Northern Innovation Program - Opportunity Assessment Projects

The Northern Innovation Program supports the vision of the Growth Plan for Northern Ontario by supporting the development and commercialization of new technologies that will contribute to future prosperity in Northern Ontario, and by fostering collaboration and partnerships among the private sector, academic institutions and research institutes. 

Eligible projects must involve research and development or commercialization activities for new technologies in the targeted sectors identified and further described in the Growth Plan. Preference is given to projects falling under the following sectors:

  • natural resources
  • advanced manufacturing
  • clean technology
  • health sciences
  • the bioeconomy
  • the digital economy

The purpose of this program stream is to help Northern Ontario businesses with identifying opportunities for new technology development projects and to provide them with vital decision-making information on the overall feasibility of the proposed project to justify additional investments of time and money.

Who is Eligible?

Northern Ontario private companies are eligible to apply.

The service provider must be a not-for-profit organization (i.e. colleges, universities, innovation centres etc.) with the capability and resources to complete all of the work associated with the Opportunity Assessment Report in-house.

Service providers are expected to charge on a fee-for-service basis at a reasonable market rate for the services being provided. A maximum of two service providers may be used if necessary. In the case of two service providers, each must outline their scope of work, timelines and estimated costs in the request for funding.  Subcontracting of services is not permitted.

All applicants are expected to be ready to commit to the proposed Opportunity Assessment project, both financially and time-wise, at the time of application.

What is Eligible?

Eligible costs are those that are incurred by the applicant after the effective date of the complete application that, in the opinion of the NOHFC, are necessary and directly relate to the project.

Only fee-for-service costs associated with completing the Opportunity Assessment Report are considered eligible for NOHFC support. The report must examine the following factors:

  • technical feasibility
  • market feasibility
  • financial feasibility
  • operational requirements
  • human resource requirements
  • commercialization strategy

What is Not Eligible?

Any costs that fall outside the scope of the Opportunity Assessment Report are considered ineligible for NOHFC support. This includes but is not limited to:

  • administrative fees or other ongoing operating costs of the service provider(s)
  • business plan development


Financial assistance is limited to 75% of eligible costs to a maximum of $15,000 as a conditional contribution.

Not all projects meeting the program criteria outlined above will receive funding. Applications will be accepted under this program until March 31, 2019. This is subject to change without any prior notice.

How to Apply

Send completed application forms to:

Northern Ontario Heritage Fund Corporation
70 Foster Drive, Suite 200
Sault Ste. Marie, Ontario
P6A 6V8
fax: 1-705-945-6701

For more information call our toll free line 1-800-461-8329.