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Feds earmark $9.9M for B.C. tech platform

Integrated Marketplace lets B.C. tech companies develop innovations that address real-world problems
Harjit Sajjan, minister of emergency preparedness, announced on Friday $9.9 million in PacifiCan funding to help establish and grow the Integrated Marketplace. | Submitted

Ottawa is earmarking $9.9 million for a program that allows B.C. tech companies to develop and deploy new innovations that address business challenges and climate goals in a real-world environment.

Launched in 2022 through Innovate BC, the Integrated Marketplace (IM) builds a network of industry partners to identify challenges and implement tech products to help large-scale organizations decarbonize, increase competitiveness, and improve health and safety, according to Harjit Sajjan, minister of emergency preparedness.

“British Columbia is brimming with the talent and innovative solutions needed to position Canada as a global leader in clean technology. By linking local companies with opportunities to demonstrate new products, we are accelerating the adoption of made-in-B.C. technology both domestically and abroad,” said Sajjan, who made the announcement this past Friday (Oct. 20).

The Vancouver Fraser Port Authority will become the program’s third industry testbed. Its initial project will focus on developing digital tools to optimize the supply chain at the Port of Vancouver, and to increase operational reliability and capacity.

The IM’s previous two testbeds are at Vancouver International Airport (YVR) and the Port of Prince Rupert. YVR is electrifying its support vehicles on the airfield to reduce operational greenhouse gas emissions, and the Port of Prince Rupert is testing ways to reduce use of diesel fuel, to decarbonize operations, and increase the port's efficiency and competitiveness.

The funding is delivered through the Pacific Economic Development Agency of Canada (PacifiCan), Ottawa’s B.C.-focused economic development agency, and comes in addition to $11.5 million provided by the province that was announced last December.