The Verschuren Centre for Sustainability in Energy and the Environment at Cape Breton University has issued the following press release:

Verschuren Centre Launches Fund Targeting Sustainable Start-ups

(Sydney, NS) – Today, the Verschuren Centre for Sustainability in Energy and the Environment at Cape Breton University (CBU) announced the creation of the Cape Breton Island Futures Fund (CBIFF).   CBIFF seeks to contribute to the economic future of Cape Breton Island by providing rapid financial assistance and non-financial business support to encourage the launch of promising ideas, to seed early stage start-up companies and to foster existing small and medium-sized enterprises, particularly those developing products or services within the sustainable business, clean tech and digital technology sectors.

“We’re thrilled to be able to support the community in this way,” says Dr. Andrew Swanson, CEO, Verschuren Centre. “The CBIFF will help grow an already active start-up community, nurture local talent and positively impact the economy Island wide. There are lots innovative ideas being talked about in the community that don’t always meet funding criteria. Our hope is that the CBIFF will provide the needed support to turn these ideas into sustainable businesses.”

The current size of the Fund is $500,000, with the intent to invest in 10 companies by December. To be eligible, the business must be regionally located and incorporated. Although the needed investment assistance will vary depending on the business, support will include access to the Island Sandbox (Verschuren Centre, Shannon School of Business, Marconi NSCC) mentors, advisors and business meeting services.

Unlike other funds, CBIFF has a rolling intake and groups do not have to be incorporated to apply, but do upon acceptance of the award. Applicants will be evaluated based on their ability to demonstrate the potential to develop business and commercial merit of the proposed products and/or services.  All applicants will be required to make a business pitch to CBIFF managers and go through an interview process.

For those interested in the Cape Breton Island Futures fund, please contact Andrew Swanson ( or Debi Walker ( at the Verschuren Centre for Sustainability in Energy and the Environment.

More information can be found at ;


About the Verschuren Centre for Sustainability in Energy and the Environment

The Verschuren Centre is a commercially focused research, development and deployment service provider for the clean tech sector.  The Centre develops and delivers sustainable technology solutions in energy, food, and resources management to businesses, governments, and communities.  Its mission involves bridging engineering and scientific research into environmental, industrial and socioeconomic policy contexts that promote the adoption and effective application of innovation for large-scale positive impact. 

About Cape Breton University

Cape Breton University is one of Canada’s youngest and most ambitious universities with a comprehensive set of liberal arts, science and professional programs and a unique commitment to community, economic development, Aboriginal learning and research into many aspects of environment and culture. Currently home to approximately 3500 students, CBU’s vision of higher education allows students to pursue diverse fields of study in programs with national reputations in final year student satisfaction, faculty-student interaction and employability. Cape Breton University delivers an authentic multicultural experience to all who become part of its academic community. Strong community involvement and a spirit of entrepreneurship enhance CBU’s position in post-secondary education.