How could your business benefit from Canada’s Small Business Financing Program?

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    Ian Hawkins

    Page written by Ian Hawkins. Last reviewed on July 17, 2024. Next review due April 1, 2025.

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      Help for SMEs is available – and this government-backed scheme is a great place to start your funding journey

      Most business owners find that their ambitions for their businesses are held in check by the funding they are able to access. Getting the capital your business needs to get off the ground – or to the next stage of growth – can be a major hurdle.

      The good news is that there’s a program out there specifically designed to help businesses: the Canada Small Business Financing Program (CSBFP).

      Here are the reasons why CSBFP is a popular choice for business owners:

      • Easier Loan Access: as a government-backed program, there is a reduced risk for lenders, making it easier for you to secure a loan from banks and credit unions.
      • Types of Loans: the CSBFP offers two main options: term loans and lines of credit. Term loans are for one-time expenses like equipment or renovations, while lines of credit provide ongoing access to funds for things like working capital.
      • Maximum Amounts: you can qualify for a CSBFP term loan of up to $1 million, with a portion dedicated to working capital and intangible assets. Additionally, there’s a separate line of credit option for working capital needs,with a maximum of $150,000.
      • Eligible Expenses: the CSBFP can be used to finance a variety of business needs, including purchasing land or buildings, equipment, leasehold improvements, and intangible assets like software.

      Which Businesses Qualify for CSBFP?

      • Small and Mid-Sized Businesses: The CSBFP is designed to support businesses with a gross annual revenue of $10 million or less.
      • Operating in Canada: Your business must be registered and operating in Canada.
      • Not a Farm: There’s a separate program for agricultural businesses – the Canadian Agricultural Loans Act (CALA).

      Not sure if you qualify? Call us – we can help you figure out the best choices for your business.

      What Can the Money Be Used For?

      The CSBFP offers financing for a variety of business needs, giving you the flexibility to invest in your growth:

      • Tangible Assets: This includes purchasing land or buildings, new or used equipment, and leasehold improvements (think renovations on a rented space).
      • Intangible Assets: The CSBFP can also help finance software, licenses, or patents that are crucial for your business operations.
      • Working Capital: Need a cash flow boost? The CSBFP can be used for ongoing expenses like payroll or inventory purchases.

      Remember: There are limitations on how much can be used for each category.

      What Are My Options as a Business Owner?

      The CSBFP offers two main financing options to suit your specific needs:

      • Term Loans: This is a one-time loan for a fixed amount, ideal for larger expenses like equipment or property purchases.
      • Line of Credit: Provides ongoing access to funds, similar to a credit card, for covering operational costs or unexpected situations.

      Choosing the right option depends on your financial goals. Discussing your needs with your Swoop Account Manager will help you determine the best approach.

      CSBFP is not a single product – and this is where confusion can creep in, particularly if you’re not an expert on the financial markets. That’s why we’ve put all your options in one place to make it easier for you to pick out the CSBFP product that aligns with your goals. 

      To get started, click through to the CSBFP. We can help you understand if the CSBFP is a good fit for your business, gather the necessary documentation, and guide you through the application process.

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      Written by

      Ian Hawkins

      Ian Hawkins is Head of Content at Swoop. As a freelance business journalist and filmmaker he has reported from Europe, Central and North America and Africa. His films and writing have appeared on BBC World, Reuters and CBS, and he has spoken at conferences on both sides of the Atlantic on subjects including data, cyber security, and entrepreneurialism.

      Swoop promise

      At Swoop we want to make it easy for SMEs to understand the sometimes overwhelming world of business finance and insurance. Our goal is simple – to distill complex topics, unravel jargon, offer transparent and impartial information, and empower businesses to make smart financial decisions with confidence.

      Find out more about Swoop’s editorial principles by reading our editorial policy.


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