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October 2, 2007

Alberta Ingenuity has announced a new way to help Alberta companies take their innovative products to market – by helping them recruit both top research and business talent.

"We know that technology is the big driver of business success today and Alberta has an abundance of creative companies who can make Alberta’s economy more successful and sustainable,” said Dr. Peter Hackett, President and CEO of Alberta Ingenuity. “We can’t wait to see how this targeted support and the dynamic partnerships it creates will change the way Alberta does business.”

Based on valuable feedback from Alberta’s small and medium sized companies, and in the wake of the province’s recently released task force report on value-added and technology commercialization, Ingenuity has reengineered the way it provides funding for technology-based companies to gain a stronghold in Alberta. While the current and ongoing programs provide funding for recruiting new science and engineering grads to build research and development in companies, the new program will focus on recruiting strong business leaders.

“This new recruitment program helps to ensure our province’s promising high-tech companies mature and grow,” said Doug Horner, Minister of Advanced Education and Technology. “In providing easier access to business professionals, the program assists our entrepreneurs in turning unique and creative ideas into tangible products and services.”

The current Industry Associates Program will be renamed Industry r&D Associates, with the new Commercialization Associates program, rolling in under its umbrella. Both programs are open for business and provide up to two years of salary support of $55,000 per year with additional top-up money from the companies.

More than 140 Industry Associates have been placed in Alberta companies since 2003 when the program was launched, which represents an investment of close to $10 million in new industry ventures.

The Alberta Ingenuity Fund supports science and engineering research of the highest calibre, to create a prosperous future for the province. It draws funding from a $1 billion endowment established and managed by the Government of Alberta to build the capacity for innovation, especially in areas with long lasting social and economic impact.
 

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Backgrounder

For more information contact:

Sandy Robertson
Senior Communications Officer
(780) 994-7907