There are a variety of funding program available to entrepreneurs

in the Colchester region:

General Business Funding

  • Northern Opportunities for Business Ltd. is our local Community Business Development Corporation (CBDC) co-located with the Partnership. They offer a variety of funding for start-ups and access to training programs.

    • Micro-Loans: Loans under $10,000

    • Loans for Clean Technology Businesses

    • Self-Employment Benefits (Available to qualified persons receiving Employment Insurance).

    • General Business Loans up to $150,000

  • The Credit Union Small Business Loan Guarantee Program:

    • Financing up to $500,000 in the form of term loans, working capital and lines of credit

  • The Black Business Initiative provides financing for capital equipment acquisition, working capital, or short-term receivable financing.

  • The Atlantic Canada Opportunities Agency (ACOA) is also co-located with the Partnership. They have a variety of programs including:

    • The Atlantic Innovation Fund, Business Development Program, Sector Export Strategies, Young Entrepreneur Development Initiative, Women in Business Initiative

  • Ulnooweg Loans (First Nations): Business start-up loans for First Nations people

  • Agri-food and Life Sciences PEI Emergence Incubator Program (open to all of Atlantic Canada)

  • Perennia's N.S. Agri-food Accelerator Program

  • Futurpreneur is a national charity that helps young Canadians, age 18-39, start and sustain their own successful business.

    • Access loans up to $45,000.


Angel Investors & Venture Capital

Angel investors are typically among an entrepreneur's family and friends. The money angel investors provide may be a one-time investment to help the business propel or an ongoing injection of money to support and carry the company through its difficult early stages. Angel investors are also referred to as private investors, seed investors or business angels. These people usually have a high net worth and provide funds to startups in exchange for ownership equity.

A venture capitalist is an investor who either provides capital to start-ups or supports small companies that want to grow and expand. Venture capitalists are willing invest these companies because they can earn a massive return on their investments if these companies are a success.


Funding for Research

  • Innovacorp: The Early Stage Commercialization Fund helps move Nova Scotia university, college and university-affiliated hospital research to market.

  • Mitacs Inc. - Provides funding for research when your business would benefit from teaming up with a university Masters, PhD or Postdoctoral Fellow for research collaborations.

  • Industrial Assistance Research Program (IRAP): For small and medium-sized businesses in Canada (500 or fewer employees); must be incorporated, profit-oriented, building innovation technology-driven new or innovative products, services or processes

  • Engage Grants (NSERC): Up to $25,000 for up to 6 months for a company to solve specific problem with technical merit, industrial relevance and potential for innovative impact with a benefit to Canada economically, socially and environmentally.

  • Springboard Atlantic: Innovation Mobilization Program to move skills/knowledge-base into industry


Funding for Exporting

  • Atlantic Canada Opportunities Agency: resources for business in market exports

  • Nova Scotia Business Inc - The Export Growth Program supports businesses looking to increase their export sales outside of Nova Scotia. The program provides financial incentives for projects that assist a business’ ability to overcome barriers to export growth.

  • Export Development Canada: bonding, insurance, and financing solutions for Canadian companies, as well as financing for foreign companies

  • Foreign Affairs and International Trade Canada (DFAIT): works with Export USA, runs the Centre of Intercultural Learning (CIL), global trade missions, and a number of export development programs

  • Canadian Manufacturers & Exporters (CME): advocates for manufacturers and exporters; builds a more competitive business environment; provides critical and timely intelligence; strengthens leadership through best practices; and leverages networks for success

  • Learnsphere - Export Development and Commercialization Consulting Funding


Workforce Support

Nova Scotia Workforce Development Grants

  • WIPSI supplements employer contributions to train full-time staff (permanently located in Nova Scotia) to improve productivity and profitability; increase innovation; adapt to new technology, machinery and equipment, or work processes; increase inter-provincial and international competitiveness; and foster workplace diversity.

  • Graduate to Opportunity - Hire a recent graduate and the Government of Nova Scotia will cover a portion of their salary.

  • Co-op Education Incentive - provides wage assistance to organizations that offer career-related work experiences for university and college co-operative students.  

  • Skills Incentive -  offers wage assistance to non-profit organizations that hire post-secondary students for summer jobs.


Government of Canada Grants

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