The Government of Canada is partnering with the Ontario Chamber of Commerce to offer two grants that will help you get online and use technology to build your business. In this article, we examine what the Canadian Digital Adoption Program (CDAP) has to offer your business. Whether you are interested in growing your business through e-commerce or to boost your pre-existing e-commerce footprint, grants are available to assist you in transforming your digital presence online and boost your business’ resilience in the market through adopting digital capabilities.

What is the Purpose of the Canada Digital Adoption Program (CDAP)?

The Ministry of Innovation, Science and Economic Development Canada (ISED) is offering assistance to small and medium-sized enterprises (SMEs) willing to adopt digital technologies to increase competitiveness. Eligible businesses will receive a grant to build their digital plan, followed by a 0% loan of up to $100,000 to implement it. The Canadian Government Digital Adoption Program, an investment of $1.4 billion provided by the Canadian Government, will provide businesses with financing, tools and resources to adopt e-commerce platforms and implement digital transformation plans. Grants given will also provide access to expert advice to increase online sales, reduce costs, better manage inventory and more.

The CDAP offers two distinct types of loans:

  1. The Grow Your Business Online Grant
  2. The Boost Your Business Technology Grant

1. Grow Your Business Online Grant

As part of the Canada Digital Adoption Program (CDAP), the Government of Canada is partnering with the Ontario Chamber of Commerce to deliver the Grow Your Business Online Grant. Through this program, small business owners can receive a micro-grant worth up to $2,400 to help get their business online, give their e-commerce presence a boost, or digitalize business operations. The grant will also provide small business owners with access to a network of eCommerce advisors where they can receive support and guidance.

The CDAP Grow Your Business Online grant helps SMEs:

  • Get online
  • Increase sales
  • Adopt security software
  • Connect with customers
  • Improve social media marketing
  • Improve user experience for online customers
  • Access to a network of more than 11,000 e-commerce advisors

The CDAP program is a reimbursement grant. If you are a successful grant recipient, you must incur costs upfront after you receive conditional approval. Funds are then paid out to your business after you are able to provide the OCC with the required proof of payment documentation. As a grant recipient, you must commit to maintaining your digital adoption strategy for at least six months. The CDAP program is a reimbursement grant.

To learn more about eligibility criteria, use the CDAP assessment tool found here

2. Boost Your Business Technology Grant

The Boost Your Business Technology Grant offers Canadian-owned small and medium-sized enterprises (SMEs) support to adopt new technologies in order to increase competitiveness and resilience. Delivered through the Ministry of Innovation, Science and Economic Development, businesses with at least one employee and between $500,000 and $5 million in annual revenue are eligible. It is designed to help get your business online, give your e-commerce presence a boost, or digitalize your business’s operations. These grants are designed to help Canadian businesses become more competitive. 

This revolutionary program is designed to help businesses increase their competitiveness and resilience by adopting new technologies and reaching a broader range of customers. If you own a small or medium-sized business in Canada, the CDAP may be helpful to you if you are looking to set up e-commerce and grow your sales online or get advice on the technologies that can propel your business forward. The CDAP aims to help businesses reach more customers, operate more efficiently, and improve resilience by adopting digital capabilities.

This grant offers:

  • Up to $15,000 to develop a Digital Adoption Plan
  • Up to $100,000 in 0% interest loan from the Business Development Bank of Canada (BDC) to implement your plan
  • Up to $7,300 to hire a skilled youth to implement the technologies that can propel your business forward

What are the eligibility criteria for the Grant?

Use the CDAP grant assessment tool to see if your business qualifies. You can get funding through this grant if your business*:

  • Is Canadian-owned
  • Is a sole proprietor or a business incorporated under the laws of Canada or a province or territory
  • Is a for-profit business
  • Employs 1 to 499 employees
  • Has at least $500,000 in annual revenue (but no more than $100M in one of the previous three tax years).

* Complete eligibility criteria can be found in the program guide.

FAQs about the CDAP

Can I apply to both of these grants?

Yes, you can apply to both grants.

Can I apply more than once if the applications are in different fiscal years?

No, you can apply only once to Grow Your Business Online over the entire duration of the program. Moreover, your business can only receive the micro-grant once.

What businesses are NOT eligible?

Your business is not eligible if it is:

  • A corporate chain, franchise or registered charity
  • A representative of a multi-level marketing company
  • A brokerage firm, such as real estate agents, investment advisors, insurance agents, etc.
  • A business that is engaged in online reselling or drop-shipping reliant on third-party suppliers
  • A wholesale or distribution business and manufacturer (unless you sell directly to consumers)

When will the CDAP be available?

The program will be available until March 2025, subject to remaining grant availability. The Canada Digital Adoption Program’s (CDAP) Boost Your Business Technology grant is fully subscribed and is not accepting new applications at this time. However, The CDAP Grow Your Business Online grant remains open for applications.

Where can I find out more about the CDAP?

For more information, interested applicants can visit the CDAP website or register for an upcoming webinar to learn more about the program.

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