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Aboriginal Business Investment Fund

Helps Indigenous community-owned businesses capitalize on business development opportunities to improve socio-economic outcomes.


The Aboriginal Business Investment Fund (ABIF) can partially or completely fund capital costs for Indigenous community-owned economic development projects. Projects like these improve social and economic outcomes for Indigenous Peoples and their communities.

To get funding, projects should be close to starting operations or breaking ground within the fiscal year following funding.

Applicants must demonstrate long-term effects that:

  • Increase the number of Indigenous community-owned businesses

  • Increase employment opportunities for Indigenous Peoples

  • Create or increase local revenue streams for Indigenous communities

  • Strengthen the economies of Indigenous communities

Indigenous Relations bases funding decisions on the results of a competitive review process. A strong application has these elements:

  • Demonstrated community support for the project that includes a formal Resolution and other supporting documentation

  • The potential for generating net economic benefit, like jobs and community revenue

  • Demonstrated management capacity and business expertise on the project

  • Demonstrated balance of own-source equity, commercial financing, and grant funding

  • The long-term viability of the proposed business opportunity

  • Potential for the project to generate spin-off business opportunities


ABIF provides between $150,000 and $500,000 to support an Indigenous community-owned economic development project. That could be up to 100% of eligible project costs. An ABIF grant can be stacked with other government and industry funding sources.


Eligible ABIF applicants are Indigenous communities in Alberta or corporate entities owned by Indigenous communities located in Alberta:

  • Communities must own and control 51% or more of the proposed business or joint venture

  • Corporate entities must be in good standing

  • Applicants must be in compliance with the terms and conditions of any previous Indigenous Relations funding

An Indigenous community may submit only one ABIF application in any given funding year.


The intent of the ABIF program is to invest in the capital elements of business initiatives.

Capital costs are associated with getting, building, or improving significant fixed assets like buildings, equipment, and other tangible assets. They must be of use or benefit for more than one financial year.


The following costs are not eligible for ABIF funding:

  • Projects that result in passive business income streams

  • These sources are received from time to time and often with no material or active participation (for example, projects that generate income from rent, royalties, dividends, and capital gains)

  • Goodwill

  • Payments for services that would normally be provided without charge, like honoraria for a community service

  • Operations, repair, and maintenance costs

  • Infrastructure costs financed by or eligible for funding from other government sources (for example, roads, rails, and utility services)

  • Training and economic development services

  • Expenditures not related to economic development

  • Expenditures not related to the approved project

  • Costs already expended on a project


Follow the link below to the Government of Alberta website ABIF page. There you will learn how to apply, be able to download the ABIF Grant Application Form, and more.

The deadline for applications to be received is September 30, 2021.

Indigenous woman stands tall while holding a drum in front a a beautiful lake with the sun beaming in. Aboriginal and Indigenous Investment Fund offered by the Government of Alberta


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