ADVANCED TECHNOLOGY PROJECTS

 

Manufacturer located in Southern Ontario

 

Between 15 and 1,000 FTE's at the applying facility

 

Established manufacturer with two

years of operating history and

financial stability

 

 

IMPORTANT ANNOUNCEMENT:

 

The application intake for the SMART Advanced Technology for Global Growth program is now closed.   Any project submitted at this time will be declined.

 

We continue to accept applications for the SMART Operational Assessments program for Northern Ontario.

STOP

Applying for Project Funding

Program Guidelines: Projects

SMART Advanced Technology Projects

Project applications must clearly articulate how the project will adapt or adopt advanced technologies.  For a description of advanced technologies, refer to the definitions section below. All project applications must also include a business case outline to identify why this project is necessary and how it will impact the current business, along with a profitability analysis.

 

Notes: 

  • An approval for an assessment does not guarantee that a project will then qualify for funding. A project funding application must be submitted separately and will be evaluated based upon its overall merits.

  • It is not a requirement for companies to complete an assessment first.  If you have a project ready to start, you may submit an application for the project funding program only. 

  • Only one project will be funded per corporation or business entity. Only one project application can be submitted for consideration at a time. If the project is not approved for funding, the company can submit an application for a second project (if funding is still available). Funding is limited to one project per corporation or business entity per round of funding.

  • Projects will be eligible for funding of up to 35% of eligible costs to a maximum contribution of $100,000.

  • Previously approved applicants are eligible to apply for this new program.

 

NoteEffective January 25, 2016, any discussion and communication pertaining to an application will be carried out directly and only with the applicant. Applications will not be discussed with third parties (i.e. consultants).  Letters of consent /authorization from applicants are no longer accepted.

Southern Ontario Service Area

 

 

Southern Ontario includes the following Statistic Canada Census divisions:

1 Stormont, Dundas and Glengarry;
2 Prescott and Russell;
6 Ottawa;
7 Leeds and Grenville;
9 Lanark;
10 Frontenac;
11 Lennox and Addington;
12 Hastings;
13 Prince Edward;
14 Northumberland;
15 Peterborough;
16 Kawartha Lakes;
18 Durham;

 

19 York;
20 Toronto;
21 Peel;
22 Dufferin;
23 Wellington;
24 Halton;
25 Hamilton;
26 Niagara;
28 Haldimand-Norfolk;
29 Brant;
30 Waterloo;
31 Perth;
32 Oxford;
 

34 Elgin;
36 Chatham-Kent;
37 Essex;
38 Lambton;
39 Middlesex;
40 Huron;
41 Bruce;
42 Grey;
43 Simcoe;
46 Haliburton;
47 Renfrew.

 

 

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map of southern ontario census divisions

Click on map to expand

 

Eligibility

Eligible Companies

In order to be considered for SMART ATGG funding, your company must meet the following criteria:

  • Must be a manufacturer based in Southern Ontario per the census map above.

  • Must be an incorporated business (federally or provincially) for 2 years or more continuously and demonstrate financial stability. 

  • Must have 15 (minimum per facility) and 1,000 FTE employees maximum in southern Ontario.  Minimum of 15 FTE employees is required from date of submission throughout the life cycle of the project.

  • Demonstrate they are engaged in international markets (i.e. companies that export, are going to export, or are selling in a value chain leading to export.

  • Propose a project that focuses on adapting or adopting advanced technologies.

 
Eligible Projects

Eligible projects must focus on improving productivity through adapting or adopting advanced technologies.  For a description of advanced technologies, refer to the definitions section below.

 

Projects of any size can be proposed for funding, but SMART Funding is only available up to 35% of eligible project costs or $100,000, whichever is less.

 

CME SMART is looking for NEW projects, however, we will consider applications for projects that have started within 6 months of the submission date and for which not more than 50% of the project costs have been incurred at date of online application submission; an incurred cost is the sum of actual paid costs. Any project cost that has been delivered to the facility is considered 100% incurred regardless of the amount of deposit.

