How to fund an artificial intelligence project using grants

Comment financer un projet d'intelligence artificielle

As a Quebec and Canada based business, there are several grant programs that you can tap into to fund your artificial intelligence ambitions and unlock their value for your organization with machine learning.

John Weigelt, National Technology Officer of Microsoft Canada talks about why he believes that technology should be seen as an enabler of better business outcomes. Organizations must foster a culture of innovation and reflect on their responsibilities as a good corporate citizen when rolling out an AI program. Thankfully, there are grants out there to help you out!

Sounds great! What are some of the options? How does one get started?

Antoine Cossé of INVEST-AI and Ina Foalea of Scale AI present their respective programs, their differences and similarities as well as the type of projects funded in the last months.

Webinar Recordings

John Weigelt’s take on innovation, AI and technology

The ultimate AI  grant matrix
The time is now to find the right grant program to finance your AI projects.
Get your copy now

Find out how Invest AI helps Québec companies to power their AI ambitions

Discover how Scale AI accelerates Canada & Québec supply chain AI projects

Discover a business perspective on AI grant landscape – differences & similarities

The objective of this conference is to give you all the information you need to understand where your company fits into these programs, and how your project can be funded.

Grants are non-refundable and can be combined with other programs such as CDAE, SR&ED, and others for a maximum of 70% except for the MEI program, which is 50%.

Funding can be used to pay internal salaries, consulting fees, hardware, and infrastructure costs to support the project (Azure, Amazon Web Services, Google Cloud Platform, local infrastructure, to name a few).

They can also be used for activities aimed at collecting/centralizing the data needed for the project. There is also the possibility of negotiating credits from technology platform providers such as Microsoft Azure credits.

About the panelists

John Weigelt, National Technology Officer, Microsoft Canada

John Weigelt National Technology Officer Microsoft Canada

Antoine Cossé, Investment Director, Fonds INVEST-AI d’IVADO Labs

Antoine Cossé, INVEST-AI d'IVADO Labs

Contact Antoine on LinkedIn

Ina Foalea, Investment Director, Scale AI

Ina Foalea, Investment Director, Scale AI

Contact Ina on LinkedIn

Nicholas Morel, Partner, Moov AI

Nicholas Morel, associé chez Moov AI

Contact Nicholas on LinkedIn

Artificial Intelligence for Social Distancing in the Montreal Métro

Les consultants de Moov Ai ont utilisé l’intelligence artificielle pour la distanciation sociale dans le métro de Montréal

Machine learning to facilitate social distancing and minimize the spread of COVID-19 in the Montreal métro.

The Société de transport de Montréal (STM) provides 1.3 million trips a day thanks to a 71-km metro network spread over four lines and composed of 68 stations, combined with 225 bus lines.

It employs more than 10,000 people, making it the 15th largest company in Quebec. The STM provides more than 80% of public transit trips in the Montréal area and more than 70% of all trips made in Québec.

Plan du métro de Montréal

As the city’s backbone, the métro is a prevalent means of transportation and is prized by Montrealers… then came the COVID-19 pandemic in March 2020.

The general confinement decreed by the Government of Quebec, combined with the generalized teleworking that followed for many Montrealers, meant that the métro emptied itself of its passengers.

Like many companies, the STM suddenly lost most of its clientele overnight in its bus and métro network. STM had to react quickly to this new reality and deal with new and immensely complex challenges.

It must now ensure compliance with health rules, such as wearing masks and maintaining a two-meter distance between customers in the métro and bus network.

This social distancing is easier to respect when the métro is empty, but how do you deal with these rules when people return to work during a pandemic? How can we gain users’ confidence while providing tools to ensure their safe return in the métro?

Why not predict traffic in train cars using machine learning to allow customers to move to less busy ones?

Supporting the technical team in the development of an artificial intelligence model

The STM called upon Moov AI to assist its team in realizing a machine learning project that would predict traffic in train cars to respect social distancing better and thus minimize the spread of the virus in the metro network.

This project aims to inform customers about the number of passengers on the metro’s orange line train cars. This data will be displayed on the website and the Métrovision screens that display information in the metro stations.

The predicted traffic in each train car is displayed, and passengers can position themselves in front of the right doors and choose the less crowded train cars.

We assisted the STM team in their first AI project by helping them overcome the hurdles to deploy a machine learning solution in a cloud service.

Prédire l'achalandage dans le métro de Montréal avec l'IA

How to calculate traffic

In the solution, the STM used machine learning to predict the number of passengers for each station on the Orange Line, every minute, within a 15-minute horizon.

To build the dataset we needed to make the predictions, the teams used data sources provided by train car telemetry. Azur train cars are equipped with a phenomenal amount of sensors of all kinds that provide data every minute.

