Can Exports SME Program

Applications close May 31 2024, Sign up before the program fills up!

UP TO $50,000 in grant funding

Access up to $50,000 dollars in matched funds from the Canadian government. Eligible expenses include travel, accommodations, marketing updates, trade shows, conferences, and much more.

Book a free consultation with Blue Lotus Creative Today to learn more!

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What is the CanExports SME grant?

The CanExport SMEs program aids Canadian companies in exporting goods and services to new international markets by providing up to $50,000 for eligible projects. It operates on a first-come, first-served basis until funds are depleted.

How it Works

Funding through CanExport SMEs is shared between the recipient and the program, with applicants able to request between $20,000 and $100,000 per project. CanExport SMEs covers up to 50% of eligible costs, ranging from $10,000 to $50,000 per project, with the applicant responsible for the remaining 50% (no in-kind contributions allowed).

How to find out if I am eligible?

Your company qualifies if it:
  • Is a for-profit business
  • Is legally incorporated, an LLP, or cooperative in Canada
  • Holds an active CRA business number
  • Has less than 500 FTE employees
  • Declared annual revenue between $100,000 and $100 million in Canada during its last tax reporting year (or last 12 months for frequent filers).

What are eligible expenses?

Category A: Travel for meetings or events with key contacts

  • Trade events
  • Airfare
  • Ground Transportation
  • Per diem
  • Mandatory visa fee
  • Other eligible travel related costs

Category B: Trade events - non-travel related

  • Attendance in a Trade Event
  • Exhibition Fees
  • Return Shipping and Handling Costs

Category C: Marketing and translation

  • Translation
  • Adapting a Website
  • Search Engine Optimization (SEO)
  • Promotional Material
  • Videos
  • Online Advertising

Category D: Interpretation services

  • Interpreter

Category E: Contractual agreements, Product registration and Certification

  • Adaptation and Translation of Contractual Agreements
  • Certification
  • Registration
  • Supplier Diversity Certification

Category F: Consultant – Business, Tax and Legal advice

  • Expert advice for legal, tax or business matters
  • Expert advice on regulatory issues
  • Expert advice on digital and e-commerce marketing

Category G: Consultant - Market research, feasibility studies, identification of key contacts, B2B facilitation

  • Export market research
  • Identification of key contacts
  • Facilitation of business-to-business (B2B) meeting programs and matchmaking
  • Feasibility studies for the target market

Category H: Intellectual Property (IP) Protection, Including Expert/Legal Services for IP Related Expenses for Target Market(s)

  • Filing a patent or industrial design application
  • Application for the registration of a trademark or copyright
  • IP professional services from a consultant and/or legal firm

Frequently Asked Questions (FAQ)

Due to popular demand, it was just announced that the CDAP stream 2 program (for the $15,000 grant) will be closing February 24 2024. Apply Today to secure your spot!

It’s a government grant and it has been challenging for all parties to navigate.

If you have at least one full time equivalent employee, you’re likely eligible for the $2,400 Stream 1 grant, which can be spent in many different ways (SBBC).

If you have reported revenue that is less than $500k in any of the past 3 years, you can also apply for the $15,000 CDAP Stream 2, unlike the Launch Online and SMB.

The program’s official site has a Grant Assessment Tool with these questions to determine which is right for you:

-Do you have between 1 and 499 employees?
-Which sector is your business in?
-Where is your head office located?
-What are you looking to do?
-Did you have annual revenues between $500,000 and $100,000,000 in any of the past three tax years?

Stream 1 is intended for customer-facing businesses who haven’t yet adopted digital tech or are looking to improve, with funding to support up to 90,000 businesses. This microgrant of $2,400 does not have the minimum revenue requirement.

Stream 2 was developed to help up to 70,000 SMEs adopt new digital technologies and strategies as part of an adoption plan, so the grant is considerably larger. It’s best designed for enterprises with high operational costs and the business is in need of capital and independent, outside expertise to move technology forward.

