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Atlantic Canada Opportunities Agency

Business Financing

Atlantic Canada Opportunities Agency

What qualifies for BDP financing?

Most business sectors are eligible except retail/wholesale, real estate, government services, and services of a personal or social nature.

Both commercial and not-for-profit applicants are eligible.

Eligible activities include business studies, capital investment, training, marketing, quality assurance, and not-for-profit activities that support business in the region. Assistance is also available to help you bid for and acquire public and private procurement contracts or to develop an innovative product or service.

Overall, your project should meet the following criteria:

* Provide economic benefit to an area or a community
* Demonstrate need for financial assistance
* Be economically viable.

How much assistance is available?

ACOA can provide an unsecured, interest-free loan towards the eligible costs of a new establishment, expansion, modernization or a project which improves your competitiveness. ACOA\'s contribution is repayable on a time schedule tailored to your circumstances. The maximum level of assistance under the program is as follows.

Costs eligible for up to 50% financing include:

* The construction or acquisition of a building
* machinery and equipment needed for the project
* working capital requirements related to an establishment or expansion project
* site improvements such as land clearing and paving required for the project
* leasehold improvements required for the project
* leased equipment and conditional sales contracts
* infrastructure such as sewer and water needed for a project
* self-built assets
* intangible assets such as patents, trademarks and licenses
* start-up costs such as insurance and interest capitalized during construction

Costs eligible for up to 75% financing include:

* Marketing:   Includes the development of a marketing plan, the hiring of marketing expertise to implement the plan, and related marketing activities such as labelling, packaging, promotional materials, advertising, product demonstrations and participation at trade shows.

* Training: Includes the development of a training plan, the hiring of training expertise to implement the plan and related activities such as training materials, seminar fees, and wages during the time that employees received off-the-job training.

* Productivity/Quality Improvement: Includes the development of a productivity or quality improvement plan, the hiring of expertise to implement the plan, and related activities such as obtaining a recognized quality certification such as ISO, and the cost of needed technical equipment.

* Innovations: Includes costs related to researching and developing new or improved products, services and processes such as the labour costs of expertise, materials, special equipment, testing and patents.

* Consultant Advice: Includes the cost of hiring a qualified consultant to prepare a business plan, feasibility study, investigate licensing opportunities, conduct a venture capital search, technology transfer search or provide advice to improve your business skills.

* Contract bidding: Includes the cost of improving your competitive ability to bid on and acquire public and private sector contracts.

* Business proposal development: Includes the cost of turning your idea into a viable business proposal, example the completion of feasibility study, prototype development, and gathering information on markets and raw material suppliers. Maximum contribution is $10,000 for this activity.

* Business Support: Not-for profit organizations may qualify for assistance towards activities that support the business community, entrepreneurship or economic development.

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Atlantic Canada Opportunities Agency