Intuit QuickBooks Canada today announced its newest program to enable entrepreneurial success through financial literacy across the country, “Startup Foundations“. In celebration of Small Business Week, QuickBooks Canada is collaborating with Startup Canada, SociaLIGHT, Launch Academy, Notman House and the DMZ at Ryerson University to help educate, train and enable up to 10,000 startups in Canada over the next year to help them improve their basic financial management skills, make better decisions and ultimately fuel business success.

Lack of financial literacy is a leading cause behind new business failure and according to QuickBooks Canada's latest research, it's also a primary reason that small businesses struggle to access capital. Nearly half (44 per cent) of Canadian entrepreneurs have faced rejection from an investor.

Why are so many entrepreneurs struggling to secure the funding they need? QuickBooks Canada's study found that a surprising number of entrepreneurs don't plan on bringing key indicators of their businesses health, like a business plan (35 per cent), income statement (49 per cent) and a cash flow statement (68 per cent) to an investment pitch. Shockingly, one in 10 entrepreneurs currently seeking investment don't plan to prepare anything for their investment pitch.

With half of all new businesses in Canada failing before their fifth year, QuickBooks has made a long-lasting commitment to providing an ecosystem of innovative products and services that will help Canadian entrepreneurs build a solid foundation.

“Without financial literacy skills, entrepreneurs aren't able to make the right decisions to fuel their own success,” said Jeff Cates, President, Intuit Canada. “Startup Foundations is designed to address this skills gap and will make a significant contribution to raising financial literacy among Canada's entrepreneurs, connecting new business owners to the right research, education, tools and advisors they need for success. We're pleased to collaborate with other leaders in the ecosystem to bring us one step further in our efforts to make a positive impact on the Canadian startup community.”

Through live events training session and online workshops, participants will learn where they stand, how to track their business day-to-day and get immediate financial insights and how to leverage this data to plan for the future. Entrepreneurs can get started here, and upon completion participants will receive a one-year free subscription to QuickBooks Online to implement their learnings.

Entrepreneurs are facing gaps in knowledge when looking to pitch their business, with 67 per cent unsure of exactly what investors are looking for. QuickBooks Canada will collaborate with key partners Startup Canada, SociaLIGHT, Launch Academy, Notman Houseand Ryerson University's DMZ, rallying organizations working on the front lines to close Canada's pervasive financial literacy gap to deliver against our goal of ensuring entrepreneurs know they are not alone.

“Financial literacy is fundamental to the sustainability and scalability of young companies, and Startup Foundations is an important initiative to increase the number of successful new businesses in Canada,” said Victoria Lennox, CEO & Co-Founder of StartupCanada. “Since 2012, Startup Canada and QuickBooks Canada have together provided financial literacy training to over 3,000 entrepreneurs. We are committed to continuing this work working with SociaLIGHT, Launch Academy, Notman House and Ryerson University's DMZ to expand the reach of this curriculum to an additional 10,000 entrepreneurs.”

“SociaLIGHT's focus has always been to empower entrepreneurs and small business owners with an emphasis on ‘People. Planet. Profit,'” said Theresa Laurico, Founder & Producer of the annual SociaLIGHT Conference in Toronto and Vancouver. “We're thrilled to collaborate with QuickBooks Canada on “Startup Foundations” to bring together dynamic leaders, young professionals, entrepreneurs, top business organizations and speakers to inspire new pioneers in the startup community and strengthen financial literacy across Canada.”

“Helping early-stage tech startups in Canada become faster, better and more successful is why we do what we do at Launch Academy. Through our Launch Membership and the Lean Entrepreneur Acceleration Program we help entrepreneurs launch their amazing ideas off the ground and connect with a supportive community of thriving entrepreneurs, mentors and investors,” said Ray Walia, Co-founder & CEO, Launch Academy. “As an entrepreneur and CPA, CMA myself, I know first hand the benefits and essential role financial literacy plays in building a successful business. QuickBooks' Canada Startup Foundations aligns perfectly with what we stand for and we're excited to partner with QuickBooks in furthering the cause of financial literacy.”

Notman House is committed to fostering a thriving Montreal startup ecosystem producing companies that contribute to the social, economic and cultural fabric of our city while shaping the future of our global society,” said Emma Williams, Director, Notman House. “Key to this is equipping our entrepreneurs with the financial literacy skills to turn their ideas into viable businesses. We're excited to take part in this initiative in partnership with QuickBooks Canada.”

As part of their ongoing partnership, QuickBooks will also collaborate with the DMZ at Ryerson University, once again. “Our partnership with QuickBooks Canada to launch #FinanceLab illustrates the DMZ's commitment to giving our startups access to high-quality, strategic advice and services,” said, Abdullah Snobar, executive director of the DMZ. “As North America's number one university-based incubator, improving the financial literacy of the startup ecosystem is fundamental to our mission in fostering the success of entrepreneurs.”