Welcome to our weekly Canadian startup news segment where we bring you the most important events in the world of canadian startups. We cover all major cities in Canada, mainly Toronto, Montreal & Vancouver and other emerging startup scenes.
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AN ADDITIONAL $20,000 IN CEBA LOANS NOW AVAILABLE TO SMALL CANADIAN BUSINESSES
The Canadian federal government has officially expanded the Canada Emergency Business Account (CEBA). Starting this week, eligible small businesses can access up to $20,000 in loan funding on top of the $40,000 they can already access.
To apply for the additional funding, applicants must get in contact the financial institution that provided their initial CEBA loan.
That economic update also mentioned the now-available interest-free $20,000 loan. With this new addition, the size of the CEBA loans has increased from the existing $40,000 to $60,000 for eligible businesses. Half of this additional amount, up to $10,000, is forgivable if the loan is repaid by December 31, 2022.
“Expanding CEBA loans to $60,000 will help give hard-working Canadian business owners the support they need to weather today’s challenges and build towards a brighter future,”said Minister of Small Business, Export Promotion, and International Trade Mary Ng.
Launched in April, the CEBA provides interest-free loans to small businesses and non-profits to help them cover costs that cannot be avoided or deferred during the pandemic. According to Prime Minister Justin Trudeau, the program has helped almost 800,000 small businesses across the country to date.
To apply for the additional loan funding, businesses and not-for-profits need to contact the financial institution that provided their initial CEBA loan. The government noted although the additional $20,000 may not be available at all participating financial institutions on December 4, it is expected to be available “soon.”
For more information visit: https://www.advisor.ca/news/economic/small-businesses-can-now-apply-for-an-additional-20000-under-ceba/
SHOPIFY BALANCE WILL BE POWERED BY STRIPE
On Thursday, it was revealed that payment processing startup Stripe and Evolve Bancorp will power two products within Shopify Balance, the Canadian e-commerce giant’s business banking offering first revealed earlier this year.
Stripe is already the payment processor for Shopify’s payments product.
Shopify will be using Stripe’s new Treasury product on the offering. Stripe and Evolve Bancorp will specifically power the Shopify Balance Account and the Shopify Balance Card.
Stripe Treasury is currently partnering with banks to offer a banking-as-a-service API. The product allows Stripe clients to embed financial services that let business customers send, receive, and store funds. The product is being offered through banks such as Goldman Sachs, Evolve Bank, Citibank, and Barclay’s.
Shopify is one of the first major partnerships to come out of the Stripe Treasury product launch. Shopify Balance is composed of three products: a bank account, card, and rewards program for Shopify merchants. According to Shopify, the goal behind Balance is to provide financial services that are built specifically for independent businesses and entrepreneurs.
“One of the biggest barriers for independent entrepreneurs is getting access to critical financial products,”
“Partnering with Stripe allows us to leverage their scale and efficiency, enabling us to focus on empowering our merchants and building Balance to meet their specific needs.”said Tui Allen, senior product lead for banking at Shopify, .
This is not the first time Shopify has teamed up with Stripe. Stripe is already the payment processor of Shopify Payments, which allows merchants to easily set up payments for their store. Notably, Stripe has also teamed up with Canadian companies like Jobber and Lightspeed to power those companies’ payments solutions and loan offerings.
With its new partners, Shopify is now looking to launch Balance early next year for merchants in the US. It is not clear when Shopify Balance will be available to Canadian merchants.
AFFIRM TO ACQUIRE PAYBRIGHT FOR $340 MILLION CAD
PayBright, one of Canada’s leading buy-now-pay-later providers, is set to be acquired by Affirm, a San Francisco based startup.
Affirm is set to purchase PayBright for $340 million CAD, including cash and equity consideration. However, the additional terms of the transaction were not disclosed.
“As part of a larger, multinational organization, we can help even more merchants attract new customers.”– Wayne Pommen, PayBright
Toronto-based PayBright is lending and payments startup that offers instant point-of-sale financing and installment payment plans for consumers and merchants. Its platform is focused on providing consumers with pay-later solutions at online shops and regular brick-and-mortar retailers.
“We built PayBright with the mission of making the everyday commerce experience simply better for Canadians,”
“Partnering with Affirm gives us the opportunity to deliver on that promise on a much larger scale. Affirm’s network, focus on trust and transparency, and industry-leading technology make it the ideal partner for PayBright.
Said Mr. Pommen, CEO of PayBright
The announcement of the deal comes two weeks after Affirm filed to go public on the Nasdaq. Affirm is a consumer finance company, which touts itself as “a more flexible and transparent alternative to credit cards.” It was founded in 2012 by PayPal co-founder Max Levchin.
For more information: https://betakit.com/affirm-to-acquire-paybright-for-340-million-cad/?utm_source=BetaKit+Newsletter&utm_campaign=f426370b75-EMAIL_CAMPAIGN_BK_12_06_2020&utm_medium=email&utm_term=0_2ec531721a-f426370b75-199852057
DRONE STARTUP SKYGAUGE CLOSES $3.3 MILLION SEED AS THE DEMAND FOR AUTOMATION AND DELIVERY KEEPS INCREASING
Skygauge Robotics has closed a $3.3 million CAD seed round and the Toronto based drone startup is immediately scaling up its hiring in response to increased demand during the COVID-19 pandemic.
The seed round closed in October and was led by BDC Capital’s Industrial Innovation Venture Fund.
“We had to invent a new way for drones to fly.”– Nikita Iliushkin, Skygauge
The seed capital brings Skygauge’s total funding to $3.8 million CAD. The startup raised $500,000 CAD initially in pre-seed, with $250,000 USD of the funding originating from HAX’s Seed Program, while the remainder was contributed by friends and family investors.
Skygauge has developed drones for industrial applications, designed to reduce the time involved during inspections, while improving operator safety by keeping them from working at excessive heights.
The startup’s drone design enables it to make direct contact with pipes, pressure vessels, and storage containers at varying angles to detect cracks beneath the surface with sensors during inspections that are typically performed by workers on ropes and scaffolding.
The startup claims its drones can reduce time on site by approximately 80 percent.
“Our vision is to really use this as a platform to create a workforce in the sky,”
“We formed in 2016 when we noticed a lack of design innovation in the drone industry. We realized this stemmed from limitations with current designs. They were not stable enough to do more physical work and so we had to invent a new way for drones to fly.”
Stay tuned for weekly updates and the latest news from the world of Canadian start-ups.
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