We’d be happy to support you through the assessment process in any way that we can.
Yes, Blue Lotus Creative is a registered and approved advisor with the federal government. Learn more about the criteria to be a CDAP digital advisor on the program site.
The federal government has put considerable effort into simplifying the grant application process, compared to previous grants like the SMB and Launch Online grants. We’re here to support you in the application process.
The grant program administrators have said that the average application takes a few days to a week to review and approve, but they’re working on reducing this time to less than one business day.
The federal government considers these four components to be essential in every plan: -Executive Summary: Provide an executive-level summary of the key elements of the plan for the SME. -Current state analysis and summary: Provide an overview of current and key business data, such as strengths, weaknesses, opportunities, threats, external issues as well as key IS/IT information. -Digital adoption analysis and suggestions: Identify at least 3 potential digital or technology solutions for the SME to consider, including how each of those solutions will benefit the SME’s business. -Implementation roadmap: Identify the key components to implement the recommended options including timeline, dependencies, costs, etc. The plan can also include optional elements such as skill requirements and other high-level requirements for each recommendation. See the Canada Digital Adoption Plan and Guide for more details.
An SME has up to six months to accept the CDAP terms and conditions, then up to nine months to submit the Digital Adoption Plan to the federal government (see Section 3.2 of the Program Guide). Most plans can be completed in less than 60 days.
Applications initially opened in January 2022 and the program is set to run for four years, with a review after one year, beginning in the new year.
Similar to most government grants, if an application meets all eligibility requirements, grants are approved on a first-come, first-serve basis.
Funds will be sent by the federal government to the SME within 30 days of uploading the completed digital adoption plan. SME’s are expected to work with advisors to come up with a deposit and payment structure. We are happy to discuss this with you.
Please review the CDAP Program’s Grant Assessment Tool for eligibility criteria. Unlike other recent grants, you must have at least 1 full-time equivalent employee. For questions on eligibility, the progress of your application and eligible spending categories, contact the grant administrators: Alacrity Canada (French & English): cdap@alacritycanada.com1-778-400-1808 Small Business BC:
We can confirm that you do not need an online store to receive approval. The grant wording does make it sound like the grant administrators prefer it. However, we’ve worked with accounting firms and environmental consulting firms who have used it to boost their SEO, update their websites and create social media plans, with approval under CDAP.
We can walk you through the entire process, but business owners or directors must apply for the grant.
No, it’s free to apply for. Blue Lotus Creative does not charge for assisting in the application process.
Blue Lotus Creative has extensive experience in Consulting, Digital marketing strategy creation, Conversion rate optimization, Pay Per Click (PPC) Advertising, Targeted email marketing, Brand creation + Rebranding, Graphic Design, eCommerce Development (Shopify, WooCommerce, Squarespace), Website Development (WordPress, Six, Squarespace, Custom).
For Stream 1, yes. You can choose your own digital advisor. For Stream 2, applicants will have access to the CDAP Digital Advisor Marketplace after receiving approval , which is a searchable and filterable list of all registered digital advisors. Blue Lotus Creative is on this approved list.
SMEs are able to reach out to any number of digital advisors, but can only work with one when using Stream 2 grant subsidy funds.

The funds for the CDAP Grant Stream 2 can only be used to create the Digital Adoption Plan, and is not for implementation or software or ad costs.

Taken From the Canada Digital Adoption Plan and Guide:

The SME and the digital advisor will work together to develop a digital adoption plan that meets the CDAP requirements. Upon completion, the SME will upload their completed digital adoption plan and invoice to the CDAP portal. Once accepted, the grant will be issued to the SME.

Reach out Today

At Blue Lotus Creative, we have a 100% success rate getting businesses grants to help modernize and optimize their businesses.

We believe in the power of the Internet. If you’re looking to have your dynamic ideas heard, there’s no better medium to spread the word. With knowledge and understanding of the full digital marketing suite, comes an inherent power to spread information and ideas. Our goal has always been to collaborate with value-aligned clients on projects we can all be proud of.