  • A deposit is considered an incurred cost.

  • Delivery of capital equipment, whether paid in full or not are considered fully incurred.

  • A capital lease is considered a purchase.  If the signing of the lease occurs prior to the submission, it is considered 100% incurred.

 

All projects must be completed within 1 year of project start date. Complex projects that require more than one year to complete will not be considered. We are looking for projects that will be completed successfully and on time, and we want the benefits that are reported to clearly relate to the project. At the same time, projects should not be so small that achieving the stated goals or performance objectives depends on other things - like the completion of other projects at the facility.

 

All project activities must be completed by June 30, 2017.  All reports must be submitted no later than September 30, 2017.

 

Maximum Contribution

A combined maximum non-repayable contribution per SME under the SMART ATGG Assessment and Project funding programs is limited to $100,000.

Stacking Guidelines

Click here for stacking guidelines

 

Timeframe
  • Applications will be accepted beginning December 1, 2014. 

  • Projects submitted for consideration must not have started more than six months preceding the date of application.

  • Applications will be reviewed on a first in basis. An acknowledgement of your application will be provided within 3 business days.  Pending all relevant and required information is submitted at the time your application has been received, a decision for the application will be received within 45 to 60 business days. 

  • The application intake will be on a continuous basis.  This process will continue until December 31, 2016 or until all funds have been committed.

  • All projects must be completed within 1 year of project start date. If an extension is required, contact your SMART Program officer and provide a written of the reason for the delay, along with the new timeline for the project.

  • All project activities must be completed by June 30, 2017.  All reports must be submitted no later than September 30, 2017.

 

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Selection Criteria and Review Process

Selection Criteria

Top ranking projects typically result in:

 

  • technological advancements through product or process innovation

  • a net new increase of permanent jobs

  • increased export sales and/or expansion into new export markets (direct or through global supply chain)

 

Please note that projects for which the primary purpose is to address a capacity issue through the purchase of new equipment or the retooling/upgrading or duplication or expansion of existing equipment, and production lines, are not considered as advanced technology projects. Equipment and technology acquisitions proposed under the SMART program must be new or applied in a unique and innovative manner  that will allow the applicant to achieve technological advancements which support production or processes.

 

Exceptions may apply.  If you are unsure if the project is eligible, it is best to submit a brief outline of your project to the SMART team to review your project prior to applying. Send an email to cmeassessment@cme-smart.ca. 

 

In addition to the above three key criteria, project applications will be evaluated on their ability to meet the following:

 

  • Applicant’s ability to achieve the expected results, as demonstrated by the competence and capabilities of the applicant’s management team, it’s commitment to the project.

  • Projected economic and environmental benefits to Ontario, including the scale of reasonableness of the benefits expected from the project and interactions with other segments of the Ontario economy (e.g. through strengthening of economic clusters across the province).

  • Creation of long-term employment and high-value jobs;

  • Improved competitiveness and economic growth in Southern Ontario;

  • Accountability mechanisms are in place to ensure due diligence in completing the project and ability to report on performance measures;

  • Expectation of success for the project, as demonstrated by the feasibility, clarity and specificity of the project plan.

 

You may want to review the Ranking Criteria prior to submitting your application, which is used by our Industry Experts in the evaluation of applications.

 

A Fair and Impartial Process Using Industry Experts

Each application will be given a fair evaluation based upon the information that is provided in the applications and with any additional supporting documentation provided by the applicant.  Applications are reviewed by SMART staff for eligibility and then forwarded to two independent outside industry experts for final review and ranking.  With the anticipated volume of applications to be received, only the highest ranked applications will be approved.  Preference may be given to projects that are diversifying a regional economy and/or from new applicants who have not received funding through any of the CME SMART branded programming.  Should additional funding be received, or if all funding is not committed before the end of the program, it is possible that the next best applications could be revisited for funding.

