July 2020
Summer days...
With the longer days of summer upon us, we wish you all rest and relaxation. Look below to see news from lifesciences sectors and remember to practice safe distancing during leisure activities.

In this issue we even included a summer reading list to inspire you! 

BioAlberta Team
THE MedTech Conference is Going Virtual
September 8 to October 23, Plus Partnering October 5 - 7, 2020
AdvaMed is excited to introduce an all-virtual conference experience for 2020 - The Virtual MedTech Conference.

The Virtual MedTech Conference will feature a mix of live and on-demand content, available to all registrants right from their homes or offices. On-demand sessions will be available in early September, with live sessions streaming from October 5-7 .

In addition, our MedTech Connect partnering platform will open in August and allow all participants to schedule virtual meetings. More updates and a program schedule is available on our website!

As the largest gathering of our industry's leaders, we believe our educational program and networking opportunities will shed light on how medtech companies have faced this challenge head-on, the lessons learned, and how the industry and the world will look moving forward. We hope you'll join us online this fall!

If you are planning on attending this event, please contact Joshua@bioalberta.com.
Free Workshop Series - Maximizing Funding
Maximizing Funding Potential | Free two-part workshop series
July 21 & 22, 2020
Emissions Reduction Alberta realizes that navigating the innovation ecosystem can be challenging.

Finding the right funding organization and applying for funding can be equally difficult.

The purpose of these workshops is to help connect innovators with the support they need to progress their technologies. If you take part you will learn about funding organizations, the application process and hear from project advisors, and greenhouse gas quantification specialists on what it takes to successfully navigate the system.

If you are a clean technology innovator curious about the differences between how organizations fund projects and ideas that deliver environmental and economic benefits, these workshops are for you.

By completing the registration you gain access to all Maximizing Funding Potential sessions.

July 21st Agenda:
9 to 10:30am MDT – The Reverse Pitch
10:30 am to 1pm MDT – A Deeper Dive

July 22nd Agenda:
9 to 10:00am MDT – Preparing Your Best Funding Application

If you want to know more about the organizations funding innovation and clean technology, join us July 21 & 22. For more information and to register see link here.
Global Cluster Partnering Healthcare
DIGITAL EVENT Aug 26-27, 2020 
From Alberta Economic Development and Trade... Online partnering event for the global life sciences industry. At GCP Healthcare, international biopharma, medtech, diagnostics and labtech companies will be inspired by cutting-edge medical and technological innovation from startups, SMEs and universities/research organizations. GCP-Healthcare will enable participations to explore opportunities for cooperation and help them to find new ways to address our global healthcare challenges.

Partnering requests: July 10 - August 25
Keynotes: August 26, 7 a.m. – 10 a.m. (UTC)
Partnering meetings: August 26, 10 a.m. - August 27, 10 p.m. (UTC)
e-Conference center open for follow-ups: August 27, 6 a.m. - September 27, 10 p.m. (UTC)

Registration for partnering requests now open. For detailed information and to register, please see link here.
Watch & Listen: Deloitte - Cannabis Industry
The cannabis industry continues to be a brave new market. It’s moving forward quickly, globalizing rapidly, and entering a new phase of more mature development locally and internationally. It’s a time of rapid change and great opportunity. Deloitte's latest content series unpacks both, helping companies prepare for the future and developing strategies to overcome tomorrow’s challenges. It’s time to grow and thrive in this exciting industry!

  • The seed-to-sale cannabis journey
  • Pioneering in craft cannabis sector

Deloitte's podcast breaks down the business side of cannabis, as we talk to the people shaping the industry today. Tune in and dive into the issues impacting the world of cannabis.

Four episodes:
Episode 1: Grow, smoke, eat: The future of cannabis
Jennifer Lee and Deborah Rosati discuss the challenges of Cannabis 2.0.

Episode 2: Professionalizing, diversifying, revitalizing
Jennifer Lee and Deborah Rosati join us again to talk governance and diversity.

Episode 3: Governance, missteps, and scandal
Hear about the highs and lows of cannabis from Rishi Malkani and Bruce Linton.

Episode 4: The first-mover advantage and the future of wellness
Rishi Malkani and Bruce Linton are back as we look towards Cannabis 3.0 and beyond.

To see it all go to this link here.
Summer Reading
McCarthy Tétrault : Business as Unusual: New Realities, New Possibilities- A Roadmap for Business Leaders
The novel coronavirus began as a public health crisis but has quickly become an unprecedented socio-economic crisis, affecting our way of life and business across all industries and all sectors of the economy.