The solution will use load sensors that calculate the cars’ weight to evaluate the number of passengers. Logically, a heavier car will have more passengers. This data is very accurate and allowed to reach an adequate margin of error for the first project.

Overcoming the obstacles to putting a first AI project into production

We guided STM’s data scientists and data developers get over the hurdles of deploying the first version of their solution in the cloud. The project was a success, and then some…

Using these learnings, their team deployed a new version of the AI model based on real-time data from the Orange Line cars even better to predict traffic on the metro.

This new AI system is displayed on the screens of your favorite stations on the orange line.

We are proud to have accompanied the STM teams who have restored the confidence of Montrealers using the metro to return to the underground facilities in complete safety.

Democratizing AI in organizations requires, among other things, the empowerment of our clients’ teams.

Moov AI Joins Forces With IVADO to Speed up Innovation in Machine Learning Model Validation

Montréal, July 7, 2020 – Montréal-based firm Moov AI, which specializes in the development of applied machine learning and artificial intelligence (AI) solutions, and the Institute for data valorization (IVADO) are proud to formalize their partnership to support innovation in the design of concrete AI solutions for business.

This collaboration aligns with IVADO’s mission to bring together industry professionals and academic researchers to develop leading-edge expertise in data science, operations research and AI.

Moov AI has developed versatile validation methods to assess the overall performances of machine learning models. As part of this partnership, Moov AI and IVADO are working on a collaborative research project with Professors Foutse Khomh and Giuliano Antoniol of Polytechnique Montréal to evaluate and refine these model validation methods, ensuring the accuracy of the models implemented in client solutions and confirming their efficiency over time.

The project has also drawn the attention of the Standards Council of Canada (SCC). Since model validation and verification must be reflected in the ISO standards that guide best development practices, the scientific validity of the methods is all the more important. The partnership is therefore expected to yield global benefits.

Olivier Blais, cofounder of Moov AI and vice-president of data science, is a member of the SCC committee tasked with defining ISO standards in AI.

About Moov AI

Moov AI builds and deploys concrete artificial intelligence and machine learning solutions that help clients seize opportunities and tackle core business challenges. Our experts help organizations leverage these technologies no matter what their level of data science maturity is.

We specialize in quickly delivering value thanks to an agile approach to handling artificial intelligence projects.

Our quest to democratize the use of AI technologies brings us to work with companies of all sizes across many industries. We pride ourselves on simplifying the complicated and bringing long term benefits to each project we undertake.


The Institute for data valorization (IVADO) is a joint initiative of HEC Montréal, Polytechnique Montréal and Université de Montréal that brings together more than 140 industrial, academic and government partners. With over 1 450 researchers, IVADO is a multidisciplinary centre of advanced expertise in statistics, artificial intelligence and operations research.

IVADO’s mission is to 1) Contribute to the development of an economic sector in big data processing for decision making; 2) Create privileged partnerships between industry and the administrative, social and academic sectors; 3) Contribute to the advancement of knowledge and train new generations of data scientists; and 4) Foster exchange and knowledge sharing between experts, partners, researchers and students.

IVADO provides a framework for six research centres: Canada Excellence Research Chair in Data Science for Real-Time Decision Making, CIRRELT, CRM, GERAD, Mila and Tech3Lab.


Moov AI
Guillaume Petitclerc
Vice-President, Marketing and Culture

Sandra Estrela
Communications Coordinator

Maxime Boissonneault and Christian Mérat join Moov AI

It is with great pride that we announce today the arrival of Christian Mérat and Maxime Boissonneault as partners at Moov AI.

It’s not every day that we have the privilege of welcoming not one, but two new partners like them into a company!

After having greatly contributed to the growth and success of GSoft, one of Quebec’s flagship tech companies, Maxime and Christian will allow us to take a giant step forward in our efforts to democratize artificial intelligence in Quebec.

Maxime co-founded Moov AI and has been involved as an investor from the very beginning of our project. Going forward, he will be taking on the role of co-CEO alongside Dominic Danis.

Christian will act as Chief Technology Officer and will oversee the development and marketing of our software products.

I asked Christian and Maxime a few questions so that they could introduce themselves and explain to us why they chose to get involved in the field of artificial intelligence with Moov AI.

L'équipe de Moov AI

Why did you decide to join Moov AI?

Maxime: I have the feeling that our world will be greatly impacted by artificial intelligence. Some people see this change as a negative thing, but I like to believe that the impact will be positive since humans will be at the centre of this transformation. Furthermore, I believe that Quebec has an opportunity to take on a leadership role on the world stage.

For this to happen, artificial intelligence must not impoverish or be focused on replacing people, but rather help them to be more efficient and impactful in their roles. I want to contribute, with Moov AI, to this positive revolution that is already underway!

