- Market Assessment
- Market Feasibility Study
- Commercialization of New Technology Assessment
- Productivity Assessment
- How to Apply
- Service Providers
CME’s SMART Prosperity Now Program, a $18.9 million program funded by the federal government through FedDev Ontario’s Prosperity Initiative to help small- and medium- sized manufacturers undertake productivity improvement projects and help to create a more competitive manufacturing sector in southern Ontario that emphasizes global trade and export opportunities. Up to 200 eligible companies will have the opportunity to schedule preliminary assessments by experts, available from February 2012 through March 31, 2013.
These assessments are intended to help companies to:
identify possible export market opportunities by undertaking a Preliminary Market Assessment; or
identify operational improvements to support existing export markets.
These projects can then be proposed to CME for possible funding.
SMART Prosperity Now will fund fifty percent of the assessment costs to a maximum of $5,000 including HST.
SMART Prosperity Now will require a Study Proposal from the expert/consultant to be submitted by the applicant which will outline the parameters of the assessment. This will include the contents, the time frame and a breakdown of the costs. If approved, SMART will require a final report from the applicant before final payment is made.
Please note. It is imperative that the assessments be linked directly to the development and/or improvement of an export market. Also, a completed assessment does not mean that a company's application will be grandfathered for automatic project funding. All project funding applications will be reviewed by Industry Experts and will be evaluated based upon its overall merits.
Signing Up for On-Site Assessments
CME is currently in discussions with a number of professional service providers with experience in global export market capabilities in the areas of productivity improvement, quality improvement, green energy technology, commercialization and new market development.
Eligible companies wishing to schedule a preliminary assessment must select a qualified service provider from the website. Applications can be submitted to CME’s Web-based tools and identify the expert from the designated list. Using its extensive schedule of Workshops across southern Ontario, the CME will give companies ample opportunity to meet potential experts.
The CME does not want to limit a company’s use of qualified experts just because they are not known to CME. If a company has a relationship with, and confidence in, experts that are not yet designated by CME, the company can propose an on-site assessment with a new expert, provided the company submits specific background information on that expert for review by CME. In making this review, CME’s objectives are (1) to establish that the expert is a bona fide professional services provider with appropriate experience in the specified areas, and (2) to prevent instances of self-dealing between companies and related-party service providers. After review by CME staff, if approved, the new service provider will be added to the list of designated experts and will be available to conduct assessments for other eligible companies.
Adding Other Experts
Service providers wanting to be added to CME’s designated list can directly communicate their desire to the CME. To access additional information, go to http://www.cme-smart.ca/prosperity-now/assessment/service-providers.html or forward an email to QSP@cme-mec.ca.
As above, the CME is not trying to create an exclusive list of experts but does hope to establish basic standards of professional qualification and a minimum expectation of performance and "value for money" in the use of public funds. After review by CME staff, if approved, the new service provider will be added to the list of designated experts and will be available for selection by eligible companies.