Government of Canada invests over $25.7 million to fuel innovation and economic growth in Vancouver

News release

Image of a technician's hand working on equipment. Text reads: Over $25.7M to fuel innovation and economic growth in Vancouver 

Ten local businesses and organizations will receive funding to commercialize new technology, grow their operations, and reach new markets

March 20, 2023 – Vancouver, British Columbia – PacifiCan

British Columbia has the people, ideas and resources to create an innovation ecosystem, generating local solutions with global impact. To support B.C.'s boldest and brightest changemakers, the Government of Canada is making strategic investments in local organizations that are catalysts for Canada-made innovation with a growing global demand.

Today, the Honourable Harjit S. Sajjan, Minister of International Development and Minister responsible for the Pacific Economic Development Agency of Canada (PacifiCan), announced an investment of over $25.7 million to help 10 Vancouver-based organizations fuel the B.C. economy, create jobs, and develop products that improve lives. This includes over $16.1 million for eight companies through the Business Scale-Up and Productivity program and over $9.6 million for two organizations through the Jobs and Growth Fund.

Minister Sajjan made the announcement at Aspect Biosystems in Vancouver, where the biotechnology company is receiving over $3.6 million in Business Scale-Up and Productivity funding. This investment will help Aspect Biosystems develop the next generation of medical treatments by broadening the application of its bioprinting technology.

Aspect’s technology platform generates 3D bioprinted human tissues that restore or replace the function of damaged organs. For example, Aspect is using their technology to create insulin-producing pancreatic tissues to treat type 1 diabetes. PacifiCan funding will help the company expand its global network of partners and scale-up its manufacturing systems. Not only will this help to increase Aspect Biosystem’s productivity, it will also support its goal of developing cures for currently incurable diseases.

More details about the businesses and organizations receiving funding can be found in the backgrounder here.

In all, today’s investments are expected to create over 500 jobs, over $500 million in revenue growth, and over $400 million in new global sales for B.C. businesses.

The Government of Canada, through PacifiCan, supports innovation, business growth and community economic development in British Columbia. PacifiCan makes strategic investments in growing companies to strengthen B.C.’s position as a domestic and international leader in a variety of sectors, such as clean technology, life sciences and digital industries. 


“British Columbia is fertile ground for companies to innovate and grow. To position our local talent for success, PacifiCan is investing in the ideas, businesses and people that will be key to the economy of the future. Today’s investments are making innovation work for British Columbians by delivering high-paying jobs, unleashing new ideas, and helping Canadian-made products find global success.”
- The Honourable Harjit S. Sajjan, Minister of International Development and Minister responsible for the Pacific Economic Development Agency of Canada

“Vancouver is home to talented minds and innovative organizations who are leading the way in life changing technology. Today’s announcement is a testament to how our Government’s commitment to creating high-paying jobs, investing in new ideas and supporting Canadian talent can accelerate growth and enable home-grown success”
- The Honourable Joyce Murray, Minister of Fisheries, Oceans and the Canadian Coast Guard, and Member of Parliament for Vancouver Quadra

“British Columbia’s innovation and tenacity has lead to Vancouver Centre being home to some of the most diverse and rapidly growing businesses across various sectors. Today’s announcement of over $25 million in PacifiCan funding will enable five Vancouver Centre businesses to scale up and bring Canadian innovation and technology around the world.”
- The Honourable Hedy Fry. P.C., Member of Parliament for Vancouver Centre

“This investment of over $25 million dollars, including to two local Vancouver Granville Businesses Tradable Bits Media and Arbutus Medical, will empower local companies to innovate, bring their products across North America, and bring more high quality jobs right here in Vancouver.”
- Taleeb Noormohamed, Member of Parliament for Vancouver Granville

“Canada has a rich history in regenerative medicine, and we are proud to be pioneering the next frontier of advanced living therapies from here in British Columbia. This support from the Government of Canada will help further our mission of developing bioprinted tissue therapeutics to transform how we treat disease.”
- Tamer Mohamed, Chief Executive Officer, Aspect Biosystems

Quick facts

  • PacifiCan is the federal economic development agency dedicated to British Columbians. PacifiCan works with partners who are building innovative businesses, creating quality jobs, and supporting inclusive growth throughout our province.

  • The Business Scale-up and Productivity program makes strategic investments in key economic sectors, helping innovative companies accelerate their growth and compete globally.

  • The Jobs and Growth Fund helps job creators, and the organizations that support them, to future-proof their businesses. This includes building resiliency and growth by transitioning to a green economy, fostering an inclusive recovery, enhancing competitiveness and creating jobs across British Columbia.

  • Founded in 2013, Aspect Biosystems is a Vancouver-based biotechnology company that is transforming how diseases are treated. By combining its proprietary bioprinting technology, therapeutic cells, biomaterials, and computational design, Aspect is creating cutting-edge tissue therapeutics to treat incurable diseases.

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Haley Hodgson
Press Secretary
Office of the Minister of International Development and Minister Responsible for the Pacific Economic Development Agency of Canada

Amanda Costa
Senior Communications Advisor

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