The federal government is rolling out a new multimillion-dollar loan program, called the Large Employer Emergency Financing Facility (LEEFF), aimed at providing financing access to large employers impacted by COVID-19 and the economic downturn it’s prompted. The plan will allow big companies to access additional liquidity to keep their operations going, retain workers on the payroll, and avoid bankruptcy. As part of this, the government is expanding the Business Credit Availability Program, put in place to keep small businesses solvent, to mid-sized companies, and Export Development Canada and the Business Development Bank of Canada will work with private-sector lenders to free up access to tens of millions of dollars in capital.
LEEFF applicants must also have significant operations or workforce in Canada. Their international situation and financing arrangements will be taken into consideration, and each business will have to demonstrate some degree of environmental commitment and vow to report annually on its climate and sustainability initiatives.
For the businesses that receive this funding, the federal government intends to implement strict limits on executive pay and share buybacks and will expect these firms to respect all collective bargaining agreements and pensions. Applications are currently open.
LEEFF will be open to large Canadian employers who:
- Have a significant impact on Canada’s economy, as demonstrated by
- having significant operations in Canada or
- supporting a significant workforce in Canada;
- Can generally demonstrate approximately $300 million or more in annual revenues; and
- Require a minimum loan size of about $60 million (guarantees of up to $80 million).
- Large for-profit enterprises in all sectors, except for those in the financial sector, can apply.
- Certain not-for-profit enterprises, such as airports, could also be eligible.
- Companies that have been found guilty of tax evasion are not eligible under the program.
A factsheet providing responses to frequently asked questions about LEEFF is available here.
LEEFF Application Process for Qualifying Enterprises
Alternately, interested applicants may send an email to firstname.lastname@example.org with the following information:
- Name of business
- Headquarters address
- Description of business
- Business annual revenues (FY2019 results)
- Number of employees
- Stock exchange symbol (if publicly listed)
- Name of contact
- Title of contact
- The email address of contact (must be from the enterprise’s corporate domain)
- Phone number of contact
Only email addresses from the enterprise’s corporate domain will be accepted.
The support will not be accessible to companies that don’t need the funding, nor can it be used to resolve insolvency or to restructure a firm.