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Canada Small Business Financing Program provides loans to start or expand your business

The stats tell the story. Of the 1.22 million businesses operating in Canada in 2022, 97.8%, or 1.19 million, were defined by the Government of Canada as” small businesses.” These businesses employed 5.7 million Canadians or 46.8% of the total private labour force.

There’s nothing small about “small” business.

The Canada Small Business Financing Program (CSBFP) is a government-backed program offering Canadian businesses loans of up to $1.0 million. Over the past decade, the program has provided small businesses with more than 53,000 loans, totalling $10 billion.

Though the program parameters, including fees, maximum interest rates, maximum loan sizes, and loan asset classes, are administered through the Department of Innovation,Science and Economic Development Canada (ISED), the review of the application and business plan and the approval and administration of the loan is overseen by banks, credit unions, and caisses populaires across Canada, including SCU.

Small businesses or start-ups with gross annual revenues of $10 million or less that operate in Canada and provide a product or service to the public are eligible to submit a business plan and application to the financial institution of their choice. 

Below is a brief overview of the program

Financing type           Available financing Program purchasing parameters     
Term loams Maximum loan $1 million to any single borrower May be used for intangible assets and working capital costs. No more than $500,000 for the: 
  • purchase of leasehold improvements or leased property
  • purchase or improvement to new or used equipment up to a maximum of $150,000
May be used to finance: 
  • commercial vehicles
  • hotel or restaurant equipment
  • computer or telecommunications equipment and software
  • production equipment
  • costs to buy a franchise 
  • leasehold improvements
  • goodwill on existing business purchase
Lines of credit Up to a maximum of $150,000 for lines of credit for a period up to 5 years from date of registration May be used to pay for working capital costs, such as the:
  • day-to-day operating expenses of the business
  • program registration fee

For more information on the Canada Small Business Financing Program, its requirements and eligibility, visit the Government of Canada program websites at the link above, or call 1.800.728.6440 and ask to speak to an SCU  business account manager.

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