Alberta has struggled through low oil prices, high unemployment rates, and a global pandemic. Through this turbulence our firm has witnessed an old adage coming true: when one door closes another one opens.

We’re seeing a new wave of Albertans ditching their steady salaries to build independent income streams. New business owners should understand how to raise enough capital to get their businesses off the ground.

To raise capital, businesses generally have to file a prospectus, a lengthy document that can cost anywhere from $50,000 to $500,000. …

If you’re a creative, or you hire creative employees or contractors, your business is probably generating intellectual property (IP). If you ever sell your business, IP can make up a significant part of your valuation — regardless of your company’s size or industry. To protect your own interests, your should always handle your IP with care.

What is Intellectual Property?

Intellectual Property is any legal right to an idea, invention, or creation in industrial, scientific, and artistic fields. IP law covers everything from colours to symbols, names, images, designs, prototypes, and written documents. …

In 2022, the price of one tonne of carbon dioxide equivalent (CO2e) is increasing to $50 per tonne in Alberta — a 25% increase from 2021’s rate of $40.

With the price of greenhouse gas emissions showing no signs of slowing, Albertan businesses can benefit from understanding the ins and outs of the carbon market. Carbon emission credits and emission offsets provide businesses with a unique playbook of opportunities now that offsets created under the Technology Innovation and Emissions Reduction (TIER) Regulation can be used for compliance purposes.

In this article we provide a brief overview of Alberta’s emission reduction…

Entrepreneurs can have a tough time raising money in Alberta.

To issue debt or equity above the Start-up Business Exemption’s maximum amount of $250,000, companies have to file a prospectus, a lengthy document that can cost anywhere from $50,000 to $500,000.

Luckily, the provincial securities commissions in Alberta allows for innovative fundraising techniques that are completely exempt from filing a prospectus.

If you need fresh capital to build a business in Canada, crowdfunding can be your golden ticket, especially if your business is in a creative industry like design, art video games, film, or tech. Kickstarter surpassed $5.6 …

In 2019, Canadian direct investment into Africa reached $10.7 billion. Tempted by serious opportunities, large and mid-sized companies are making inroads to the African continent — especially in the major markets of energy, oil & gas, electricity, and infrastructure.

At our firm, we’re seeing more and more Canadian companies expanding into the African market. Expanding your company into a business environment like Africa is no easy decision, but small and mid-sized firms should feel encouraged to make their move.

You can alleviate much of the stress and uncertainty involved with international expansion by taking advantage of special funding programs available…

During a market contraction like we’re seeing today, there’s usually a big shake-up with our small and medium enterprise clients. When there’s change, there’s opportunity, and many people who were recently laid off or otherwise lack job security are looking to benefit by starting their own businesses.

The increase in new corporations is positive, but it’s important for new entrepreneurs and business owners to understand how their contractual obligations can extend past their last day at work.

Employers who are restructuring their teams should protect their business interests by understanding the legal obligations of their employees and contractors.

In this…

When I decided on a brand identity for our law firm, I reflected on how far my team had come from the day we first “hung up a shingle.” We needed a new feel that reflected our true identity, but would not infringe on anyone else’s intellectual property.

Nowadays, Canadian law regulates every aspect of corporate branding, but most business owners don’t understand the actual risk of introducing a new identity to the market.

If you’re naming a new business or product line, you can avoid a costly mistake by understanding the basic rules of naming a business in Alberta.

Private corporations exist in a highly dynamic environment where every economic shift creates new challenges and opportunities. When the economy contracts we see more consolidations as businesses aim to lower their costs and become more competitive.

Shareholder teams may find themselves faced with unexpected stresses in times of change. To reduce the business risk of each new opportunity and manage the associated stress, shareholders should always abide by a clear set of rules.

The formal agreement that solidifies these rules is called a Unanimous Shareholder Agreement (“USA”).

What are Unanimous Shareholder Agreements?

Unanimous shareholder agreements (“USA”) are written agreements made by shareholders to restrict the…

Depending on your age, “Canadian content” might remind you of a John Candy film, a Bare Naked Ladies song, or CBC shows like Heartland.

The Canadian Radio-television and Telecommunications Commission (CRTC) regulates exactly what makes content “Canadian,” in their Radio Regulations, 1986 (SOR/86–982). They also mandate virtually every broadcaster in Canada to play a weekly quota of Canadian Content, lovingly referred to as CanCon.

As a Canadian performer, composer, or lyricist, you have a much better chance of getting picked up for broadcasting if your musical work qualifies as CanCon.

This article provides an overview of CanCon rules for artists…

How Butterfly Transactions Minimize Taxes When You Split Your Business

If you’re a business owner looking to part ways with your partner or co-owner, a butterfly transaction can save both of you from serious tax consequences.

A butterfly — also known as a corporate divorce — is a restructuring method that lets Canadian business owners divide a company on a tax-free basis.

If you split up your company without a butterfly, you and your partner will be liable to pay capital gains tax on the disposition or transfer of assets to shareholders.

Butterflies Can Purify Your Corporation

Business owners can use a butterfly transaction to “purify” their corporation.

Business owners…

Claudius du Plooy

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