 
Confidentiality and Conflict of Interest

All CME staff and contractors involved in the application review and selection process are covered by a strict confidentiality and conflict of interest agreement, as are all the industry experts involved in the review of your proposal. In addition, based on information you provide in your application, we will screen our experts for any conflicts of interest so that your proposal receives an impartial and unbiased review. Click here to download a copy of the CME SMART Program Code of Conduct. Final decisions about funding will be made by a panel of those experts, rather than by CME staff, further reducing any chance for bias.

 

Financial statements are reviewed to ensure the viability of a company.  This information is held in strict confidence with the program.  Only the SMART staff assigned to the application as well as the industry experts who have provided a "no conflict" status with the applicant will have access to view the file.  The Federal Economic Development Agency for Southern Ontario (FedDev Ontario) will have access upon request of the documents.

 

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Expenses: Eligible and Non-Eligible Costs

 
Expenses

Use the Project Costing Template from the Tools section below to keep track of your project expenses, as they will need to be input into the online form.  When completing the application, ensure that you include ALL project related expenses into the budget. The project funding amount will be based only on the eligible costs however all costs must be shown to show the full impact of the project and dollars leveraged.

 

Once the project is complete, and all of the project expenses have been documented by your company, you are ready to use the online Expense Claim Form to report these expenses to CME for reimbursement. The Expense Claim Form will look like the budget you submitted as part of your original application, and you will need to explain any significant variations (up or down) in actual expenses – and identify any major vendors in each cost category. Note that all invoices over $500 must be submitted with proof of payment.

 

Eligible Costs

Eligible costs include all expenses directly related to the project and deemed reasonable and necessary for its execution. Below are examples of eligible costs; this is not an exhaustive list.  Costs should be reviewed with your program advisor to avoid disappointment.

 

Costs may include:

  • Plant equipment purchases, including software and equipment technologies that support manufacturing processes;

  • Installation and commissioning of new equipment;

  • Consulting Fees directly related and necessary to the project implementation (industry standard rates only);

 

Eligible costs must be for arm's-length purchases.  Equipment leased from an owner other than the manufacturing applicant (e.g., leasing from holding company) is not eligible for funding because it is essentially equipment leasing vs. a purchase or lease agreement to own.

 

Non-eligible Costs

The costs below can be included in your budget outline but will not be considered eligible for funding.  This is an example of non eligible costs and not an exhaustive list**.  Costs should be reviewed with your program advisor.

  • Costs of land, building or vehicle purchase;

  • Refinancing;

  • Costs of intangible assets such as goodwill, whether capitalized or expensed;

  • Equipment leased from an owner other than the manufacturing applicant (e.g., leasing from holding company);

  • Depreciation or amortization expenses;

  • Interest on invested capital, bonds, debentures, or mortgages;

  • Bond discount;

  • Losses on investments, bad debts and any other debts;

  • Fines or penalties;

  • Costs related to litigation;

  • Non-incremental wages;

  • Fees for administrators, including payments to any member or officer of the Board of Directors;

  • Fees for consultants to complete any portion of the SMART application process;

  • Travel, accommodations, meals and entertainment

  • Research and Development costs or prototype development and samples

  • Labour - internal

  • Materials

  • Construction

  • Media advertising

  • Media placement

  • Training

  • Shipping, transportation, postage or courier costs

  • Communication costs

  • Promotional materials i.e. golf shirts, golf balls, pens, hats, etc.

  • Salaries and Commissions

  • All recoverable taxes

** SMART reserves the right to amend the criteria as required.

 

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Approval and Reimbursement Process

Approval

A Program Advisor will contact successful applicants and request a confirmation of project details, then prepare a Contribution Agreement (contract). The contribution agreement must be signed within 30 days of approval notification. Upon receipt of the signed agreement, the first contribution payment, representing 30% of the awarded contribution amount, will be issued.

