Through its Industrial and Technological Benefits (ITB) obligations, Lockheed Martin is investing in four SMEs in Canada.

The news was announced today in Ottawa by the Honourable Navdeep Bains, Minister of Innovation, Science and Economic Development, at CANSEC, Canada’s premier defence and security trade show.

“The investments that result from the Government of Canada’s Industrial and Technological Benefits Policy create high-skilled, well-paying middle-class jobs for Canadians,” Minister Bains said. The minister pointed out that the ITB Policy helps Canadian businesses to grow, innovate and export which plays an important role in Canada’s economy.

The ITB Policy which was formerly called the Industrial and Regional Benefits Policy (IRB) requires successful suppliers to make investments in Canada equal to the value of the defence contract they have been awarded. This has contributed to investments of $30 billion in Canada’s economy since 1986. Since that time there have been over 130 contracts with more than $41 billion in obligations to invest in Canada with over 90 per cent completed or have started.

As part of its ITB obligations for the in-service support of the C-130J Super Hercules, Minister Bain announced that Lockheed Martin is making investments in four Canadian companies that will generate jobs and grow the economy.

The four companies that will benefit from this investment are:

  1. Gastops Ltd., an Ottawa firm that provides state-of-the-art sensing equipment for use in advanced fluid testing;
  2. Contextere, an emerging Industrial Internet of Things software company in Ottawa that is developing a new wearable and mobile technology to help industrial workers be safer and more efficient;
  3. Metamaterial Technologies Inc., a Halifax company that is designing and developing new multi-functional materials to help solar panels absorb more light; and
  4. Solace Power Inc., a wireless power research and development company based in Mount Pearl, Newfoundland and Labrador.

“Under this policy, Lockheed Martin is supporting research and technological breakthroughs that will help these firms grow and become part of supply chains here and abroad,” Minister Bain said. This is seen as a win-win situation as it supports the development of new products and emerging technologies that will aid Canadian companies to meet the future needs of the CAF and also compete globally. “We are using investments in the Canadian Armed Forces and Coast Guard to drive the kind of innovation that will grow small businesses and boost our economy as a whole,” he added.

Minister Bains also took the opportunity to unveil the Innovation Wall at CANSEC which is sponsored by the Canadian Association of Defence and Security Industries. The Innovation Wall covers the last century in Canadian defence and security innovations with a photo and story collage highlighting a significant innovation in each decade.

The defence industry in Canada comprises of over 650 firms, employing more than 63,000 full-time workers and contributes $9.4 billion in revenue to the economy.