Free Government Small Business Loans – Navigating the Canadian government funding process can be challenging for businesses of all sizes. Optimizing the planning, writing, submission and reporting process can take significant time and resources; However, there are huge benefits associated with accessing funding regularly. Companies should take time to familiarize themselves with the options available when completing the Canadian government funding process to ensure they get the greatest result possible.
To support If you have questions about accessing business grants and loans, please check the information on this page that we are regularly asked about by Canadian companies. Our library of small business financing resources can also help independent evaluation of government financing programs. If you’re ready to discuss how Mentor Works can improve the funding process, call us at 1-888-599-3111 or visit our Get Funding Help page.
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Both provincial and federal governments offer small business financing programs and services. There are two general ways for companies to search for Canadian government funding programs, including looking by their province/region of operation and exploring by their project/investment area.
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Companies can also refer to our library of programs for a comprehensive view of the various small business financing grants and low-interest loans available to Canadian businesses. These programs can be applied to a wide variety of activities such as hiring and training, research and development, capital investment, and business expansion.
To be eligible for most Canadian government funding programs, businesses must be incorporated for at least three years and have at least 15 people on the payroll, although each program has its own eligibility requirements. This is to establish the financial stability of the organization. In general, most Canadian government grant programs are positioned to support integrated small and medium enterprises (SMEs) and large companies.
Please see our Canadian Small Business Funding Guide for more information on funding criteria and access our blog for program-specific eligibility factors.
No. Most programs support companies with at least 15 employees, but there are other programs, such as hiring and training grants, that support from 1 to 50 employees. Canadian government grants and loans are tailored to support small businesses and each has its own eligibility criteria.
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Yes, typical Canadian government financing programs only approve applications from businesses that have been incorporated for at least three years, but there are also small business financing programs available for unincorporated businesses, although this financing is limited.
If you’re not sure whether or not your Canadian small business qualifies for grants and loans, contact us to learn more.
In order to receive Canadian government funding, the financial health of a business is important. Generally, a current balance sheet and income statement must be submitted with the application. At a minimum, some financial information will be required, such as a letter from your financial officer.
There are also several Internet resources to support the planning components. As part of our process, we support the development of customized business and project plans to act as supporting documentation for your funding application if required.
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The process for obtaining scientific research and experimental development (SR&ED) tax credits and incentives is significantly different. It is often more complex and time consuming to follow tax returns compared to the typical Canadian government grant process. We have also seen the complexity of the claims process increase in recent years, while the total value of claims decreases.
Also, business owners are only entitled to SR&ED tax credits once a year. As such, no immediate or regular cash flow improvements are gained. Small business grants and Canadian government funding programs are available at various points throughout the year and can provide immediate cash flow impacts and immediate support for future projects.
To learn more about how state funding and SR&ED tax credits can be combined, watch this quick video on a holistic funding approach.
There are a number of small business grants and reimbursable loans that focus on business expansion. These types of financing programs often seek to help businesses increase production to serve a larger portion of the domestic or international market. Projects generally include expanding facilities, adopting innovative equipment, hiring and training employees, and developing new markets through ambitious marketing and sales efforts.
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A primary goal of government funding is to retain highly skilled talent in Canada, increase the number of skilled jobs in Canada and ensure their long-term sustainability. As long as expansion plans ensure that jobs are maintained at a Canadian-based operation, the financing options for expanding are significant.
To strengthen your business’s export expansion plans and learn how to access Canadian government financing for exports, download the Canadian Business Guide to Export Expansion.
Do you want to expand your business to new markets? This video explains how government grants and loans can finance your business expansion projects.
Canadian government funding programs support a wide range of business activities and expenditures. There are grants and/or loans for the hiring and training of new and existing employees; Research and development for the innovation of new projects and products in various industries such as automotive, clean tech, and manufacturing; there is capital investment funding to support new tech adoption; and financing programs such as CanExport that support global business expansion for economic business growth.
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Currently, there are also a variety of COVID-19 government funding programs that support businesses by compensating for the loss of revenue and recovery costs related to the global pandemic.
This video explains what the four major financing activities for government grants and loans are and how you can take advantage of them for your unique business.
Yes, but not to the same extent as established SMEs. Generally, you have to be incorporated for at least two years to apply for non-refundable funds (small business grants), but there is a significant amount of funding to support activities such as product and process applied research, engineering design, technology acceleration, product testing, Certification, marketing studies, proof of concept, piloting and demonstration, and pre-commercialization activities.
You can focus on groups like MaRS that offer market research studies and business project support from local universities and colleges. Mentor Works also provides resources for startups and entrepreneurs. Startups can download our Free Funding Checklist to align your business for future funding success.
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Regional Innovation Centers (RICs) are another good source of provincial and federal funds. They also offer great business planning tools and support to help you determine the right strategy for growth. As a first step, contact your local business center for more information on startup resources and support.
Across Canada, there are various employers subsidizing the onboarding of new graduates. These programs are often specifically targeted at certain industries, but some are more general and can support a wide range of employers or employees. Many government-supported programs require you to find your graduate degree before applying. This is not optional – it is part of the process.
For most programs, graduates must have graduated within the last 3-5 years, and some programs also have age requirements – mostly under 31 years old.
Post-secondary hiring funds are most abundant in the spring and summer each year, when the majority of new graduates are ready to enter the workforce. Companies can plan to ramp up recruiting around this period to get the most value out of Canadian business travel. To discover currently available funding programs, please let us know. more about the position you are recruiting for via our wage subsidy identifier contact form.
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Looking to hire recent graduates for your business? Learn more about government funding grants and loans for hiring and training in Canada.
No funding programs currently support many different areas of business, from research and development to capital investment for business expansion and human resources. Training, lean manufacturing & design, export expansion, workforce expansion, IT best practices, and energy efficiency projects are common activities that receive funding.
This does not mean that the government does not recognize the importance of R&D in our economy. Keeping talent in Canada is dependent on collaboration and partnerships with innovative businesses and R&D facilities in our post-secondary institutions.
To learn what financing programs are available for a wide range of business activities, watch this quick educational video.
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There is more support for innovative research and development now than ever before in Canadian government funding. Disruptive technology development, demonstration and deployment is a key area of the government’s strategic investment initiatives. The Industrial Research Assistance Program (IRAP) is generally a great program to start with because it supports research and development projects of all sizes. Browse research grants and reimbursable funding to explore a wider range of options.
Not usually, because the government evaluates risk similar to what banks do. The government probably sees the trade as higher risk, so funding is limited in this case. But this does not mean that all avenues for funding are blocked. Focus on regional centers such as CFDC and Small Business Centers as well. You may also be able to take advantage of hiring and training funding.
Many Canadian business financing programs favor industrial and manufacturing companies. This is because product design, research, development and production improvement projects often lead to spin-off benefits throughout the Canadian economy. Manufacturers can start the government funding process by searching for funding by project type.
Due to the high number of potential government funding programs manufacturers
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