By Anthony Capkun
May 10, 2018 – Are you an aspiring female cleantech entrepreneur and innovator? Could you use a little cash… say, $1 million?
Women are underrepresented in the innovation economy, says the Government of Canada, noting 5% of Canadian tech companies have a sole woman founder or CEO, and only 13% have a woman co-founder.
The feds want to change that.
Jim Carr, Minister of NRCan, today unveiled a nationwide challenge for Canada’s aspiring woman cleantech entrepreneurs and innovators, asking them to submit their ideas to tackle “the world’s most difficult energy and environmental challenges”.
The Women in Cleantech Challenge offers five women an opportunity to develop their idea into a marketable cleantech solution and compete for a $1 million prize. The Challenge focuses on the development of new solutions in areas such as climate change, green growth and applying new technologies to reduce negative environmental impacts.
Delivered in collaboration with innovation hub MaRS Discovery District, the Challenge aims to help level the playing field for Canadian women in the area of clean technology.
Five women entrepreneurs will each receive support valued at more than $800,000 through:
• Business incubator support valued at $300,000 from MaRS.
• The opportunity to work with federal labs to develop their technology, up to $250,000 value.
• An annual $115,000 stipend for living and travel expenses.
After a 2.5-year incubation period at MaRS, the five entrepreneurs will vie for the $1-million prize to invest in their new cleantech business.
VISIT the Challenge website for more information. The deadline to apply is July 13, 2018.
This is the first of five challenges that will be launched in the coming months under NRCan’s Cleantech Impact program, part of Impact Canada. Cleantech Impact will invest $75 million over four years in the five challenges.
— Image courtesy MaRS Discovery District.