Looking ahead, we expect the economic impact of the COVID-19 emergency to unfold in three distinct phases, each of which will present distinct challenges and potential opportunities. In this paper we highlight key issues in this new economic landscape and provide valuable insights and considerations to guide you through the complexities, new realities and new possibilities of succeeding at doing business as unusual. Link here.


Supply Chain Challenges – The Whole Picture: 7 Questions to 7 Specialists

Supply chains globally have been significantly impacted, with very serious consequences, because of COVID-19. Even as the economy starts to reopen, supply chain issues continue to be top of mind for leaders across many industries as companies navigate new and evolving business norms.

For the whole picture, McCarthy Tétrault asked seven questions to seven leading lawyers with expertise on the various areas of supply chain. Link here to what they had to say.
UCeed Health Funds
UCeed is now funding ventures in child and general health. This is Canada’s first seed fund for child health – a priority research area for UCalgary.

Activated by Innovate Calgary, the university’s knowledge transfer and business incubator, UCeed serves to support the robust pipeline of UCalgary-based child and health enterprises.
Focal Point: Edmonton International Airport
Innovation at Edmonton International Airport Includes many
“Firsts” and “Biggests”

Often, people think only of advancements in aircraft technology when considering innovation in aviation, but Edmonton International Airport (EIA) is changing that narrative. 

The airport embraces innovation in every part of its business and actively seeks out opportunities that will benefit and promote innovation for businesses across the Edmonton Metro Region and all of northern Alberta. 

“Our mandate is to create economic prosperity for the regions we serve,” said Myron Keehn, EIA Vice President of Air Service and Commercial Development. “Staying on the cutting edge of innovation allows us to continue to drive growth and development both at the airport and in the surrounding areas.”

The Alberta Aerospace & Technology Centre was created in 2015 as a hub for advancing fields such as robotics, renewable energy, and simulator training. Even now, during a global pandemic that has severely affected airport operations, EIA continues to prove itself a leader in leveraging its assets for positive regional growth. 
Earlier this spring, EIA became the first airport in Canada to achieve community certification for Center of Excellence for Independent Validators in Pharmaceutical Logistics (CEIV Pharma). This global designation certifies that medical supplies and temperature-controlled-products can be handled by the certified airport community knowing they will arrive or depart in good order. The airport’s Fresh Cargo Centre is approximately 5,000 square feet in size and is an essential component of the biopharma and agri-food supply chains.

Most recently, the airport announced Airport City Solar, a 627-acre, 120-megawatt solar farm. This will be the largest airport-based solar farm in the world when completed in 2022. The facility will consist of 340,000 individual panels and generate approximately 200,000 MW per year, which will be fed into the power grid. In full operation, the facility will produce enough electricity to power between 27,000-28,000 homes.

In May, the airport welcomed three Antonov-124 aircraft at the same time, one of the largest aircraft in the world. This was the first time three of these aircraft were in Edmonton simultaneously. The newly expanded cargo apron and facilities at EIA were put to good use unloading the hundreds of tonnes of freight destined for the region. The majority of the cargo contained medical equipment, PPE, and e-commerce deliveries from an increase in the community’s online shopping. 

EIA is truly fostering an environment for innovation and development to thrive, in whatever form they come in. Visit www.flyeia.com to learn more. 
New residency for wellness and nutrition company
Adventus LifeFood Inc. (Adventus) is the first participant in a new residency program at the BMO Centre for Innovation and Research (BMO-CIAR) at Concordia University of Edmonton . Adventus will develop premium multi-functional health food ingredients, nutraceuticals, and a range of natural health products, and have access to laboratory infrastructure, mentorship, researchers and more .

Adventus is joining the BMO-CIAR as the first resident in its state-of-the-art lab, working to develop premium quality multi-functional health food ingredients, nutraceuticals, and a range of natural health products. Through this residency, CUE and the BMO-CIAR will be providing resources, support, and opportunities for Adventus to take the next steps towards commercializing products.

"The BMO-CIAR was designed to be a place for industry and academia to come together and discover what is possible when we work together," said Dr. Manfred Zeuch, Vice-President External Affairs and International Relations at CUE. "Our doors are open. We are excited to welcome Adventus, and look forward to supporting other local innovators seeking to develop world-class products and services."

