Investment and Job Creation in Sherbrooke - Premier Jean Charest Announces Financial Assistance to Neptune for a Project Totalling Close to $20 Million
Sherbrooke, March 9, 2012 - Québec Premier Jean Charest has announced $3 million of non-repayable financial assistance to Neptune Technologies & Bioressources to carry out a project valued at $20 million.
Neptune is a Québec public corporation, with its head office in Laval and a production plant in Sherbrooke. It specializes in the extraction of krill oil made from tiny cold-water shrimp, used in the nutraceutical (health nutrients) and functional foods market. The financial support provided is aimed at helping the company expand and optimize its production processes by installing three new production lines. The project, which will be carried out in two phases over a three-year period, will create 40 new jobs and consolidate 83 other jobs.
"The natural health products market, especially nutraceuticals, is booming. The krill oil production process developed by Neptune is an extraordinarily innovative breakthrough with market potential. What is more, this is a relatively undeveloped niche in Québec. Our support will enable the company to maintain its competitive position on markets at home and abroad, in addition to strengthening Québec's presence in this sector. It is crucial for my government to support promising projects that help promote innovation and exports, the avenues of choice to meet the challenges of globalization," said Jean Charest.
Krill oil extracted by a process patented by Neptune is sold by the barrel. The organic components contained in krill, in particular Omega 3 and antioxidants, are actively sought by the agri-food, nutraceutical, cosmetic and pharmaceutical industries for their therapeutic benefits. Neptune's products are currently marketed in Europe, the United States and Asia.
"Neptune has always had an innovative approach, using the most advanced technology to achieve the highest levels of productivity, efficiency and quality. The health benefits of our products are recognized by Health Canada for cardiovascular health, inflammation and women's health, which gives us a competitive edge for our international development. These investments will strengthen our position within the industry and open up new markets. We are extremely enthusiastic about this growth strategy," added President and CEO Henri Harland.
"By backing this project, the Québec government is showing its commitment to promoting SME productivity and wealth creation in all regions. It is also working to ensure the expansion of a fast-growing industry, positioning Québec on the international scene. This project will therefore enhance the competitiveness of Québec's natural health products industry, while stimulating the local economy. This is also very good news for the Biotech Health niche of excellence, which comprises enterprises engaged in the Life Sciences cluster," concluded the Premier.
About the ESSOR Program
The financial assistance provided by Investissement Québec comes from the ESSOR Program of the Ministère du Développement économique, de l'Innovation et de l'Exportation (MDEIE).
The ESSOR Program is the result of a merger between the Strategic Support for Investment Program (PASI) and the Economic Projects Support Program (PSPE), and is managed jointly by Investissement Québec and the MDEIE. It simplifies the administration of the various types of investment assistance. For more information about ESSOR, contact an Investissement Québec advisor at 1-866-870-0437.
About Investissement Québec
Investissement Québec's mission is to foster the growth of investment in Québec, thereby contributing to economic development and job creation in every region. The Corporation offers businesses a full range of financial solutions, including loans, loan guarantees, and equity investments, to support them at all stages of their development. It also responsible for administering tax measures and prospecting for foreign investment.
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