If you have questions about our financing, eligibility requirements and applying to our Startup Program, please read through the answers below.
No, we offer strictly collateral-free loans supplemented by our mentorship program.
Futurpreneur offers collateral-free Startup loans at a better interest rate than most banks. We are able to finance up to $20,000 per business (the minimum amount is $5,000). If you need additional funding, BDC, our partner for this program, may provide up to an additional $40,000.
Applicants only need to apply once for both financing options on the Futurpreneur website.
Our startup offer includes funding along with two years of expert mentoring support so you can start your business with your best foot forward.
The loan is repayable over 5 years with interest-only payments required in the first year.
You can repay the Futurpreneur portion of the loan early, at no additional cost.
Futurpreneur is addressing a demonstrated gap in business ownership among young adults. According to Statistics Canada, whereas 45% of Canadian adults age 18-64 are under 40 years of age, only 16% of small and medium enterprises have primary decision makers who are under 40 years old (compared to 20% of the population and 25% of business decision makers age 40-49 and 32% of the population and 47% of the business decision makers age 50 to 64) – indicating much lower small business ownership among those less than 40 years old than among older Canadians.
One of the main factors behind this gap is access to financing—one of Futurpreneur’s key offerings. Typically, the younger you are, the lower your credit score is, and the less likely you are to secure financing from traditional lenders. As you grow older, your length of credit history increases, and you start to build a credit profile—both of which help you build a credit score. It makes sense, therefore, that the average credit score increases with age.
Futurpreneur isn’t alone in striving to increase small business ownership among young entrepreneurs. We represent Canada in two global networks:
– Youth Business International member organizations typically focus on entrepreneurs age 18-35. Several of these member organizations, including Futurpreneur as Canada’s official member, extend this range to age 39, and
– The G20 Young Entrepreneurs’ Alliance (G20 YEA) is an established G20 affiliated network of which Futurpreneur is Canada’s official member.
Canada also has many organizations supporting entrepreneurs age 40 and older. In particular, the 260+ Community Futures non-profit organizations across Canada, many of which are Futurpreneur partners in supporting our young entrepreneur clients.
Starting a business is challenging. Access to capital, financial literacy and unsatisfactory credit are just a few of the key barriers to success for many young entrepreneurs. The access to capital barrier, due to racism and systemic bias in the current financial system, along with business financial literacy are particularly acute for young Black entrepreneurs.
According to the Government of Canada’s fall 2020 consultations with the Black entrepreneurship community, “The issue of access to capital was identified by many participants as the most important issue for Black entrepreneurs. Participants noted that access to capital is crucial for any entrepreneur and that Black entrepreneurs have more difficulty than other entrepreneurs accessing capital.”
This is one of many statements about financing barriers faced by Black entrepreneurs from organizations, including Government of Canada, BDC, Canadian Black Chamber of Commerce, and others. Unfortunately, there is sparse data about the extent of this capital barrier, as most institutions do not collect demographic data about borrowers or credit eligibility.
In October 2020, Futurpreneur began collecting data about the barriers faced by our entrepreneurs in different communities, and the findings related to credit barriers are stark. Within the first three months of collecting data, only 17% of all entrepreneurs identified “bad credit score” as a barrier to their success; however, 31% of entrepreneurs who identify as Black identified “bad credit score” as a barrier—more than twice the 15% response rate of entrepreneurs who identify as White.
This is why, alongside mentorship and other supports, our Black Entrepreneur Startup Program includes more inclusive financing criteria for Black entrepreneurs, recognizing and addressing the impact of systemic credit barriers to their business success.
Starting a business is challenging. Access to capital, financial literacy and unsatisfactory credit are just a few of the key barriers to success for many young entrepreneurs. The access to capital barrier, along with infrastructure constraints and cultural considerations, is particularly pronounced for certain communities, especially Indigenous entrepreneurs.
According to a 2017 report by the National Aboriginal Economic Development Board, “First Nations and Inuit businesses and entrepreneurs have been unable to access low-interest borrowing at the same rate as non-Indigenous Canadians.” A range of organizations—NACCA, BDC, Public Policy Forum and others—have arrived at this same conclusion. Unfortunately, there is sparse data about the extent of this capital barrier, as most institutions do not collect demographic data about borrowers or credit eligibility.
In October 2020, Futurpreneur began collecting data about the barriers faced by our entrepreneurs in different communities, and the findings related to credit barriers are stark. Within the first three months of collecting data, only 17% of all aspiring entrepreneurs identified “bad credit score” as a barrier to their success; however, 36% of aspiring entrepreneurs who identify as Indigenous identified “bad credit score” as a barrier—more than twice the overall proportion naming credit as a barrier to their success.