Also, it is a unique pleasure to work with friends whilst contributing to Moov AI’s mission in such an inspiring atmosphere!

Christian: Moov AI is a company that operates in a cutting-edge sector and is made up of people I trust. Evolving and surpassing myself in a respectful stimulating environment is a challenge that motivates me enormously! This is what drove me to join the team!

How does Moov AI’s mission to democratize AI inspire you?

Max: Because we must rapidly promote the use of these technologies across Quebec in order to stay ahead of the wave and strengthen our position within the global market thanks to artificial intelligence.

Quebec is currently known as an important global hub of AI research but we want to enable businesses in Quebec to be known for how they actually leveraged the benefits of applied AI

Chris: I’ve always been a technologist: I believe that technology should be an engine that serves to improve our lives. AI currently shows tremendous potential, but we’ve barely seen the tip of the iceberg in terms of what it has to offer.

The more widespread its use becomes, the more we will be able to derive its value to improve people’s lives.

The killer question: What do you want to accomplish?

Max: 2 things! To help companies become more productive and efficient as well as to contribute to “AI for Good” projects like education or environmental initiatives.

Chris: I think there’s no shortage of technology challenges. I want to surround myself with people who have similar traits to my own: curiosity, a desire to surpass oneself, a desire to improve people’s lives and with them build, in our own way, a piece of this better world

What impact do you think AI can have on businesses in Quebec?

Max: I see AI as an accelerator and a valuable enabler that can propel Quebec’s businesses. Whether it’s to make better decisions, make them faster, automate them, or make great discoveries, machine learning and artificial intelligence will have a major impact on those that leverage it.

Chris: AI is a technology that is still in its infancy and we’re already seeing how it has turned some industries upside down. Getting the most out of this new technology will allow companies to overcome significant challenges and move confidently towards the future.

Quebec is positioning itself to be a dominant AI hub. I believe that the more we are able to improve our approaches and push to make AI accessible and efficient, the more it will be an opportunity to make the entire province of Quebec shine.

Maxime, earlier you mentioned “AI for Good”. If you each had to choose a societal challenge to solve with AI, what would it be and why?

Maxime: I have 2 challenges! * laughs * Education and the environment!

Education, because it’s the foundation of our society. We’ll be able to solve many of the problems we are currently experiencing thanks to a reinvented system of education. We need to revolutionize the way our students learn and, for me, artificial intelligence will be an important vehicle for change in this area.

Secondly, the environment. With the imprint that humans are leaving on the earth today, it is easy to be negative about what the future holds for us. However, much can be done to solve many of the problems and we would love help to solve them.

Chris: AI has the potential to automat certain repetitive tasks. This can result in a welcomed decrease in the labour requirements for sectors that have chronic recruitment needs but are not very popular for a variety of reasons.

Many of these sectors have significant positive impacts on society and improving the cost-effectiveness of these projects would translate into an improved quality of life for all citizens.

One example would be the complete automation of recycling sorting facilities since reducing the cost of recycling and retrieval would greatly benefit society.

Entrepreneur profiles

To help you get even more familiar with these guys, we thought it would be a good idea to also share their biography.

Maxime Boissonneault

Maxime Boissonneault

Maxime is a seasoned entrepreneur. He was a partner at GSoft, one of Quebec’s flagship tech companies for more than 10 years. With customers all over the world, two successful product launches and an in-house product incubator, GSoft achieved great commercial success.

He co-founded Club Social, an alcohol portfolio which includes Portage gin, White Keys vodka, Saint-Marie rum and Les Iles spritz. He also acts as angel investor in several start-ups and Quebec investment funds, notably with Creative Destruction Lab.

A portrait of Maxime would not be complete without mentioning his extensive involvement in several social causes. He sits on the board of multiple non-profit organizations, participates actively in fundraising activities, but above all, he is personally involved with the children at Sainte-Justine Hospital.

As co-CEO of Moov AI, Maxime will share his great expertise and experience in building and growing a successful consulting business. He will be a proud ambassador of our mission to democratize artificial intelligence in Quebec.

Christian Mérat
CTO – Chief Technology Officer

Christian is an accomplished software architect with an impressive track record of creating successful software products. One of GSoft’s first employees, and eventual shareholder, he strongly contributed to the commercial success of the company’s flagship product, Sharegate, thanks to his strategic vision and cutting-edge technological expertise.

Christian knows how to turn a product’s vision into reality. He can overcome any technical obstacle thanks to his innate ability to leverage the right technology to meet business needs.

At Moov AI, he will act as CTO and oversee the development and marketing of our software products. He will also take on a coaching role within the team and share best practices in software engineering and product development.

