Government funding FAQs

What are Government Grants and Contributions?

Often referred to as "Gs & Cs," government grants and contributions within the business marketplace are government funding assistance to businesses to support specific commercial and industrial policy objectives.

What types of funding programs are included in The Funding Portal's searches and services?

The Funding Portal takes a comprehensive approach to searching through all government funding and private financing programs to find the right type of funding instrument for your business. Here is an overview of the types of funding included on the Portal’s Find It tool:

  • Contributions: Repayable financial contributions awarded by governments to an organization.
  • Equity: Ownership stakes by government in the shares of the applicant company's corporation.
  • Government funding programs: Grants, contributions, loans, vouchers and tax incentives offered by government to applicant organizations as sources of industrial and economic stimulus.
  • Grants: Non-repayable financial contributions awarded by the government to an organization.
  • Incentives: Funding (grants, contributions, loans, tax credits, vouchers) disbursed by Canadian governments to support businesses and the economy.
  • Industrial and Technological Benefits (ITBs): Formerly known as Industrial and Regional Benefits (IRBs), Industry Canada's ITB Program ensures that aerospace and defence companies winning contracts worth more than $100 million provide contracts of equivalent value to Canadian contractors. The Government is currently reviewing this program. More details will be provided in the Feb. 18 issue of the FundingReport newsletter. 
  • Industrial Stimulus: See “Incentives”.
  • Loans: Funds loaned by a government agency or a private party to an organization.
  • Private financing programs: Canadian sources of venture capital (VC), angel financing, bank financing, private foundations and private investment available to applicant Canadian businesses.
  • Tax Credits: Tax refunds and tax credits are a type of funding administered through the tax system that provides refunds or credits on eligible investments.
  • Value Proposition (VP): A new "rated and weighted" approach to evaluating the quality of defence procurement projects under the Industrial and Technological Benefit (ITB) program.
  • Vouchers: Vouchers are pre-paid fund flowing from a government agency to a research institution to conduct R&D, e-business or commercialization services on behalf of a business.
  • Wage Subsidies: Funding to support all or part of an employee's salary, wage subsidies are generally applicable to persons with certain characteristics, such as students, interns, graduates, unemployed workers, people with disabilities, or aboriginal persons.

Why use The Funding Portal?

Use The Funding Portal to source government funding and private matching funds for your organization in a fraction of the time. 


Without the Portal:

  • Average time required to find funding: 12 business days/ 94 hours
  • Average cost per hour: $150 blended rate for professional/ in-house time $13,700 
  • Total time and costs: 12 business days and $14,000 in out-of-pocket costs 


With The Funding Portal:

  • Average time using Find It search tool and Ask-an-Expert service: 2.4 hours
  • Average cost using The Funding Portal: $480 (Including client time priced at $75/hour)
  • Total Time and Costs: 2.4 hours and $480 in costs


Savings over conventional method:

  • Time: 91.6 hours (3 weeks) saved
  • Money: $13,500 saved per search

How much funding is paid out in Canada each year through government funding programs, including grants and contributions?

While it is difficult to tally because governments account for grants and contributions in many different ways, it is estimated that governments in Canada at the federal, provincial and municipal levels together provide about $30 billion in annual government funding to businesses. This funding is an important instrument for governments to stimulate economic development and achieve industrial policy objectives, and is common in developed countries around the world.

Are there funding opportunities available for my business?

There is only one way to find out. Search using Find It, our high-powered search engine, and apply using our business advisory services to improve your outcomes. Before The Funding Portal, it took days to identify government funding and private financing programs, department by department and website by website. Now, you can instantly identify appropriate funding programs and turn to the Portal’s expert funding services to improve your outcomes.

How does The Funding Portal match its experts with funding applicants?

The Funding Portal's Roster brings together some of Canada's foremost funding experts in government grants and private financing, many drawn from respected federal, provincial and municipal government funding agencies. The Portal matches applicants with the most relevant expert based on industry sector, location and funding objectives.

Can my location impact the funding programs to which I can apply?

Some government funding programs or private investment funds are available nationwide, while others are region-specific. Some funding programs are also geared towards certain industries or certain size businesses, such as start-ups or small businesses. The Funding Portal's Find It search engine helps refine your results to navigate funding requirements.

Can I fill out more than one government funding application for my business?

Yes, you can apply for all the government funding programs for which you meet the requirements. However,  a small percentage of government funding programs prevent applicants from receiving funds from other programs.

Do government grants and contributions need to be repaid?

Under some government funding programs, a contribution may need to be repaid. Grants are generally not repayable provided that they are used to achieve the stated objectives of the program and the business objectives specified in the government funding agreement. Breach of the government funding agreement can trigger repayment obligations— therefore it is important to respect your engagement and keep proof of any purchases made with the funds.

Does The Funding Portal sell government information?

The Funding Portal is a national bilingual online portal that provides all Canadians with access to more than 4,500 federal, provincial and municipal government funding, tax incentive programs and private financing opportunities through its unique Find It search engine. Users are asked to register for a free account to conduct multiple searches on Find It.

Are “success fees” or “contingency-based billing” allowed? Does The Funding Portal link payment of client fees to the success of the funding application in any way?

There are legal and regulatory matters governing this issue. The Funding Portal complies with the legal and regulatory environment governing government funding: 

  • Tax incentive programs administered by the Canada Revenue Agency, such as SR&EDs, do allow for contingency-based billing or “success fees” as they are often called. And many service providers do in fact charge clients on this basis, requiring payment if and when tax incentives are received by the applicant.
  • Many grants and contributions programs require applicants to state that they will not use their government funding to pay for professional services associated with the application process. The funds are to be used to finance the approved project itself and not the application process.
While our data suggests that your funding outcomes will improve by using The Funding Portal, we cannot guarantee results and much will depend on the quality of the project, team  and supporting information that the applicant is able to put forward. We provide a valuable professional service and our clients accept that our fees are fair and payable for working with them to make their application the best it can be.

Our policies can be summarized as follows:
  • All fees are agreed to in advance, set out in an invoice, and secured by credit card or cheque.
  • These funds are paid into our Trust account where they are held pending completion of the service.
  • On completion of the service, the invoice is re-sent to you, showing the funds drawn from trust and your account paid in full.
  • These practices are consistent with those adopted by reputable professional firms, world-wide.

What are the accepted payment methods?

The Funding Portal accepts payments via credit card and cheque. PayPal payments are also accepted, but a 5% surcharge will apply. Payments must be made prior to service delivery.


Does The Funding Portal offer services related to Industrial and Technological Benefits (ITBs)?

The Funding Portal offers a one-window gateway for companies seeking information and expert services related to Industrial and Technological Benefits (ITBs). The Portal has a pan-Canadian team of experts who can match your organization with large multi-national aerospace and defence companies with ITB obligations.


What specific services will I receive under Ask-an-Expert, Apply for It, and Leverage It?

Please visit our designated Services page to learn more about each offer.