Ontario Supporting Innovation in Growing Life Sciences Sector
$9.7 million in funding helping the Ontario Bioscience Innovation Organization bring new technologies to market
July 25, 2023
Economic Development, Job Creation and Trade
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TORONTO — The Ontario government is investing up to $9.7 million to support a project by the Ontario Bioscience Innovation Organization (OBIO) that will help Ontario companies in the life sciences sector adopt and develop critical technologies, such as 5G, ethical artificial intelligence (AI), blockchain, cybersecurity, quantum and robotics. These critical technologies will improve the sector’s competitiveness worldwide and ensure that Ontario remains a leader in life sciences innovation.
“More and more, we’re seeing the impact that critical technologies have on improving competitiveness, fueling innovation and driving economic growth in sectors like the life sciences,” said Vic Fedeli, Minister of Economic Development, Job Creation and Trade. “OBIO’s project will help Ontario life science companies develop and access the technologies they need to grow and create good-paying jobs, and our government is proud to support their efforts.”
OBIO, a not-for-profit organization representing the life sciences sector, will receive up to $9.7 million through province’s Critical Technology Initiatives program to launch a new Life Sciences Critical Technologies & Commercialization Centre of Excellence. The centre of excellence will work with eight partner organizations to provide small and medium-sized businesses in the life sciences sector with the tools and resources they need to adopt, develop and bring to market critical technologies. Funds will also be used to support 5G living labs – specialty testing environments with 5G infrastructure.
“We are grateful for this new funding, which will enable us to support companies through the adoption, development and commercialization of critical technologies, a key driver for the Ontario life sciences sector,” said Maura Campbell, President and CEO of OBIO. “We look forward to working with our partners to launch the Life Sciences Critical Technologies & Commercialization Centre of Excellence, ensuring that Ontario-made technology companies are supported in the province to become international market leaders.”
The province’s $107 million Critical Technology Initiatives funding supports programs led by not-for-profit organizations that will accelerate the use of critical technologies by Ontario companies and enable the development and adoption of innovative made-in-Ontario solutions. Critical technologies will help Ontario companies increase productivity, open new revenue streams, create highly skilled jobs and enhance global competitiveness.
- Ontario has one of the largest information and communications technology (ICT) sectors in North America and is home to over 400,000 ICT workers. Ontario’s technology sector is centred around the Toronto, Waterloo and Ottawa regions.
- Ontario’s life sciences sector includes domestic and multinational companies, start-ups, scale-ups, hospitals, research centres, universities, technology incubators, and scientists. The health and life sciences sectors employ more than 70,000 people across 1,900 firms in Ontario.
- OBIO is a membership-based organization engaged in strategy, programming, policy development and advocacy to further the commercialization of Ontario’s life sciences companies.
- AI, 5G and quantum technologies are expected to contribute $29 trillion to the global economy by 2035.
“Our government continues to invest in Ontario’s emerging life sciences sector and leverage the innovation happening right here in our province. By supporting this growing and leading industry, the outcomes will pay dividends to Ontarians and our healthcare system for years to come. “
– Sylvia Jones
Deputy Premier and Minister of Health
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