Interactive resources for incubators and accelerators
Interactive resources for incubators and accelerators
Interactive resources for incubators and accelerators

Financial Sustainability Canvas

Where will revenue come from TODAY and in the FUTURE? How do you make money as an Entrepreneur Support Organisation?


This section discusses the range of funding approaches and options that are available to ESOs, from donors to fee for service to venture building. By exploring each option, ESOs are able to select approaches that not only fit the organisation but also those that are best suited for specific programs and desired outcomes.

The Financial Sustainability Canvas, first developed by the Social Enterprise Academy (SEA), is an excellent framework to identify how changes in the market impact the funding and finance options for your organisation, and how the organisation can adapt to thrive going forward.

There are several different business models, but the key to achieving financial sustainability is to constantly go through your own customer discovery to find out what works for your organisation. There are pros and cons to each model, and some more suited to short term than long term. 

Most organisations will have a primary and secondary way for generating revenue, and other forms of support. This will depend on your goals, your entrepreneurs, your local ecosystem, and the skills of your team.

Practical Tip

Always adapt to fit your context and ask what will work for your organisation. We advise you to have at least a few business models that are consistent. 

Probing Questions

  • General

    • What are your entrepreneurs saying? 


    • What are your donors/sponsors/funders saying? How have things changed for your donors/sponsors/funders? What are their priorities?


    • Can you map what your entrepreneurs are saying with what your funders are saying?


    • Solutions sell! Understand your customers’ needs first. Where are matches between your plans and theirs?


  • Financial Sustainability Canvas

    A sustainability framework from Spring (first developed by SEA)



Building Your New Plan

What are the components you need to build your new plan?