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    Government of Canada releases new app for small business engagement

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    Finding government support for your small business has just gotten easier thanks to the new Canadian Business App.

    The app was released on Monday by Minister of Small Business and Export Promotion, Mary Ng, during a meeting in Markham, Ontario.

    “The Canada Business App is a fantastic tool that will help small business owners access the government programs and services they need simply and quickly,” Minister Ng said.

    She noted that her government was focused on helping Canadian businesses start up, scale up and access new markets.

    “When small businesses in communities across the country succeed, our economy grows, and middle-class jobs are created.”

    A screenshot of the app.

    Small business facts

    According to the government, small and medium-sized business account for about 99 per cent of Canadian enterprises. These businesses have about 10 million workers across the country, which is over 70 percent of the workforce.

    Government statistics also show that 95,000 small businesses are created each year while about 85,000 fail annually. However, about 45 percent of small enterprises make it to the 10-year mark.

    Those provinces with the largest number of entrepreneurs are Ontario (417,742 small businesses), Quebec (236,705 small businesses), B.C (179,517), and Alberta (160,264).

    Small businesses are often financed with savings of the owner, and just 40 per cent applying for credit from banks and financial institutions. Statistics show that the average small business requests $70,000 in debt financing. Many small businesses also draw on credit with suppliers, loans from friends or relatives and earnings from other businesses to fund their enterprises to make ends meet. The latest statistics show that just over six per cent of small businesses use government credits or grants.

    Benefits of the app

    The Canadian Business app is similar to the Innovation, Science and Economic Development Canada portal, but designed to provide a more customized mobile experience. The government’s aim is to help smaller businesses find and access tools and resources to improve their operations and growth.

    A screenshot of the app.

    These include financing programs, loans or capital investments, grants, financial aid, tax credits, NGO financing, as well as private sector financing opportunities.

    Canada Business is a free app available on the App Store and Google Play. Through the app, users can use geolocation to localize their results, and set up push notifications.

    Users can choose topics from a menu that includes: newest programs & services; find permits & licenses; file my taxes; start my business; finance my business, and protect my ideas. By setting up a profile within the app, users can create and manage a notification list or calendar.

    There is also a business assistant that allows users to text in their questions and get a response.

    Originally published June 13, 2019, updated August 25, 2023

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