Prime Minister Justin Trudeau today announced the launch of the Canada Digital Adoption Program (CDAP) to help Canadian small- and medium-sized businesses grow their online presence and upgrade or adopt digital technologies. The funding will help for-profit organizations leverage e-commerce opportunities and digitize their operations to stay competitive and meet their customers’ needs in the digital marketplace.
This investment, which will provide $4 billion over four years, will support up to 160,000 small businesses and create good middle-class jobs across the country, including nearly 30,000 jobs enabling young Canadians to gain valuable work experience. CDAP consists of $1.4 billion in grants and advisory services to SMEs and up to $2.6 billion in loans from the Business Development Bank of Canada (BDC) to help SMEs cover the cost of implementing digital transformation plans.
“Our government is committed to ensuring that all Canadian businesses benefit from the digital economy – from main street retail shops to entrepreneurs to manufacturers,” said The Hon. Mary Ng, Minister of International Trade, Export Promotion, Small Business and Economic Development. “The Canada Digital Adoption Program will support as many as 160,000 small- and medium- sized businesses to adopt new technologies while creating thousands of jobs for young Canadians. I encourage small business and owners and entrepreneurs to apply for the CDAP and leverage technology to grow their business and access new customers around the world.”
Canadian small- and medium-sized enterprises (SMEs) can assess their digital readiness and may apply for grants and loans online. Depending on their size, specific needs, and goals, businesses can apply for funding through the Grow Your Business Online or Boost your Business Technology streams.
Click here to access the assessment tool and determine which grant best suits your business.
- Grow Your Business Online funding provides microgrants of up to $2,400 and youth e-commerce advisors’ support to help small businesses implement digital storefronts and e-commerce capabilities. Grants will be available through local and regional service providers across Canada. The service providers will also support a network of e-commerce advisors who will advise and help small businesses adopt e-commerce. Applications can only be submitted by a small business that meets all of the following criteria:
- Is a for-profit business (including for-profit social enterprises and co-operatives)
- Is a registered or incorporated business
- Is a consumer-facing business
- Can be accessed by consumers or provides in-person services to consumers
- Has at least one employee
- Must commit to maintaining digital adoption strategy for six months after participation in the program
- Must consent to participating in follow-up surveys, sharing information with the Government of Canada (ISED and Statistics Canada), and having the name of the business published as a recipient of funding
The following types of small businesses are ineligible:
- Corporate chains, franchises or registered charities
- Representatives of multi-level marketing companies
- Real estate brokerages
- Boost Your Business Technology funding provides grants covering 90 per cent of costs up to $15,000 to access advisory services to develop a digital adoption plan, access to zero per cent interest loans from the BDC, as well as opportunities for student placements. Before applying, your business must meet all of the following eligibility criteria:
- Be incorporated federally or provincially, or be a Canadian resident sole proprietor
- Be a for-profit, privately owned business
- Have between 1 – 499 full time equivalent employees
- Have at least $500,000 of annual revenues in one of the previous three tax years