Canada Empowers Black Entrepreneurs with Clean Tech Funding

October 13, 2023

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Decarbonization and fighting air pollution are of central focus in Canada, as the nation works to meet its commitment to reach net-zero emissions by 2050. In an effort to diversify this movement, the Federation of African Canadian Economics (FACE) is administering the $160 million Black Entrepreneurship Loan Fund. Under the Macro Loan Program, eligible Black-owned businesses can seek up to $250,000 for capital investments, including clean transportation vehicles and refueling and recharging equipment. Working capital and short-term receivable financing loans are also available.

FACE is working with the Government of Canada, the Crown corporation Business Development Bank of Canada, and financial institutions like credit unions to deliver these loans. This program is cross-sectoral with public-private partnerships at the heart of FACE’s work.

Favorable funding for Black entrepreneurs in Canada could not be timelier given the nation’s clean transportation and energy revolution. Budget 2023 announced five key Clean Investment Tax Credits totaling more than $60 billion over the coming decade. Energy Minister Jonathan Wilkinson announced Canada’s Carbon Management Strategy at the end of September from the International Energy Agency in Paris, France.

FACE adds to this tapestry of funding and policy programs and offers Black-led businesses in Canada flexible loan terms, allowing eligible entities up to 12 months postponement of principal payments with a loan tenor of up to seven years. The program will charge interest for up to 12 months, while fees, rates, and terms are subject to the borrower’s credit rating.

Clean transportation stakeholders looking to enhance their value chain by way of inclusive diversity supplier initiatives can see this opportunity as a boon to their efforts. Michigan State University recently reported on the profound financial benefits for companies investing in minority-run businesses. Large Canadian businesses can work with Black-owned companies to apply for this program.

Diverse and inclusive financing is essential, as Black Canadians face considerable obstacles in the entrepreneurial ecosystem: 75% of Black Entrepreneurs feel their race has made success as an entrepreneur more elusive, per the African Canadian Senate Group. Statistics Canada reports that average investment in White-owned businesses is more than three times greater than that of Black businesses in terms of physical capital.

Stark differences along racial lines render FACE’s loan program essential amid Canada’s clean energy innovation movement. More equitable lending will allow the best and brightest entrepreneurs to contribute to the nation’s decarbonization goals.

Expanding access to capital with an inclusive approach is crucial as the clean energy revolution unfolds in real time from coast to coast and country to country. Investment, technology, and public policy tailwinds are accelerating Canada’s move toward sustainable energy and transportation. Canada is clear in its intention to fund for new ventures that address climate change. Black-led businesses focused on clean technology, sustainability, and decarbonatization should contact FACE’s Support Team.

Could your firm, agency, or organization use support in navigating the incentives, regulations, and policies coming to your fleet due to these new policies?

GNA, North America’s leading clean transportation and energy consulting firm, is here to help. Reach out if you would like to strategize around environmental justice and clean transportation. Here’s to a season full of transformational clean transportation — and human — investment.