship Development Institute to deliver its Incubator Track program. MP Levitt also celebrated the graduation of the first 15 entrepreneurs who participated in the first cohort of the program and met the entrepreneurs of the second cohort, which was launched on March 16, 2017.
With this non-repayable contribution through FedDev Ontario’s Investing in Business Innovation initiative, the York Entrepreneurship Development Institute is delivering Incubator Track in three intensive 16-week skills development and mentorship programs to 45 entrepreneurs in York Region and the City of Toronto. It is also providing much needed seed funding to support these entrepreneurs to further commercialize their ideas and launch high-potential, early-stage businesses.
As entrepreneurs establish and grow their businesses with help from this program, it is expected that up to 70 new full-time jobs will be created.
For more information on the Incubator Track program, please visit the York Entrepreneurship Development Institute’s website.
MP Levitt also announced an investment of up to $32,378 under the Canada 150 Community Infrastructure Program (CIP 150) Intake Two, for the York Entrepreneurship Development Institute to improve accessibility of its theatre.
“The York Entrepreneurship Development Institute is a key resource for entrepreneurs from any industry or sector. With the FedDev Ontario funding, the Institute will provide entrepreneurs with comprehensive training and mentorship to teach them the business skills they need to turn their innovative ideas into real solutions.”
– Michael Levitt, Member of Parliament for York Centre
“Canadian workers need the opportunity to equip themselves with the knowledge and skills to succeed in our ever evolving work place. Significant investments in skill development programs such as the ones provided by the York Entrepreneurship Development Institute will strengthen businesses in my riding of Humber River-Black Creek by creating jobs, helping families, and strengthening the community for everyone.”
– The Honourable Judy A. Sgro, Member of Parliament for Humber River-Black Creek
“The Government of Canada recognizes the vital importance of skills development and growing new companies in making Canada a global centre for innovation. This investment in the York Entrepreneurship Development Institute will help 45 entrepreneurs to gain the necessary skills and access to capital, with a goal of creating innovative companies and jobs of the future.”
– The Honourable Navdeep Bains, Minister of Innovation, Science and Economic Development and Minister responsible for the Federal Economic Development Agency for Southern Ontario
“We are extremely proud of the program and community of successful entrepreneurs we have created over the past few years. So far our hard-working graduates have one of the best survival rates of Canadian start-ups, and we believe that with this additional funding to help seed their ventures, they will be even more successful, and have long-term prosperity."
– Dr. Marat Ressin, President, York Entrepreneurship Development Institute
Incorporated in 2013, the York Entrepreneurship Development Institute is partnered with the Schulich Business School at York University. The Institute is a not-for-profit accelerator that provides entrepreneurs with educational programming, coaching, mentorship and networking opportunities with potential investors.
FedDev Ontario's contribution will leverage up to $1.35 million in matched seed funding provided by the entrepreneur or investors participating in the program.
In 2015, UBI Global named the York Entrepreneurship Development Institute as the #1 University-linked accelerator in Ontario, and among the top three in North America. As part of the Incubator Track program, graduates will receive a formal certification from York University.
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