Funding for Northern Ontario Businesses Available!
October 2nd, 2015
While Southern Ontario usually receives most of the attention as an economic hotspot in Canada, it is impossible to ignore the important contributions to the economy coming from the Northern half of the province. The Northern Ontario Heritage Fund Corporation (NOHFC) represents a dedicated program from the Canadian government that provides government funding for businesses looking to strengthen their communities.
By investing in Northern Ontario, the government hopes to develop these communities with a range of economic advancement, tourism, and infrastructure projects. This fund is one of the largest investments in the province’s history, with over $130 billion invested over ten years. This government funding has created 110,000 jobs in Ontario has created 110,000 jobs annually over it’s ten-year existence, ranging from transit systems, bridges, and roads to schools and hospitals. These investments repurpose older infrastructures with innovative ideas, or introduce new ideas altogether.
Research demonstrates that every $100 million invested into public infrastructure boosts the province’s GDP by $114 million, which is especially the case for construction and manufacturing sectors. Since 2003, over a billion dollars in investments from NOHFC have sustained 6,870 projects in the north, creating or sustaining 25,800 jobs in the process.
Northern Business Opportunity Program
One of the most important facets of the NOHFC is the Northern Business Opportunity Program for business expansion projects. The province has a well-documented plan for growing the north, and the Northern Business Opportunity Program encourages business productivity and expansion.
This initiative supplies government funding for existing businesses in Ontario that are hoping to expand their operations within Northern Ontario. This includes any business hoping to increase their revenue while generating new jobs. The initiative highlights the following sectors:
- Health sciences
- Advanced manufacturing
- Digital economy
- Arts, culture, and creative industries
- Transportation, aviation, and aerospace
- Water technologies and services
- Renewable energy and services
- Forestry and value-added forestry-related industries
- Agriculture, aquaculture, and food processing
- Minerals sector and mining supply and services
The initiative considers other business activities as well, based on the discretion of the NOHFC Board of Directors. The board evaluates any project with a well-defined economic benefit for Northern Ontario.
Some of the most common types of projects under the NOHFC include capital construction, invested in new or used equipment or machinery, land servicing costs, training costs associated with third parties, leasehold improvements, and information and communications technology (which includes software, but not in an exclusive sense).
Proposed projects should not have a detrimental impact on existing businesses in Northern Ontario: all projects require outcomes with a measurable economic benefit. Applicants are expected to balance their funding and financing as necessary to make projects realities.
The NOHFC grants priority consideration to projects generating full-time equivalent jobs in Northern Ontario.
Funding varies by project, but usually does not exceed 50% of eligible project costs up to a maximum of $1 million per project. Some projects might receive additional funding beyond that $1 million sum if the project warrants such financial support.
Up to 30% of NOHFC funding comes in the form of a conditional grant, with the rest as a repayable loan. In the absence of a conditional grant, the NOHFC might provide incentives accordingly.
Keep in mind that even the best projects that meet all of the outlined criteria might fail to impress the NOHFC Board of Directors. Increase your chances of success with a custom tailored application from INAC Services. We have obtained government funding for over 350 businesses and organizations to date. We have the expertise to make your application stand out!