Saskatchewan Advantage Innovation Fund (SAIF)

Introduction:

SAIF is a fund managed by Innovation Saskatchewan to help facilitate innovation in Saskatchewan’s core economic drivers (agriculture, oil & gas, and minerals) and their industrial ecosystems (industries that supply products, services and technologies to, or process outputs from, the core sectors). 

Eligibility:

To be considered, proposals must:

  1. Benefit a sector, not individual companies operating in a sector.  Proposals not being put forward by a group of companies and organizations will not be considered, nor will proposals that fail to describe how the sector beyond those companies and organizations will benefit.
  2. Address technologically challenging issues – ones for which the solution cannot be developed by assembling known pieces of technology.  The initiative must be a step into the unknown.
  3. Describe the path to implementation and benefits expected.  Innovation is the creation of something new that is implemented for benefit.  SAIF assesses how the development requesting funding will be implemented and the scope of the resulting benefits, be they economic, environmental and/or social.
  4. Have a significant portion of the initiative’s funding being provided by sources other than SAIF including the initiative’s proponents.

 Types of Proposals

SAIF will entertain projects (those initiatives that are intended to develop new technologies, products or services) or institutional development initiatives.  In the past, SAIF has provided funding to the following types of initiatives:

  • Development of new, or improvements to existing, Enhanced Oil Recovery (EOR) technologies
  • Acquiring learnings from the implementation of Carbon Capture, Utilization, and Storage at Boundary Dam
  • Development of rare earth mineral processing technologies
  • Investments in genomics research
  • Innovation skills capacity development in SMEs
  • International engagement and investment attraction support
  • International Minerals Innovation Institute

Proposal Evaluation

Innovation Saskatchewan employs the ProGrid methodology of proposal evaluation.  The review team assesses the degree to which the proposed initiative:

  1. Aligns with Saskatchewan’s core economic drivers
  2. Leverages funds from other sources
  3. Receives investment from the proponent
  4. Takes advantage of Saskatchewan-based scientific infrastructure and personnel
  5. Has a detailed project plan addressing the elements important to a successful development
  6. Addresses the proponent’s ability to implement the initiative’s results
  7. Addresses the market’s ability to adopt results and/or partner’s ability to participate
  8. Addresses risks involved in accomplishing the initiative
  9. Will be implemented to enable the production of benefits in a timely fashion
  10. Delivers economic benefits
  11. Delivers environmental benefits
  12. Delivers societal benefits
  13. Is able to sustain the projected benefits

For an effective evaluation, applications must address all of the above topics.

Application Procedure and Funding Decision Process

Proposals for funding by SAIF can be received at any time.  Please email your questions to info@innovationsask.ca and the question will be assigned to the staff member with the most appropriate background.  IS staff will work with the proponent to ensure that the initiative is eligible and, if eligible, that all the information needed to assess the proposal has been provided.  The review team uses the ProGrid process to assess the proposed inititiave, and if it meets or exceeds a defined threshold, it is recommended to the IS Board for consideration.  The IS Board, which meets four times per year, reviews the recommendations.