SDTC partners with accelerators to provide seed funding to five potential breakthrough technologies

August 15, 2019

OTTAWA, ON, August 15, 2019 – Sustainable Development Technology Canada recently expanded its reach by piloting seed funding to find and support Canada’s most promising early-stage cleantech entrepreneurs. To do so, SDTC is partnering with up to eight incubators and accelerators across the country. The pilot was launched in May with four grants of $100,000 or less to companies with potential breakthrough technologies in agriculture, energy, power generation, and traffic management. Today SDTC is announcing investment in a further five new game-changing innovators, and partnerships with cross-Canadian accelerators from St. John’s, NL to Victoria, BC.

Clean technology is a megatrend that will affect most sectors at varying speeds. This initiative will provide the right funding at the right time to help cleantech entrepreneurs develop businesses that are tackling some of the world’s greatest sustainability challenges.

By partnering with a select group of business accelerators, SDTC’s funding will fuel the growth of these companies by expanding on the support, such as training, mentorship, office space, tools, and community, already being provided through the accelerator or incubator. SDTC is identifying a cross-section of promising new cleantech entrepreneurs by providing up to 30 grants of $50,000 to $100,000 each this pilot year.

The five companies receiving investment demonstrate the remarkable breadth of technology innovation taking place across Canada today. Each is receiving a grant of $100,000.

  • Open Oceans Robotics Inc.supported by Alacrity Canada (Victoria, BC), collects ocean data using proprietary wind and solar powered surface vehicles (USVs) equipped with sensors, cameras and real-time communications offering a safer, more effective and affordable way of gaining ocean insights and helping build an ocean IoT.
  • Canscan Softwares and Technologies Inc.supported by Centech (Montreal, QC), is building artificial intelligence driven systems for optimizing container inspection processes without negativity impacting workflow or requiring expensive infrastructure upgrades. Their goal is to reduce the truck idle time (and hence emissions) while waiting for inspection (at Ports like Montreal).
  • SucSeed Social Enterprises Inc.supported by Genesis (St. John’s, NL), develops solutions for streamlining food production while decreasing the environmental damage caused by the production and transportation. Their proprietary technology for at home hydroponic gardens enables an expected 20% higher efficiency for a 99% waste free production process.
  • Pani Energy Inc.supported by Alacrity Canada (Victoria, BC), develops optimization software solutions using data-driven technologies (AI/ML), cloud computing, and IoT for improving the performance of water treatment processes without changing existing plant hardware.
  • Stream Technologies Inc.supported by TEC Edmonton (Edmonton, AB), has developed a proprietary technology to optimize fertilizer inputs by expediting soil test results through spectral data and machine learning.

Quotes

“Supporting Canadian clean technology is not just important for our economy, it also creates good jobs while helping to protect our environment. In the fight against climate change, the work these companies are doing is more important than ever. Through SDTC, our government is helping early-stage entrepreneurs achieve their full potential and, ultimately, solve some of our biggest environmental challenges.”

— The Honourable Navdeep Bains, Minister of Innovation, Science and Economic Development

“Through our partnerships with start-up accelerators across Canada, SDTC’s Seed Fund supports true entrepreneurship; recipients are people who know that transformative environmental and economic change starts at the local level. From St. John’s to Victoria – we are proud to do our part to support these innovators in their quest to help change the world.”

–Leah Lawrence, President & CEO, Sustainable Development Technology Canada

We are so excited to receive funding and mentorship from SDTC! This funding will enable us to create a more efficient indoor garden that can create even more fresh produce and allow us to get more classrooms and households growing. This is an incredible opportunity to help scale the impact that environmental focused technology companies can have on the world.

–Emily Bland, CEO, Sucseed

The support from SDTC’s pilot project is an incredible opportunity for us to accelerate the growth of our company by fuelling our technology advancements and commercial readiness. It will help us bring to market our autonomous solar-powered boats to collect ocean data safely, affordably and without greenhouse gas emissions, transforming how we protect and understand our oceans. We’re honoured to be a recipient of this investment and be supported by an organization committed to making Canada a leader in cleantech.

–Julie Angus, CEO, Open Ocean Robotics

We are delighted to be selected as an SDTC seed fund recipient. We see this partnership as crucial in our mission to develop and market technologies that will significantly change how the maritime shipping industry works. Not only do we look to make the industry more efficient with less congestion and better asset management, we believe our innovative technologies will help reduce greenhouse gas emissions and make the industry safer. We see our selection into the fund as confirmation that we are on the right path, as we bring an innovative idea to materialize into a game-changing product.

— Jennifer Ivens, Founder and CEO, Canscan Tech

The SDTC Seed Fund positions Stream to enter the global market with the partnership of our local ecosystem. A strong entrance makes us look bigger than we are; a powerful advantage as we engage fortune 500 companies in our early days. We are thrilled to be recipients of the seed investment, and look forward to a lasting relationship with SDTC as we continue to scale.

— John Murphy, CEO, Stream Technologies Inc.

By utilizing Artificial Intelligence and proprietary models, Pani Energy’s real-time optimization technology reduces the resources (energy, chemical, other consumables and GHG) used in industrial and municipal treatment and desalination infrastructures by up to 30%. We are delighted to partner with SDTC through this modest injection of seed fund that itself has set a benchmark through a balance between speed and diligence in its delivery and execution. This fund in combination with equity financing will accelerate Pani’s commercialization efforts and multiply the environmental impact in the water industry within Canada and abroad.

–Devesh Bharadwaj, CEO, Pani Energy

“We are thrilled that two of our cleantech portfolio companies Pani Energy and Open Ocean Robotics are able to participate in SDTC’s seed-funding pilot program. Access to this type of funding provides the support needed for early-stage entrepreneurs to launch into their markets. Programs like this are an incredible opportunity for these two bright entrepreneurs, as well as the clean technology community across Canada.”

–Richard Egli, Managing Director, Alacrity Foundation of BC

“This funding helps put Canada on the world stage. It’s a great example of how SDTC is responding to entrepreneurs committed to solving environmental problems that can be globally scaled. This isn’t just an investment in the companies, it’s an investment in the environment and our future. We look forward to the progress of all the promising recipients of SDTC’s funding.”

–Darrell Petras, Executive Vice-President, TEC Edmonton

“Genesis is honored to receive this support from SDTC. We believe strongly in the potential of clean technology and the talented entrepreneurs achieving success in this sector. The funding from SDTC will support and inspire the growth of our client companies and will ultimately positively affect the environment and economy as a whole.”

–Michelle Simms, President & CEO, Genesis

Background

SDTC is pilot-testing a new funding approach, partnering with established accelerators to find and support promising early-stage Canadian environmental entrepreneurs. Up to 30 grants of $50,000 to $100,000 each will be available under the program. Working with accelerators gives SDTC access to a cross-section of entrepreneurs who would not have otherwise been able to access federal dollars.

On May 8, 2019, The Honourable Mary Ng, Minister of Small Business and Export Promotion, announced SDTC’s Seed Funding pilot program at SDTC’s fourth annual cleantech leadership summit in Ottawa.

With the support of technology accelerators, the funding process is simple and streamlined. This program will have an immediate impact, getting capital to where it’s needed, quickly. SDTC is working with accelerators who are focussed on the start-up successes of Canadians from coast to coast:

SDTC is responding to what we have heard from Canadian entrepreneurs, transforming the Canadian technology ecosystem by providing federal support earlier in the life cycle of bringing promising ideas to life. The program supports true entrepreneurship; recipients are the kind of people who are betting their life savings on showing that something important can be done better.

The initial recipients are: