October 7th, 2015
Did you know that a single governing body represents an estimated 82% of Canadian manufacturing production and 90% of all goods and services? (Canadian Manufacturing & Exporters CME) is Canada’s largest trade and industry, providing an active voice for manufacturing and global business companies across the country. Over 85% of 10,000 companies in their membership base comes from small and medium-sized enterprises.
CME helps over 100,000 companies across the country with a focus on manufacturing, international trade, and service-related industries. CME wants these companies to successfully compete in domestic and global markets. Using their expertise, connections, and leadership, they help their members increase their performance, adopt innovations, and grow their enterprises in a variety of ways.
The CME focuses on issues that their members find most important: namely, business opportunities in the USA, increasing manufacturing competitiveness, expanding into international markets, and finding the right people and skills to get the job done. In this regard they provide business intelligence, advocacy, networking connections, business initiatives, and advice on best practices.
Growing companies often necessitates financial investments to spur these processes along. Ontario represents a major financial hub and one of the most important provinces from an economic standpoint. As such, CME collaborated with FedDev Ontario and FedNor to deliver the CME Smart Program. So far, funding for businesses under the CME SMART Program has reached over 1,100 companies in Ontario. Companies use these funds as an investment into increased productivity and enhanced future growth.
SMART Productivity Assessments Program
There are two major streams of the SMART program. The first provides benefits to Northern Ontario, with targeted manufacturing initiatives to assist Northern manufacturers in the improvement of their operations.
Under this initiative, CME contributes up to 50% of eligible costs to a maximum of $15,000. This funding helps companies implement lean manufacturing, introduce product or process improvements, perform market analysis, and improve their information systems, human resources, and management systems. After doing so, the CME conducts research that identifies any barriers that northern manufacturers experience in relation to growth.
After completing these assessments, companies become eligible for government funding through FedNor’s Targeted Manufacturing Initiative for Northern Ontario.
SMART Advanced Technologies for Global Growth
The second stream of the SMART Program comes via FedDev’s Investing in Business Growth and Productivity (IBGP) initiative. Known as the SMART Advanced Technologies for Global Growth (or ATGG), this stream helps Southern Ontario manufacturers to adopt new technologies that help them increase their productivity and competitiveness on a global scale.
For this stream, eligible applicants require a financially stable enterprise with between 15-1000 employees located in southern Ontario, and they need to have been incorporated for a minimum of two years.
There are two components to this stream: the first provides a non-repayable contribution of up to $15,000 for conducting assessments in a similar manner to the SMART Productivity Assessments Program. The second component focuses on making projects into realities by bringing in new technologies, materials, or processes that help the company improve in various capacities. Advanced technology projects are eligible for up to 35% of eligible costs to a non-repayable contribution of $100,000.
It is unnecessary for projects under this stream to perform an assessment first. If your project is ready to begin, we can help you to start working on your application today. If you are an export or export ready manufacturer located in Ontario, there are several government funding initiatives your business can benefit from. If you want more information about the CME or the Smart Program, get in contact with us at INAC!