CCI response to the Canadian Innovation Corporation Blueprint
Today, Deputy Prime Minister and Finance Minister Chrystia Freeland and Innovation, Science and Industry Minister François-Philippe Champagne published a “blueprint” document for the Canadian Innovation Corporation.
In response, CCI President Benjamin Bergen issued the following statement:
“We welcome the commitment to help Canadian companies grow and scale and the idea of a nimble agency that can engage in targeted funding support and activities aimed at catalyzing research commercialization and the generation of intellectual property for the benefit of Canadian companies. However, the real work will be in the details of this agency’s mandate.
“If the CEO and board members are pulled from the ecosystem of bloated innovation intermediaries, we fear that the CIC will ultimately fall back on the same failed approaches that have left Canada at the bottom of the OECD innovation ranks. This organization requires leadership with first-hand experience in the private sector to give this new agency the best possible shot at success.
“While we welcome the CIC blueprint’s emphasis on the importance of intellectual property and other intangible assets, to go from words to outcomes, the leadership team will need to have a deep and sophisticated knowledge of freedom-to-operate issues, and how to successfully navigate IP issues within modern global value chains.
“The best time to establish an agency like this would have been seven years ago, but the second-best time is right now. Canadian innovators are navigating a challenging economic environment, and a fully operational innovation partner empowered by the government to support domestic growth could be meaningful, if done properly.”
The Council of Canadian Innovators is a national business council representing 150 Canadian-headquartered scale-up technology companies. We advocate for policies to increase access to talent, capital and customers, and marketplace frameworks that help support growth in the 21st century digital economy.