About Starter Company Plus

Starter Company Plus seeks to help entrepreneurs start, expand or grow a small business in their communities by providing training, grant funding of up to $5,000.00, and access to mentorship from local business leaders.

The December 2, 2019 deadline has now passed but we are beginning to accept intake for our next cohort. The deadline for submitting a completed business plan and cash flow projections for our next cohort is Friday, August 14, 2020 before 3:00PM. (Continue reading for more detail.)

If you are:

  • Not employed full time
  • Not in a full-time education program or returning to school
  • Not currently receiving funding from another Provincial entrepreneurship or business program
  • Not a previous recipient of Starter Company (Plus) grant
  • A Canadian citizen or permanent resident living in Ontario.

And are willing to:

  • Create and follow a business plan and a 2-year financial forecast
  • Agree to participate in bi-weekly training and mentoring meetings over a 3-month period
  • Agree to provide business reports to the Markham Small Business Centre for verification over a 3-month period.

Then:

  • Your business may be a fit with the Starter Company Plus program.  

Important Note:

We encourage all who are eligible to apply, we can help with your business plan but please be reminded that preference to receive a grant will be given to those applicants whose proposals have a realistic plan for:

  • Creating employment opportunities for individuals other than the business owner; and/or,
  • Opening a physical location outside of a home office; and/or,
  • Expanding an existing business;and/or,
  • Operating in a priority sector (e.g., Regulated professions, Scientific, Technical, Medical, Life Sciences services or Technologies that are market ready with demonstrated traction).

Please fill out an expression of interest survey, and our program coordinator will contact you about next steps.

Important: This expression of interest is not a complete application. In order to complete an application you must submit a substantially completed business plan including cash flow projections. Our program coordinator will help you get started by recommending training sessions and working with you to complete these documents.

Expression of interest survey Link:
https://www.surveymonkey.com/r/StarterCompanyPlus

Based on your responses to the above survey, we will determine the eligibility of your proposal, if eligible, the program is delivered in two stages:

  1. Training and Preparation of Business Plan and Cash Flow Projection
  2. Only for selected candidates: Receive grant funding and begin 3-month mentoring period (September 2020).

Because of the competitive nature of the program, some proposals do not end up satisfying the above criteria as well as other proposals and therefore do not end up being selected to receive grant funding as part of the second stage of the program.  Despite this, we are still available to assist you in working on your business plan and providing you with training and advisory services.

Eligible applicants will be assigned a learning plan which typically includes attending training sessions.  These training sessions will prepare an applicant to write a complete business plan and financial forecast which will be the basis for evaluating the application. You can find the Business Plan and Financial Forecast Templates here:

https://www.markham.ca/wps/portal/home/business/msbc/business-plan-templates/business-plan-templates

For example, a learning plan could include attending sessions on the following subjects:

·         Start-up Requirements

·         Financial Forecast

·         Business Planning

·         Sales & Marketing

Please check the dates on our website: http://msbc.markham.ca

Those who are selected to receive a grant will then begin three months of mentoring and receive their grant, starting in September as they work towards executing their business plan.  This is just one of a number of upcoming cohorts, so if your application is not selected to receive a grant for this cohort, there is the possibility that your application could be deferred for consideration in a subsequent cohort.  The Starter Company Plus Program is competitive and there are limited spaces available. Complete your business plan and cash flow projections as soon as possible, as the program may fill up early.