Accessing Federal Grants for Exporting

Changes to CanExport?

Did you know there have been changes to the CanExport grant?  If you were previously ineligible because you already had sales in the US or another market, we have good news!  The government has modified the rules; small and medium-sized companies are now eligible for the CanExport grant even if they have had sales in the target market (aka country).  Thus, you can be eligible for CanExport as long as you have had less than $20K sales per annum in the target market in the last 24 months, or if the target market represents less than 10% of your international sales.

What is CanExport?

CanExport is a federal government grant for small/medium size businesses, with annual revenues within the $200K-$50M range, who are interested in developing new export markets.

The grant can cover up to 50% of your market development expenses for new market development.  Expenses such as business travel, trade fairs, market research and adaptation of your marketing materials for new markets are eligible.  Note that there are ineligible expenses.

This is a 50/50 matching grant to a maximum of $100K. For example, if you spend $200K in market development activities, you may be eligible to receive up to $100K from the CanExport grant.  

CanExport is definitely a good opportunity for small businesses interested in exporting and there is a lot more to know about it. For more information, check out the CanExport here.

What is the AgriMarketing program?  

Note: If your products or services are related to agriculture, you may not be eligible for the CanExport grant. However, you should check out a similar grant through Agriculture and Agrifood Canada’s AgriMarketing program

 

By Katherine Britton, CPA CMA MBA

Director, Business Development | Women’s Enterprise Centre, BC

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Winners Announced for WESK’s Emerging Entrepreneur Award, Growth & Expansion Award, and Innovator Award

On May 23, 2018, WESK recognized three female business leaders from Saskatchewan with Entrepreneur Awards. Emerging Entrepreneur Award, the Growth & Expansion Award, & the Innovator Award.

The Emerging Entrepreneur Award was presented to Meagan Barabash (Bravo Dance Co.). This award is given to a female entrepreneur who has built a strong, scalable business foundation and has achieved early success with strong market potential.

To read more about Meagan and Bravo Dance Co., click here.

 

The Innovator Award was presented to Brooke Longpre, (Sound Solar Systems Inc.). This award is given to a female entrepreneur who has built an innovation or technology-based business and has achieved early success with strong market potential.

To read more about Brooke and Sound Solar Systems Inc., click here.

 

The Growth & Expansion Award was presented to Jordana Jacobson (Cravings Maternity-Baby-Kids). This award was given to a female entrepreneur who has built a solid foundation for her business and is now experiencing rapid growth and significant expansion opportunity for her business by strengthening her leadership capacity and developing new market opportunities.

To read more about Jordana and Cravings Maternity-Baby-Kids, click here.

 

“The Celebration of Achievement Gala & Entrepreneur Awards is the only event of its kind in Saskatchewan that brings together female entrepreneurs with representatives from government, industry, media, and educational institutions to celebrate the outstanding contributions of inspiring female entrepreneurs,” – Prabha Mitchell, CEO of WESK. 

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Brooke Longpre – Winner of WESK’s 2018 Innovator Award

Brooke Longpre is Co-Founder and Operating Partner of Sound Solar Systems Inc. She is trained in solar PV design, construction management and has developed a wide range of technical and business skills since the company was founded in 2010. Her small business has hundreds of kWs of turn-key solar projects installed across Western Canada. The company focus is solar energy and energy storage systems for residential, commercial, and industrial markets within Western Canada.

About Sound Solar Systems Inc. 

Sound Solar Systems Inc. has been in operation since 2010. Their principal objective and focus is design and engineering, supply, install, monitor, & service of solar photovoltaic (PV) and energy storage systems for commercial and residential markets. They have constructed and managed a growing portfolio of hundreds of kW’s of distributed solar energy in Saskatchewan and Alberta.

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Jordana Jacobson – Winner of WESK’s 2018 Growth & Expansion Award

Jordana Jacobson is an award-winning entrepreneur. Though her businesses CRAVINGS maternity-baby-kids, Layla+Ryan apparel, and Entrepreneur306 keep her busy, she is equally devoted to her family, fitness, and community. Jordana volunteers for many community and charitable organizations including the Saskatoon Chamber of Commerce SABEX Awards Committee, the Saskatchewan Amateur Bodybuilding Association, and her own foundation “In Memory of Marlo” which supports the Children’s Health and Hosptial Foundation.

About CRAVINGS:

CRAVINGS is Saskatoon’s premier maternity, baby, and children’s boutique. A one-stop-shop for everything from belly bump to big kid!

 

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Meagan Barabash – Winner of WESK’s 2018 Emerging Entrepreneur Award

Experience. Learn. Grow. Dance! This is precisely what Bravo Dance Co. aims to do in Martensville, SK, and surrounding area. Owner and founder, Meagan Barabash, has not only danced for more than two decades, but has won many awards, and received her fine arts credits that facilitate not only her fulfilling dance instruction but also her passion for the arts.

