Tax alert

Enhanced BC Small and Medium Sized Business Recovery Grant

Small and medium sized businesses make up the fabric of British Columbia’s economy, so it’s critical they receive the support they need throughout the pandemic and beyond. To do just that, the BC government recently enhanced the BC Small and Medium Sized Business Recovery Grant Program.

Important updates  

As of December 18, 2020, it’s now easier for businesses to receive fully-funded financial support through the program—provided they employ up to 149 BC residents and have seen a drastic decrease in revenue since March 10, 2020. Specifically, adjustments to the program include:

  • Increased funding opportunities (i.e., small and medium enterprises can now receive grants between $10,000 and $30,000, while tourism businesses may now be eligible to receive an additional grant top-up between $5,000 and $15,000);
  • A reduced minimum revenue drop requirement of 30 percent (down from 50 percent);
  • A shorter operational window (i.e., eligible businesses now only need to be in business for 18 months leading up to the date of application, rather than the previously-mandated 3 years); and
  • Broader eligibility parameters (including businesses that are seasonal in nature, have temporarily closed or are sole proprietorships).

All eligible businesses will be asked to develop a recovery plan as part of their application. The government is offering up to $2,000 for business owners to obtain advice and assistance from professional service providers, such as Grant Thornton LLP, in developing a viable recovery plan.

This program will run until March 31, 2021 or until the funds are fully allocated, whichever comes first.

What are the eligibility requirements?  

To qualify for a base grant, a business must have

  • its majority share owned by one or more BC residents;
  • been operating in British Columbia for at least 18 months prior to applying;
  • its sole or primary operations located and conducted in British Columbia;
  • employed up to 149 BC residents for four or more months prior to applying;
  • had positive cash flow for the last financial statement, prior to February 1, 2020; and
  • experienced a revenue loss of at least 70 percent at some point during March or April 2020, and at least 30 percent at some point during May 2020 and present day.

Please note that not-for-profit organizations are not eligible to apply for this grant program.

How do you apply?

The application process will take place in two steps:

Step 1: A business applies for funding and the BC government considers its eligibility.

Step 2: If deemed eligible, the business receives up to $2,000 to put towards a professional service provider to help it develop a recovery plan. The government will use this plan to make its ultimate funding decision. If you would like assistance in developing your business’s recovery plan, please reach out to a Grant Thornton advisor.

As a provider of professional services, we look forward to helping you develop a blueprint for your business’s recovery and success. To learn more about how we can support you throughout the grant application process and beyond, please contact us.