ventureLAB using $2.5M investment from Ontario government to introduce MedTech stream
by CM Staff
The investment will enable ventureLAB to support made-in-Ontario medical solutions and will strengthen Ontario’s MedTech sector.
MARKHAM &mdsah; ventureLAB has announced a $2.5 million investment from the Government of Ontario to establish a MedTech-specific stream within its Hardware Catalyst Initiative (HCI), Canada’s only lab and incubator for hardware and semiconductor companies. The funding is part of the Ontario Together Fund, from the Ministry of Economic Development, Job Creation and Trade, and builds on a $9.7 million investment from the Government of Canada through the Federal Economic Development Agency for Southern Ontario (FedDev Ontario). The investment will enable ventureLAB to support made-in-Ontario medical solutions and will strengthen Ontario’s MedTech sector and technical capacity to fight COVID-19 and respond to future pandemics.
Since opening in 2020, ventureLAB’s Hardware Catalyst Initiative has supported 24 Ontario hardware and semiconductor companies that have reportedly raised millions of dollars in investment capital, created new jobs, and generated valuable intellectual property.
The funding will also be used to establish a MedTech-specific stream, with a new lab in Vaughan, Ontario, focused on the unique hardware and semiconductor needs of healthcare companies. The two-year project hopes to result in high-quality employment opportunities as well as a range of made-in-Ontario technologies, innovations, and intellectual property.
“Hardware and semiconductors underpin virtually all modern devices, and as we navigate our new normal, they are especially key in healthcare technologies, along with other sectors critical to economic recovery and growth,” explains Melissa Chee, President and CEO, ventureLAB. “The Ontario Together Fund enables ventureLAB to create a MedTech-focused HCI stream and empower a new generation of founders that will innovate, scale, and commercialize IP-rich healthcare solutions — transforming the face of patient care in Ontario while also attracting and retaining the very best talent in the world.”
Vaughan is emerging as a healthcare hub in Canada and, as such, is a good fit for ventureLAB’s new MedTech lab. Vaughan is home to Cortellucci Vaughan Hospital, Canada’s first smart hospital, and is leading a new initiative, the Vaughan Healthcare Centre Precinct, which hopes to bring further innovation and healthcare jobs to the region.
The new Hardware Catalyst Initiative MedTech lab will be located within Vaughan-based Sterling Industries to benefit from its resources, product development and production background. As an end-to-end contract manufacturer and assembler of medical devices and components, Sterling Industries is a background with manufacturing facilities and distribution channels in the U.S. and Europe.
“Establishing a thriving MedTech sector requires investing in technology, top engineering talent, and a commitment to providing resources and mentorship to emerging companies looking to scale,” says David Van Slingerland, CEO, Sterling Industries. “We immediately recognized the value in ventureLAB’s new MedTech program because it ticks all of those boxes. If we want to move beyond COVID-19, and be better prepared for the next health emergency, we need to start building the foundation now.”