Ignite your ideas with our Spark Innovation Challenge, newly expanded across the province. You could win up to $50,000 and guidance from seasoned business professionals to put your idea into action.

Spark Regions

Spark Region Map

Important Dates: 
August 28, 2017
Competition launch
September 21, 2017
Submission deadline
October 5, 2017
Shortlist entrants notified
October 10 - 24, 2017
Spark acceleration boot camp
October 26 - 31, 2017
Pitches and judging
November 1, 2017
Winners notified

Four Spark competitions have been held in Cape Breton since the launch in 2014, and one in western Nova Scotia in 2016, Spark West. This year, the competition expanded to reach entrepreneurs across Nova Scotia. The goal is to find and support high potential, early stage knowledge-based companies, and encourage entrepreneurial activity in the province.

Spark is now closed for submissions! The deadline was Thursday, September 21, 2017, at 5:00 pm AST.

We received 136 submissions. The breakdown by region was: Halifax (68), West (31), Cape Breton (23), North (14)

Read which companies made the shortlist!

Below are highlights about the opportunity. You'll also find details in the SPARK INFO KIT.

About Spark 

We’re looking for the best early stage technology companies in Nova Scotia. If that’s you, tell us about your venture.

You could win up to $50,000 to put your idea into action and business guidance from somebody who’s been there, done that.

We’re especially interested in start-ups from the information technology, life sciences, clean technology and ocean technology sectors. However, we welcome submissions for any innovation with market potential.

Entrants must be a start-up based in one of the four competition regions in Nova Scotia - see map to the right. They must have a new knowledge-based product or service and zero sales revenue since inception.

Funds awarded will be used to support the completion of prototypes or preparation for taking the product or service to market.


Entrants must be a start-up based in one of the four competition regions in Nova Scotia with a new knowledge-based product or service and zero sales revenue since inception.

Entrants must be the majority owner(s) (51 per cent or more) of the start-up and plan to work full-time with the business in the competition region in which they are applying.

Winners of Innovacorp’s I-3 Technology Start-Up Competition and/or previous Spark competitions are ineligible to apply to Spark with the same product or service from the winning submission, but may apply with a different product or service and a different company. 

Innovacorp investment portfolio companies are ineligible for this competition.  

Eligibility details can be found in the SPARK INFO KIT.

How do I enter?

Spark is now closed for submissions! The deadline to submit your application was Thursday, September 21, 2017, at 5:00 pm AST. Entering was easy. Entrants simply submited a 5-8 page business summary, using our BUSINESS SUMMARY TEMPLATE, answering the questions in the boxes provided. SUBMISSIONS were made online. Check out the SPARK INFO KIT for all the details.


Winners will receive up to $50,000 in non-dilutive, non-repayable funding as well as guidance from seasoned business professionals.

A total of $200,000 will be awarded in each region.

Awards are intended for the establishment and/or future development of the start-up.

Judging criteria

Each region will have a five-member judging committee with representatives from the private and public sectors.

Submissions will be evaluated on the quality of the idea, market potential, team and plan to get to market.


All submissions will be treated confidentially and will not be made available to the public. Only those directly involved in managing or judging the competition will view submitted documents. While summary details will not be disclosed, the competition organizers reserve the right to announce those who advance to subsequent competition rounds. 


Spark is presented by:


Megan Maltby
  1. 902.424.8670 ext. 1147
  2. 1.800.565.7051 ext. 1147