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Scale ESEs

TEF fosters the scaling of ESEs through access to grants, support for engaging in social procurement, and research and evaluation.

In 2019, TEF staff interviewed managers of four ESEs, each with sales of over $750,000 and more than 15 key population staff, to gain a greater understanding of factors that influence the growth of employment social enterprises. Through the interviews, six factors were identified by all four enterprises as key drivers for enterprise growth. These findings are summarized in the TEF ESE Growth Lessons Report

Growth Grants

TEF has launched a new grant stream -- Growth Grants -- to support employment social enterprises to explore, plan and pilot strategies to significantly scale their businesses, based on validated market demand. Growth Grants provide up to $10,000 in one-time funding.

Growth Grants are open to existing employment social enterprises in Peel, Toronto, and York Region, who have been in operation for at least three years, have sales of over $50,000, and who have more than 10 employees who face barriers.

Growth Grants can be used to engage in any activities that will enable the enterprises to create at least five new ongoing employment opportunities for employees who face barriers over two years, including: technical assistance costs, human resources costs, capital costs and administrative costs.

Applications for Growth Grants are currently closed. 

Mixed Capital Opportunities Fund

TEF’s Mixed Capital Opportunities Fund (Mixed Cap) offers a grant/loan hybrid up to $30,000, in partnership with Alterna Savings. Mixed Cap is designed for existing employment social enterprises that have a business opportunity or expansion plans, and job creation potential, particularly for people who are socially marginalized.

Please note that the Mixed Cap has been temporarily suspended due to the Social Enterprise Demonstration Fund from the Ministry of Economic Development, Job Creation and Trade being terminated. TEF and Alterna are seeking a new source of funding to continue to offer Mixed Cap in the future.

Social Procurement

TEF helps connect employment social enterprises with new customers through increased capacity to engage in social procurement. TEF supports this work through an arrangement with Buy Social Canada.

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