start-up companyGiven the current global COVID-19 crisis, Canadian businesses of all scales have been significantly affected. From vast store shutdowns, to shifting all possible operations to work from home, to extensive layoffs, businesses nationwide are dealing with the consequences of this disease now more than ever. While larger corporations are finding it easier to keep afloat, smaller independent businesses specifically start-ups are struggling to make ends meet. A large portion of funding for these firms is typically generated from start-up company grants.  

The Canadian Venture Capital and Private Equity Association (CVCA) has addressed the same issue in an open letter to Canada’s Minister of Small Business, Mary Ng asking for increased support for the national start-up community. The organization, spanning over 2,090 individual and member organizations, shed light on the requirements of start-ups with high growth potentials and the innovation sector of Canada in general. They recommended that officials could provide additional support for this hard-hit cluster of businesses. The organization regularly works to bring its community members together to enable partnerships and increase knowledge sharing proving to be a resource for Canada on private capital investments.  

Within this letter, three main potential pathways for additional support were listed. It was suggested that those firms subject to a Scientific Research & Experimental Development tax credit or any CRA funded innovation grants, be paid out their claimed amount as a liquid refund in addition to SR&ED reviews being passed on altogether, speeding approval process. Potentially required audits could then be completed at a later date once the economy is operational close to regular standards. By by-passing audits and reviews, the CRA could offer SR&ED funding based on the firms’ prior year filling at no additional cost to the CRA. This action can then in effect offer immediate liquidity for businesses and start-ups who require it the most to keep their staff on their payroll, keep operational and avoid increased unemployment in the country. Included in this call to action, CVCA also requested an improvement in the wage subsidy currently offered to Canadians after Prime Minister Trudeau announced it to be increased to 75% on March 27, 2020.  

As a second step, CVCA suggested that the Business Development Bank of Canada (BDC) increase their contribution of injecting liquidity into the Canadian economy. In addition to the BDC’s current role in the government’s emergency loan program, they are being called upon for additional capital for investors and funds stating that those reliant on foreign investors have also been drastically impacted as the foreign investors have retreated given current circumstances.  

CVCA suggests that BDC award matching convertible note loans with no payment obligations for up to 36 months after which the note can be converted to equity at BDC’s discretion. They also requested for BDC to temporarily ease the criteria for qualifications of lending measures to allow for start-ups who wouldn’t typically qualify, to also have access to liquidity in these tough times.  

The CVCA urged the idea that current measures assume pre-existing relationships with financial institutions which are relationships most start-ups lack undermining their need for assistance. The letter pushes the government to take more inclusive actions that increase liquidity for all types of businesses and firms within our nation given how critical of a role private equity and venture capital have within the regular Canadian economy. All assistance measures should take into account the need to also address this now missing element amidst the COVID-19 crisis.

myths vs facts sred

If your company’s core focus involves R&D work, your expenditures are probably soaring high. The continuous process of testing against ever changing performance indicators and enhancing your product involves stable financial sourcing. Before you release your product to the market and gain capital returns, consistent product enhancement and development remains critical. In order to encourage these projects, the Canadian Government has already invested in your company and brand by providing one of the most generous R&D cash refund/tax incentive programs in the world. The program provides more than $3 billion in tax incentives to over 20,000 claimants each year. 

This massive tax incentive program is known as the Scientific Research and Experimental Development program. It’s also known as SR&ED, some call it ‘shred’ and others call it R&D Tax Credit, Research Tax Credit, Research & Experimentation Tax Credit, Investment Tax Credit and R&D Funding. Be sure to not get lost in the names!  

When combined with other provincial program, your business may recover up to 68% of the qualified cost. It’s surprising but doable, and at EVAMAX we’ve seen it happen. These tax incentives come in 3 forms: 

  1. Reduction of taxes 
  2. Investment Tax Credit 
  3. Cash Refund  

These 3 types of research methods are qualified under the SR&ED program: 

  1. Basic Research: Work done to advance scientific knowledge without any practical application in mind 
  2. Applied Research: Work done to advance knowledge specifically for a practical purpose
  3. Experimental development: Work done to achieve a technological advancement to create new or improved existing products, processes 

The SR&ED program’s success rates are perceived as too good to be true, resulting in these common misconceptions:  

  • The SR&ED high tech sector and for highly intensive and critical R&D only – so I can’t claim any benefit  
  • It only has benefits for larger corporations and not small businesses  
  • Your R&D work was not successful  
  • You don’t pay taxes, how can I get a credit  
  • Your I don’t have time for all paperwork 

 Here are those misconceptions debunked with facts about the SR&ED Program: 

  • Any industry can get the benefit of SR&ED program if there has been an attempt for a technological improvement/advancement.  
  • These benefits include not only the research cost but also wages, capital expenditures and overheads 
  • The more incentives for small companies then larger corporation  
  • Your company can get a refund even if the experimentation failed  
  • You can receive a refund even if you have not paid taxes or declared loss 
  • It is about the expenditures, not about the sales you make  
  • The program is more technical than financial  

Want to know if you qualify? If you are a Proprietorship, a Partnership, or a Corporation having a business in Canada then you are likely to quality for the SR&ED program. 

