IRAP Canadian Small Business Grants for Technological Innovation

bigstock-Back-view-image-of-young-busin-49673441National Research Council Canada (NRC) provides a number of services to growing small to mid-sized businesses across Canada, including providing of financial assistance through NRC Industrial Research Assistance Program (IRAP) to in order to undertake technology innovation.  NRC-IRAP funding is typically released on April 1st of every year, which coincides with the start date of many IRAP-funded projects. However, most IRAP projects can occur anytime between the April 1st start date and March 31st of the following year; there are exceptions to this rule.

Who Can Benefit from IRAP Canadian Business Grants?

NRC helps for-profit small to mid-sized companies with 500 or fewer employees that have the objective to grow and generate profits through the development and commercialization of innovative, technology driven new or improved products, services, or processes in Canada.

IRAP Government Business Grants Alternatives

Two popular funding alternatives offered through NRC are IRAP Accelerated Review Process (ARP) and IRAP Mid-sized Projects.

Industrial Research Assistance Program (IRAP) Accelerated Review Process (ARP)

IRAP ARP helps small to mid-sized businesses across Canada solve innovation challenges.  The loose focus of this funding program opens up a number of opportunities for businesses to take advantage of grants from the Canadian government.  For example, some of our clients have accessed IRAP ARP to help with market expansion activities such as website improvements and the development of e-commerce portals to better reach export markets.

IRAP Accelerated Review Process (ARP) Canada Business Grants:

  • Amount: Maximum $50,000 in government grants covering as much as 80% of direct labour and 50% sub-contractor expenses.
  • Timeline: Federal funding is released April 1st of each year.
  • Eligibility: 1-500 people on payroll, at least 2 years incorporated, and a commitment to internal R&D activities.

IRAP Small Business Grants for Mid-Sized Projects

IRAP Funding for Mid-Sized Projects support those larger than IRAP ARP in scale and typically covers 65% of salary costs.  The exact amount of IRAP funding will be determined by an IRAP representative.  IRAP Mid-sized projects support the solving of an innovation challenge through technology and research.

Projects Eligible for Business Grants Canada for IRAP Mid-Sized Projects:

  • The production of original software.
  • Research and Development, prototyping, feasibility studies.
  • The development of new products, including manufacturing process analysis & product testing.

Learn More about These and Other Canadian Government Grants & Loans Opportunities

If you are an established business with at least 15 employees, have been incorporated for a minimum of 3 years, and either manufacture or partake in R&D in Canada, you are invited to join Mentor Works for a free Canadian government funding workshop or webinar. Register for an upcoming session to learn more about the government funding landscape, and strategies to develop a government funding plan.

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  1. What Government of Canada funding programs do we presently have to help the 50+ Entrepreneur who is based in Canada and wants to startup a small business as an entrepreneur or small business owner?

    Please advise.

    Joe W.

    1. Hello Joe,
      Thank you for joining our conversation. It sounds like a great cause that you are a part of.

      Unfortunately there are not any specific programs (for seniors) that we have profiled on Mentor Works’ blog. However, for the most part I believe the resources available to 50+ are similar to what you would find for others (with the exception of some programs especially aimed at helping young people start businesses). First step, download a checklist to find out what you need to do in order to qualify for government support: If you do find any programs aimed at seniors specifically please let me know (

      Also, this just came to mind, but I know of a few of a our clients that are teams made up of people who are 50+, and under 30. Seems to me, people under 30 have the biggest difficulty finding jobs (and thus are offered greater support from the government), and generally speaking people over 50 are better off financially -a good fit for business partnership?

      Thanks again for stopping by our blog!

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