Meagan has always been passionate about dance and making a difference in people’s lives. By fusing these two passions together, Meagan created the BDC dance family. A space that is supportive, encouraging, and designed to facilitate the growth and learning of young people has always been a dream of Meagan’s.

After teaching dance in Saskatoon and the surrounding area, Meagan experienced many perspectives within the dance studio. She was able to see the studio from the
dancer’s perspective, the instructors’ perspective, and the parent’s perspective. There were distinct gaps in many studios and systems. This was something Meagan knew she could address.

Additionally, dance had a significant role in Meagan’s life growing up, and she knew that she had the ability and the drive to create an incredible experience for other dancers, families, and the community alike.

In addition to the gaps in the dance world, Meagan felt she could specifically improve upon, she also has a strong desire for helping to make a difference in people’s lives.
Always looking for ways to give back, Meagan decided in late 2010 to take her philanthropic activities to a new level and utilize the platform that the Miss Teen Canada-World organization provides its girls. Winning the title of Miss Teen Saskatchewan – World 2011, Meagan was able to greatly impact the lives of many children, raising money for charity, organizing and executing community events, bringing awareness to her platform of self- love and acceptance, and more. Her zest for community and social support has stuck with Meagan and played a significant role in her business plan for BDC.

In addition to the aforementioned experience Meagan has in the dance world, she also graduated from the Edward’s School of Business gaining her Bachelor of Commerce degree with Great Distinction in 2016.

About Bravo Dance Co.

Bravo Dance Co. provides more than just great dance instruction in Martensville. The team has created an impeccable reputation built on personal service and dedication to their students and families. Bravo Dance Co. has become a business the community trusts to instill in their children dance skills, but also qualities that will lead to success in all areas of their lives.

BDC has shown their commitment to their students by going above and beyond in all aspects of the business operations. Passion, transparency, dedication, and adaptability have proven BDC’s excellent customer service and resulted in the success of the business.

With classes in everything from Tap to Ballet to Musical Theatre, Hip Hop, and even Ukrainian dance, BDC has something for everyone ages 18 months through to adulthood.

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WESK’s Celebration of Achievement Award presented to H&B’s Rachel Mielke

For Immediate Release, May 23, 2018

 

WESK’s Celebration of Achievement Award presented to H&B’s Rachel Mielke

Three other female business leaders to be recognized with Entrepreneur Awards

 

REGINA SK – Chief Executive Officer and Founder of Hillberg & Berk Rachel Mielke today became the first recipient of Women Entrepreneurs Saskatchewan’s (WESK) Celebration of Achievement Award. WESK is highlighting the province’s female business leaders at its inaugural Celebration of Achievement Gala & Entrepreneur Awards in Regina.

 

WESK’s Celebration of Achievement Award pays tribute to an exceptional female entrepreneur who has built a business in Saskatchewan with a significant impact on the economy and the community.

 

“We are thrilled to announce that WESK’s first Celebration of Achievement Award is presented to Hillberg & Berk’s Rachel Mielke,” WESK CEO Prabha Mitchell said.

 

“Hillberg & Berk continues to make waves across the country and indeed the world, from its seasonal collections which celebrate women’s achievement and the beauty of the Canadian landscape to sparkle balls for all Canadian Football League teams, and designing custom rings for Canada’s Olympic Athletes to creating two custom brooches for Her Majesty Queen Elizabeth II. Rachel is an inspirational leader and a true role model for women in business in Saskatchewan and beyond.”

 

Mielke notes that empowering women has always been at the heart of Hillberg & Berk.

 

“When I started the company I was passionate about empowering women and figuring out how we could do more for the women who buy our product than just sell them beautiful jewellery,” Mielke said. “We’ve worked diligently to feature and tell the stories of incredibly inspiring women. The birth of my own daughter pushed me even further in that direction to really focus on equality and women’s empowerment and making that a core part of our business in everything that we do at Hillberg & Berk.”

 

In addition to the Celebration of Achievement Award, WESK will also present three other awards to recognize outstanding Saskatchewan female business leaders in the following categories: Emerging Entrepreneur, Innovator, and Growth & Expansion.

 

The Emerging Entrepreneur Award will be presented to a female entrepreneur who has built a strong, scalable business foundation and has achieved early success with strong market potential. The finalists for this award are: Meagan Barabash (Bravo Dance Co.); Jeanny Buan (Viahera Canada); and, Heather Murphy (Authentically: Business and Life Solutions)

 

The Innovator Award will be presented to a female entrepreneur who has built an innovation or technology-based business and has achieved early success with strong market potential. The finalists for this award are: Caitlin Barlas, Julie Gryba, and Bailey Wilmot (The Local Kitchen); Brooke Longpre (Sound Solar Systems Inc.); and, Jackie Martin (Viking Innovations Ltd.)

