Aboriginal Business Financing Program

When applying for a loan with NADF or one of our delivery partners to start, acquire, or expand your business, you may also qualify for a non-repayable contribution from the Aboriginal Business Financing Program (ABFP).  Working together with our delivery partners, the ABFP provides a range of services and support that help to promote the growth of a strong Aboriginal business sector.

If you are an existing business, you may qualify for ABFP assistance for your business' marketing and business support activities.

To learn more and to find out if you and your project are eligible for ABFP assistance, contact us.

Our Delivery Partners

Applicant Eligibility

To be eligible for ABFP support, an applicant must be:

  • a Canadian Aboriginal individual 18 years and older
  • a Canadian corporation, partnership, association or other legal entity that is majority-owned and controlled by Canadian Aboriginal people 

A Canadian Aboriginal individual is a person who is:

  • a Status Indian; or
  • a Non-Status Indian; or
  • an Inuk; or
  • Métis

Projects where Aboriginal communities may have a minority interest in a partnership or joint venture may also be supported, however, in these situations, eligible costs will be prorated based on the level of Aboriginal ownership and control.

Eligible Projects

  • Business planning
  • Business start up costs
  • Business acquisitions
  • Business expansions
  • Marketing initiatives that are local, domestic, or export-oriented
  • New product or process development
  • Adding technology to improve operations and competitiveness
  • Operating costs in association with capital costs
  • Financial services, business support, business-related training and mentoring services

Contribution Limits

Requests for financial support are assessed on each project's viability and merits.  The level of ABFP contribution will depend on a number of factors, including: the scope of the project, the need for financing, and whether other sources of financing are available, including funds received from other government departments and agencies.  While there are contribution maximums, actual ABFP contributions will be limited to what is required to ensure your project proceeds and is viable.

In general, ABFP maximum contributions are:

  • Individual Aboriginal entrepreneurs and wholly-owned or majority-owned Aboriginal businesses: up to $99,999  
  • Community-owned businesses: up to $249,999

Although actual ABFP contributions may vary based on the factors noted above, in general ABFP may contribute up to:

  • Business Support
    • up to 75% of eligible costs
  • Capital and Operating
    • Youth Applicants: up to 40% of eligible costs
    • Non-Youth Applicants: up to 35% of eligible costs
  • Marketing
    • up to 60% of eligible costs

Equity Requirement

A successful application requires a balanced financial package, including debt financing from NADF or one of our delivery partners and an equity contribution from the applicant. 

Minimum equity requirements:

  • Applicants 18-35 years: 10% of total project costs
  • Applicants over 35 years: 15% of total project costs

NOTE: Actual equity requirements may be higher. 

Aboriginal Business Financing Program funding provided by National Aboriginal Capital Corporation (NACCA)


Questions?  Contact Us