OMIF – Music Creation
DeadlineSeptember 23, 2020
5:00 PM EST
Music Industry Initiatives
DeadlineOctober 29, 2020
5:00 PM EST
Global Market Development for Music Managers
Cycle 1August 6, 2020
5:00 PM EST
Cycle 2October 6, 2020
5:00 PM EST
The OMIF Music Creation (MC) stream supports the development of competitive, sustainable music companies in Ontario that take risks discovering and developing talent – particularly emerging artists – and bringing it to market.
MC will provide funding to eligible domestic record labels, multinational record labels and domestic music publishers to support business activities that are focused on: expanding artist rosters; investing in professional recording and production; facilitating job creation; undertaking export market development; enhancing business capacity; and increasing and strengthening diversity within Ontario's music industry.
Funding is provided in the form of direct grants towards the costs of eligible activities. The OMIF Music Creation stream requires applicants to provide a matching contribution to ensure that maximum ROI is achieved from provincial investment. Applicants must demonstrate clear, measurable outcomes which align with the objectives of the Music Creation stream.
Eligible Applicants can apply to ONE of the following two deadlines:
Thursday, July 23, 2020 5:00 PM ET
for activities taking place between August 1, 2020 and July 31, 2021
Wednesday, September 23, 2020 5:00 PM ET
for activities taking place between October 1, 2020 and July 31, 2021
In light of COVID-19, Ontario Creates understands that future planning is challenging at this time. As a result, there are two application deadlines for the 2020-21 program cycle. Applicants are encouraged to only apply to the first deadline if they are able to clearly articulate activities that they think have a reasonable chance of being executed within the eligible activity timeframe. We strongly recommend applying to the second deadline if additional time is needed to confirm plans. As this program has a comparative and competitive assessment process, applications that contain more specific detail with respect to the proposed activities will be evaluated more favourably.
Domestic Record Labels, Multinational Record Labels, and Domestic Music Publishers
Note: Music Managers are eligible to apply for export travel support through the Music Industry Initiatives Program.
NOTE: Full eligibility requirements can be found in the Music Creation Guidelines.
Funding is available in the form of a direct grant.
- Up to 50% towards the cost of eligible activities
- The maximum funding is 40% of the company’s two-year average of total revenue to a maximum cap of $350,000. The minimum funding request is $10,000.
- Applicants must have minimum annual revenues of $25,000 from core business activities as a record label or music publisher.
IMPORTANT: First-time applicants must contact the OMO at least three weeks ahead of the application deadline to discuss eligibility. Email inquiries to OMO@ontariocreates.ca.
- Applicants must submit their applications electronically through the Ontario Creates Online Application Portal (OAP) at https://apply.ontariocreates.ca.
- Applicants that do not have a user account on OAP should go to https://apply.ontariocreates.ca/ and click on “Register.” For assistance, please see Ontario Creates’ website for the “OAP Quick Start Guide”.
- For technical assistance, please contact the OAP Helpdesk at firstname.lastname@example.org.
- Applicants are strongly encouraged to begin the application process early to allow ample time to compile and complete the necessary information. The application can be worked on over time and save information as it is entered. Once saved, you can go back to edit and/or add information up until the time when the application is actually submitted.
Late applications will not be considered for funding.
Prior discussion with Ontario Creates regarding the eligibility of an activity does not guarantee funding.
Interested applicants are strongly encouraged to attend an upcoming Ontario Creates Information Session. Please complete the online registration form by 5:00 pm ET on the day prior to the Information Session. Unregistered guests will only be accepted if space permits.
Wednesday, June 10, 2020*
11:00 AM - 12:30 PM EST
Thursday, June 25, 2020
2:00 – 3:30 pm
Guidelines and Application Forms
Applicants are encouraged to thoroughly review the guidelines and OMF Overview, and if necessary, register your company’s corporate information with the OAP.
Program Coordinator, Music Creation
Enquiries regarding the Online Application Portal (OAP) should be directed to email@example.com
To receive notification of upcoming deadlines and program updates, please register with your complete contact information, including your full name, company name and telephone number, as well as the name of the program that you are interested in.
Frequently Asked Questions
OMIF - General
Is the Ontario Music Investment Fund (OMIF) the new Ontario Music Fund (OMF)?
