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Book Publishers Operating Grant

Apply for funding to help cover operating and specific business development related expenses related to the production of books.


Eligible organizations may receive funding to invest in the operations, administration and in specific business development activities of their organization to further its mission and strengthen the organization's and industry’s capacity.

The grant is intended to increase the financial viability and business growth of the Alberta book publishing industry, while still recognizing the cultural importance of the industry as a whole.

Grant deadline

The intake period is open from April 1 to June 1 annually.


Grants are calculated using a formula. A coefficient is assigned based on the applicant’s sales revenue. Second, the number of eligible titles published in the 12 months preceding the application deadline is identified. The coefficient and the number of eligible titles published are multiplied together, and then multiplied by the sales revenue. The total is divided proportionately within the program budget.

Sales revenue thresholdCoefficient
Under $10,0004
$10,001 to $100,0002
$100,001 and over1

Eligible organizations may receive no less than a minimum of $5,000 or more than a maximum of $125,000.


Eligible organizations

To be considered eligible, your organization must be primarily involved in the production of books or ebooks, or both.

Your organization must also:

  • be registered and in good standing in accordance with the appropriate provincial legislation
  • have been in operation in Alberta for at least 12 months prior to application
  • be at least 51% majority owned by an Albertan or Albertans, and the effective managerial and editorial control must reside with the persons who are residents of Alberta
  • publish books by individuals other than the organization’s principals, board members or stakeholders
  • not publish more than 25% of titles by principals or owners of the company, nor accept author payments for services as a regular part of their publishing program
  • be primarily engaged with and generate at least 51% of operating revenues from the creative products mentioned above
  • be physically located in Alberta
  • demonstrate editorial independence, based on their publishing program
  • for publishers who are part of an associated group, companies must be able to prove a reasonable and clear distinction between their publishing programs and their corporate structures
  • have published in the last full calendar year at least 2 trade or educational books
  • have at least $15,000 in eligible book sales in the company’s fiscal year prior to applying and no more than $2,000,000 in annual sales averaged over the 3 fiscal years prior to applying
  • organizations associated with a post-secondary institution, such as University Presses must be recognized as a separate department or entity within their institution
    • Post-secondary institutions are not considered eligible.

Eligible published and digital books

In order to be considered eligible, a book must:

  • be at least 48 pages in length for a printed book, except for children's books, which can be less than 48 pages
    • or, if a digital version of a book, including an audio version, it must be equivalent to the above requirements for a printed book and be available for sale through the internet or by any other non-physical transmission
  • be a new title: a new title is a book, either print or digital, with more than 50% original content
    • or be a new edition: a new edition is the publication, in modified form, of a book previously published by the same or a different publisher. A new edition must have substantial changes to at least 25% of the original content or at least 25% new written content; or substantial changes to the illustrations (excluding the cover).

Books that are published in multiple formats only count as one title.

Eligible expenses and activities

Core expenses

Eligible expenses for core funding include all normal operating expenses, including but not limited to:

  • administration and programming fees
  • salaries for permanent employees
  • fees for artists or persons under contract
  • repairs and maintenance of equipment and fixed assets
  • renting facilities used in production and presentation programming

Business development expenses

In addition to regular core operational activities, specific business development activities are included as eligible activities. Applicants may utilize up to 20% of their approved grant for business development activities. This includes initiatives that increase revenues, contribute to growth in terms of business expansion, and increase profitability by building strategic partnerships and making strategic business decisions.

Expenses for business development activities, if claimed, are not eligible for support under the Cultural Industry Organizations Project Grant.

How to apply

Step 1: Review the guidelines

Review the Book Publishers Operating Grant Guidelines to review the program and application requirements.

Step 2: Create an online profile

New applicants must request access to set up an online profile prior to filling out an application.

To set up a profile, complete the GATE Front Office Registration form and email it to: [email protected]

Your login credentials will be emailed to you.

Step 3: Complete the application package

Login to the Online Grant Application System to begin your application.

Step 4: Submit your application

Submission details will be updated accordingly.

Faxed, emailed, late or incomplete applications are not accepted.

After you apply

Your application will be assessed and funding calculated based on the funding formula and the information provided in the application package.

Applicants will be notified in writing of the result of their application and funding status after all recommendations have been approved.


Grant recipients may meet reporting requirements in one of 2 ways:

  1. The applicant may apply in the subsequent year to the grant program, in which a completed application form with attachments is submitted through the online grant application system and support material is received.
  2. If a subsequent application is not submitted, the grant recipient must submit a full final report as detailed in the program guidelines through the online grant application system.


Connect with us if you have questions about the Cultural Industry Grants:

Phone: 780-422-8584
Toll free: 310-0000 before the phone number (in Alberta)
Email: [email protected]