Programs to Hire Consultants
1. Consultant Advisory Service Program (CAS)
Companies in Atlantic Canada are eligible to apply for Consultant Advisory Service (CAS) grants. These grants are funded through ACOA but usually administered through local ecosystem players such as CEED (for those in the Halifax region) or through your local Community Business Development Corporation (CBDC).
CAS grants are used to hire a consultant who will complete work that the company does not have the expertise in-house to perform. They’re used to assist a company with hiring a professional consultant to address specific challenges, deficiencies and opportunities for the business or organization.
The grant will fund 75% of the professional fees up to a maximum of $5,000 + HST. Each company is responsible for 25% plus any amount above the maximum. Companies must demonstrate the financial need, show that they don’t have the expertise needed to do the work and be a registered business.
There’s no limit on the number of applications per year. There can only be 1 in progress at a time. If someone has a project on the go and would like to apply for additional funding they have to wait until the current one is complete and approved. Applications are approved through both the administering organization and ACOA.
If interested, companies should contact their local organization administering the program (likely a CBDC outside of Halifax) or their ACOA Account Manager.
2. Learnsphere Commercialization Consulting and Mentoring Program (CCM)
The Commercialization Consulting and Mentoring Program (CCM) provides financial assistance to help Atlantic Canadian businesses and institutions in the final stages of commercialization.
Receive up to $16,250 (65% of project costs) to:
Hire consultants or mentors to help get a new and innovative product, technology, or process to market. Host group learning activities that will improve knowledge and preparedness for commercialization
This program is managed by LearnSphere, with financial assistance from the Atlantic Canada Opportunities Agency.
Click to learn more and apply
3. Invest Nova Scotia Export Development Program (EDP)
*Available to only Nova Scotia based companies
Get expert help to address the challenges or barriers for selling your products/services outside of Nova Scotia and access services to improve competitiveness from market research to technology implementation or development.
Receive up to $15,000 (50% of project costs). The minimum project cost is $5,000 CAD.
Please note the $15,000 program maximum is a combination of the consultant AND travel/trade mission streams within the Export Development Program. Therefore, if you plan to partake in travel, it may be best to first access one of the two other support programs listed above to hire consultants.
A detailed list of guidelines for this program can be found