Here are some unexpected activities that qualify for SR&ED: 

    • Enhancements, efficiency issues, new product development  
    • Methods to make products cheaper/faster/better/durable 
    • New formulations, new designs, innovations 
    • Risk, uncertainty, unproductive time or material
    • Material changes, inconsistent product or quality issues
    • Reduction in labour and resources needed  
    • Integration issues, new algorithms, software structures and tool  

If you are looking for assistance in creating your company’s submission, contact us to help you through the process. At EVAMAX, our team believes in maximizing our clients benefits to the fullest potential. Our approach does not use a “one formula fits all” policy, we assign industry specialists to work with you, ensuring successful identification of eligible projects and costs. Feel free to reach out to us today, for a no obligation consultation

Advice for Emerging Female Entrepreneurs | EVAMAX Group

Entrepreneurship continues to be a promising field for Canadian women, and many are starting their own business because of greater autonomy and flexibility. Ideas and plans that are perhaps rejected in corporate environments and by investors in initials stages, entrepreneurship can turn into a reality. 

Similar to any bold career decisions, female entrepreneurs share their own set of challenges when creating their own product or service line. Here are some tips you can pick up along your journey: 

Keep an awareness of paths, apart from your own: 

Don’t forget to expand your knowledge in other fields especially technical fields. Gaining technical experiences, whether it is at a beginner or intermediate level should not be overlooked when starting a business. Women are not often exposed to opportunities including side projects or tasks that involve technical skills such as programming, coding and data analysis. 

Next time you have a chance to enhance your technical skills through a project, take on a project that will enhance your technical skills, lean in and do it. Whether it is not your field of expertise, it is beneficial to have awareness in various fields. As an entrepreneur, you’ll have a better understanding of where to find or create solutions for challenges you’ll encounter.  

Related: Transform your Business Today by Coding Away

Seeking Resources:  

Understand what resources are already available to you and what you can acquire to nurture your dream into a reality. Find and seek out value in your surroundings and determine its applicability to your business. You must have been surrounded by the constant promotion of gender diversity and equality in the business entrepreneurship industry.

While this promotion is addressing a significant issue, taking advantage of this “trend” is critical. Whether it’s taking an opportunity to market your brand at a local female business networking event or gathering funding allocated for women in business.

Related: How to Become A Successful Young Business Leader in Canada

The Canadian government is keen on supporting female entrepreneurs throughout their journey, by providing grants such as the Woman Entrepreneurship Fund, BDC Capital Woman in Tech Venture Fund, Farm Credit Canada, Venture Capital Canada, Export Development Canada: Woman In Trade, Women’s Program Investments, Farm Credit Canada’s Woman Entrepreneur Program. Attend funding, grants consultations and have your proposals ready to send out to these pools of capital.  

Related: How can Business Grants Bring Innovative Ideas to the Market

Don’t stop at planning and strategizing, take action today: 

Although planning and strategizing your vision is an integral part of establishing your own business, don’t hold back on acting upon your plans. Start by becoming an expert in your own vision, by understanding what your brand means to you and what it can mean to your audience. Be ready to communicate this on various platforms, including networking sessions and social media marketing.

Related: Three Ways to Apply For a Business Grant in Canada

 Be sure to invest in yourself during this process. Attend conferences, read books and watch documentaries related to your goals, stay healthy and be sure to spend time with supportive family and friends. No hesitations – start today and check off your to-do lists. 

Establishing your business can take a while while focusing on your outcome and the end goal take just as much time to focus on the process. Try making the process a little more exciting and desirable! Take time to yourself and give yourself credit for both successes and trials & errors.  

Do you want to know all the Grants and Incentives your company is eligible for? Feel free to reach out to EVAMAX today for a no-obligation consultation.    

 

 

Canadian Start-Ups reinventing ‘Global’ Pharma right here, right now

Canadian Start-Ups continue to change the game within the Big Pharma industry.

Having a significant research arm in Canada, BlueRock Therapeutics was recently sold to Germany’s Bayer for a $1 billion valuation. This startup developed a new Parkison’s disease drug as well as an innovative approach to drug discovery. 

Although start-ups often receive backlash for selling their creations too quickly, it’s important to consider the opportunities that come from the sale. Canadian entrepreneurs adapted to the current pharmaceutical landscape, profiting greatly from selling in house innovations.

With Big Pharma now doing less in-house R&D, start-ups are taking advantage of these market spaces. Leaders in the Pharma industry are looking beyond their usual companies to partner with start-ups and gain access to modern research. 

Related: R&D all the way! The Value of A Well-Constructed R&D Plan In Your Business

Fortunately, companies with significant Canadian ventures, like Bluerock, are gaining billion-dollar payouts. Benefitting the life-science fields with greater budgets, equipment, and labs. Investors are now focused on start-ups now more than ever, because of their skyrocketing potential in pharma. 

