active spring in public funding for quebec's startup ecosystem

Since the start of 2023, the Quebec government, particularly the Ministère de l'Économie, de l'Innovation et de l'Énergie (MEIE), has been stepping up its announcements of financial support for innovative entrepreneurship.
Nearly a year after the publication of the Québec Innovation Research and Investment Strategy (SQRI2) and the Québec Entrepreneurship Plan, we have put together a list of the financial support granted by the MEIE, and will be sure to update it as future announcements are made.



Creation of Espace Ax-C for innovative entrepreneurship: financial assistance totalling $38.5 million to École de technologie supérieure (ÉTS) to support the creation, in Montreal, of Espace Ax-C, an innovative entrepreneurship centre of international scope. Additional financial assistance from the Government of Canada and the City of Montreal brings the total public support to $48 million.
Support for innovative technological entrepreneurship: financial assistance totalling over $14.3 million to support ten business incubators and gas pedals over the next three years.

  • ESTRIE: ACET($1.5M)
  • MONTÉRÉGIE: Continuums ($1.07m)
    • Center d'entreprises et d'innovation de Montréal (CEIM) ($1.5 million)
    • District 3 Innovation Center ($1.5 M)
    • Esplanade Montréal ($1.5 M)
    • Group 3737 ($1.5 million)
    • The entrepreneurial base $1.49 million
    • MT Lab $1.25 M
    • $1.5 M

Creation and growth of innovative companies in the life sciences: financial assistance of up to $7,197,992 will be awarded to five Quebec incubators and gas pedals to stimulate the creation and growth of innovative companies in the life sciences sector. Each organization will receive a grant of up to $500,000 per year:

  • AdMare BioInnovations
  • Catalyst for health technologies (CTS)
  • McGill University Dobson Centre for Entrepreneurship
  • Quebec Biotechnology Innovation Centre
  • Quantino

Artificial intelligence: financial contribution of $21 million over three years to Mila - Institut québécois d'intelligence artificielle to help it pursue the development of a university network of excellence in responsible artificial intelligence (AI) research, as well as the training and attraction of AI talent in Quebec.

Seed-stage financing: a loan of up to $3 million to Front Row Ventures (FRV) to ensure the continuity and growth of its venture capital training program, while increasing the financing of seed-stage companies. The financial contribution comes from the Economic Development Fund, managed by Investissement Québec.

Services for strategic research platforms and facilities: $6,698,132 to support 14 projects to develop unique research platforms or facilities in innovative fields, and to promote access to leading-edge infrastructure for Quebec companies and other stakeholders, notably the LACIME technology platform at the École de technologie supérieure for Quebec startups.

Impulsion PME to support young innovative companies: investment of $120 million by 2027 in the Impulsion PME program, administered by Investissement Québec, to continue supporting the start-up and development of young innovative companies with high growth potential across Québec, with the addition of a biopharmaceutical component.


Entrepreneurial development in Quebec: $6.5 million for Espace-Inc to help entrepreneurs across Quebec build and consolidate innovative, sustainable-growth businesses over the long term, notably in collaboration with the regional growth spaces (ERACs)acceleration .

Promoting Quebec entrepreneurial initiatives: $2.19 million for Défi OSEntreprendre, a nationwide entrepreneurial competition that showcases the achievements of participants of all ages. Additional funding of $1.7 million from the Secrétariat à la jeunesse and $250,000 from the Ministère de l'Éducation brings the total public support to $4.1 million.

Support for growth-phase entrepreneurship projects: grant of up to $6.56 million to La Ruche, to create a matching fund to support growth-phase entrepreneurship projects by March 31, 2025.


Developing business innovation: $64.6 million to Mitacs to support innovation internships until 2027, with the aim of fostering international links and collaboration between businesses, students and research teams to meet innovation challenges.

Offensive de transformation numérique (OTN): continuation of this initiative, with financial assistance totalling nearly $37 million to support 14 projects that will raise awareness among some 65,000 businesses of the importance of going digital.

Accelerating the tourism industry's digital shift: additional support of $4 million from the Ministère du Tourisme and MEIE to Événements Attractions Québec (EAQ), to continue supporting the entire activities, events and attractions sector in accelerating its digital transformation. This support is in addition to the $3 million provided to EAQ as part of the Offensive de transformation numérique (OTN).
Innovation Program (Health segment): financial assistance totalling $1,173,198 to support, by 2024, the realization of six initiatives selected following a call for projects launched as part of the Innovation Program.

In addition to financial support announcements, several standard financial assistance programs and tax measures are designed to help companies and research organizations pursue or expand their activities.

Fonds local d'investissement (FLI ): New terms and conditions came into force on April 1, 2023, aimed at facilitating access to capital and accelerating project completion. Management of local investment funds (FLI) is the responsibility of regional county municipalities (MRCs).

Call for international research and innovation projects 2022-2023: The call for projects is open to universities, CCTTs, public research centers and RSRIs. Projects are aimed at setting up international research consortia. Next deadline: October 13, 2023.