 

Expense Reimbursement

Once the project is complete, and all of the project expenses have been documented by your company, you are ready to report these expenses to CME for reimbursement. The Expense Claim Form will look like the budget you submitted as part of your original application, and you will need to explain any significant variations (up or down) in actual expenses – and identify any major vendors in each cost category. Note that all invoices over $500 must be submitted with proof of payment. Copies of all invoices, shipping documents, copies of loans/lease agreements and payment schedule (if applicable), etc. must be provided with the reimbursement claim. Once all expenses have been received, they will be reviewed for final eligibility.

 

The contribution award amount is broken down into three payments, issued as follows:

 

  • 30% within 30 days of receipt of your signed agreement

  • 50% after completion of your project and upon receipt and approval of your expense claim and documentation

  • 20% after receipt and approval of your performance report, this usually occurs 2 to 3 months after project completion to allow time to monitor and assess your project results.

 

Prior to submitting your expense claim, ensure that you review all eligible and non-eligible costs section. Any expense claims with non-eligible costs will be denied and will delay your expense claim. If your approved expenses end up being less than originally proposed, the award amount will be adjusted accordingly.

 

  • For example, assume you proposed a $300,000 project and received an award of $100,000 – 35% of the project costs. Once the project was completed, actual expenditures were only $150,000, the award amount would be reduced to $52,500, and payments would be adjusted accordingly.

  • Based on the revised award amount, you will receive a second payment that, combined with your initial payment, brings you up to 80% of the award amount.

  • Continuing the example above, you would have received $30,000 as an initial payment (30% of $100,000). After reducing the award amount to $52,500, you will receive a second check calculated as follows:

  • 2nd Payment = (80% of $52,500) less initial $30,000 payment = $12,000

    • After the 2nd payment, you would have received a total of $42,000.

    • If your actual expenses are higher than originally budgeted, we will not be able to increase the award amount, so be sure to keep close control on your spending during the project.

  • 3rd Payment = 20% of $52,500 for a total of $10,500 bringing the funding amount to $52,500.

 

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Definitions

Exporter

To trade or sell goods or commodities into another country.  Shipments from Canada to USA and abroad are considered exported goods.

 

Full-time Employee

A full time employee is a person who works directly for the applicant company, works a minimum of 35 hours per standard week, is paid through company payroll and is issued a T4 slip for income tax purposes.  Part time employees can have combined hours to create a FTE employee.  For example, 2 part time employees who work a total of 17.5 hours each per week can be combined to equal 1 FTE employee. The number of FTE employees must be sustained throughout the lifecycle of the project. A company must have a minimum of 15 FTE employees and maximum of 1,000 employees located in southern Ontario.

 

Incurred Expense

An expense is considered to have been incurred if the relevant services or products have been provided or delivered or payment or deposit has been made.  Also, as of the submission date,  if the relevant services or products have been ordered  (but have not been provided or delivered), then the portion of the monies prepaid in respect of such services or products shall be considered costs or expenses incurred.

 

Manufacturing

Any natural or legal person who makes a physical good with tools and/or machines by effecting chemical, mechanical, or physical transformation of materials, substances, or components, or by simulating natural processes, usually repeatedly and on a large scale with a division of labor. Manufactured items often are, or are made out to be, different from other similar goods in one or more aspects, and are sold commonly under a particular brand name.

 

Small - Medium Size Enterprise (SME)

For the purpose of the SMART ATGG Program, a SME is a manufacturing company with 15 to 1,000 FTE employees located in southern Ontario.

 

Advanced Technologies Definitions

The following definitions are based on a Statistics Canada survey completed in 2007 and are meant to provide a framework for determining advanced technology investment. Advanced technologies continue to develop at a rapid pace.

 

Advanced technology refers to a new technology that performs a new function or improves some function significantly better than commonly used technologies. Advanced technology includes information and communications technology (ICT) such as computer and network hardware, and software.

 

Technology is broadly defined to include the technical means and know-how required to produce a product or service. It takes the form of equipment, materials, processes, methods, blueprints and knowledge.

