First Nation Business Support (Canada-wide)

(most info [sic] from Anishinabek Consultants Inc. newsletter)

1. Tale’awtxw Aboriginal Capital Corporation (British Columbia)


Tale’awtxw Aboriginal Capital Corporation is an Aboriginal Financial Institution; TACC is committed to supporting the success of Aboriginal Businesses within the Coast Salish Traditional Territories with business financing and support services. We hope to provide you with inspiration, tools, resources and information to use towards building, conceptualizing or expanding your business.

Accessing Financing: Tale’awtxw provides financing for Aboriginal Entrepreneurs including Status, Metis, and Inuit and UNN members. As an Aboriginal Entrepreneur starting or expanding a Small Business, we understand it can be difficult to access financing for your venture and we have options to meet your needs. Available starting in April of each year; the First Citizens Fund (FCF) option offers a 40% forgiveness portion over the life of your loan offering borrowing power up to $75,000. Our TACC Conventional Loan does not include a forgiveness portion, yet is competitive with mainstream financing with competitive interest rates and flexible amortization terms. You can also combine the First Citizens Fund with the TACC Conventional Loan to make the most of your borrowing power for the needs of your small business.

2. Alberta Indian Investment Corporation


A.I.I.C. provides interest-bearing loans to First Nation entrepreneurs for the purpose of establishing, acquiring, diversifying or expanding a business. In some cases, equity financing may also be available. Interest rates are competitive. Loans are generally for periods of up to 5 years.

Financial Assistance: • Loans to on and off reserve businesses • Equipment loans • Loans to set up new business • Loans to expand business • Loans for working capital • Equity Financing • Life insured loans • Fixed or floating interest rates • Flexible repayment terms • Competitive rates/terms Applicants for financial assistance must: • have a business plan which shows that their business will be profitable • contribute their own equity as a portion of the total financing of the business • have adequate collateral security • have acceptable credit rating Eligibility: To be eligible for A.I.I.C services, applicants must meet the following criteria: • must be a Status Indian who has resided in Alberta for at least one year • if a corporation or partnership, the Status Indian must own at least 51% of any shares, participate more that 51% in profits, and above all, must be active in managing the business • The applicant’s head office must be in Alberta The following types of funding applications are generally ineligible for A.I.I.C financing services: • personal, housing or consumer loans • farming, ranching or other agricultural ventures • feasibility studies • Investment properties

Alberta Indian Investment Corporation Contact Information:
P.O. Box 180
Enoch, Alberta
T7X 3Y3
E mail:
Phone: (780) 470-3600
Toll Free: 1-888-308-6789
Fax: (780) 470-3605

3. Saskatchewan Indian Equity Foundation Inc


Aboriginal Youth Business Initiative (AYBI) The Aboriginal Youth Business Initiative (AYBI) is a financial program established to provide business loans directly to Aboriginal youth. Training and support services are also available. The objective of this program is to increase access to capital and business management services for Aboriginal youth. SIEF provides access to capital to help young people build entrepreneurial interest and capacity. SIEF also provides pre-lending training and post-lending mentoring and coaching services to youth businesses to ensure high levels of success. The program is open to all types of Aboriginal youth business. We provide start-up capital for new businesses with viable business plans, and we lend funds to existing businesses for expansion, modernization or the acquisition of fixed assets.

The AYBI program is available to businesses that are 51 percent Aboriginal owned and/or operated and dedicated to the employment of Aboriginal workers. The maximum loan is $15,000 with an interest rate of 8.5%. Any Aboriginal youth from age 18 to 35 inclusive is eligible, as are businesses, corporations and partnerships where at least 51 percent is owned and controlled by an Aboriginal youth.

4. First Peoples Economic Growth Fund (Manitoba)

First Peoples Fund

This program is intended to provide support to Manitoba First Nation individuals or First Nation-based enterprises which, in the opinion of the Fund, have a business concept that, through initial screening, provides excellent opportunity but demonstrates a need for financial assistance with a professional business plan in order to attract financing for the business.

This program allows the applicant to engage the services of a professional consultant to assist in the research and development of a quality business plan that will be used to attract financing. Applicants should also attach a business concept summary. The business concept summary should include but not be limited to: business overview, industry overview, marketing strategy, management experience, staffing, estimated project costs and financing.

Nature of Funding • Funding available is up to 75% of the costs to a maximum of $20,000. This funding is non-repayable. Who is Eligible? Applicants must: • Be a member of a Manitoba First Nation, living on or off reserve in Manitoba • Be aged 18 and over, and eligible to work in Canada • Submit an application describing the business for which they wish to develop a business plan • Not have owned a similar business in the past 12 months • Provide the name and qualifications of the proposed consultant, proposed terms of reference and a written proposal, including a quote. It is recommended that three competitive quotes are obtained.


5. Waubetek Business Development Corporation (Ontario)


Aboriginal Student Business Loans The Aboriginal Student Business Loans (ASBL) Program provides loan financing of up to $1,500 for new or existing student businesses. This program is generally for those students who wish to create their own summer business or become self-employed. Eligibility These student business loans are currently available to Aboriginal youth 15 to 25 years of age who is a member one of the First Nations within our service area.

Program Description • The maximum loan amount available per business is $1,500 (limit may be exceeded depending on the business plan). • All applicants are required to contribute 5% towards the total cost of their project up front as a cash equity investment. • Applicants under the age of 19 years will require a guarantee on each loan (parent, guardian or business person). • The interest rate for loans is the prime lending rate. • Repayment terms are flexible, depending on the type of business. • All applicants must be returning to school as a full-time student in the fall of the same year. • All applicants must prepare and submit a business plan (a template will be provided). • Year-round, part-time or seasonal businesses also eligible.

