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 using Find It. Here is an overview of the types of funding included on the Portal’s Find It tool:
- Government grants and contributions
- Tax refunds and tax credits: Tax refunds and credits for certain eligible investments, such as job creation and R&D, are widely available for business in Canada and one of the easiest and most common sources of government funding.
- Loans: Some government departments and crown corporations offer loans to businesses at a lower interest rate than private sector lenders, including low and no-interest loans. Businesses that do not qualify for commercial credit may sometimes qualify for these loan programs.
- Loan guarantees: In some instances, the government offers loan guarantees to businesses that might otherwise be turned down for a loan. There is less risk for the lender if the government provides a loan guarantee, which makes the financial institution more willing to lend to your business.
- Wage subsidies and job creation funding: You may be able to get part of an employee's salary paid if you hire people with certain characteristics, such as students, interns, graduates, and people with disabilities or Aboriginal persons, among others.
- Equity investments: Governments are not really in the business of owning companies so equity investments are rare. However, some government funding programs provide public funding to prepare your company for external investors, including assistance in business and financial plans and understanding venture and equity markets.
- Other: Governments provide an array of unique and innovative funding solutions. Use Find It to identify government funding solutions that are right for you.
- Private financing: Venture capital, incubators, angel financing, bank loans.
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 $24 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 4,000 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 public 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.
- Grants and contributions programs, by contrast, often prohibit contingency-based billing or “success fees” as they are often called. Many application forms require applicants to state that they will not use their public funding to pay for professional services associated with their 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.