The Jobs and Growth Fund (JGF) is a new $700 million federal government funding program that aims to strengthen local Canadian economies with long-term growth opportunities and jobs creation following setbacks from the global COVID-19 pandemic. It is worth noting that the JGF includes up to $70 million exclusively dedicated to small businesses established after January 2020 that meet the program’s eligibility criteria. This is important to highlight because most grant and loan programs require businesses to be established for longer periods of time, meaning that there is usually less funding for startups and entrepreneurs.
“By investing in our job creators and the organizations that support them, the Jobs and Growth Fund will help to create quality jobs, pursue inclusive and clean growth opportunities, and empower businesses and communities from coast to coast to coast.”
– Mélanie Joly, Canada’s Minister of Economic Development and Official Languages.
JGF financial support is being administered by Canada’s regional development agencies, including FedDev Ontario for Southern Ontario applicants and Western Economic Diversification Canada (WD) for applicants in Western Canada. Applications are now being accepted on a continuous intake basis until March 31, 2024, or until funding is fully allocated.
Funding Snapshot: Jobs and Growth Fund (JGF) for Ontario and Western Canada
The Jobs and Growth Fund (JGF) will support projects that contribute to job creation and long-term business growth through various areas to focus on rebuilding the Canadian economy following negative impacts caused by COVID-19.
- Eligible businesses could receive interest-free repayable contributions for up to 50% of eligible costs
- Eligible not-for-profit organizations could receive non-repayable contributions for up to 90% of eligible costs
- Eligible Indigenous organizations may receive contributions for up to 100% of eligible project costs
- Project contribution amounts do not normally exceed $10 million
- SME Businesses, including co-operatives
- Not-for-profit organizations and community economic development partners
- Indigenous organizations
To be eligible for the Jobs and Growth Fund, projects must:
- Strengthen the capacity in sectors critical to Canada’s recovery and growth:
– Support scale-up and market expansion activities
– Develop emerging areas of global competitive advantage
– Support supply chain adaptation and diversification opportunities in critical sectors such as food production, medical supplies, and biomanufacturing
- Foster an inclusive recovery:
– Support businesses owned or majority-led by underrepresented groups
– Increase the participation of underrepresented groups in the economy by supporting not-for-profit organizations that provide funding, business services, training, etc. for a more equitable workforce
- Preserve Canada’s competitiveness and future-proof SMEs through digital adoption:
– Support the development or adoption of digital and technological solutions (i.e. Industry 4.0) to increase and promote business productivity
– Invest in technologies that help scale businesses, enhance their capabilities, and increase resilience
- Support the transition to a green economy:
– Support the development and adoption of clean technology
– Help communities and businesses plan and drive clean, sustainable economic growth
– Partner with organizations to catalyze the development of green regional clusters
– Work with organizations supporting businesses to transition to a green economy
- Applications will be accepted on a continuous basis until all funding is allocated.
- Certain costs may be eligible on a retroactive basis up to 12 months before the receipt of the project application, but no earlier than April 19, 2021.
- All projects must be completed prior to March 31, 2024.
If your Ontario or Western Canada business is interested in applying for government funding through the Jobs and Growth Fund (JGF), please consider getting in touch with the Mentor Works team to help streamline the application and grant writing process.
Government Grants and Loans for COVID-19 Recovery
Although most Canadian provinces are no longer in strict lockdowns due to COVID-19, and national vaccination rates are higher than any other country, many small businesses across the country are still on a tough road to recovery from negative impacts caused by the virus.
Government funding is important now more than ever, and Canadian businesses should make sure they’re aware and accessing the grants and loans available to them.
In addition to the new Jobs and Growth Fund (JGF), there are a variety of other government programs dedicated to providing COVID-19 relief and recovery funding. Stay up to date on the Mentor Works COVID-19 Funding Programs Page for resources, news, programs, and all incentives related to COVID-19 support.