Reviewing 'Formulating a Non-Dilutive Fundraising Strategy', Part 2 of OBIO's 'Building Your Early-Stage Strategy Toolbox' Event


By Sean Peel, Director, Program Development, OBIO

On the evening of Tuesday, June 26th, David Cayea (COO, PlantForm Corporation) shared how PlantForm had developed a strategy for securing non-dilutive funding, through which they had raised over $6.5M in funding, via grants and research contracts alone.

David emphasized that the strategy started with identifying a person within the organization who would monitor, evaluate and respond to grant calls and request for proposals. The strategy also involved the use of contract organizations to help raising non-dilutive funds. 


During his talk, David addressed the following as components of a non-dilutive funding strategy:

  • Identifying potential non-dilutive funding programs

  • Which criteria you should use to decide in applying to a potential opportunity

  • Preparing an application

  • Things to be aware of after getting an award

When identifying some potential non-dilutive funding programs, David highlighted that you should not merely consider government-funded industry grants, such as IRAP and Mitacs, but also consider funding from foundations, such as Grand Challenges Canada, as well as research contracts and industry partnership funding. He also noted that PlantForm had secured funding from U.S. and other international sources. OBIO members have access to OBIO’s list of over 125 non-dilutive funding opportunities through the OBIO Member Portal.

Some of the criteria David discussed when deciding whether or not to apply for funding programs included ensuring that there is a project fit. PlantForm looked for funding that supported advancing their core technology and new technology development in support of the core technology, or that expanded the indications they could target. Another criterion to consider was the conducting of detailed costing and determining whether the value from the funding was worth the effort. A similar topic was addressed in more detail in the “Performance Reporting for Confident Decision-Making” workshop that OBIO hosted earlier this year as part of the H2BB program.

To learn more about the other criteria that David identified in his presentation, please visit the OBIO Member Portal where it will be uploaded shortly.

For more information on becoming an OBIO Member, click here.