Yes. The Ontario Music Investment Fund (OMIF) replaces the Ontario Music Fund (OMF). In 2019-20, the Ontario Government undertook a review of the Ontario Music Fund with a view to modernization and targeting funding to activities with the highest return on investment (ROI), and with a focus on supporting emerging artists.
What are the launch dates for each of the three streams?
The Music Creation stream launched on May 29, 2020.
The Music Industry Initiatives stream launched on June 18, 2020.
The Live Music stream will launch in late summer 2020.
What are the deadlines to submit applications?
Eligible applicants can apply to ONE of the following two deadlines:
Thursday, July 23, 2020 5:00 PM ET
for activities taking place during an eligible activity window of August 1, 2020 to July 31, 2021.
Wednesday, September 23, 2020 5:00 PM ET
for activities taking place during an eligible activity window of October 1, 2020 to July 31, 2021.
Music Industry Initiatives: to be communicated on June 18, 2020.
Live Music: to be communicated in late summer 2020.
Who is eligible to apply to the OMIF?
The program provides support through three program streams – applicants include:
- Music Creation — eligible domestic and multinational record labels and domestic music publishers.
- Music Industry Initiatives — eligible music industry organizations or music service associations.
- Music Managers are eligible for export/market development support.
- Live Music — eligible live music promoters and presenters.
What if the activities I would normally apply for are no longer possible due to COVID-19 social distancing measures?
Ontario Creates understands that COVID-19 has created many challenges across the creative industries. To help address some of these challenges, COVID mitigation measures for programs that are in progress have already been introduced, and these will extend to all 2020-21 programs including the Ontario Music Investment Fund.
- Activities may address necessary COVID-19 responses, in keeping with program objectives. Companies will be permitted to budget funds for operations-related costs, including salaries related to COVID-19 impact mitigation. Activity outcomes should account for these types of necessary expenses. Business plans should describe the impacts of COVID-19 on your company and your recovery strategy.
- In lieu of travel/export-related expenses that may not be possible due to COVID-19 restrictions, the cost of participating in virtual activities/events that facilitate international business and audience development will be eligible, including costs associated with the preparation of marketing materials.
- As the COVID-19 situation evolves, successful applicants will be permitted to make activity changes as necessary, that align with program objectives.
Flexibility and leniency will be provided to the extent possible. Activity changes will be permitted in cases of activity cancellation due to COVID-19, and expenditures will be permitted to occur within a reasonable timeframe beyond the originally contracted period. In all cases, please contact a Program Consultant at the Ontario Music Office to discuss the specifics of your circumstances and deliverables.
OMIF - Music Creation
Does the Music Creation stream replace the Music Company Development stream?
The Ontario Music Investment Fund replaces the former Ontario Music Fund with a view to streamlining and targeting funding for maximum ROI and to support emerging talent. Record labels and music publishers will be able to apply for similar activities in the Music Creation stream to what they would typically have applied for in the Music Company Development stream. Please see the Music Creation guidelines for further details.
I’m an artist, am I eligible to apply directly?
The OMIF is designed to complement other existing provincial and federal funding programs. Record labels and music publishers may apply for activities that support artists i.e., recording, marketing & promotion, touring etc.
Individual artists may be eligible for Ontario Arts Council funding www.arts.on.ca. In addition, and the federal government provides direct support to artist through FACTOR www.factor.ca.
As indicated in the guidelines, exceptions to the eligibility requirements may be considered for applications from companies that are led by BIPOC (Black, Indigenous, People of Colour) or Francophone individuals and applicants that otherwise meet the provincial definition of diversity. We strongly encourage high potential BIPOC artist-entrepreneurs to contact us at least three weeks in advance of the application deadline, as there may be flexibility in terms of the eligibility of your business model.
How does OMIF define an “emerging” artist in the Music Creation stream?
Under OMIF, an emerging artist is defined as an artist or group that has not achieved Gold Album status in Canada in the past 6 years and has had no more than 3 gold albums in their career (Gold Album threshold is currently 40,000 Album Equivalent Units sold).The Gold Record threshold is a useful guide to identify artists at earlier stages in their careers.
Recognizing that the meaning of “emerging” may vary for different artists/genres/communities, alternative approaches to defining an emerging artist may be considered if accompanied by a sound rationale.
Record labels and publishers may apply for activities that support artists at all stages in their careers, but funding for emerging artists will be prioritized.
