Idea Fund Seed Funding

Supporting ventures who are committed to inclusion, diversity, environment, and acceleration

As TechAlliance takes bold steps towards equitable growth, we continue to unlock opportunities for some of Canada’s most promising startups and fastest-growing innovation companies with the i.d.e.a. Fund to foster a vibrant, inclusive and green ecosystem.

The i.d.e.a. Fund supports a more sustainable economy and equitable recovery in Southern Ontario by providing recipients with $30,000 in matching seed funds and up to 40 hours of expertise from our Venture Growth team. Any equity-deserving founders will only need to match 25% of the funds they receive.

Idea Fund Seed Funding

Seed Funding and Support

Idea Fund Icon

Expert Advice

Our Venture Growth team, comprised of entrepreneurs, have the knowledge and experience to help you address challenges while offering guidance and insight on growth plans and strategies, talent attraction, raising follow-on investment, market intelligence and diversification, product development, quantification of product benefits, market value propositions, commercialization of intellectual property and more.

Idea Fund Application

Who Can Apply?

How to Apply

Applications for Cohort 1 of the i.d.e.a. Fund closed on June 7th, 2022.

Sign up for our newsletter to receive i.d.e.a. Fund email updates and to be notified when the applications open for Cohort 2 in 2023.

For full selection criteria, download the Program Guide.

Applications for Cohort 2 of i.d.e.a. Fund will be open March 24 to April 17, 2023.
Successful applicants will be notified in May and the full list of Cohort 2 recipients will be announced publicly in Summer 2023.

Join a virtual information session to learn more about this exciting new opportunity!
There will be an opportunity for live Q&A with the i.d.e.a. Fund team throughout each session. 

March 28, 2023 | 3:30 – 5:00 PM

April 5, 2023 | 8:30 – 10:00 AM

April 13, 2023 | 12:00 – 1:30 PM

Sign up for our newsletter to receive i.d.e.a. Fund updates or for more information, speak directly to our Project Manager.

For full selection criteria, download the Program Guide.

Cohort 1

In Cohort 1, TechAlliance of Southwestern Ontario provided 20 companies with $600,000 and over 200 hours of expert advice through the i.d.e.a. Fund

Across Southwestern Ontario, approximately 120 companies received non-repayable contributions of up to $3,600,000 through Cohort 1 of the Government of Canada-supported i.d.e.a Fund. View the full list HERE.

The TechAlliance-supported companies in Cohort 1 were:

Applicant Toolkit

Applicant Toolkit

Applicants are responsible for completing and submitting the online application through the central Intake Portal.

The application form will request information about:

  • How your business meets the program’s eligibility criteria
  • General information about your business
  • Business growth and scaling goals
  • How your business will meet the goals of a green and sustainable recovery
  • How you would use the funds provided through this program
  • How you will match the funds provided

Applicants will be responsible for submitting the following information, and may book a 1-on-1 advisory session with a Startup Advisor to seek input on their application.

  • Business Model Canvas
  • Budget (high level)
  • Short video and/or pitch deck (optional)
  • The applicant must complete the application in full
  • The application provides enough information to address the applicable evaluation criteria
  • The intended use of funds is clear and consistent with a realistic strategy to achieve the business’ scaling goals
  • Stacking of public funding (federal, provincial or municipal) is not permitted and will not be considered matching funds. For example, you may not use federal or provincial grant funds as matching funds.
  • The applicant must be able to provide matching funds up to a maximum of $30,000 to receive seed funding
  • Equity seeking groups groups would be required to provide a 25% match whereas all other recipients would have to provide at 1:1 match
  • The application falls under the eligible project types
  • The applicant has acknowledged that the funds will not be used for ineligible costs as outlined below
  • There is a positive environmental impact (directly or indirectly)
  • There is an economic impact (job creation, revenue generation, add-on investment) to Ontario
  • The applicant has read and agreed to the TechAlliance Client Services Agreement
  • Costs of land, building or vehicle purchase;
  • Costs of intangible assets such as goodwill, whether capitalized or expensed;
  • Depreciation or amortization expenses;
  • Interest on invested capital, bonds, or debentures;
  • Bond discount;
  • Monthly mortgage and loan payments;
  • Refinancing of an existing debt;
  • Losses on investments, bad debts and any other debts;
  • Fines or penalties;
  • Costs related to litigation;
  • Opportunity costs;
  • Hospitality and entertainment costs;
  • Franchise fees and franchise license costs;
  • Lobbyist fees
  • 50% of activity seed financing released once an initial diagnostic and work plan (including goals and milestones) has been completed by the recipient and their advisor
  • 25% of activity seed financing released upon recommendation of the advisor and completion of their interim report
  • 25% of the activity seed financing released upon completion of the project and the approval of the final reporting requirements

Download the Business Model Process Template and follow along with the video below. Also download the Business Model Canvas Pitch for working on your pitch.

Download the Business Model Canvas Pitch for working on your pitch and inserting it into your business model canvas.

Book a 1-on-1 advisory session with a Startup Advisor to seek input on your application.

For further queries about the program, eligibility criteria and application form, visit the FAQ page.


About i.d.e.a Fund

TechAlliance Delivers the i.d.e.a. Fund in London, Middlesex County, Lambton County, Elgin County, Oxford County, and Huron County

On April 29, 2022, TechAlliance of Southwestern Ontario announced a partnership with Innovation Guelph to deliver the Government of Canada supported i.d.e.a. Fund in Elgin, Huron, Lambton, Middlesex, and Oxford counties. The Fund is a Southwestern Ontario-focused initiative to accelerate the growth of high-potential ventures in key sectors linked to the green economy, including agri-innovation, clean tech and advanced manufacturing.

The i.d.e.a. Fund is delivered in partnership with the following Ontario Regional Innovation Centres: Innovation GuelphHaltechInnovate NiagaraWEtech Alliance, TechAlliance of Southwestern Ontario, and Innovation Factory.

i.d.e.a. Fund is funded by the Government of Canada’s Jobs and Growth Fund, which advances economic recovery efforts, supports businesses and organizations to help create jobs, supports the transition to a green economy, and positions local economies for long-term growth.

idea fund partners