OWEN SOUND, Ont.: A group of online innovation networks for Ontario manufacturers has received a federally funded $597,000 cash injection.
The Interactive Manufacturing Innovation Network (iMiN), spearheaded by the Excellence in Manufacturing Consortium (EMC), aims to bring together manufacturers, industry sectors, community partners, academic institutions and other stakeholders into a province-wide series of networks that will promote and facilitate awareness, excellence and innovation throughout the province.
The funding, which will go towards the first phase of the initiative, is coming from the Federal Economic Development Agency for Southern Ontario (FedDev Ontario), through its Community Adjustment Fund.
The first networks will be set up in Eastern Ontario (Brockville, Greater Napanee, Arnprior, Cornwall, and Ottawa Valley); Chatham-Kent, Oxford Region (Ingersoll, Tillsonburg and Woodstock); and Windsor-Essex.
“As the saying goes, it takes a whole village to raise a child. Similarly, we believe it takes the entire community to help a manufacturer to truly succeed,” said Al Diggins, president and general manager of EMC, a not-for-profit manufacturing consortium with 900 company members across the province. “Bringing together the entire spectrum of organizations and subject-matter experts that enable manufacturers become more competitive and viable here at home is key achieving long-term retention and expansion.”
He said the network will use web 2.0 technology to provide manufacturers with the collaborative forum that will help them become more competitive.
Development is well underway and EMC said it plans to launch each local iMiN before the end of the year. The deployment phase will conclude by March 31, 2011.