The federal government has announced that it is planning to extend its Business Credit Availability Program (BCAP), which was created amid COVID-19 to support medium-sized Canadian businesses, to June 2021.
Deputy Prime Minister and Finance Minister Chrystia Freeland announced the decision on Monday morning to extend BCAP, which is administered through Export Development Canada (EDC) and the Business Development Bank of Canada (BDC).
Through BDC, businesses are able to access loans of $12.5 million, while EDC’s BCAP offering includes $6.25 million loans. Businesses must apply through their financial institutions, which work with EDC and BDC, to receive the loans. The deadline to apply and obtain approval for BCAP loans is now June 30, 2021.
Also good to hear #BCAP has been extended. But, like all the programs, major changes are needed to make this functional for more small firms. BCAP has been given poor reviews by many CFIB members.
— Dan Kelly (@CFIB) August 31, 2020
As part of its plan to extend BCAP into 2021, the government stated that it is “supporting the flow of additional credit” through the program, but did not provide details on any additional capital commitments.
BCAP, announced as one of the first COVID-19 relief programs implemented by the federal government, was initially aimed at primarily supporting small and medium-sized enterprises (SMEs). In May, BCAP was expanded to help mid-sized companies.
Under the revised BCAP criteria, EDC and BDC began to loan larger amounts to medium-sized businesses with credit needs that exceed what is available through the program and other business support measures.
BDC started offering loans ranging from $12.5 million to $60 million to businesses with annual revenues of over $100 million.
The EDC’s Mid-Market Guarantee and Financing Program, through BCAP, distributes loans valued between $16.75 million and $80 million apiece. These loans are designed to sustain the operations of companies with revenues between $50 million to $300 million. They guarantee 75 percent of new operating credit and cash-flow loans for exporters, international investors, and businesses that sell products and services in Canada.