Next Level Program




What is it?


If you are a business with an innovative product or service and looking to expand, Next Level can help.

This program is designed to help businesses with late-stage product development and to access new markets. This support may be applicable to contracted expertise, services or direct costs in any of the following areas.




Purchase New Equipment or Software

Expand to New Markets

Complete Training & Certification 

Next Level will cover up to 50% funding, up to $5,000 in assistance towards approved costs in the above categories.


Who is Eligible?

Revenue producing, innovative companies located within Northwestern Ontario. Funds for this program are limited therefore applications will be weighed on the following criteria:

  • Registered business
  • An innovative product that is manufacturing or technology-based that you have developed and own
  • At revenue or have confirmed purchase orders and has a demonstrated growth rate of 10%
  • Operating full time with at least one full-time employee
  • Located in Northwestern Ontario
  • Sales outside of Northwestern Ontario or can demonstrate the potential to expand sales outside of NWO.
  • A business model and strategy that validates forecasted sales and employment growth
  • Next Level Funding is not intended for businesses operating as distributors or resellers.

Innovative companies are defined for the purposes of the Next Level program as focusing on technology or manufacturing. Companies that fall outside of these categories but derive a significant portion of sales and profits from products or services recently introduced to the market may also be deemed eligible.

The following sectors are the preferred sectors for this program.

  • Advanced Manufacturing
  • Agri-Food
  • Health/Bio-Sciences
  • Clean Tech
  • ICT/Digital

Who is Ineligible?

  • Hobby and part-time businesses
  • Retailer, resellers, consultants
  • Municipalities and non-for-profits



  • Outcomes of the Next Level project must be geared towards growing sales, increasing employment levels, or decreasing costs.

  • The applicant is required to contribute a minimum of 50% of the total project costs. Paid expenses occurring before the date of the application for Next Level funding will not be recognized as an eligible contribution. 

Next Level Application Process:

  1. A meeting between the applicant and the program coordinator will be scheduled to discuss and to advise on your project and the Next Level program.
  2. Receive the application, complete and submit it along with vendor quotes for your project. 
  3. The Next Level committee will review your application 
  4. If approved, you will receive the max approval amount and then be able to make your purchases
  5. Once you have completed the project, you submit proof to NOIC and you will receive your reimbursement. 

What are some examples of projects that may qualify for Next Level?

  • Purchasing Equipment or Software

    • New production equipment for your manufacturing business 
      • examples: a mixer, heat sealer, production equipment, bottle filler etc to increase productivity 
      • equipment for product testing
    • New software
      • Examples: sales and marketing software such as a CRM, inventory management software, data analytics/reporting software, AI etc. 
  • Marketing

    • Professional video of your innovative product for market growth
    • Marketing Consulting for business expansion 
  • Training and Certification Costs: 

    • Course fees for staff 
    • Food certification costs 
      • Gluten Free, nutritional testing, shelf life stability testing 
    • Updated labelling related to the above

Ready to Apply or Learn More?


Please contact Jeremy Dutton to set up a meeting to discuss your project and start your application! or 807-768-6685.


Next Level Project Example

For an example of completed Next Level project, take a look at the following case studies.











Our Get There program maybe a great fit to help your team attend out of town tradeshows and conferences so you acquire new new customers


Find out more