Sustainability at BDC

We help Canada and its entrepreneurs create a prosperous, inclusive, green economy. We are committed to empowering business owners of today to build a prosperous future for generations to come. As such, we are aligned with the United Nations’ Sustainable Development Goals and support the objectives of the Paris Agreement for a cleaner, more sustainable future by 2050.

Canada’s Entrepreneurs

Creating economic, social, and environmental value

Economic Value

Support entrepreneurs in a competitive market

Social Value

Support diversity, equity, inclusion & well-being

Environmental Value

Accompany entrepreneurs to a greener economy

Sandra Odendahl

Building a better tomorrow

Meet Sandra Odendahl, BDC’s Senior Vice President and Head, Sustainability and Diversity, who is leading the team responsible for all facets of BDC’s sustainability and ESG programs.

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Economic Value

Behind every small- and medium-sized business is a human story – a unique entrepreneur with aspirations and plans. We help them create economic value by providing financing and expert advice that enables them to succeed and grow in a quickly changing business landscape.

We are committed to supporting entrepreneurs through:

  • Offering entrepreneurs a variety of kinds of financing for every stage of their companies’ growth.
  • Acting as a strategic partner for the country’s most innovative and high-growth businesses through BDC Capital.
  • Offering non-financial support and training through BDC Advisory Services.

95,000

clients across Canada

1 million

estimated jobs created

$350B

revenues

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Jim Kennedy - Co-owner of Louisbourg Seafoods
From humble beginnings to a 500-employee fish and seafood company

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Shelley Stewart - Owner of Bar S Ventures
How this 19-year-old woman built an impressive logging business

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Razia Suleman - Owner of Bayshore Inn
From refugee to business leader: How this entrepreneur built a small hospitality empire

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Social Value

We create social value through the products, services and advice we offer to the vibrant community of Canadian entrepreneurs, through the hard work of our employees, and through a work environment that promotes inclusion and well-being. Our goal is to ensure that no one is left behind.

We are also proud of our ability to facilitate connections and partnerships that build diversity, equity and inclusion (DEI) acumen among our stakeholders. We are committed to enabling sustainable, inclusive economic growth and development, and a key component is our DEI initiatives.

Diversity, equity and inclusion (DEI)

We believe in championing diversity, equity and inclusion – inside and outside our organization.

Our commitment starts internally with a measurable action plan, informed by feedback from our employees and employee resource groups. They help shape our policies, and play a critical role in the success of our DEI initiatives. This engagement is one of the reasons we are consistently recognized as one of Canada’s Best Diversity Employers.

We are working to empower entrepreneurs from equity deserving communities through our Client Diversity strategy. Our approach is to listen to what entrepreneurs need, learn by working with organizations that serve these communities, and then act to provide tangible solutions.

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The Benefits of Inclusive Leadership

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Let’s recognize the contribution of Black entrepreneurs

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Clients looking at a Miovision infrastructure
How a deliberate approach to diversity and inclusion improved employee engagement at this tech start-up

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Environmental Value

A greener future is on the horizon – we accompany entrepreneurs as they foster and transition to a low-carbon economy in line with Canada’s Paris Agreement goals. Our efforts include:

  • Our commitment to reducing our own operational footprint to net zero by 2025.
  • Our Cleantech Practice invests in globally competitive cleantech firms as they discover and commercialize ways to combat climate change and pollution.
  • We offer information, advice, and tools, notably the B Corp Impact Assessment tool which measures a company’s environmental and social impact.
  • Our Venture Capital team backs innovative Canadian companies that are reinventing industries and making them more energy efficient.

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Anie Rouleau - Founder of The Unscented Company
A Transformation in Progress

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How to build a sustainable business with the B Corp assessment

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Steve Russell and Andrew Estabrooks - Founders of Foghorn Brewing Company
Solar-powered beer shows how green energy can pay off for local businesses

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Read about our actions

B Corp: The World-Class Tool for Sustainable Entrepreneurs

BDC is Canada’s first B Corp bank and part of a global movement of companies creating local prosperity, strong community and a sustainable environment.

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BDC’s 2022 Annual Report

Read our annual report to see how we – through entrepreneurs - contribute to sustainability in Canada.

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