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The Canada Emergency Business Account (CEBA) is an initiative of the Government of Canada.  The official Government website is

CEBA Loan for Technology Startups

CEBA Loan for Technology Startups

The Canada Emergency Business Account (CEBA) is a lifeline for technology startups in this challenging economic climate. It provides interest-free loans, giving a financial cushion that can empower firms to ride out the storm. This could be the difference between breakthrough innovation and early dissolution for tech startups. 

In this blog post, we will explain CEBA loan for technology startups in detail, explaining its eligibility and importance for technology startups to survive.

CEBA Loan Overview

The Canadian government introduced the Canada Emergency Business Account (CEBA) initiative to support businesses impacted by the COVID-19 pandemic, including technology startups. This program offers interest-free loans of up to $60,000 to alleviate economic stress and ensure technology startups can maintain operations during these challenging circumstances. Technology startups must have had an active business account before March 1, 2020, to qualify for this scheme.

An appealing feature of the CEBA loan for technology startups is the potential for loan forgiveness: up to $20,000 of the loan can be forgiven if repaid by December 31, 2023. The flexible repayment terms and zero-interest make CEBA an attractive financial resource for technology startups and not-for-profit organizations experiencing financial hardships.

Key Features of CEBA Loan for Technology Startups

Below are some of the key features of CEBA loan for technology startups:


A vital element of the CEBA loan scheme is the offering of interest-free loans. These funds provide technology startups with the essential capital required to manage operational costs without the added pressure of interest accrual during the pandemic. This interest-free phase lasts until January 1, 2024. After this date, the outstanding loan balance turns into a 2-year loan with an annual fixed interest rate of 5%. 

Such loans are extremely beneficial for technology startups as they can be utilized for various operational costs, including lease payments, property taxes, and other utilities such as insurance coverage. This eases financial strain and enables startups to concentrate on steering through the existing hardships caused by COVID-19.

Forgiveness Benefit

The CEBA loan program offers a loan forgiveness benefit. Eligible technology startups can take advantage of this, with up to $20,000 of the loan amount being forgiven if the CEBA loan is repaid by December 31, 2023. This prospect for partial forgiveness provides substantial financial relief and incentivizes startups to repay their debt early. 

However, to be eligible for this benefit, technology startups must maintain good standing and comply with all the criteria established by the Canadian government. Timely repayments and adherence to eligibility conditions can optimize the advantages of CEBA loan forgiveness.

Extended Repayment

The CEBA loan program provides extended repayment terms for technology startups until December 31, 2023. Within this period, no payments towards the principal amount are necessary, offering technology startups a break from financial strain during these challenging times. However, by December 31, 2025, the full loan amount and any accrued interest must be repaid. This feature caters to the immediate financial needs of technology startups while allowing them sufficient time to plan for eventual repayment.

CEBA Loan Eligibility for Technology Startups

Navigating the eligibility criteria for the CEBA loan is pivotal for technology startups looking for financial support during the ongoing pandemic. The eligibility prerequisites primarily focus on the Payroll Stream and Non-Deferrable Expense Stream.

Payroll Stream

To qualify under the Payroll Stream, your technology startup must have had a payroll of at least $20,000 and no more than $1.5 million in 2019. This prerequisite calls for a thorough record of employment income paid during the fiscal year, signifying a commitment to employee well-being and adaptability to economic fluctuations.

Non-Deferrable Expense Stream

The Non-Deferrable Expense Stream caters to technology startups without payroll. For such businesses to be eligible, they must have non-deferrable expenses ranging from $40,000 to $1.5 million in 2020. These are costs that are unavoidable and crucial for business operations, including rent, utilities, insurance, and payroll-related obligations.

Securing the CEBA loan under these conditions can equip your technology startup with the much-needed financial buffer to sustain essential business operations during the pandemic, paving the way for long-term survival even in tough times. Having a clear understanding of the Payroll Stream and Non-Deferrable Expense Stream requirements can provide your technology startup with a better chance of successfully securing the CEBA loan, offering a financial lifeline in these challenging times.


CEBA loan for technology startups is a vital initiative launched by the Canadian government to support businesses affected by the COVID-19 pandemic. From interest-free loans, loan forgiveness, and extended repayment terms, CEBA offers technology startups the necessary financial relief during this difficult period. 

To be eligible for this scheme, technology startups must have had an active business account before March 1, 2020, and meet the criteria of either the Payroll Stream or Non-Deferrable Expense Stream. With this understanding, technology startups can take advantage of CEBA’s financial assistance and set themselves up for success in the long run.

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