What is the Starter Company Plus Program?

The County, in partnership with the Province of Ontario, recognizes the importance of supporting entrepreneurs of all ages through their journey into entrepreneurship and through business expansion. It is for this reason that the County of Huron and the Province of Ontario have invested in providing training, mentorship and monetary funds to local small business owners in the form of the Starter Company Plus program.

Starter Company Plus provides training, mentoring, and grant opportunities for eligible participants to start, expand, or buy a small business. The program aims to address local and/or regional economic development needs, and where appropriate, focuses on specific industries and sectors.

Eligibility:

In order to be eligible for the Starter Company Plus program, applicants must be:

  • 18 years of age or older at the time of registration;
  • Proposing a new company, expansion of an existing company or buying a business in Ontario;
  • Not attending school full time nor returning to school;
  • Resident of Ontario;
  • Canadian citizen or permanent resident;
  • Not enrolled in other provincial employment or self-employment related programs that include or do not include financial assistance;
  • Not currently enrolled concurrently in any self-employment or entrepreneurship; training/financing programs offered by government funded organizations
  • Have not received a Starter Company Grant in the past;
  • Must be able to demonstrate 25% cash or equivalent to the business

To Apply:

  1. Consult with a Business Advisor;
  2. Complete a learning plan, and participate in business planning workshops and training relevant to your business;
  3. Engage with a mentor (coordinated with the Small Business Centre).
  4. Submit a business plan, two-year cash flow, as well as two letters of support by the designated date.

We will be accepting new applicants on a continuous intake basis in 2017. Specific application dates will apply in 2018.

Considerations for Selecting Grant Recipients

  1. Potential for job creation (now or in the future); demonstrated need in the area
  2. Businesses fitting the following characteristics will be looked upon more favourably as they fall with the County’s Economic Development Strategic Goals:
    • Showing a potential to enhance one of the County’s key Sectors: Agriculture/Agri-Food; Healthcare; Tourism; Information Technology; Education; Retail and other Services; Manufacturing
    • Showing a potential to expand: including but not limited to; staff, square footage, additional location, product line(s), etc.
    • Potential to fill commercial spaces
  3. Quality of Information in the business plan
  4. Demonstrated understanding of the industry
  5. Demonstrated investment of 25%
  6. Relevant learning/training plan being instituted
  7. Engaging with mentor
  8. Relevant and realistic goals and targets for the business
  9. Improves quality of life in Huron County
  10. Improves and/or has considered environmental impacts

For more information about the Starter Company Plus Program in Huron County please contact:  Kim Postma, Business Advisor at the Small Business Centre  519.524.8394 ext 3302 or by email kpostma@huroncounty.ca.