The BMO-CIAR strives to advance industry and community interests by building and strengthening connections between CUE and external partners to turn knowledge and ideas into solutions. From research commercialization to intellectual property protection and business incubation, the BMO-CIAR offers businesses of all sizes opportunities to scale up and drive innovation.  To find out more see link here.
Alberta Government SME Enterprise Relaunch Grant 
The Small and Medium Enterprise Relaunch Grant offers financial assistance to Alberta businesses, cooperatives, and non-profit organizations that were ordered to close or curtail operations, and that experienced a revenue reduction of at least 50 per cent, as a result of the COVID-19 pandemic.

Eligible organizations can apply for 15% of their pre-COVID-19 revenue, up to a maximum of $5,000 in funding.

Businesses, cooperatives and non-profits can use these funds as they see fit to help offset a portion of their relaunch costs, such as implementing measures to minimize the risk of virus transmission, which could include:
  • physical barriers
  • purchasing personal protective equipment and disinfecting supplies
  • paying rent and employee wages
  • replacing inventory and more.

The Government of Alberta has committed up to $200 million in funding for the program.
Grant funding amounts are calculated based on 15% of the eligible organization’s pre-COVID-19 monthly revenue up to a maximum of $5,000 per business, cooperative or non-profit organization. For more information see the link here. xt Link
UCeed Health Funds
UCeed is now funding ventures in child and general health. This is Canada’s first seed fund for child health – a priority research area for UCalgary.

Activated by Innovate Calgary, the university’s knowledge transfer and business incubator, UCeed serves to support the robust pipeline of UCalgary-based child and health enterprises.

Opportunity Fund Award: Up to $150,000 investment

Criteria:Applicant must have an established relationship with the University of Calgary as a current, past or visiting faculty member, a student, or has licensed or assigned intellectual property developed at the University of Calgary. Technology Readiness Level (TRL): Stage 1-4. Minimum one (1) full-time employee. See link here.
Export Readiness – Micro Vouchers

Are you preparing to export to global markets?

Through this Alberta Innovates program they are supporting Alberta SMEs, with a minimum of $20,000, to build and develop a strategic approach to expanding their international plans and building global export opportunities.

The focus of the program is to fund an Alberta SME (applicant – you) to hire a qualified service provider that will help you build a strategic approach to entering global markets. You may be eligible for up to $20,000, which is paid directly to one service provider named in the application.

If successful, you must work directly with the service provider you’ve identified in your application to define the scope of work to expand export activities.

To learn more about this opportunity see this link here.
GOC: Student Employment - Still Open
Temporary Flexibilities for Employers to Feb 2021
For those members who would look to this mechanism for student summer employment, be advised of the following changes GOC has made to the program in response to the COVID-19 situation.

Temporary flexibilities for Canada Summer Jobs (CSJ) 2020

Wage subsidies: All funded employers will be eligible to receive a wage subsidy reimbursement of up to 100% of the provincial or territorial minimum hourly wage. Previously, private and public sector employers were only eligible to receive up to 50% of the provincial or territorial minimum wage.

Part-time employment: All funded employers may offer part-time placements (for example, fewer than 30 hours per week). Previously, all CSJ-funded employment had to be full time (a minimum of 30 hours per week for at least 6 weeks).

Employment period: All funded employers may offer job placements from now until February 28, 2021. Employers can offer part-time employment to youth who want to work during the academic year. Previously, all CSJ-funded positions had to be completed no later than August 28, 2020.

Changes to project and job activities: All funded employers will be provided the flexibility to amend project and job activities to support the delivery of critical services.

To be eligible to receive funding under the CSJ program, employers must be able to provide youth a job placement in a safe work environment. In the current context of COVID-19, employers are responsible to stay informed of provincial guidance on essential services and Municipal, Provincial and Federal public health information.

BioTalent Student Work Placement Program
Canadian universities and colleges are placing highly-educated students in the bio-economy. If you are looking to hire young and eager talent, BioTalent Canada’s Student Work Placement Program (SWPP) can help.

Past positions include everything from Drug Formulation & Delivery to Sustainable Agriculture Intern.

Want to learn more? See Student Work Placement Program (SWPP) and contact Benita at buruhisho@biotalent.ca; Hannah at hwalhad@biotalent.ca; Colleen at chayes@biotalent.ca; Sue, in BC at scallaghan@biotalent.ca.
Canada's Technology and Aging Network's - AGE-WELL - is receiving $21.9 over three years from GoC to provide Canadians with technology-based solutions to improve quality of life for older adults and caregivers.

