September 7, 2012: Businesses looking to introduce, modify, or replace technology to improve their operations are invited to submit an expression of interest under the Provincial Government’s Technology Utilization Program.

“The addition or upgrade of technology can substantially improve the productivity of a company,” said the Honourable Keith Hutchings, Minister of Innovation, Business and Rural Development. “Through the Technology Utilization Program, the Provincial Government is helping small businesses become more productive and successful. I encourage businesses to take a look at their operations and consider how they can be improved through technology and make contact with my department through this expression of interest.”

Through this competitive process, businesses are first invited to submit an overview of their project followed by a more detailed application. The deadline for submissions of the expression of interest is October 10. Those who apply wil be notified no later than Nov. 27 if their EOI is acceptable and wil then be invites to submit an application–although such an invitation is not a guarantee that the company will qualify for funding. Applicants wil be notified no later than March 8 as to whether or not their projects is approved for funding.

For more information on the program, visit www.gov.nl.ca/ibrd or contact one of the Department of Innovation, Business and Rural Development’s offices, which are listed in the backgrounder below.

“Innovation is key to developing and maintaining the competitiveness of any economy competing in the global marketplace,” said Bob Tetford, Provincial Chair, Canadian Manufacturers & Exporters. “Our provincial economy, like any other, must innovate and develop in order to attract new business and ensure the continued success of ventures already established. Both experience and research show that companies involved in the manufacturing and exporting sectors are one of the main driving forces behind developing new technologies and, even more importantly, bringing them successfully to market. The Technology Utilization Program is an excellent program for those companies who wish to innovate by adapting new technology.”

The Technology Utilization Program is a program under Innovation Newfoundland and Labrador: A Blueprint for Prosperity. The program provides non-repayable contributions, up to 80 per cent of eligible project costs to a maximum of $75,000, and is designed to assist businesses improve processes, product quality, efficiency and competitiveness. It also equips businesses with technology to become more energy efficient and reduce emissions.

Since its launch in 2006, Newfoundland and Labrador’s first innovation strategy has guided Provincial Government investments in private sector enterprises, educational institutions, and key infrastructure. Some of the successes stemming from the strategy include an increase in the province’s telecommunications capacity, creation of the Research & Development Corporation, and the establishment of the Craig L. Dobbin Genetic Research Centre.

To View the Terms of Reference or submit and expression of interest CLICK HERE

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CONTACT: Scott Barfoot, Director of Communications, Department of Innovation, Business and Rural Development, 709-729-4570, 690-6290, scottbarfoot@gov.nl.ca J

Jackie Field, Operations Manager, Canadian Manufacturers & Exporters Newfoundland & Labrador
709-772-3227,