Greater diversification in the Pharma landscape means R&D is generating better ideas at improved efficiencies. Now large pharmaceutical companies focus on their strengths, including a clinical trial, branding, and sales. Likewise, start-ups are focusing on their own niche strengths including focused research and greater quality results due to decreased production pressures.

Investors are becoming keen on professional risk takers – innovative entrepreneurs in this industry. Not only are investors seeking to back Canadian entrepreneurs but so is the Canadian government through grant programs. SR&ED tax incentive claims use tax incentives to encourage Canadian businesses to conduct R&D.  

Related: How to Encourage Employees in a Tech Startup Company to Innovate

EVAMAX specializes in filing paperwork for SR&ED claims, so your pharma start-up continues to grow without financial limitations and easily accessed support from our government.  

The changing dynamic of the pharma scene is because of the (slight) decrease in Big Pharma’s ownership of drug platform. Their high failure rate due to risky, large investments made in hopes of creating a single viable drug meant they were losing millions to billions of dollars. 

Now, research begins with start-ups, governmentally or privately funded researchers that pursue big ideas more efficiently than big pharma has done in the past. They don’t approach research and pharmaceutical development with pressures and interests of corporations, instead, they are focused on solving real work problems.  

Related: How Collaboration in Pharmatech Industries Can Save Lives

Incubators in Toronto, JLABS and Montreal’s, Med Institute, nurture ideas and minds with cutting-edge software, artificial intelligence, data, and biologics. Canadian companies are not only selling pharmaceuticals to the global pharma, but they are also selling ideas. In cities such as Toronto, Montreal and Vancouver filled with start-ups this new R&D model creates greater opportunities.  

Do you want to know all the R&D Grants and Incentives your company is eligible for? Feel free to reach out to EVAMAX today for a no-obligation consultation

 

 

The Benefits ERP Software Has To Offer Your Business_EVAMAX Group

Enterprise Resource Planning (ERP) has become an increasingly popular technology among businesses due to the variety of benefits it brings to the table. 

Essentially, ERP is a business process management software that enables organizations to use a system of integrated applications to manage business processes and automate various functions. Society is now experiencing a time of rapid technological advancement that requires constant adaptation in order to survive.

Businesses resistant to change will ultimately fall behind their competitors, who are constantly looking to increase efficiency and productivity. ERP assists companies in all aspects of their business, including customer relationship management, human resources, and accounting practices.

Related: Top Ten Software Development Companies According to the GoodFirms

It can help companies to break old habits and transform their business, leading to new opportunities that were not previously available. If ERP is something your company is interested in implementing, contact EVAMAX to assist you in acquiring the financing and benefits to do so. 

Listed are the benefits of ERP Software implementation. 

Streamlining Business Processes to Increase Productivity 

ERP software allows your company to centralize important information and data, regardless of which department or subsection, on a single platform. The storage of all this data in one place leads to increased communication and efficiency while decreasing the occurrence of human error.

Related: SRED Program: R&D Refund for Tech Companies

To be more specific, ERP can reduce the human error that is related to everyday business processes such as inventory count, manual data entry, and miscommunication. Activities like these are seen as a waste of time to companies who have integrated ERP because they can easily be eliminated through centralizing your company information on a single platform. 

Predictive analytics and other technological tools included in ERP software provides users with a deeper internal and external understanding of their business as well as identifies areas of improvement in order for the company to be successful.  

Related: Canadian Innovation Grants are Transforming Businesses Nationwide

Growing Your Business Both Internally and Externally 

ERP can have a positive impact on companies looking to expand and grow. This software has the ability to simplify decision making by providing real-time data, historical data, predictive analytics, and global trends. Essentially, ERP aims to identify the best and most efficient opportunities without incurring significant risk. 

For example, Epicor, an ERP software, provides seasonal and geographical trends along with both current and historical data to support accurate demand planning. Companies who are able to track inventory, identify areas of improvement, and reduce human error are more likely to succeed in expanding their business.  

On top of that, ERP can lead to a reduction in expenses and costs incurred by companies. Although ERP software may seem costly upfront, companies will still profit through the long-term savings and benefits it provides. By improving workflow and identifying areas of inefficiency, companies can eliminate unprofitable operations as well as increase efficiency in business processes.  

Related: IRAP: Could You Be the Next Company to Receive Millions in Funding?

Improving Customer Experience and Creating Transparency 

Although ERP software is not the first thing most companies think of when trying to improve their customer experience, it still has a direct relationship. ERP promotes transparency and accuracy, ensuring that the customer’s journey will be a smooth one. Transparency allows employees to properly track information and data which in turn benefits the customer.

This software deters potential negative experiences for customers such as incorrect orders, inadequate products, and lack of timely information. In direct relation with Customer Relationship Management (CRM), ERP assists companies in providing solutions to problems and offers a more personalized/adaptive customer service.  

Related: Government Grants for Innovation and Technology

As society is in the midst of the greatest period of adaptation and competition, there is no better time to implement ERP software to improve management solutions. The benefits this software provides, as listed above, heavily outweigh any large up-front costs required to implement the program. 

If you believe ERP software is something that will benefit your company, contact EVAMAX today to assist you in identifying grants/funding that will be applicable to your company.