For more information, please contact a Business Development Officer at:
Waubetek Business Development Corporation General Delivery
Birch Island, Ontario
P0P 1A0
Telephone (705) 285-4275
Fax:(705) 285-4584

6. Jeunes Promoteurs (Quebec)

Jeunes Promoteurs

Applies to: Quebec If you want to start up your first business and you are between the ages of 18 and 35, you may be eligible to obtain financial assistance.

• Component 1 – Preparation of a business plan: 75% of your expenses to carry out a feasibility study are eligible. • Component 2 – Establishment of a first business: If you have a business plan and will create at least two jobs, 50% of your expenses are eligible. • Component 3 – Entrepreneur training: Acquire training that is relevant to your business plan and obtain access to assistance that could cover all your eligible expenses.

For more information please go to:

7. Aboriginal Business Development Fund (Ulnooweg Loan – Atlantic Canada)


Applies to: New Brunswick, Nova Scotia, Prince Edward Island, Newfoundland and Labrador You could get a repayable loan of up to $250,000 to start or buy a business, grow the one you already have or refinance your business, if you: • Are a status or non-status Aboriginal (First Nations, Métis or Inuit) • Are living on or off reserve • Live in the Atlantic Provinces (New Brunswick, Nova Scotia, Prince Edward Island, Newfoundland and Labrador) • Own 51% or more of the business People aged 35 or younger may also be eligible for smaller loans (up to $15,000) at a lower interest rate. Ulnooweg Development Group Inc. administers the loans on behalf of the Atlantic Canada Opportunities Agency. A commercial accounts manager will work with you and help you to find other business services for Aboriginal entrepreneurs.

To find out more information go to their website:

8. SEED Canada (Atlantic Canada)

Service Canada

Seed Capital Program The Seed Capital Program, a community based initiative made available by the Community Business Development Corporations (CBDCs) and other community led organizations, provides loans to start, expand or improve a small business, as well as acquire business skills training. Making It Your Business More Atlantic Canadians are starting their own businesses than ever before, and it’s not hard to see why. Being an entrepreneur offers independence, the chance to make your own decisions and do things your own way, and the potential for tremendous rewards. The Atlantic Canada Opportunities Agency (ACOA) provides contributions to CBDCs and other organizations to help Atlantic Canadians acquire the business skills and capital they need to start modernize and expand their businesses through the Seed Capital Program. Seed Capital Program The Seed Capital Program provides loans to start, expand or improve a small business, as well as acquire business skills training.

• A maximum of $20,000 is available per applicant in the form of a repayable, unsecured personal loan with flexible interest and repayment terms. • A maximum of $2,000 is available per applicant for specialized training and business counselling. Eligibility • Applicants must reside in Atlantic Canada • Applicants must be the majority owners of their businesses • Applicants under 35 years of age may use the loan to start-up, expand or modernize a business • Applicants 35 years of age and older may use the loan to start a new business only • The loan may be used to leverage other investments • The loan cannot be used to purchase an existing business • The loan cannot be used for refinancing existing debts or business restructuring

More Information: For more information on the Seed Capital Program, please contact the Canada Business nearest you at: 1-888-576-4444 or go to

9. Aboriginal Business Development Program: (N.W.T, Nunavut and Yukon)


If you’re Aboriginal and live in the Canadian North, you could get financial assistance to start and grow a business. You can also get help with: • Business planning • Start-up • Marketing You need to own at least 51% of your business.

CanNor, Yukon Territory Region – Email:
CanNor, Northwest Territories Region – Email:
CanNor, Nunavut Region – Email:

10.  National Aboriginal Capital Corporations Association


The National Aboriginal Capital Corporations Association (NACCA) is the association for a network of Aboriginal Financial Institutions (AFIs) dedicated to stimulating economic growth for First Nations, Métis and Inuit by promoting and underwriting Aboriginal business development. AFIs provide business financing and support to Aboriginal businesses, which can include; business loans, financial consulting services, aftercare and start-up support.

11.  Aboriginal Business Canada

Aboriginal Business Canada

Aboriginal Business Canada is a program of Indian and Northern Affairs Canada (INAC). Working with clients and partners, we provide a range of services and support that is helping to promote the growth of a strong Aboriginal business sector in Canada. Our support varies depending upon the needs of the client, the availability, and sources of funding, the eligibility of costs, the economic benefits, and the reasonableness and timing of financial returns on investment.

12. Aboriginal Business Development Fund


Did you know that you could get funding at the community level? The ABDF (Aboriginal Business Development Fund) is a program that provides tools for Aboriginal entrepreneurs who choose to start their own businesses. The funds are available through a community-based organization.

What is an ABDF? • The fund increases access to capital for Aboriginal entrepreneurs who would normally not qualify for a loan • Loans combine financing with management training and on-going mentorship. The entrepreneur commits by undertaking training to enhance management skills and agrees to ongoing mentorship. The loan is disbursed only after these conditions are met • The fund benefits the community and serves as a business model for other communities to follow

What is BDC’s commitment? BDC has committed $1 million dollars for 4 ABDFs in various regions of Canada. Agreements have currently been signed for 3 ABDFs. For all of these agreements, the funds are delivered at the grassroots level and involve amounts varying from $5,000 to $20,000. The loans are fully repayable with terms varying from 2 to 3 years depending on the project’s cash-flow expectations.

For more information go to:


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