Our team can help make your innovative solutions a reality. We fund Yukon innovators who are ready to start, grow or get to market.
Whether you have a disruptive new solution, or an incremental adaptation of an existing solution, our Innovation Fund can provide the funding and support to help you create or reimagine processes and practices, and/or design, develop or deploy your ideas to the world.
Funded by Government of Canada’s Northern Economic Development Agency (CanNor) and Government of Yukon.
Your project proposal must demonstrate the following criteria:
-Individuals, teams and businesses that are based in the Yukon. (Decentralized teams may apply to a project tied to the Yukon, as long as one employee is present in the Territory)
-Existing business or intent to move towards a for-profit business model that is self-sustaining
-Ideas, projects and prototypes must be innovative with the potential for commercialization:
Our team is excited to hear your idea at whatever stage you are at. Book a time for a confidential chat, and together, we will help to determine if your idea or proposal demonstrates a technical challenge worth testing, an advancement that has never been done before, or a valuable modification to something that already exists. We will provide supportive advice for your project’s next steps!
*Note that the Innovation Fund is intended to offset hard costs for project materials to build and test your innovation on a reimbursement basis. Funding cannot cover costs for employee wages, utilities, rent, etc.
Clément Richard, Innovation Project Coordinator (Mark Kelly Photography)
We’re here to help you make it real
The introduction of a new product, service, process, technique, or way of doing business can help shape and reimagine the future, improve quality of life, create wealth, diversify and drive the economy in the North and beyond.
Whether revolutionary or evolutionary, your innovation can involve technology, processes, societal adoption/accessibility and/or business models.
Our Innovation Fund is geared toward supporting Yukoners who need financial support to advance the technological readiness of their ideas, effect the change necessary to create space and capacity within the local economy or connect with industry to support market deployment.
Whether you are developing the basic principles or preparing for scaled deployment of your idea, we can help.
What's the difference between innovation and niche?
Do have an idea that has potential to become a business? A valuable step is to explore the relationship between niche and innovation, and where your idea fits in.
Finding your niche is essential to becoming a successful business. It’s about meeting the underserved needs of a specific audience—think of products designed for healthy eating, the outdoor community, and conscious consumers.
Innovation is related to niche—and goes a step further. YukonU I&E funds innovations that can be simple yet powerful upgrades to existing products, models, and systems. Innovation is all about finding creative and effective solutions for the benefit of your community.
We've seen incredible examples of innovations in the Yukon: ColdAcre is innovating the way food is produced year-round, while Neighbourly North is innovating accommodations in the North, and YukonGrow is producing soil blends to optimize growing in challenging conditions.
Still unsure if your idea is innovative? Book a time to explore your idea with an innovation officer: https://calendly.com/iande/innovatorhuddle
Since 2016, Joel Brennan worked with our team to design and iterate the prototype, securing a patent along the way. Our wrap-around services and funding for mass manufacturing accelerated Joel’s progress toward commercialization.
Winning the 2017 Yukon Innovation Prize lead Elise McCormick and Joanne Sherrard to launch their Aurum Skincare line.
“Thanks to the financial support made available through I&E, we were able to get to market much sooner than we had originally anticipated. The ongoing access I&E provides to startup funding, coaching and industry specialists is key to making our entrepreneurial dreams a reality."
The Mayo-based personal care products company is proudly Indigenous owned and operated. Founder Joella Hogan, a citizen of the First Nation of Na Cho Nyak Dun, is committed to developing her business in her community and providing employment opportunities there.
"Thanks to I&E, I was able to grow my business and provide meaningful skills and empowerment to young women in my rural community."