IP Support Services: Find the Right Funding for You

IP support services

If you’re a Canadian startup or small business with an innovative idea, you might be wondering how to protect and leverage your intellectual property (IP) to grow your business and compete in the market. And, of course, how to budget for this. Fortunately, there are several IP support services available to businesses across Canada. These services can help you increase your IP awareness, develop and implement an IP strategy, and, most importantly, access a variety of funding opportunities for your business’s IP initiatives.  

Caravel has partnered, or is in the process of partnering, with some of these initiatives to ensure our team of IP experts are at the disposal of businesses across Canada seeking IP support. 



ElevateIP is a federally funded, nationwide project that helps business accelerators and incubators provide the tools Canadian startups need to understand, strategically manage, and leverage their IP. ElevateIP is part of a $90-million investment from the Government of Canada through its ElevateIP strategy, which is designed to help Canadian companies protect, manage, and leverage their IP.   

ElevateIP helps in three key areas: IP Education and Awareness, IP Strategy Development and IP Strategy Implementation.   

To be eligible for ElevateIP, you must be a Canadian-controlled private corporation (CCPC) with less than 500 employees, own the IP that you want to protect, and be headquartered in one of the provinces or territories covered by one of the ElevateIP recipients. ElevateIP recipients are organizations that have been selected by the federal government to provide IP supports to startups across Canada. ElevateIP has several regional recipients, including Communitech, Springboard Atlantic, MAIN, the University of Calgary, and New Ventures BC.  

Through ElevateIP and their Canada-wide partners, eligible businesses have the opportunity to access up to $100,000 CAD worth of IP support services to develop and/or implement an IP strategy. You can contact the ElevateIP recipient that covers your region or visit the Innovation Canada website to learn more about the service and how to apply. 

  • Communitech: To be eligible for Communitech’s IP support, you must be a Canadian-controlled private corporation (CCPC) with less than 500 employees, headquartered in Ontario, Manitoba, or Saskatchewan, and own the IP that you want to protect. You can register a profile on the online portal or contact the Communitech team to learn more about the service and how to apply.  
  • Springboard Atlantic: Springboard Atlantic is an Atlantic IP Advantage program that partners with business accelerators and incubators (BAIs) in the region to provide IP training, strategy development, and funding for IP filing to innovative companies. The program is open to start-ups that are members of a participating BAI in Atlantic Canada.   
  • MAIN/MomentumPI: The MomentumPI service is offered through MAIN, which helps Quebec-based companies access professional intellectual property (IP) services through support organizations. To be eligible for the service, a company must be a Canadian small or medium-sized enterprise (SME) with less than 500 employees, have a clearly defined innovation project, and be supported by a participating support organization. A company that already has an IP strategy can use the service to implement it, but not to create it. A company that is not yet supported by a support organization or an IP firm can still apply for the service but must find a support organization that agrees to sponsor them and an IP firm that agrees to work with them.   
  • The University of Calgary / Innovate Calgary / Economic Development Lethbridge: The University of Calgary facilitates IP support and funding opportunities through Innovate Calgary and Economic Development Lethbridge for businesses in Alberta. To be eligible, applicants must be either registered or have their headquarters located within the province of Alberta and have a workforce that does not exceed 500 employees, having been in operation for less than a decade. The company should report an annual recurring revenue that is below the $10 million mark. In terms of funding, the company should have a history of raising less than $1 million in dilutive funding. Lastly, there is a requirement for the applicant to have a relationship with the local entrepreneurial community, which is demonstrated by being associated with an Alberta-based business accelerator or incubator.  
  • New Ventures IP / Accelerate IP: Accelerate IP is offered in BC, Yukon, and Northwest Territories. To participate in the program, startups must meet certain eligibility criteria, such as being incorporated in Canada, having less than $1 million in annual revenue, and having a clear IP need or opportunity. The program also aims to support the growth and scaling of startups, and to enhance their attractiveness to investors and potential partners.   


IP Assist: 

IP Assist is a service run by the Intellectual Property Institute of Canada (IPIC) on behalf of the National Research Council of Canada Industrial Research Assistance Program (NRC IRAP). IP Assist offers a range of targeted IP services to help you transform your innovations into valuable assets and safeguard them from competitors. The main goals of IP Assist are to help small and medium-sized enterprises (SMEs) with three tiers of IP needs. 

The levels are broken down as follows:  

Level 1, Awareness: Provides your business with access to IP advisors, resources, and partner organizations so you can increase your knowledge of IP best practices and better understand how to leverage and safeguard your innovations.  

Level 2, Strategy: Provides you with access to IP experts who can assist you in developing an IP strategy to support your business goals, help you prioritize IP actions, and provide you with valuable insight related to your technology, competitors, and the IP landscape.   

Level 3, Action: Provides funding to help your business execute the actions prioritized in your IP strategy, such as filing patent applications, conducting IP audits, or licensing IP.  

IP Assist is a valuable IP funding resource for Canadian businesses. You can contact your NRC IRAP industrial technology advisor or the IPIC office for more information on the program, eligibility, and access to funding.  


Intellectual Property Ontario (IPON) 

IPON is a service offered by the Ontario government to help innovators, businesses, and researchers at various stages of their IP journey. IPON offers a range of funding for participating businesses that range from an initial $35,000 for clients in their IP Bootcamp and Partner Program and up to a potential additional $100,000 in IP funding. IPON’s website offers detailed information about their funding opportunities and eligibility for these opportunities.  

IPON offers three types of support: 

IP Education: Provides you with online and in-person learning opportunities, such as webinars, workshops, courses, and events, to help you build your IP knowledge and skills.  

IP Funding: Provides you with financial assistance to help you secure and maintain your IP rights, such as filing patent applications, conducting prior art searches, or obtaining IP opinions. As part of the program, you can apply this funding to an IP service provider of your choice or refer to IPON’s list of vetted IP lawyers and registered IP agents.  

IP Mentorship: Provides you with access to IP mentors who can guide you through the IP process, provide you with feedback and advice, and connect you with relevant IP resources and networks.  

To be eligible for IPON, you must be an Ontario-based innovator, business, or researcher with an innovative idea, product, or service that has IP potential. You can apply for IPON through the online portal or contact the IPON team to learn more about the service and its requirements.  


Caravel has already partnered with some of these initiatives to provide IP support from our specialists to businesses across Canada. While you will need to go directly to these various institutions to confirm your eligibility as a business, once your funding and support have been arranged you can connect with experts like those at Caravel to access resources for your various IP needs.  

For more information on how Caravel can support you with your IP needs, either on your own or through one of the above initiatives, get in touch with us today! 

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