A collaborative facility for
 applied innovation in the ocean sector



fisheries & aquaculture

marine transportation

marine defence & security


COVE – Centre for Ocean Ventures & Entrepreneurship is a collaborative facility for applied innovation in the ocean sector.

Our mission is to propel the ocean economy by providing high quality marine infrastructure and a collaborative space in which a community of ocean enterprises can start, grow and prosper. Our primary goal is to support ocean technology commercialization.

This hub of activity will be home to local and global ocean technology businesses, post-secondary institutions, researchers, and marine-based and service businesses that support the ocean sector.

Members of COVE have unparalleled access to the ocean, shared facilities and some of the leading minds in the sector. Start-ups will benefit from mentoring in the Start-Up Yard the on-site incubator.

COVE is at the centre of Nova Scotia’s globally recognized ocean cluster, located in the former Coast Guard facility on Halifax Harbour. The COVE site features extensive marine facilities with two large, deep-water piers, office space, an incubator and space for shops and labs.

COVE is a place where innovations will be developed and brought to market. It’s a place where start-ups will be inspired and guided. COVE is a working facility for ocean enterprises with access to water and testing facilities.


location-bgCOVE will be at the centre of the ocean cluster in Halifax, Canada’s Ocean City. With a prime waterfront location, on one of the largest harbours in the world, it is in close proximity to major ocean research institutes and world-leading companies focused on ocean-technology. It has rail and road access and is located 25 minutes from Halifax Stanfield International Airport.

Nova Scotia has an international reputation in ocean observation and we will continue to expand on this success. We have the highest concentration of ocean technology companies involved in acoustics, sensors and instrumentation. We are home to more than 300 ocean-related companies and 60 innovative high-tech ocean companies. Nova Scotia Community College (NSCC) is fully integrated into the ocean technology sector through excellence in applied research and training.

The ocean research community in Nova Scotia is surging. The federal government has increased funding for ocean science at Fisheries and Oceans Canada and Defence Research and Development Canada. Nova Scotia is well positioned to participate in this activity.

Halifax is home to world-renowned ocean-related research institutions, including Canada’s largest – Bedford Institute of Oceanography (BIO) – and Dalhousie University, already Canada’s leading ocean research university. It is also home to large national and international ocean research programs like the Canada Excellence Research Chair (CERC) in Ocean Science and Technology, the Ocean Tracking Network (OTN) and the Marine Environmental Observation Prediction and Response (MEOPAR) network. Halifax is also home to the Institute for Ocean Research Enterprise, which facilitates connections among businesses and researchers that will inform public policy and build synergies among partners.

Recently Dalhousie established a new global centre of excellence in ocean research called the Ocean Frontier Institute. This was done in partnership with Memorial University in Newfoundland and Labrador, the University of Prince Edward Island and four of the world’s leading ocean research institutions, including Woods Hole Oceanographic Institution in the US and GEOMAR in Germany.


The primary role of COVE is to support ocean technology commercialization.

This collaborative space will be home to local and global ocean technology businesses, start-ups, researchers, and marine-based and service businesses that support the ocean technology sector.

Open innovation is a guiding principle for COVE. Networking opportunities will be integrated into the facility. This will be a place where researchers interact with businesses, a place of peer mentoring and a place that offers short-term and long-term lease and membership arrangements.

Start-ups will be able to more easily validate and commercialize their ideas due to the use of shared facilities with ocean access and exposure to mentors from the world’s leading ocean technology ecosystem.


impact-bgThe programs, facilities and services offered through COVE will bring the ocean technology cluster together to capitalize on inherent synergies and advance the competitive position of members in the global oceans industry.

For ocean technology companies, COVE will enhance market access to large ocean industries by

  • Investing in collective marketing to raise the profile of the cluster and identifying large-scale product and service opportunities in major ocean sectors.
  • Employing advisors with deep knowledge of ocean science, technology, markets and corporate business structures – for mentoring.
  • Being a one-stop shop for information regarding public sector funding in support of marketing and product development, including assistance in writing funding proposals.
  • Investing in, and seeking funding for, proof-of-concept projects that will allow local component and sensor companies to integrate their products into higher value subsystem and system products to increase value.
  • Proactively positioning COVE clients to participate in government programs that incentivize large ocean companies to work with small and medium-sized enterprises (SMEs).
  • Establishing rich working relationships with like-minded hubs regionally, nationally and internationally.

SMEs and academic teams will further benefit from:

  • Training in specific skills required to enter supply chains of key sectors such as aerospace & defence and offshore oil & gas.
  • Training in systems engineering, design for manufacturing (DFM), design for test (DFT) and logistics support analysis (LSA).
  • Funded supplier visits to COVE and visits by COVE members to corporate buyers.
  • Creation of a capital pool to fund select technologies.


The facility will include a mix of short and long-term workspace to support members locally and those visiting from other locations. They will receive access to a range of services and shared infrastructure. There will also be a full mix of programming that can be accessed on site and on a virtual basis. Members from across Nova Scotia will have access to services via regional node arrangements.

The amenities available to tenants of COVE include electronics fabrication and testing facilities, mechanical fabrication space, office space, storage spaces, water tanks, waterside marine services and shared services such as reception and a large multipurpose room for training and events. There will be ongoing programming on-site.

Key stats:

  • An 8-acre site, with a 13-acre water lot
  • 2,850 feet of docks & 2 finger piers
  • A water depth of 49 feet
  • 16,000 square feet of office space
  • 10,000 square feet of incubation space
  • 16,500 square feet of shop and lab space

Innovators. Educators. Defenders. Explorers.
And so much more.

With a strategic location on North America's east coast, the ocean-related focus of its universities and community college, and the depth of its science-based workforce, it’s no surprise Halifax is a world leader in ocean science and business.