Government of Canada invests to support innovation in the Yukon

News release

CanNor invests nearly $128,000 to promote interactive digital media, modular communications shelters and an artificial intelligence business acceleration program.

May 20, 2022, Whitehorse, Yukon Canadian Northern Economic Development Agency

Innovation and technology adoption are key to driving our economy forward. Small and medium businesses, and the organizations supporting them, are continuing to innovate and transform operations. Across the territories, through CanNor, the Government of Canada is investing to encourage innovation and the adoption of technology, while helping business start up, scale up and create local jobs and opportunities for Northerners.

Today, the Honourable Daniel Vandal, Minister of Northern Affairs, Minister for PrairiesCan and Minister for CanNor, announced that the Government of Canada is investing nearly $128,000 to support the Yukon’s innovation sector as it continues to strengthen and grow. This announcement aligns with Canadian Innovation Week, an opportunity to celebrate, recognize and support ingenuity across the country.

This funding, delivered by CanNor, supports three initiatives in Whitehorse. Though each project serves a different purpose, they all exemplify ingenuity and creativity within their fields. The impacts of these projects range from creating modular communications shelters, to supporting businesses interested in adopting artificial intelligence, to advancing physical and mental health, reconciliation and inclusivity.

Today’s announcement demonstrates the Government of Canada’s commitment to supporting the sustainable, diversified growth of economic sectors with a focus on strengthened entrepreneurship and Northern innovation.


“Diversification and innovation is key to economic growth in the North and Arctic, and right across Canada. Our government will continue to invest in the ingenuity of Yukoners in creating good jobs, supporting inclusive growth, and building resiliency for years to come. These projects are impactful, and will inspire more innovation moving forward.”

The Honourable Daniel Vandal, Minister of Northern Affairs, Minister responsible for Prairies Economic Development Canada and Minister responsible for the Canadian Northern Economic Development Agency

“The Yukon is full of creative thinkers and problem-solvers. Through advancement in innovation, technology and partnerships, the Yukon continues to grow stronger and more vibrant. Today’s investment will further cultivate Northern entrepreneurship and bring new ideas to the forefront. Each of these projects will create jobs and growth, and promote a dynamic economy across the territory.”

Dr. Brendan Hanley, Member of Parliament for Yukon

“Yukoners’ ingenuity and creativity have helped find solutions that meet the unique needs of our territory and communities across Canada’s North. This investment will help innovators, entrepreneurs and local businesses expand, growing our local economy, as well as advance mental and physical wellness, reconciliation and inclusivity initiatives. I look forward to seeing the far-reaching economic and social benefits that comes with each of these projects.”

Ranj Pillai, Yukon Minister of Economic Development

“The funding opportunity from CanNor allows us at Total North to continue innovating and moving our product (Compod) forward as we look to grow from selling locally to becoming a nationwide distributor. The ability to purchase materials to build further iterations of the Compod had been crucial in the evolution of the product and we are extremely grateful for this opportunity.”

Dan Johnson, President, Total North Communications

“Growing the local tech industry in the Yukon has been an important part of Tech Yukon’s mandate, and our new North of AI - Business Acceleration program was designed to help accomplish this goal. With the support from CanNor, Yukon Government Department of Economic Development, and our partner Scale AI, we were able to build the North of AI program, supporting local tech start-ups and entrepreneurs, enabling them to move their ideas towards building thriving businesses. This program is a first of its kind in the Yukon and is also part of Canada’s AI supercluster. We are excited to continue our work with our funding partners, building future tech start-ups and creating local tech entrepreneurs.”

Ziad Sahid, Executive Director, Tech Yukon

“CanNor's funding allowed Discovelo to strengthen and expand both our active software product offering and our company's core by supporting an innovative integration of training, partnership development, and product design.  The funding agency's belief in the importance we place on indigenous reconciliation and inclusion and diversity, and in translating these and other core values into actions and products that expand our growth potential has built confidence and provided inspiration to our entire team. We are grateful for CanNor's vote of confidence in our vision for innovation in the space where health, fitness, and education intersect with these key values."”

Scott Keesey, Chief Executive Officer, Discovelo Inc.

Quick facts

  • CanNor is investing nearly $128,000 to support three innovative technology projects in Whitehorse.

  • Projects include Total Shelters, North of AI – Business and Learning Accelerator, and Content and Market Expansion for Gamified Active Learning.    

  • Inclusive Diversification and Economic Advancement in the North (IDEANorth) makes foundational investments in economic infrastructure, sector development and capacity building to help position Northerners in the territories to take advantage of Canada's innovation economy.

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Kyle Allen
Press Secretary
Office of the Minister of Northern Affairs, Minister Responsible for Prairies Economic Development Canada, and Minister Responsible for the Canadian Northern Economic Development Agency

Laura Seeley
Communications Advisor, Yukon

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