Small Business Loan Guarantee Program

Are you a mission-based enterprise enhancing the wellbeing of Nova Scotia? Your rocket could qualify for our fuel.

The Nova Scotia Co-operative Council through its Small Business Loan Guarantee Program is investing $200,000 in mission-based enterprises in Nova Scotia that are looking to start and/or grow and expand their enterprise.

Mission-based private businesses believe that it is possible to have a positive impact on a social or environmental issue while considering all stakeholders and staying committed to product development, profit, social responsibility, and sustainability.

Program Overview

Investment can be in the form of a guaranteed loan or line of credit, subordinated debt, equity, revenue sharing or royalty agreement. A maximum investment of $50,000 will be granted to successful applicants, until the funds are all invested.

Investment can be anywhere within Nova Scotia (urban or rural) as long as the community is serviced by a credit union.

Funds cannot be used for business planning, debt restructuring or to cover losses.


Another way to fuel your rocket

Small Business Loan Guarantee

Helping small businesses with big ideas is precisely why the Small Business Loan Guarantee Program was created. It is the only financing program of its kind designed to empower small businesses in Nova Scotia to succeed.

The program is a joint initiative of the Nova Scotia Co-operative Council, Atlantic Central, local participating credit unions, and the Province of Nova Scotia. Together, we are delivering better financial assistance for the start-up and expansion of small businesses. The Small Business Loan Guarantee Program supports provincial business owners with creating and maintaining rewarding careers for Nova Scotians each year.

Credit unions are the only financial provider to offer access to the financing program, which ensures investments in our small businesses start and stay in Nova Scotia. Credit unions can provide financing up to $500,000 in the form of term loans, working capital and lines of credit. No other financing programs provide access to working capital or lines of credit to individuals who would like to start or purchase a small business and/or grow and expand an existing business.

Learn more and apply through your local Credit Union.


Eligible enterprises include start-ups and/or growth and expansions.
Not-for-profit, co-operatives or private businesses that have a positive impact on a social or environmental issue that meets a community need or maximize a community opportunity.
Enterprises must be registered and based in Nova Scotia. Enterprises can be new or existing credit union members. Note: At the time of fund disbursement, enterprise must be a member of a local Credit Union (i.e., have a bank account). Finally, every applicant must be in good standing with the Canada Revenue Agency in order to receive the funds.

No. Credit unions will refer enterprises that are a fit for the Impact Investing program to Nova Scotia Co-operative Council (NSCC) for ajudication of applications and decision-making. Final investment decisions rest with NSCC.
If an enterprise is a fit for the Small Business Loan Guarantee program, your Credit Union can follow your existing processes for this program.
No. There will be no regional allocations. Decisions will be based on the best proposals/opportunities. All mission-based enterprises are welcome to apply regardless of their location within Nova Scotia.

Additional information

Eligible enterprises will need to complete a formal application including the following information:

  • Amount requested
  • Information on the enterprise (description of the organization, leadership team, etc.)
  • Description of the enterprise’s social and/or environmental mission and impacts
  • Summary of the opportunity and how the investment will help the enterprise meet its objectives
  • Business plan & community support
  • Financial sustainability
  • Ability to grow and expand impact and how this will be measured
  • Ability to service debt and/or meet other financial obligations
  • Description of other partners and additional financing leveraged

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