In partnership with Rupertsland Institute and the Metis Nation of Alberta, Apeetogosan (Metis) Development Inc. (AMDI) is pleased to announce and introduce the following new Micro Business loan program for Métis Women. The program, that will be called, Métis Women in Micro Business Program (MWMBP), is a new loan program that is designed to target Métis women entrepreneurs in Alberta who are considering starting or expanding their own micro business.
Today’s conventional banking perspectives on business viability, including AMDI’s existing loan and grant programs, unfortunately preclude women who own and operate, or, desire to own and operate small or micro sized businesses. Historically, it was thought that if the project could not sustain full-time employment as well as service debt, then the project would, in a realistic sense, be unsustainable. This principle continues to govern AMDI’s loan policy to this day.
The problem with such operating parameters is that we have neglected the role and economic value that women in micro businesses provide. First, when we ignore, or exclude women and their micro businesses, we are limiting women’s participation in the economy and their economic impact. That is, we are overlooking the much wider and durable economic value and benefit of their contribution. Métis women contribute to a productive and civilized society and through their micro businesses that improve the health and wellness of the family and the community. Women are at the heart of our Métis community and when empowered, they are advocates on social issues, role models for future generations and preservers of Métis culture.
So, to encourage this kind of participation in the economy, the Métis Women in Micro Business Program (MWMBP), will target small business endeavors whose maximum project size will not exceed $25,000. The MWMBP will provide an interest free loan of up to $22,500, where 40% of financing will be forgivable on the back end of the loan.
- Must be a Métis woman with planned or existing majority of ownership and control of the business held by her;
- Must operate within the Province of Alberta;
- Must submit a valid MNA card
- Must provide proof of Alberta residency
PRoject eligibility & terms:
- Maximum project size is $25,000 ⸫ Maximum Loan size is $22,500
- Resources must be expended on assets for the project
- Applicant must demonstrate 10% commitment to the project
- 40% of loan is forgivable at the end of the loan – with good repayment. Three NSF’s or more would void forgivable portion subject to Manager/lender discretion
- Repayment of monthly payments start on the 15th or 1st of the month, starting within 45 days of advance.
Frequently asked questions:
Q: Can I pay my loan off sooner than the originally planned with a lump sum?
A: Yes. There will be no penalty applied to early payouts.
Q: What is the maximum size of loan I can access?
A: Maximum size of loan that will be offered to the Métis Women in Micro Business Loan program is $22,500, and maximum project size is $25,000.
Q: Am I required to contribute anything towards the project?
A: Yes. A cash equity contribution of 10% of Total Project Costs will be required.
Q: Will these loans require security?
A: Yes the amount borrowed will require Apeetogosan to bind the repayment obligation to the business and the owner. The general security documents will require a Promissory Note, a General Security Agreement and a personal guarantee or co-signor of the individual (at the discretion of management).
Q: What am I allowed to use the funds for?
A: We will allow the funds to be used for legitimate business expenses, these include the following:
- Commercial rent or lease payments (excluding personal rent)
- Wages to arms-length employees
- Small tools
- Advertising & promotion
- Fuel & oil
Q: I am currently the owner and pay myself as a draw, dividend or a salary. Can I use the funds for this purpose?
A: No, however, you will be able to pay yourself from income generated from the business. The purpose of the loan is to assist specifically with capital expenditures required to establish or expand the business’s operations.
Q: In addition to the completed application, what other paperwork or information should I be prepared to provide?
A: If Apeetogosan does not currently have it on file, you should provide the following:
- Certificate of Incorporation (if applicable), and if you are an existing business, your most recent Annual Financial Statement;
- If existing business is a sole proprietorship, a copy of previous year’s tax return showing self employment income;
- Certificate of trade name registration (if a sole proprietor);
- Business Number with CRA;
- Copy of your current MNA Membership card;
- Copy of a cheque or banking information of your business bank account.
Q: In order to ensure I receive the forgivable portion of the MWMB loan, what documents must I submit?
A: You must be prepared to submit copies of bank statements, credit card statements and/or invoices and receipts confirming that the funds were used for allowable business purposes. You will be assigned a Pinnacle consultant or Apeetogosan representative to work with you to vet the information and submit the claim to ensure the subsidy is applied to your loan account.
If you happen to have more questions, please call 780-452-7951.
listen to real stories:
This video was put together with the help of 5 Métis women who are representative of many Métis women in Canada who are providing immense benefits to their communities through micro businesses – a sphere of economic activity that is often overlooked. In support of the Métis Women in Micro Business Program recently launched at AMDI, these 5 women were generous enough to tell us their story – what motivated their passion and commitment to serving the community through the products and services they provide to the market.