This is why, alongside other supports, our Indigenous Entrepreneur Startup Program offers more inclusive financing criteria for Indigenous entrepreneurs, recognizing and addressing the impact of systemic credit barriers, as well as infrastructure constraints and cultural considerations to support their business success.
Yes, Futurpreneur offers a “side-hustle” program dedicated to part-time entrepreneurs who want to start a business while retaining their full-time jobs.
This offer consists of a four-year repayable loan of up to $15,000, supplemented by two years of mentoring. Learn more about our Side Hustle Program.
No, we do not offer a coaching service.
Financing from Futurpreneur is accompanied by our industry-leading mentorship program. Once a loan is disbursed, entrepreneurs are matched with an experienced volunteer entrepreneurship mentor who guides them for about 3 – 5 hours per month for up to 2 years.
Mentors provide business advice, support, active listening and encouragement to help entrepreneurs stay focused on what really matters for their business success.
Working with a mentor is one of the requirements of our financing program, and you must receive our financing in order to be matched with a mentor. We do not offer these options separately.
Futurpreneur does not offer a business plan writing service, but we do have several free tools available to guide you on our website:
• The business plan writer, a free tool that walks you through the basic steps of creating a business plan, including a step-by-step cash flow template for you to complete. It includes tips & tricks and detailed examples to guide you as you write.
• We also provide examples of business plans and financial documents. On this page, under More Resources, see Financial Templates and Business Plan Examples.
• Finally, we also offer examples of best-in-class business plans, crash courses in everything from financials to operations, and practical guides on everything from exports to managing your cash flow.
Note: As part of your funding application, you can request help finalizing your business plan. When applying for funding, please indicate on the application form that you would like this support.
Futurpreneur offers free resources and tools to help entrepreneurs at every stage of business development. If you are in the idea or R&D phase of forming your company, our free tools and resources can help guide you through the process of developing your business plan, creating your cash flow, and more. We’re here to help move your business forward!
In order to apply to Futurpreneur’s Startup Program and secure financing, your company must be in the pre-startup or startup stage (i.e., beyond the Idea or R&D phase).
• By pre-startup, Futurpreneur means the company is in the process of launching and will make its first sales ideally within the next few months.
• By startup, we mean existing companies that have had less than a year of significant sales, i.e., sufficient revenues for the applicant(s) to pay themselves.
Our startup program is aimed at entrepreneurs between the ages of 18 and 39 exclusively. If you are about to turn 40, you may be eligible for the program provided your full application is completed before your 40th birthday.
If you are 40 years of age or older, unfortunately, you are not eligible for our program.
Yes, you are still eligible to apply provided you own a majority of the company–that is, you own at least 51% of the voting shares. However, please note that your partner will not appear on the application for your loan. You will, therefore, be solely responsible for the loan and its repayment.
No, you must have obtained permanent resident status in order to apply for financing and mentoring at Futurpreneur.
Yes, Futurpreneur verifies each applicant’s personal credit score and, if applicable, that of their associates, i.e., those under the age of 40 and permanent residents or Canadian citizens and who own more than 5% of the company’s shares.
Credit checks are conducted with the permission of the interested parties.
Note: The use of a guarantor is not possible.
No, the loan cannot be used to pay off a pre-existing debt. Nor can it be used as a down payment to secure other loans. However, the loan may be in addition to other sources of financing.
Here’s how to apply for a loan:
• Go to https://www.futurpreneur.ca/en/ and register as a new entrepreneur by clicking > register/login > application portal > register as an entrepreneur
• You’ll receive an automatic email asking you to confirm your email address and continue your request (click on the link). If you don’t receive the confirmation email, check your spam folder.
• You will then be able to fill out the form and upload the required documents, which include:
– a completed business plan
– financial forecasts for the next two years and a month-by-month breakdown
– Government ID (passport or driver’s license)
Note: All of the required documents must be uploaded for your application to be processed.
• The analyst in charge of your file will then contact you to go over your application and advise you of the next steps.
Partners who are eligible for the program (under the age of 40 and a permanent resident or Canadian citizen) who own more than 5% of the company’s shares must appear on the application for a loan.
Please note: You only need to apply once per project. When you register, you will be asked if you have any associates. If this is the case, you will need to answer “yes” and provide your or your associates’ contact information. They will then receive an automatic email inviting them to join the application. They can then complete the form and provide the appropriate documentation.
Please access the application portal using a computer. The platform is not compatible with mobile devices such as cell phones or tablets.
The portal functions best using the Chrome browser.
If the problem persists, please contact the portal platform’s technical support service: email@example.com.
Provide your name, the nature of your problem and, if necessary, attach a screen capture of the error message you received.