The Black Entrepreneurship Program (BEP) is a partnership between the Government of Canada, Black-led business organizations, and financial institutions. With an investment of up to $221 million over four years, it will help Black Canadian business owners and entrepreneurs grow their businesses and succeed now and into the future.
Components of the program:
- National Ecosystem Fund – will support not-for-profit Black-led business organizations across the country in their capacity to provide support, mentorship, financial planning, and business training for Black entrepreneurs. Deadline: Closed. Previous deadline – December 21, 2020.
- Black Entrepreneurship Loan Fund – is a partnership between the Government, Black-led business organizations, and several financial institutions. It will provide loans up to $250,000 to Black business owners and entrepreneurs across the country. Deadline: Details to come.
- Black Entrepreneurship Knowledge Hub – will conduct research on Black entrepreneurship in Canada. It will help identify barriers to success and opportunities for growth. The Hub will be led by not-for-profit Black-led community and business organizations in partnership with educational institutions. Deadline: Closed: January 18, 2021.
The program will include:
- up to $53 million to develop and implement a new National Ecosystem Fund to support Black-led business organizations across the country. It will help Black business owners and entrepreneurs access funding and capital, mentorship, financial planning services, and business training.
- up to $33.3 million in support through the new Black Entrepreneurship Loan Fund that will provide loans of between $25,000 and $250,000 for Black business owners and entrepreneurs. The Government of Canada is also partnering with financial institutions, including RBC, BMO Financial Group, Scotiabank, CIBC, National Bank, TD, Vancity, and Alterna Savings, to make up to $128 million available in additional lending support.
- up to $6.5 million to create and sustain a new Black Entrepreneurship Knowledge Hub that will collect data on the state of Black entrepreneurship in Canada and help identify Black entrepreneurs’ barriers to success as well as opportunities for growth. The Hub will be run by Black-led community and business organizations, in partnership with educational institutions.