Montreal—The Business Development Bank of Canada (BDC) has earmarked $200 million for loans to help entrepreneurs and small businesses upgrade their information and communications technology (ICT).
“We now know that ICT has a very real impact on small business productivity, innovation and competitiveness. In fact, much of the productivity problem in Canada can be attributed to insufficient investments in technology,” explained Jean-René Halde, BDC president and CEO.
The BDC President announced this new initiative for the launch of Small Business Week, which is runs from October 16 to 22.
“Our government is pleased to announce this initiative as part of its digital economy strategy, which aims to make Canada a global leader. Greater adoption of digital technologies is a key element of our strategy, and their use is an effective driver of productivity and innovation across every sector,” said the Honourable Christian Paradis, Minister of Industry.
Accessible financing to invest in ICT
Both BDC client and non-client companies, including small businesses such as individual or home offices, may apply for a loan to purchase hardware, software and consulting services including Internet solutions to boost online sales. BDC says it will “…speed up and simplify the processing of these applications.”
“To finance investments in ICT, entrepreneurs normally use short-term financing, which quickly reduces the company’s working capital,” explained Halde. “With this $200 million that BDC is earmarking for investments in ICT, entrepreneurs may pay back the loans over the medium term, which protects the company’s working capital.”
Entrepreneurs with ICT projects that do not exceed $50,000 must submit their loan applications online at www.bdc.ca. Companies that need more than $50,000 should contact the BDC business centre in their area, apply online or call BDC customer service.
BDC is a crown corporation with almost 1,900 employees and more than 100 business centres across the country and offers financing, subordinate financing, venture capital and consulting services small and medium-sized companies.