Many business professionals are surprised to learn that Canada gives out more grants and incentives than most other countries to businesses, particularly small- and medium-sized businesses. When we compare grant funding for businesses in Europe and the U.S., Canada not only provides more funding per program, but the types of programs are wide-ranging, covering many business sectors.
Here are few incentives worth considering in 2019:
FedDev Scale-up and productivity
While this program is given a new name, it has $920 million in funding available. The funding in repayable contribution (no interest loan, generally with favourable repayment terms and security). The contributions are in the range of $500K to $10M.
There are now five Superclusters in Canada (Digital Technology in BC; Protein tech in Saskatchewan; Advanced Manufacturing in Ontario; AI supply chain in Montreal; and Ocean technology in Nova Scotia). Each supercluster has funding from both the government and private/public businesses. Funding in each supercluster varies, but the federal government has allocated nearly $950 million across all superclusters. Any company in Canada can join any of these superclusters. While SME’s can apply for funding, it appears that projects seeking funding must be collaborative.
Training for Manufacturing Companies
The AIME Global program supports southern Ontario manufacturers to undertake training or skills-upgrading activities that support innovation at manufacturing facilities. Supportable projects may include developing new engineering skills, training in the use of new software, hardware or other tools necessary to support innovation and adoption of new technologies. Businesses that have never received AIME funding may be eligible for up to a maximum of $100,000 with 50% shared costs.
This program assists businesses by covering 50% of their marketing costs of up to $50K when they try to access a new foreign market. A new foreign market is defined as one where less than 10% of a business’ total sales come from that foreign market. This program has lowered its minimum requirements. For example, no full-time employees are required and the annual revenue a company needs to have is $100K. This means more start-ups can apply.
Brian Cookson is president and managing director of RDP Associates (established 1987). RDP works with businesses across a wide array of sectors and enables them to obtain various forms of government grants. It helps both start-ups and established businesses with gaining access to financial assistance for their innovation and business expansion projects. For a complimentary assessment of your eligibility for government grants, contact RDPGrantsTeam@rdpassociates.