Under capitalized $40K initially from myself√ $1M installed. Choosing low cost equipment√ Replacing for growth. Lack of operating capital√ Patient terms with growers and suppliers.√ RBC Line of Credit since 2012. Cost of interest on borrowed money. No fixed land assets to offer security.4
High Cost of Growth 10-20% per year Never optimal production levels Always re-investing the margins√ Versus developing working capital. Always spending for the future√ Marketing, staff, consultants, plans.√ Before the revenues arrive. Costly ventures and innovation√ Some good and some bad (costly).5
Government Lenders Canada Small Business Financing Program.√ Farms not eligible.√ Apply through your bank.√ 85% loan guarantee.√ Finance 90% of capital assets up to $500,000.√ May require 25% personal guarantee.√ Costs 2% registration fee and Prime +3%. Business Development Bank√ Must be 2 years in business.√ Flexible terms. Higher risk and cost (prime + 3%).6
Grant ProgramsEastern Ontario Local FoodConference7 Agriculture Adaptation Council: $15,000 NRC – IRAP: $69,400, 3 projects. CME-Smart: $67,000, 2 projects. Ag Canada Youth Hire program: $10,000 EODP: $17,142, 3 projects Atlantic Canada...: $5,000 EODF and FEDDEV: possibly in the future
Private Loans Promissory notes Not regulated. Simple one page, not guaranteed. Various terms 1-3 years, 6-10%. Currently $245,000, 14 people.8
Shareholders I remain the only common shareholder.√ Special Preferred Shareholders. Highly regulated. You need a lawyer.√ No sales to the public.√ Accredited, close family, friends, and associates. Fixed value. Discretionary fixed annual dividend 6%. Currently $684,000 from 24 people.9
Expansion Program Budget $1.8M to move and expand.√ Mix of subordinate debt & commercial debt. Pitching to mainstream investors:√ Merchant banks, equity firms, investment funds,venture capital, agri-business.√ Cannot meet their expectations.10
Go back to the organic community Mission minded impact accredited investors.√ Offering subordinate debt. External accreditation as a Benefit Corp.√ To validate our commitment to a triple bottom line.√ Our score of 86 out of 200, minimum 80 points.√ Average 84 out of 1941 sustainable companies.√ Average 105 out of 504 B Corps.11
Channels to Impact Investors RBC Generator.√ $10-million for social and environmental ventures. MARS Center for Impact Investing√ Pitch fairs and Social Venture Exchange. Mission Markets Exchange√ Financial Marketplace For Sustainable Capitalism. Slow Money√ Annual conference, Boulder CO√ Investing in food, sustainable ag, communities.√ Pitch fairs and networking.12
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