Business Scale-up and Productivity (BSP) in the Prairie provinces
Up to 50% of eligible project costs:
- minimum $200,000; maximum $5 million per project from PrairiesCan†
- minimum 50% of total project funding required from confirmed non-government sources
- you must confirm all non-PrairiesCan sources when you apply and once again after project approval
†Maximum $10 million to any 1 organization
Incremental costs essential to the project. For example:
- capital costs (equipment, machinery)
- labour (wages, benefits)
- costs related to intellectual property
- technology development and commercial demonstrations
- professional, advisory, technical services
Costs deemed unreasonable, non-incremental and/or not directly related to project activities, for example:
- basic and applied R&D (Technology Readiness Level 1-6)
- land acquisition and goodwill
- salary bonuses and dividend payments
- entertainment expenses
- refinancing of existing debts
- amortization or depreciation of assets
- lobbying activities
Donations, dues and membership fees are ineligible.
PrairiesCan is looking to support projects that have a viable plan to produce strong economic outcomes.
Applicants must quantify, substantiate and later report on the following expected results:
- number of highly-qualified personnel (HQP) jobs created in Canada
- number of non-HQP jobs created in Canada
- revenue growth ($)
- export sales growth ($)
- business sales growth resulting from commercialization ($) – where applicable
PrairiesCan is working to improve the economic participation of underrepresented groups such as Indigenous peoples, women, and youth. Applicants are encouraged to report on efforts to support inclusiveness. Refer to the Government of Canada’s Inclusive Innovation Agenda
- PrairiesCan provides funding based on submitted claims.
- PrairiesCan will reimburse based on approved portion (in other words 50%) of eligible project costs that have been incurred and paid.
- Consult your accountant and/or Canada Revenue Agency to determine the full implications of receiving BSP funding (such as taxable income, Scientific Research and Experimental Development Tax Incentive Program (SR&ED) tax credits)
- SR&ED credits or other similar federal or provincial tax credits expected to be received within the project scope/timeline for project activities will be considered to be other government assistance. This may require PrairiesCan to reduce its funding to maintain the level of government assistance at 50%.
- Where possible, exclude SR&ED eligible costs from your application.
- After project completion, there is a 1 year grace period, followed by equal monthly payments over 5 years.
- Interest-free; no security/collateral will be taken.
- There is no penalty for early repayment.
- Within approximately 90 business days of receiving a complete funding application. Refer to PrairiesCan’s service standards.
- One successful BSP project per organization per calendar year.
The BSP program uses a 2-stage continuous intake approach to which applicants may apply at any time:
- Expression of interest (EOI): This abbreviated on-line application form lets applicants describe the proposed project purpose, rationale, eligibility, activities and budget. We use it to determine if a project should advance to a full application.
- Full application: If a project advances to the second stage, we invite the applicant to provide more details about their project through our online portal.
We encourage you to contact us prior to submitting an EOI. A PrairiesCan officer would be happy to answer your questions.
How to submit an expression of interest
- Go through the BSP EOI help guide before submitting. We strongly recommend that you download or bookmark the guide now for reference while completing the EOI form.
- Prepare the following documents to submit along with your EOI:
- financial statements for the past 2 years, as well as interim financial statements for at least the last 6-month period
- other supporting information (such as business plan, pitch deck) detailing your organization, how it meets the high-growth definition, and details about the proposed project
- confirmation of other funding sources (such as bank statements, unused portion of lines of credit, official letters of intent, funding agreements, signed term sheets):
- funding provided by applicant:
- current bank statements detailing existing cash balances or the unused portion of lines of credit
- funding provided by third-party sources:
- official letters of confirmed/conditional funding
- funding agreements
- signed term sheets
- funding provided by applicant:
Note that we will not accept the following as confirmed funding:
- forecasted revenues from future activities
- accounts receivables
- commitments to raise equity or to obtain future bank financing
- Scientific Research & Experimental Development (SR&ED) credit receivables
After submitting an expression of interest
EOIs with the strongest merit and alignment with program objectives, priority areas and significant economic benefit, will be invited to complete a full application and undergo detailed assessment. Within 30 days of the EOI submission, PrairiesCan will invite selected applicants to submit a full application for funding. If you have not been contacted, your project will not be considered further.
Applications will be evaluated on their ability to achieve the BSP objectives and on their relative strengths in the following areas:
- market potential
- management capability
- financial capacity
- economic benefits
- technology readiness (technology commercialization projects only)
- departmental/regional priorities
- If undergoing a detailed assessment, PrairiesCan will request:
- business plan (if not already submitted)
- forecasted income statements and cashflow for the duration of the project
- detailed breakdown of project costs
- disclosure of pre-existing disbursements to third parties or senior executives
Although PrairiesCan may engage companies directly on outstanding questions or issues, applicants are advised to submit a complete and thorough application.
Not all applications undergoing a detailed assessment will receive an offer of funding.
A technical assessment may be conducted by National Research Council’s Industrial Research Assistance Program (NRC-IRAP) for projects using novel technology.
Sustainable Development Technologies Canada and Clean Growth Hub will be consulted on projects related to clean technology and clean resources.
Elements of a strong proposal
- comprehensive and well-written business plan
- independent market assessment and/or evidence of unmet market demand
- clearly defined market size and opportunity
- direct competitors identified and assessed
- detailed description of both the applicant organization and project management team
- credible financial statements accompanied by logical and reasonable financial projections
- demonstrated financial capacity to execute the project and the ability to repay
- clear alignment with at least 1 priority area
- significant economic benefits/outcomes supported by reasonable assumptions and rationale
- well-defined IP strategy (if applicable)
- clear explanation as to how the productivity or efficiency savings will enable the company to grow and expand (if applicable)
BSP is part of the national Regional Economic Growth through Innovation program.
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