Young Business Leaders Unleashed

    TORONTO, Jan. 27 /CNW/ - Hundreds of aspiring young entrepreneurs will be
able to contribute quickly to Canada's economic recovery as a result of a $10
million grant to the Canadian Youth Business Foundation (CYBF) announced in
today's federal budget.
    "Canada has no shortage of young people ready and willing to defy the
current doom and gloom. This grant from the Government of Canada will let us
increase dramatically the number of business start-ups that we can finance and
support through our partners in more than 150 communities across the country,"
said Vivian Prokop, CEO of the national charity.
    "I would like to thank in particular Industry Canada, Industry Minister
Tony Clement, and Minister of State for Small Business and Tourism Diane
Ablonczy for their enthusiasm in nurturing a culture of entrepreneurship at a
time when Canada needs it most."
    While access to business credit is tight and unemployment is rising, the
demand for the CYBF's financing and mentoring services continues to grow. The
number of CYBF-funded start-ups from October 2008 through January 2009 was 68
percent higher than during the same period in 2007, and the Government of
Canada's investment will enable CYBF to meet this growing demand and
accelerate its pace of lending.
    An estimated 20,000 young people want to start businesses every year but
find it difficult to obtain financing through traditional sources. CYBF offers
an experienced volunteer mentor and a loan of up to $15,000 with no
collateral. Qualified applicants can access a further $15,000 through a
partnership with the Business Development Bank of Canada.
    The one-year grant will provide much-needed stimulus in communities from
coast to coast, enabling the launch of an estimated 800 new businesses within
5 years. Based on the performance of CYBF clients to date, these businesses
will generate an estimated 5,000 new jobs, $135 million in sales revenue and
$32 million in tax revenue within 5 years.

    CYBF is a national charity dedicated to growing our nation's economy one
young entrepreneur at a time. We look at character not collateral, when
providing youth, age 18-34, with pre-launch coaching, business resources,
start-up financing and mentoring, to help them launch and sustain a successful
entrepreneurial business. Founded in 1996, CYBF has invested to date in more
than 2,800 young entrepreneurs, whose businesses have generated more than $300
million in sales revenue, $69 million in tax revenue, $33 million in export
revenue, and created more than 15,000 new jobs. Through CYBF's national
network of community partners, we are able to deliver our program coast to
coast with more than 2,600 volunteers across Canada. Information about CYBF is
available at

For further information:

For further information: Media Inquiries: Katrina White, VP Marketing &
Communications, CYBF, P: (416) 408-2923 ext 2115, C: (416) 268-0988, E.; or Flavian DeLima, Media Relations & Communication's
Specialist, CYBF, P: (416) 408-2923 ext 2120, C: (416) 834-3870, E.

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