Are Artist Managers eligible in the Music Creation stream?
Music Managers are eligible to apply for dedicated global market development support under the Music Industry Initiatives. A streamlined process will enable them to receive funding to support time-sensitive export opportunities, including online international business development and marketing activities.
Is there support for Live Music under OMIF?
Yes, the OMIF has a Live Music stream for eligible music promoters/presenters. Guidelines and deadlines will be released in late summer 2020.
OMIF - Technical
How does OMIF define “core business revenue” for the Music Creation stream?
Appendix 1 of the Music Creation Guidelines outlines the eligible applicant types. Core business revenue for record labels refers to revenue from physical products (CD/DVD/vinyl/merchandise); revenue from digital sales and streaming services; revenue from licensing and sale of rights and permissions (domestic and international); and revenue from commissions and fees from related activities. Core business revenue for music publishers refers to revenue from licensing and sale of rights and permissions; and revenue from commissions and fees from related activities.
What’s the best way to structure my application activities? Should I submit all recording activities as one, and then all marketing, then all the business development, etc. or project by project?
Activities in the Music Creation template for music companies mirror those in the showcasing, and business development. Information can also be entered on a by-project basis, as long as each project documents the relevant activities.
How many years’ worth of financial statements am I required to submit?
Financial statements for the most recently completed fiscal year and the previous fiscal year, for a total of two sets of financial statements are required.
Financial statements must be supplied within six months of the applicant’s fiscal year-end (i.e. applicants with a December 31 year-end are expected to supply 2019 and 2018 financial statements by the application deadline).
At the time of application my company will have just reached its Fiscal Year End and audited financials will not be ready for a couple of months. Are we ineligible?
Financial statements must be supplied within six months of the applicant’s fiscal yearend (i.e. applicants with a December 31 year-end are expected to supply 2019 and 2018 financial statements by the application deadline).
- A minimum of Notice-to-Reader financial statements will be accepted. Notice-to-Reader financial statements must be prepared and signed by an accountant who is a member in good standing of a provincial branch of the Chartered Professional Accountants (CPA).
- Review engagement or audited financial statements are required for requests of $150,000 or more, and must be conducted by an independent public accountant.
What is the definition of a “permanent establishment” in Ontario?
“Permanent establishment” generally refers to a fixed place of business. However, whether a fixed place of business is a “permanent establishment” is a question of fact which ONTARIO CREATES | ONTARIO MUSIC INVESTMENT FUND - FAQs 5 must be determined on a case-by-case basis. In interpreting the term “permanent establishment”, the courts have considered factors such as: the degree of the corporation’s control over the place of business, the degree of continuity and permanence of the place of business and the presence of personnel and routine activities.
What is the definition of a "Canadian" artist?
A “Canadian Artist” must be a Canadian citizen or have landed immigrant status. A Canadian group is defined as having more than one member, at least half of whom are Canadian citizens or permanent residents.
What is the definition of a “Canadian-controlled corporation”?
Canadian-controlled corporation” is generally a corporation that is more than 50% owned by Canadians, as determined under sections 26 to 28 of the Investment Canada Act (Canada).
What are the criteria that a company needs to meet in order to be an Ontario-based music company?
To be considered Ontario-based, the company must be registered in Ontario and have a permanent office in Ontario.
Are there specific dollar amounts that I should submit in the budget for travel, accommodations and meals?
Air travel should be budgeted at economy rates and should reflect the costs of booking at least 30 days in advance of travel. Accommodation expenses should be at moderate per night rates and should reflect the average for the travel destination/activity, and per diems are capped at C$75/day for domestic travel and C$100/day for international travel (including daily meals and incidentals).
Can I include the cost of capital expenditures (purchase of equipment, software, etc.) in my activity budget?
As outlined in the OMIF Guidelines, costs related to capital expenditures (i.e. equipment, software) are restricted to specific circumstances. In the circumstances where costs related to capital expenditures are permitted to be included in the activities budget, an applicant can only include the “amortization expense” related to the cost of the capital expenditure. Where a capital asset has been rented, the actual rental cost is permitted for inclusion.
The amortization expense for each capital expenditure must be calculated using the prescribed amortization method outlined in each program stream guideline (i.e. straightline method, % of cost). See the applicable guidelines to determine the maximum amount of amortization expense that is eligible to be included in the activities budget.
