McGuinty Government Investing In Job Growth And Innovation In The Waterloo Region



    New Funding For Accelerator Centre Gives Boost to Local Technology
    Companies

    WATERLOO, ON, Dec. 13 /CNW/ - The McGuinty government is helping create
the jobs of the future by boosting cutting-edge companies in the Waterloo
region, Minister of Research and Innovation John Wilkinson announced today.
    "Our government is committed to helping local emerging companies grow and
create high-value jobs right here in the Waterloo region and right across the
province," said Wilkinson. "Working together with the Waterloo Accelerator
Centre, we are helping Ontario's innovative thinkers take their ideas to the
next level. This will generate future prosperity and good, high-paying jobs
that will benefit all Ontarians."
    The government is investing an additional $150,000 in the Waterloo
Accelerator Centre, bringing the total provincial investment to $750,000. The
centre works to accelerate the creation and growth of sustainable new
technology companies. There are currently 19 start-up companies housed in the
centre, as well as five innovation partners who are helping these companies
develop their business and move new innovations into the marketplace.
    "The Waterloo Accelerator Centre plays a critical role in helping
entrepreneurs take innovative ideas and grow them into successful businesses,"
said MPP for Kitchener-Centre John Milloy. "Today we are investing in
generating new businesses and high-value jobs for a more prosperous Waterloo
region, and a higher quality of life for all Ontarians, now and in the
future."
    "I'm proud to be a part of a government that is committed to investing in
future job growth and prosperity by investing in our local entrepreneurs and
innovators," said MPP for Kitchener-Conestoga, Leeanna Pendergast.
    The centre capitalizes on the McGuinty government's $150-million
commitment to research and innovation in Kitchener-Waterloo, ensuring the
ultimate outcome is a steady stream of new companies and jobs in the region.
    "Ontario's ongoing support has been vital to the creation and growth of
the Accelerator Centre," said Dr. Tom Corr, Accelerator Centre CEO. "We
applaud the government's ongoing commitment to the Accelerator Centre and to
the larger innovation agenda through its various initiatives including the
Regional Innovation Network program and the Ontario Centres of Excellence."
    "For Ontario to succeed in today's global economy, we need to build a
culture of innovation in every sector and in every corner of our province,"
said Wilkinson. "Our government is firmly committed to building the next
generation of jobs and a prosperous economy, and the Waterloo Accelerator is
an excellent example of the success we can accomplish when we work together."
    Investing in job creation through regional innovation is just one of the
ways the McGuinty government is strengthening the economy and supporting
Ontario families. Other initiatives include:

    
    -   Encouraging strong job creation, with over 422,000 net new jobs since
        October 2003
    -   Committing to expand our Next Generation Jobs Fund to $1.15 billion
        to support job creation for Ontarians
    -   Launching the $160 million Ideas-to-Market strategy that supports
        emerging companies, which includes the Ontario Venture Capital Fund
    -   Establishing a six-year, $500-million Advanced Manufacturing
        Investment Strategy to help manufacturers invest in innovative new
        technologies, and
    -   Phasing out the capital tax and accelerating a five per cent rate cut
        in 2007, while working towards eliminating the tax altogether by
        July 1, 2010.

    Disponible en français

                          www.ontario.ca/innovation


    Backgrounder
    -------------------------------------------------------------------------

                      ONTARIO COMMERCIALIZATION NETWORK
    

    The Waterloo Accelerator Centre is part of the McGuinty government's
$30-million Ontario Commercialization Network. This group of organizations
builds connections between researchers and entrepreneurs in key sectors and
regions throughout Ontario to move promising technologies to market.
    One of the benefits of this network is its ability to bring
commercialization services closer to the clients that need them - small firms,
researchers, entrepreneurs and investors. The regional networks also
facilitate access to other commercialization resources, including MaRS,
Ontario Centres of Excellence (OCE) Inc., the Ottawa Centre for Research and
Innovation (OCRI), and Communitech.

    
                         Waterloo Accelerator Centre
    

    The not-for-profit Accelerator Centre seeks to commercialize the
innovative work of researchers and entrepreneurs. It focuses on early-stage
technology enterprise issues and promising technology companies.
    The centre is the result of a multi-stakeholder partnership that includes
the Province of Ontario, University of Waterloo, Region of Waterloo, City of
Waterloo and the Government of Canada. Other stakeholders include the
University of Guelph, Wilfrid Laurier University and Conestoga College.
    Clients of the centre - emerging technology companies - can access the
plug-and-play office suites in the its 22,700-square-foot building, located in
the Waterloo Research + Technology Park. Suites range in size from as small as
250 square feet to as large as 800 square feet and include office furniture,
Internet access and telephones. Suite fees pay for access to meeting rooms,
reception, photocopying, light administrative support and a networking
kitchen.
    The centre has assembled an entrepreneurship council made up of business
and technology leaders to provide mentorship to its companies. The council
offers experience in growing an enterprise, such as financial management,
investment, research and development, product development, marketing, sales
and human resources.
    As well, the centre works with innovation partners, including
Communitech, Canadian Innovation Centre, Infusion Angels Innovation Centre
(sponsored by Microsoft), Ontario Centres of Excellence and the National
Research Council's Industrial Research Assistance Program to help nurture and
grow their clients.
    Typical clients will remain at the centre for one to three years and
graduate when appropriate. They will either move into the Waterloo Research +
Technology Park or remain within Waterloo Region. Ideally, they will maintain
a connection to the centre, acting as a resource or mentor for the next
generation of entrepreneurs.
    For more information, visit: www.acceleratorcentre.com

    
    Disponible en français

                          www.ontario.ca/innovation
    





For further information:

For further information: Sandra Watts, Minister's Office, (416)
314-7067; Perry Blocher, Ministry of Research and Innovation, (416) 326-7717

Organization Profile

ONTARIO MINISTRY OF RESEARCH AND INNOVATION

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