Applications open for Third Ocean Startup Challenge, with up to $40,000 in Funds for Idea and Early Stage Ocean Innovators based in Canada
June 22, 2022 | News Release
CANADA – (June 22, 2022) The Ocean Startup Project, a national organization working to make Canada one of the best places in the world to start and grow an ocean venture, has opened applications for the third intake of its Ocean Startup Challenge. Idea and early stage ocean technology startups can apply to be part of the third Ocean Startup Project cohort with awards up to $40,000 for winning teams, along with valuable business supports, such as mentorship, networking opportunities, events, expert-led workshops, and more. The Challenge intake occurs once per year to foster the growth and development of new ocean technology startups in Canada’s booming Blue Economy.
“In just a few short years, we have seen the Canadian ocean startup ecosystem blossom, and that’s thanks to a country that is awakening to the incredible opportunities that exist for innovation in the Blue Economy,” said Don Grant, Executive Director at the Ocean Startup Project. “We want to continue building on the success we have seen from past Challenge winners by creating more new ocean startups and empowering founders to explore and pursue unique ocean tech solutions that will make a significant impact in Canada and around the world.”
Up to $750,000 in funds will be distributed in total to seed idea and early stage ocean technology startups working to build solutions in fisheries and aquaculture, marine biosciences and resources, shipping and marine transportation, energy, and naval and defence.
St. John’s, Newfoundland-based CORSphere is developing an industrial asset maintenance tracking software that leverages data, collaboration and predictive analytics. The startup was selected at the idea stage in 2021 and is already in revenue.
“Being selected for the Ocean Startup Challenge was a game-changer for CORSphere,” said Sazied Hassan, CEO at CORSphere. “The industry connections we made and the guidance we received as we fine-tuned our idea helped us launch and scale very quickly, and we highly recommend the Ocean Startup Project and the Blue Economy as a place to start your entrepreneurial journey.”
The Ocean Startup Challenge launched in 2020, and has had two cohorts to date, supporting 43 startups with more than $1.6-million in funds, and specialized programming to help founding teams achieve developmental milestones. Here are just a few of the ways past winners are making an impact in Canada’s ocean startup ecosystem:
- 73.5+ full-time jobs have been created (and counting!) across the country
- collectively raised more than ~$7.5-million in non-dilutive funding
- collectively raised ~$8.5-million in equity investment since working with OSP
- six Challenge winners continued their progress by participating in Creative Destruction Lab – Oceans Stream
Individuals and/or teams are invited to submit a written and video application before the Thursday, September 1, 2022 deadline at 11:59pm ADT. Information sessions and office hours will take place over the summer for prospective applicants; visit our Eventbrite page for upcoming dates. For more information about the process and to apply, visit oceanstartupproject.ca/challenge.
The Ocean Startup Project inspires, initiates and invests, making Canada the best place in the world to start and grow an ocean venture. The project team creates and delivers activities to support ideation through commercialization, for innovators and entrepreneurs from industry to academia. The Ocean Startup Project offerings complement existing industry accelerators, incubators and other support organizations across Canada’s world-class innovation ecosystem. Together with our partners – Creative Destruction Lab (CDL), Genesis Centre, Innovacorp, New Brunswick Innovation Foundation, PEI BioAlliance, Springboard Atlantic, Centre for Ocean Applied Sustainable Technologies (COAST), and Technopole Maritime du Québec (TMQ) – the Ocean Startup Project is accelerating how homegrown startups get their technologies to market and attract international companies to Canada’s shores.