Do the expenses listed in the activities budget and cost report include sales taxes (GST/HST, PST, VAT)?
No. Taxes that are recoverable by the applicant may not be included in the Activities Budget or claimed as an Eligible Cost in the final cost report.
What is a Related Party Transaction?
Related parties exist when one party has the ability to exercise, directly or indirectly, control, joint control or significant influence over the other. Two or more parties are related when they are subject to common control, joint or common significant influence. Related parties also include management and immediate family members.
A related party transaction is a transfer of economic resources or obligations between related parties, or the provision of services by one party to a related party, regardless of whether any consideration is exchanged. The parties to the transaction are related prior to the transaction. When the relationship arises as a result of the transaction, the transaction is not one between related parties.
Control of an enterprise is the continuing power to determine its strategic operating, investing and financing policies without the cooperation of others.
Joint control of an economic activity is the contractually agreed sharing of the continuing power to determine its strategic operating, investing and financing policies.
Significant influence over an enterprise is the ability to affect the strategic operating, investing and financing policies of the enterprise.
[This definition is quoted directly from the CICA Standards & Guidance Collection paragraph 3840.03.]
What is an Associated Corporation?
One corporation is associated with another in a taxation year if, at any time in the year:
- One of the corporations controlled, directly or indirectly in any manner whatever, the other;
- Both of the corporations were controlled, directly or indirectly in any manner whatever, by the same person or group of persons;
- Each of the corporations was controlled, directly or indirectly in any manner whatever, by a person and the person who so controlled one of the corporations was related to the person who so controlled the other, and either of those persons owned, in respect of each corporation, not less than 25% of the issued shares of any class, other than a specified class, of the capital stock thereof;
- One of the corporations was controlled, directly or indirectly in any manner whatever, by a person and that person was related to each member of a group of persons that so controlled the other corporation, and that person owned, in respect of the other corporation, not less than 25% of the issued shares of any class, other than a specified class, of the capital stock thereof; or
- Each of the corporations was controlled, directly or indirectly in any manner whatever, by a related group and each of the members of one of the related groups was related to all of the members of the other related group, and one or more persons were members of both related groups, either alone or together, owned, in respect of each corporation, not less than 25% of the issued shares of any class, other than a specified class of the capital stock thereof.
[This definition is quoted directly from Subsection 256(1) of the Income Tax Act (Canada)].
What is considered a recoupable expense?
A recoupable expense is an amount of money, and/or the cost of goods or services that is offered to an artist in a recording, license, publishing, performance or any service agreement; the recoupable amount is then paid back to the record label or publisher, usually at the rate of the artist’s share of royalties and/or other form of earnings. Recoupable amounts are generally paid back to the offer in first position, meaning that the artist receives no royalties until recoupment.
Applicants will be required to clearly state recoupable expenditures where applicable. OMIF funding provided to eligible Applicants for artist expenditures and investment may be nonrecoupable in certain cases.
For funding that comes from private sources, how do I list that in my Financing Plan (i.e. Radio Starmaker Fund and private broadcaster-portions of FACTOR)?
For consistency, OMIF will recognize all FACTOR funding as 50% public and 50% private. Radio Starmaker Fund is 100% private. Applicants should list the applicable funding from these entities in the appropriate lines in the Financing Sources section of the Activity Budget Financing Plan.
What are you looking for in my company business plan?
Business Plans must contain, at minimum, the following components:
- Applicant profile (company history, the team, and description of the unique space you fill in the marketplace)
- Overview of business activities, including and short/long-term goals. Outline competitive strengths, artist development strategies, human resources, corporate financing and other key details
- A S.W.O.T. analysis (strengths, opportunities, weaknesses, threats) that demonstrates your knowledge of the market conditions in which you are operating
- Case for Eligible Activities to be Funded: How can these activities take you to the next level? We want to help you grow beyond what you’re already doing…. Present a clear picture of how, with our assistance, you can make this happen. (essentially we are looking for an analysis of how OMIF support will contribute to company growth and long-term potential; how your company demonstrates the capacity to undertake the proposed activities, and what the anticipated outcomes are for activities. (you can refer to Appendix 2 of the guidelines for a list of potential Measurable Outcomes that you could speak to in your business plan).