 

Project Focus

Productivity assessments and projects that focus on adopting advanced technology, materials and processes, defined as follows:

 

  • Design, Engineering and Virtual Manufacturing Technologies – primarily including software or equipment technologies such as Computer Aided Design (CAD), Computer Aided Engineering (CAE), Computer Aided Manufacturing (CAM), modelling and simulation technologies, technologies for systems engineering, and rapid prototyping (3D printing). 

  • Processing, Fabrication and Assembly – primarily including equipment and technologies that support advanced fabrication. Examples include Flexible Manufacturing Cells (FMC), Flexible Manufacturing Systems (FMS), Micro Electro Mechanical Systems (MEMs), reconfigurable systems lasers, e-beams, plasma Cutters and Sputters, robots, high speed machining technologies, injection molding, precision die casting, metal spraying.

  • Inspection – primarily including equipment and technologies that support inspection and testing. Examples include automated vision-based or sensor-based systems.

  • Communications, Logistics and Supply Chains – includes software and equipment technologies to support communications expansion within plants, buildings, enterprises or supply chains. Examples include LANs, internets, extranets (to manage suppliers, sub-contractors or customers), customer relationship management systems (CRMs), warehouse management system (WMS), Advanced Planning and Scheduling (APS), and Transportation Management.

  • Automated Material Handling – includes software and equipment technologies to support parts identification and tracking, automated storage and retrieval.

  • Integration and Control – includes software and equipment technologies to support manufacturing integration and control within plants and/or operations. Examples include multi-axis machines, adaptive machine control (haptic or forced), process control software, supervisory control and data acquisition software and computer integrated manufacturing.

  • Development and Implementation of Advanced Technologies or Product Development - the development and implementation of new technology (software or equipment) to support operational productivity or new product development.

  • Manufacturing and Control Management – primarily includes software or advanced practices to support improved manufacturing management. Examples include electronic work management, distribution resource planning (DRP), lean manufacturing, just-in-time manufacturing, manufacturing resource planning (MRPII) and enterprise resource planning (ERP).

  • Quality Management - primarily includes software, practices, and certifications to support advanced management. May be tied to equipment required to support certification. Examples include business certification (i.e. ISO), Statistical Process Control (SPC), Total Quality Management (TQM), six sigma and kaizen.

  • Others – other advanced technologies, including equipment, software and practices, that support advanced manufacturing. Examples include competitive technology intelligence (CIT), benchmarking, sustainable development strategy (incorporating advanced technologies), product data management (PDM) and product life cycle management (PLM), geometrics and geospatial technologies, remote sensing, the use of biotechnologies or nanotechnologies.

 

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Tools & Templates

Preparing and Organizing Your Information

Our application form has a number of detailed questions about your company, the people who work there, and about the specifics of your proposed project, its costs and timing, and the benefits you expect from it. The questions are detailed because we want to give you the best opportunity to provide a very clear presentation about why your project will be successful and will make a difference to your company. To help organize the information we need about your company and your project, download the project funding application template. When you have all of the information ready, you can cut and paste answers in the appropriate places in the online application form.

 

All applications require a detailed business case to outline the project benefits and how it will improve current operations.  You may use your own format for a business case, or download our template below.  If you are using your own format, please ensure to address all the points contained in our template below. Don't forget to prepare a thorough Profitability Analysis, showing detailed calculations (NPV, IRR, ROI, Payback). You can use your own format or the many examples that can be found online, but we have provided a sample below.

 

If your company does not have a cost breakout spreadsheet, use our template below to show the expenses relevant to the project, as you will need to input all your project expenses into the online form. If you have already been invoiced by the vendor, you may include the invoice numbers and amounts.

 

Submitting an application

The following MUST be submitted with your application for funding:

 

  • Two most recent completed Fiscal Year Financial Statements (audited or reviewed) for last two years. Please note that interim/current statements may be requested during the ensuing review process. If your project is approved for funding, you may also be required to provide additional financial statements.

