Please note: BEP is a need based program.

NOTE: *NEDC has merged all application forms into one, so there is now only one form to apply for all programs. You can also apply online now or you can download the Word and PDF application forms.  Go to Forms
**This program is sometimes referred to as Aboriginal Business Canada (ABC), Aboriginal Business Development Fund (ABDF), or Aboriginal Business and Entrepreneurship Fund (ABEF).

Contributions to assist in the capital, marketing and operating costs of establishing, expanding and acquiring a business:

  • Up to $99,999 for individuals*
  • Up to $250,000 for community owned businesses*
  • Up to 40% contribution toward eligible startup and 3 months of operating costs or 30% toward eligible acquisition or expansion costs
  • minimum 10% cash equity required
  • commercial financing required (NEDC may be willing to provide financing as well)
  • ineligible costs include (not exhaustive): land & building, owners wages, unnecessary costs, personal expenses, pre-committed expenses
  • ineligible projects include (not exhaustive): tobacco or alcohol related activities, sexually exploitative or Explicit operations, gaming-related businesses, and pay-day loan and similar type businesses.

*The maximum contribution is rarely approved and delivery agents may impose a maximum contribution lower than listed above.  NEDC limited contributions to $25,000 for individuals and $50,000 for community owned businesses in the 2018-2019 fiscal year.

Contributions up to 75% for planning and support activities including::

  • business plans,
  • feasibility studies,
  • environmental studies for commercial development
  • business valuation for business acquisitions
  • business support (i.e. setting up financial reporting requirements, implementation services, etc.)
    financing not required

The program can provide contributions for marketing initiatives:

  • must provide a detailed marketing plan,
  • maximum 60%,
  • no financing required.


  • Canadian Status & non-status First Nations OR Inuit OR Metis – WITH A STATUS CARD
  • Be nineteen years or older
  • Reside and operate or propose to operate the business on, or serviced from, Vancouver Island
  • Access term financing with each application with the exception of applications for business planning, feasibility studies and the implementation of a marketing plan.

NEDC’s Application Process:

  • Complete an application form and submit to NEDC with any supplemental information and/or documents (ex. status card and identification, resume, financial projections, household budget, etc).
  • Complete and submit a business plan and submit any additional information requested by your BDO.

*Please remember to leave yourself enough time to complete the process and note that costs that are already committed to are not eligible expenses in this program.

**Feel free to contact NEDC and discuss your plan with a Business Development Officer (BDO) and any potential information they may require.

Upon receipt of all requested information, your BDO will analyze your project and make a recommendation to the delegated approval authority. If the request for a contribution is approved, the applicant will receive a “Letter of Offer” from NEDC.

A project is monitored for the life of the agreement to ensure the client continues to meet their contractual obligations and to determine the success of the project.

To make a claim on an approved project, you need to submit a Claim Summary and Detailed Eligible Costs to NEDC:
Claim Summary – PDF

Detailed Eligible Costs – PDF