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Starter Company Plus Program


Then Starter Company Plus is for you!

If you’ve got a winning idea for starting a new business and are not a student you should consider applying to our Starter Company Plus program.

How it Works
Starter Company Plus is a training program for enterprising people who want to start, and/or expand a business in their community. The program provides training sessions on aspects of running a successful business and mentorship from local business leaders.

Successful applicants may apply for a grant of up to $5,000 upon the completion of a business plan.

Successful applicants must provide matching funds worth 25% (in cash or equivalent) of the grant. This requirement will be waived in exceptional circumstances (including but not limited to individuals with special needs or those that have faced personal set-backs).

Am I eligible for Starter Company Plus?
You are eligible for Starter Company Plus if you are:

  • running a business, proposing a new company, expansion of a company or buy an existing company from a retiring entrepreneur
  • not currently a full time student
  • a resident of Ontario
  • a Canadian citizen or a landed immigrant
  • prepared to commit to a minimum average of 35 hours a week, for running your business
  • prepared to attend monthly meetings for at least six months after the start of the business

You cannot apply if you are currently enrolled in a provincial entrepreneurial program.

What type of business can I start?
Almost any type of business is eligible, as long as it:

  • is a sole proprietorship or either a partnership or corporation where the applicant will be the majority shareholder
  • is an independent business venture
  • fits the Canada Revenue Agency definition of being self-employed
  • operates at arm’s length from family business ventures
  • operates in Ontario
  • operates full-time as defined in the business plan
  • maintains its own books and records
  • maintains a separate business bank account
  • follows government rules and regulations for operating a business

Businesses not eligible for Starter Company Plus include:

  • franchises
  • distributorships
  • business ventures that are continuations of existing commercial endeavours
  • commissioned sales
  • not-for-profit or charitable enterprises
  • multi-level marketing ventures
  • single event such as musical ventures bands, DJs or dance/party event organizations
  • businesses that are strictly pay per click
  • 1-900 businesses

How do I apply for Starter Company Plus?

Selection Process

  1. Complete program application.
  2. Speak with Entrepreneur Centre Programs Coordinator to discuss business plans and idea.
  3. Complete any necessary preliminary work prior to starting the program.
  4. Upon acceptance into the program, begin training sessions.

Apply now for Starter Company Plus


Round Application Deadline Start Date
1 April 30, 2017 May 8, 2017
2 June 30, 2017 July 10, 2017
3 September 22, 2017 October 9, 2017
4 December 22, 2017 January 8, 2018
5 March 23, 2018 April 9, 2018
6 June 22, 2018 July 9, 2018
7 September 21, 2018 October 8, 2018

Contact the Thunder Bay & District Entrepreneur Centre (EC) for more information:

Suite 201, 34 Cumberland Street North
P.O. Box 800
Thunder Bay, ON P7C 5K4

Lexie Penko
Phone: (807) 625-3286
Toll Free: 1-800-668-9360 (North America)
Fax: (807) 623-3962