Celebrating Cohort 1 of the i.d.e.a Fund

March 23, 2023




This morning I joined Innovation Guelph and Minister Filomena Tassi for a celebration of cohort 1 of the i.d.e.a fund!

The i.d.e.a fund was created to support and position local economies in southern Ontario for long-term growth. The goal is to provide high potential businesses with the opportunity to receive non-repayable grant money (seed funding) and business advisory supports to develop new green products, services, processes, and technologies and/or redesign existing products, services, processes, and technologies to reduce their impact on the environment.

In April 2022, the Government of Canada, through FedDev Ontario, provided an investment of $10 million for Innovation Guelph and its Regional Innovation Centre partners to establish and deliver the i.d.e.a. Fund.

380 applications were received for Cohort 1 of i.d.e.a. Fund. We are happy to share that we have achieved our Cohort 1 goals as the 117 participating businesses are comprised of:

  • 52% of businesses owned by underrepresented groups (exceeded goal)
  • 50% women-led
  • 30% of businesses are new (exceeded goal)

The breakdown of underrepresented groups participating in Cohort 1 of i.d.e.a. Fund is as follows:

  • 10% of businesses are black-owned
  • 3% of businesses are indigenous-owned
  • 42% of businesses are owned by persons of colour
  • 7% of businesses are owned by persons with a disability(ies)
  • 12% of businesses are owned by LGBTQ2+ individuals

To all the entrepreneurs and business owners in Guelph and across Canada who are working towards a healthier environment – thank you. Thank you for working towards a greener Canada. Resources like the i.d.e.a Fund are here to offer the support and help necessary for you to thrive and the Government of Canada is pleased to be there for you on your journey to success and growth!