Rebuilding Business Post COVID

Rebuilding Business Post COVID June 06, 2021

This article was written by Tom Christenson, CA, MPACC, and Managing Partner at Yates Whitaker LLP

The provincial and federal governments have stepped forward to provide some relief for business owners. To gain access to these programs, you need to be on top of your numbers and on top of your filings to access subsidies and be able to manage through these difficult economic times. Here is a brief summary of support for businesses. 

  1. Federal Programs and Support
    1. Canadian Emergency business Account (CEBA).  One of the better ones in my opinion with a wide net.  Designed just to get cash into businesses with obligations.  Applications are done through your bank.
    2. Canadian Emergency Rent Subsidy (CERS).  Designed to help businesses with rent obligations.  The first version of this was difficult; it left it in the hands of the landlord and the landlord had to take a haircut in order for it to work.  That didn’t go well for a lot of small businesses. 
    3. CEWS.  Can be complex or simple, depending on which method you choose and the nature of your business.  Designed originally in part to relieve the EI system with a focus on businesses being able to retain employees in the face of a revenue drop.  Applications are done through CRA.
    4. CRHP.  Replacing CEWS.  Designed with a focus to help businesses with a drop in revenue that has likely laid off personnel, to gear back up and hire.  CRA has not released specifics on how to apply for this subsidy yet.

Alberta has a variety of grants and initiatives as well.

  1. Cash Flow Management Tools.  Can be basic like a piece of paper or fancy like a bookkeeping system with bolt-on software, like QBO and Dry run.  Or, something in the middle like Excel.  Excel can be a basic or advanced tool, and it’s cost-effective for many small businesses.
  2. Lending relationships.  BDC has been a very valuable resource, but their offerings must be used carefully in conjunction with your lender.  Banks have also been patient, but they have for the most part deferred not forgiven.  This means cash flow again is critical because the problem is coming.  In exchange for deferral, banks have frequently pushed for more disclosure, better and more timely reporting, and more timely reporting. 

If you would like more information about accessing these programs, you can contact Tom at:

Yates Whitaker, LLP

#300, 10328 - 81 Avenue
Edmonton, AB T6E 1X2

P. (780) 413-7211 |  F. (780) 413-7226
[email protected]