“The Ontario Together Fund is helping Ontario businesses to fully develop their ideas and innovate in our diverse life sciences sector,” said Vic Fedeli, Minister of Economic Development, Job Creation and Trade. “Our government is proud to partner with companies like Conavi Medical and ventureLAB as they help make Ontario the home for next-generation medical technologies.”
Conavi Medical is a Toronto-based medical device company that develops, manufactures, and sells innovative imaging guidance technologies to guide common minimally invasive heart procedures. Its flagship product, the Novasight Hybrid System, is the first and only clinical device available on the market to combine ultrasound and optical imaging to help physicians visualize disease and deploy stents to open the arteries and restore blood flow to the heart. The company was founded in 2007 by a team of physicians and scientists, based on research conducted at Sunnybrook Research Institute.
The company is investing $6.7 million to make substantial enhancements to its existing facility and implement state-of-the-art IT systems. With these enhancements, Conavi Medical will scale up their manufacturing by at least tenfold to meet current sales commitments and forecasted future demand. With a $2.5 million grant from the Ontario government, this project is expected to create 16 new jobs.
“Heart disease is a leading cause of death globally. The Novasight Hybrid System is designed to help interventional cardiologists deliver more personalized and precise treatments for patients undergoing angioplasty and stenting. Conavi Medical aims to positively impact the care of patients both locally in Ontario and worldwide,” said Thomas L. Looby, Chief Executive Officer, Conavi Medical Inc. “We are tremendously grateful for the support from the Province of Ontario as we continue to pursue this bold vision.”
“Conavi Medical Inc. is a homegrown success story that showcases the strengths of Ontario’s life sciences ecosystem,” said Trevor Dauphinee, CEO, Invest Ontario. “Invest Ontario is pleased we were able to facilitate Conavi’s access to the Ontario Together Fund as they scale-up production of their innovative imaging platform. We partner with industry and government to meet the needs of strategic investors by leveraging the advantages of Ontario’s skilled workforce, innovation networks and cost-effective business climate.”
ventureLAB, located in York Region, is a not-for-profit leading global founder community for hardware technology and enterprise software companies in Canada, enabling technology startups to accelerate the commercialization of transformational products on a global scale. The organization offers a combination of business, investment, and technical expertise, connections to a global network of industry partners, and access to their 50,000 square foot innovation space and world-class lab to drive innovations from prototype to product.
ventureLAB is investing $3.3 million to expand its Hardware Catalyst Initiative (HCI) – Canada’s only hardware and semiconductor-focused lab and incubator. With a grant of $2.5 million through the Ontario Together Fund, the company will create a medical technologies stream of the HCI. ventureLAB will invite innovative MedTech companies to use the services of the HCI to accelerate the commercialization of their products in Ontario. This project is expected to create six jobs.
“The Ontario government’s investment into ventureLAB’s Hardware Catalyst Initiative to create a MedTech-specific stream signifies the growing importance of hardware and semiconductors in the future of healthcare and life sciences, critical sectors for our economic recovery and growth by creating a new generation of IP-rich tech companies,” said Melissa Chee, President and CEO, ventureLAB. “The Ontario Together Fund ensures we are able to work with leading Ontario MedTech companies to commercialize, grow and scale their businesses here in Ontario.”
“ventureLAB is one of the biggest and most diverse tech communities, not only in Markham but across Canada,” said Logan Kanapathi, MPP for Markham-Thornhill. “I have witnessed the incredible work they do on site in their Markham-Thornhill facility, from revolutionizing patient-care with new intelligent innovations to the development of new Markham-made healthcare hardware. ventureLAB will continue to pave the way for better healthcare across Ontario, Canada and the world with this $5 million investment from the Province of Ontario to best strengthen our province’s pandemic supply chain.”
These investments in Conavi Medical and ventureLAB align with the province’s recently announced Life Sciences Strategy, a plan to make Ontario a global hub for biomanufacturing and life sciences and improve our preparedness for future challenges. It will create high-paying jobs, strengthen our health care system – and make it clear that Ontario is a world-leading partner in developing the medicines, vaccines and health technologies of the future.
Supporting innovative projects like these is why Ontario has invested an additional $50 million in the renewed Ontario Together Fund in 2021–22. The fund continues to support local innovators and businesses to further enhance Ontario’s domestic supply chain capacity, promote Ontario’s MedTech ecosystem and build up our manufacturing sector to ensure the province is well-prepared for future challenges.