They are looking for projects. Now is the time to investiaget and apply for these exceptional funding opportunities. Check it out at: http://ow.ly/fgsL50zE3oO Y
Western Economic Diversification Canada: $304 million for western Canadian businesses

Businesses across Western Canada unable to access existing relief measures can now apply to Western Economic Diversification Canada's Regional Relief and Recovery Fund.

The new Regional Relief and Recovery Fund (RRRF) is being delivered by regional development agencies (RDAs) to help more businesses and organizations, that are key to the regions and local economies. A total of $304 million will be available for western Canadian businesses.

To learn more or apply see Western Economic Diversification Canada
In the news…

Congratulations to BioAlberta Sponsor McCarthy Tétrault! Demonstrating national transactional strength and superior client service, McCarthy Tétrault received seven IFLR1000 Canada Awards. These awards are deep-rooted in legal innovation and highlight Canada’s top-performing firms and teams at both a provincial and national level.

The Firm received the following awards:
  • Québec Firm of the Year
  • Canada M&A Team of the Year
  • Banking and Finance Lawyer of the Year - Richard O’Doherty
  • Canada Banking and Finance Deal of the Year - The Manufacturers Life Insurance Company and Sun Life Assurance Company of Canada in the closing of a secured credit facility to First Nation LP in order to finance its equity interest in Wataynikaneyap Power LP
  • solvency Deal of the Year - The Government of Québec, as debt holder and equity provider, in connection with the renegotiation and CCAA proceedings of Stornoway Diamond Corporation
  • Ontario Impact Deal of the Year - Canopy Growth's $3.4 billion acquisition agreement with Acreage Holding
  • Québec Impact Deal of the Year - Le Groupe Maurice's C$1 billion partnership with Ventas.
To learn more about these awards see this link here .
Edmonton Innovator Develops World-Class Technology to Drive Better Outcomes
Health City announced a collaboration between MEDO.ai, WestView Primary Care Network and Alberta Innovates to initiate a key pilot study of MEDO.ai’s artificial intelligence-augmented 3D ultrasound platform. Edmonton-based MEDO.ai, following their “Engineering of the Future” award from Falling Walls Venture 2019 in Berlin, and has been accepted into the Alberta Innovates’ Accelerating Innovation into Care (AICE) – Market Access Program. AICE is a key entrepreneurial ecosystem support program that provides digital health tech companies in Alberta with the opportunity to implement their innovative solutions in a real-world setting anywhere in North America. For more information see link here.
Bast Fibre Technologies wipes up $3.33m to commercialize 100% natural fabrics processing tech

Single-use plastics are not only finding their way into landfills, they’re becoming the main subject of legislation, too. Unsurprisingly, some manufacturers who rely on synthetic substances for their products are starting to search for something new.

“We are very much a specialty fabric company. We are getting inquiries from end marketing organizations telling us they have a two or three-year time horizon to phase single-use plastics out of their products and that they want to design natural fibers into their products. They are asking to work with us now,” Noel Hall, chairman and CEO of Bast Fibre Technologies, told AFN. Bast currently uses hemp and flax for their fibers.

Bast Fibre Technologies recently closed a C$4.5 million ($3.33 million) equity financing co-led by the Lightburn group and Natural Products Canada. A number of existing investors also participated in the round.

Read more about this exciting Alberta company's movement in the market here.
Calgary based Forage Capital Markets 

The Forage Capital Ag & Food Business Solutions Fund is a $100MM growth equity fund that invests along the entire agriculture and food industry value chain. The fund focuses on companies that have suffered a significant disruption to their business model.

Forage’s experienced investors have spent the last 20 years investing in:
  • Crop inputs
  • Primary food production and processing
  • Equipment manufacturing
  • Branded food companies

The Forage team can work with management to stabilize their business and set new growth priorities that capitalize on the innovative opportunities that will emerge as the Canadian economy recovers and prospers.

To learn more see link here.

Congratulations and we wish continued success to Alberta’s Entos Pharmaceuticals (John Lewis) on receiving a $4.2 million CIHR-IRSC grant and the selection of 2 Fusogenix DNA vaccine candidates for SARS-CoV-2 animal challenge studies and human trials in July.

Read about it here .
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