  • Business case for project application (click here to see our template for guidance)

  • Project Costs (download our template)

  • Profitability analysis (NPV, IRR, ROI, Payback) of the investment showing detailed calculations, if not included in business case (see an example)

  • Any other relevant information on your project - proposals, purchase orders, customer validation letters, etc.

 

 

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Support

Online Portal Technical Requirements and Support

 

  • Supported browsers: Internet Explorer from 8 to 11, and Chrome 8+.  Mozilla Firefox is not supported and may cause errors.

  • JavaScript must be enabled on all browsers

  • Maximum file size for an uploaded document is 500 MB

 

If you are experiencing technical issues, please email: support (support@cme-smart.ca).  All issues will be responded to within 2 business days.

 

For password retrieval, please click on the "forgot your password?" link on the portal login page. You will need to enter your user ID to retrieve your password.

 
SMART Program Advisors

Questions about the application process or the program? Call us at 1-877-913-4263 and ask to speak to a Program Advisor.

 

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Application Process: How to Apply

Who Should Complete the Application?

Because the application contains important information about your company (for example your corporate registration number) and about your proposed project (including details of costs and timing), different people in your organization may have to contribute different information to complete your application. However, at this time, only one person per facility can be registered to use the online system, so it might be best if the application is reviewed and submitted by a senior person at the company. Under no circumstances can SMART accept applications submitted by a third party consultant even with the permission of the company. This decision is to protect SMART and the applicant from having an unauthorized submission. 

 

NoteEffective January 25, 2016, any discussion and communication pertaining to an application will be carried out directly and only with the applicant. Applications will not be discussed with third parties (i.e. consultants). Letters of consent /authorization from applicants are no longer accepted.

 

If you are unsure if the project is eligible, submit a brief outline of your project to the SMART team prior to applying. Send an email to cmeassessment@cme-smart.ca. An advisor will review it and contact you to discuss. 

 

When submitting your application, ensure you have all documents ready to upload with your application. Failure to attach the supporting documents will delay the review process of your application.  For your benefit, review the Tools & Templates section above of all required documents to upload. Use our templates if you do not have your own formal plans.

 

What You Will Need

 

  1. Information for the application: To help organize the information we need about your company and your project, download a paper-based version of the project funding application form (template in Tools section above). When you have all of the information ready, you can cut and paste answers in the appropriate places in the online (web) application form. Please note that there are character count limits in certain fields in the online application.

  2. Project Cost Breakout: If your company does not have a cost breakout spreadsheet, use our template in the Tool section to show the expenses relevant to the project.  If you have already been invoiced by the vendor, you may include the invoice numbers and amounts. This information will need to be input into the online form.

  3. Business Case: All applications require a detailed business case to outline the project benefits and how it will improve current operations.  You may use your own format for a business case, or download our template from the Tools section above. If you are using your own format, please ensure to address all the points contained in our template.

  4. Profitability Analysis: You must demonstrate the NPV, IRR, ROI, Payback of the investment showing detailed calculations (if not included in business case). See an example in the Tools section.

  5. Two most recent completed Fiscal Year Financial Statements (audited or reviewed) for last two years. Please note that interim/current statements may be requested during the review process. If your project is approved for funding, you may also be required to provide additional financial statements.

  6. Any other relevant information on your project - proposals, purchase orders, customer validation letters, etc.

 

 

Failure to attach any of the above documents will delay the review process of your application. 

 

Submit an Application

The SMART online application system is now open.  As of May 15th, 2015, only applications submitted via the online portal will be accepted. 

 

  1. Gather all information and electronic documents.

  2. Log on to the Online submission portal and create a User ID.

  3. Create a new application by selecting 'FedDev Advanced Technology Project'.

  4. Complete each section of the application in full, including all detailed costs and budget.

  5. Upload your business case, project costing sheet, profitability analysis (if not included in business case), financial statements, and any other pertinent documents.

  6. Submit.

 

An automated email will confirm your submission. Note your case number for any future correspondence. A CME SMART representative will contact the applicant for additional details or for approvals. A final decision on the application will be provided to the applicant within 45 to 60 business days.

 

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