Small Business Support Resources
Ensure your business is prepared to handle a potential case of business disruption to mitigate potential financial impacts to your employees and your business.
- Coronavirus disease (COVID-19): Resources for Canadian businesses
- Business Continuity Checklist: Maintaining business during an infectious disease outbreak. Click here to download.
- Canadian Chamber of Commerce Pandemic Preparedness for Business
- CDC’s Interim Guidance for Businesses and Employees
- Hamilton Police Services Crime Prevention Information for Business
Electricity and Utilities Support
On March 24th, the provincial government announced immediate electricity rate relief
- For a 45-day period, the government is holding electricity prices to the off-peak rate of 10.1 ¢/kWh no matter what time of day the electricity is consumed.
- Time-of-use customers will see rate reductions of over 50 per cent compared to on-peak rates.
- The pricing applies automatically – no customer action is required.
- Some customers may receive a bill before their utility or unit sub-meter provider is able to implement the price change, in which case they will receive a credit on the following bill.
In addition to the TOU rate relief, Alectra has been working on other solutions that will make a real difference to our business customers.
- Extended the period for which we will not disconnect customers to July 31st.
- Alectra will be releasing security deposits on eligible accounts provided by all business customers.
- Working closely with customers who require flexible payment plans during this difficult time
See the full announcement from Alectra here.
Navigating coronavirus: COVID-19 updates & resources for foodservice operators
Restaurants Canada is closely monitoring developments related to COVID-19 to ensure that the restaurant & bar industry has all necessary information associated with this evolving public health situation.
Click here to visit their website with resources and up-to-date information for restaurant owners.
BarterPay helps businesses obtain the goods and services they need without using cash, instead they barter their idle inventory and/or services.
BarterPay converts the value of traded goods and services into TRADEdollars® (at retail value) which allows the business owner to extract the actual things they need from the network versus trading directly one to one.
To learn more about BarterPay, click here.
In February 2020, BarterPay became a new Affinity Benefit for members in the Ontario Chamber of Commerce Network. Learn more here. Through this partnership, members of participating local chambers of commerce and boards of trade will be given exclusive benefits such as reduced activation fees, special promotions and access to BarterPay Small Business Barter Loans at 0% interest.
Business Development Bank of Canada (BDC)
The Business Development Bank of Canada website is a great resource hub for Canadian entrepreneurs. It includes information on working capital, payment postponements and rate reductions.
Effective immediately, new relief measures for qualified businesses below. For more details visit: bdc.ca/coronavirus.
- Working capital loans of up to $2 million with flexible terms and principal postponements for up to 6 months for qualifying businesses;
- Postponement of payments for up to six months, free of charge, for existing BDC clients with total BDC loan commitment of $1 million or less
- Temporary rate reductions for eligible BDC clients and on new client loans
- Additional details regarding Business Credit Availability Program (BCAP) measures, including industry specific support
RBC Royal Bank of Canada
REPORT: Small Business, Big Pivot: A devastating downturn, and how Canadian enterprises can transition
Canada’s economic recovery won’t be fully realized without a small business rebound. But it is not enough for companies in this hard-hit sector to stay solvent. They must also adapt to an economy that has become more virtual, local and fragmented since the global pandemic. There is a lot at stake if our small businesses are unable to make the transition.
RBC’s report offers policymakers with a way forward. RBC’s five-point plan was informed by proprietary economic analysis, and an in-depth survey of 22,000 businesses. It focuses on:
1. Streamlining Ottawa’s relief programs for the next phase of the recovery
2. Investing in capacity to reopen safely, including broad-based programs to assist employers as they try to get back to business
3. Creating new networks for a massive digital push to support small firms in the global platform economy
4. Implementing new economic strategies to scale small business; and,
5. Adopting a more strategic approach to globalization as protectionist measures emerge
Support from Big Tech
Google’s Support for Small Businesses
Google announced they will provide $340 million in Google Ads credits available to all small- and medium-sized businesses with active accounts over the past year. Credit notifications will appear in their Google Ads accounts and can be used at any point until the end of 2020 across our advertising platforms. Learn more about Google’s initiatives here.
Facebook’s Support for Small Businesses
Facebook is offering $100M in cash grants and ad credits for up to 30,000 eligible small businesses in over 30 countries where we operate. Details here.
Facebook also announced the launch of Shops, a way for businesses to set up storefronts on both Facebook and Instagram for free. The Shops are powered by Shopify, BigCommerce, and Woo. Shops is an easy way to turn your business’ social platform into an e-commerce shop. Learn more.