Moov AI accredited Google Partner – Google Cloud Platform

Montreal, November 27, 2019 – With the goal of delivering powerful AI solutions that deliver tangible results to customers, Moov AI announces its accreditation as Google Partner – Google Cloud Platform (GCP).

This partnership allows us to better meet the growing needs of our customers and bring them the latest technology while having the support of Google throughout the process.

In our desire to democratize artificial intelligence in businesses, an important point of this partnership is the possibility to train our clients on these tools. Our intention is to make our customers self-sufficient to carry out AI projects in their companies.

Olivier Blais, VP Data Science of Moov AI

This is another step in our technology plan to provide the best solution for our customers, regardless of their development environment.

Moov AI and Keyrus: a partnership to power businesses in their digital transformation and the adoption of artificial intelligence

Montreal, November 26, 2019 – Entering the world of artificial intelligence is no longer an option for corporate and public organizations that need to accelerate their digital transformation to create value from data and automatization. Thanks to this partnership, companies will be able to accelerate their digital transformation by having access, in a concerted manner, to the expertise of artificial intelligence and data valorization.

Moov AI will continue to support companies in the delivery of concrete artificial intelligence solutions, such as the latest implemented solutions: prediction models for attrition and price prediction, recommendation engines, NLP model, etc. All of these projects deliver tangible and compelling business value to their customers across all industries.

Keyrus, an expert in management, will bring its expertise to support companies in the definition of their data / BI / AI roadmap and to implement efficient and industrializable data platforms.

This partnership made perfect sense for us since our offers are so complementary: artificial intelligence thanks to Moov AI and business intelligence and advanced analytics thanks to Keyrus Group. Our respective customers win on all counts. Not only do they benefit from a global offer in their digital transformation, but it will be delivered by companies that are experts in their fields.

Dominic Danis, CEO of Moov AI

Partnering with market expert firms has always been Keyrus’ commitment to delivering the highest quality to our customers. We are proud today to continue in this direction by partnering with Moov AI. We are combining our expertise and savoir-faire to enable any organization to undertake its digital transformation by making full use of the lever of artificial intelligence and data”

Antoine Cossé, Offers & Innovation Director of Keyrus Canada

About Moov AI

Moov AI builds and deploys concrete Artificial Intelligence and Machine Learning solutions that help clients seize opportunities and tackle core business challenges. Our experts help organizations leverage these technologies no matter what their level of data science maturity is.

We specialize in quickly delivering value thanks to an Agile approach to handling artificial intelligence projects.

Our quest to democratize the use of AI technologies brings us to work with companies of all sizes across many industries. We pride ourselves on simplifying the complicated and bringing long term benefits to each project we undertake.

About Keyrus

Keyrus, value creator in the Data and Digital age : An international actor specializing in Data and Digital technologies, Keyrus’ mission is to help
companies benefit from Data and Digital paradigm in order to increase performance, facilitate and accelerate transformation, generate new levers of growth, competitiveness, and longevity.

Placing innovation at the heart of its strategy, Keyrus develops value propositions that are unique in the market around an innovative offer that relies on expertise in three major and convergent disciplines: Data Intelligence, Digital Experience, and Management & Transformation Consultation.

For more information:

Moov AI
Guillaume Petitclerc

KEYRUS Canada Inc.
Zoé Delorme
Tél. : 514-416-4623

Olivier Blais nominated for the 30/30 Infopresse 2019 award

The Moov AI team is very happy to announce the nomination of Olivier Blais for the 30/30 Infopresse 2019 award.

This contest is based on people who are under 30 and work in the communication marketing industry.

They are 30 years or less and they inspire others by their projects, ideas, audacity and ambitions. The fourth annual addition of this contest is focussed on the leaders of tomorrow that are moving the industry forward.

– Infopresse

Infopresse has highlighted Olivier’s transformation of different companies where he has worked in past years, as well as his ability to share his vast knowledge in the data science sector.

We’re very happy to have founded Moov AI with a someone like Olivier, his energy and his knowledge in the technology sector constantly amazes us. We are very proud of him.

Dominic Danis, président Moov AI

To highlight this year accomplishments, VICE+ was contacted to create a documentary to help understand the realities that these young professionals experience in their day-to-day work life and their vision of the future.

It’s a good opportunity to learn more about the industries direction through the eyes of tomorrow’s leaders.

This 20 second video was made for each of the laureates, here is Olivier’s.

My mission is to help people make the best decisions. We can accomplish this with the new technologies available to us in artificial intelligence.

At this time, I am trying to apply my skill set to help address environmental safety concerns.

I’ll be using machine learning to better respond to problems that are bigger than me.

Olivier Blais, Cofondateur Moov AI

We invite you to consult the complete Infopresse report to learn more about the laureates that represent the future of the industry.

Our sincerest congratulations to all nominees.