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NGen: The Advanced Manufacturing Supercluster

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Many companies in Canada have been waiting for the five Superclusters to open.  For those who don’t know about it, the Innovation Superclusters Initiative is a national incentive strategy by the Government of Canada to spark growth and help Canada realize its potential as a global leader in innovation and technology. the initiative will infuse nearly $2 billion into the economy and is expected to contribute to the country’s GDP by $50 billion over the next ten years. Superclusters are distributed in five different regions of the country. Recently, NGen, Ontario’s supercluster, started accepting applications for membership. The focus of this Supercluster is advanced manufacturing.

Membership to NGen is free. Once you become a member, you can access information about the Supercluster including how to apply for funding. Currently, NGen has $190 million of funding. 
On April 16, 2019 NGen will be holding a “project pitch day” in Waterloo.

There are extensive eligibility criteria on the NGen website. However here are a few key requirements:

  • The project is undertaken by an industry-led consortium of partners that are incorporated in Canada
  • Minimum participation of 3 private sector organizations
  • One private sector organization to serve as the lead partner; the contact delegate and to complete the digital forms and upload the required documentation on behalf of the consortium
  • The project consortium must have manufacturing and technology capabilities
  • Projects must be strategically aligned with NGEN’s goal of positioning Canada as a world class leader in advanced manufacturing
  • Projects must drive transformation of the Canadian manufacturing ecosystem, involve later stage technology and manufacturing with the potential to yield a 20x ROI on the ISED investment, drive collaboration across ecosystem members, and create enduring ecosystem assets (IP, human-machine collaborative workforce, tools/test beds, new manufacturing leadership mind set)
  • Involve and/or support the application of technologies in manufacturing or the scale-up of technologies for manufacturing in Canada. Demonstrate significant short-term commercial opportunities for industry partners.


NGen will reimburse up to 44.4% of a project’s eligible costs that are incurred following the signing of a Project Agreement. The reimbursement of 44.4% is set at project level, not at partner level. Therefore, project partners can negotiate within the consortium the levels of funding. No single partner can receive more than 70% reimbursement.

There are 4 other superclusters in Canada including digital technologies & data driven enterprises, protein innovations, artificial intelligence supply chains, and ocean/marine biotechnology. If you fit into the NGen criteria or potentially into the other superclusters, this can be a great opportunity for collaboration and funding opportunities. For a complimentary assessment of your organization’s eligibility for funding, you can contact RDP Associates at RDPGrantsTeam@rdpassociates.com

Hunter Cookson is a Government Funding Specialist with RDP Associates in Toronto.

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