 

The Growth & Expansion Award will be presented to a female entrepreneur who has built a solid foundation for her business and is now experiencing rapid growth and significant expansion opportunity for her business by strengthening her leadership capacity and developing new market opportunities. The finalists for this award are: Connie Buchanan (Zoom Zoom Groom, PreZoomably Cats, and Apex Academy); Colleen Haussecker (Canadian Organic Spice & Herb Co. Inc.); and, Jordana Jacobson (Cravings Maternity-Baby-Kids)

 

“The Celebration of Achievement Gala & Entrepreneur Awards is the only event of its kind in Saskatchewan that brings together female entrepreneurs with representatives from government, industry, media, and educational institutions to celebrate the outstanding contributions of inspiring female entrepreneurs,” Mitchell said.

 

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For more information:

 

Katelyn Bruce

Marketing & Communications Officer

WESK

DIRECT: 306.260.2931

 

ABOUT WESK

Women Entrepreneurs of Saskatchewan’s (WESK) vision is for all Saskatchewan entrepreneurs have an equal opportunity to achieve success and recognition. Entrepreneurship is a catalyst for independence, economic development, employment, growth, innovation, and equality. For more than 20 years, WESK has worked with hundreds of women, helping them start, purchase and expand businesses. WESK is a non-profit, membership-based organization that provides business advisory and support services; start-up, purchase and expansion lending; mentoring and networking; and a variety of learning opportunities from seminars and webinars to events. Since 1995, WESK has provided more than $30 million in loans and professional advice to women across the province. Together, women entrepreneurs and WESK have shaped and enhanced the Saskatchewan economy. WESK is supported by Western Economic Diversification Canada.

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Women Entrepreneurs of Saskatchewan Inc. (WESK) Invests in Indigenous Economic Development in Saskatchewan

Women Entrepreneurs of Saskatchewan Inc. (WESK) Invests in Indigenous Economic Development in Saskatchewan 

FOR IMMEDIATE RELEASE – May 14, 2018

Saskatoon, SK

Today, WESK CEO, Prabha Mitchell, highlighted investments of more than $300,000 for the Indigenous Women Entrepreneurs Program (IWEP) in Saskatchewan, through Western Economic Diversification Canada under their Western Diversification Program (WDP) and other funding sources.

“The launch of the new brand in May 2017 reflected WESK’s commitment to diversity and inclusion,” says CEO of WESK, Prabha Mitchell. “The new brand was to address the needs of every entrepreneur regardless of culture, age, and stage of business growth,” she added.

In collaboration with our strategic partners, WESK will engage and consult with Indigenous women, organizations, communities, chiefs, elders, and other leaders in four communities to identify barriers, deliver training and offer supports including business advising and financing to start or grow a business. The project is intended to develop a best practices model to assist Indigenous women to start/grow a business, employ people in their communities, and fuel economic growth.

“Investing in the capacity of Indigenous women to become successful entrepreneurs will help build a stronger and more inclusive economy in Saskatchewan,” said the Honourable Navdeep Bains, Minister of Innovation, Science and Economic Development and Minister responsible for Western Economic Diversification Canada. “The Government of Canada is committed to supporting the skills, education and resources Indigenous Peoples need to fully participate in the economy and strengthen their communities.”

“The IWEP was initiated by WESK to foster entrepreneurial capacity amongst Indigenous women and serve as a catalyst for economic growth in Indigenous communities,” says CEO of WESK, Prabha Mitchell. ”Such an undertaking is not feasible without the support and engagement of our partners including the Federation of Sovereign Indigenous Nations, the Saskatchewan Indian Equity Foundation, First Nations University, and FHQ Developments,” she added.

“Working together, we have been able to leverage additional resources from the Government of Saskatchewan and Indigenous Services Canada to support the IWEP,” says Vice Chief Heather Bear. “The Treaty right to livelihood encompasses economic self-sufficiency. The FSIN saw this partnership with WESK as an opportunity to increase the economic self-sufficiency of First Nations women, through entrepreneurship, and thereby improve the well-being of families,” she added.

“Our women are the life givers and caregivers in our Nations,” says Chief Bobby Cameron. “They are the heart and soul of all of our families and communities. When they succeed we all succeed,” he added.

This investment in Saskatchewan was part of an announcement of over $27 million made by Minister Bains on March 13, 2018 at the Songhees Nation in British Columbia, supporting a total of 45 Indigenous projects across Western Canada.

 

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To learn more about the Indigenous Women Entrepreneurs Program contact:

 

Prabha Mitchell, Hon. CPA, CGA; MSW          Katelyn Bruce
CEO, WESK                                                     Marketing & Communications
108-502 Cope Way                                        108-502 Cope Way
Saskatoon, SK S7T 0G3                                  Saskatoon, SK S7T 0G3
T: 306.477.7173 ext. 281                                 T: 306.477.7173 ext. 286
E: pmitchell@wesk.rbdemo.site                                     E: kbruce@wesk.rbdemo.site

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