Starter Company Plus

Business to Bruce supports business development, business recruitment and business enhancement. Starter Company Plus helps people start businesses with training, mentorship connections, and grants.

What is it?

A hands-on training and mentorship program that gives you – a new entrepreneur – the resources, knowledge, and guidance for starting a business in Bruce County.

How does it work?

  • Meet with a Business to Bruce advisor to see if it’s a right fit for you and your business goals
  • Work with your advisor to develop an Individual Learning Plan (ILP). The ILP will include attending workshop training, meeting with your advisor, completing other recommended training, meeting with your coach, and preparing a business plan. Complete all steps in your ILP at your own pace 
  • Pitch your business idea and plan to our advisory committee
  • Advisor meetings, mentorship meetings, and execute action items for goals described in your business plan

Upon completion of these steps, you may receive a $5,000 grant for start-up costs*

*Note: Given the program is competitive in nature, not all participants will receive the grant, will benefit from taking part in the training and mentorship

How many hours of my time are needed?

It will vary for each client, and will be based on your ILP, but approximately:

  • 10 hours in training workshops (2 hours each)
  • 3 hours in advisor meetings (1 hour each)
  • 4 hours in mentor / coach meetings (1 hour each)
  • + the hours it takes you to write a business plan

*Note: you may be needed to complete more or less training hours

When does the program start and end?

It launches in September 2019, but you can join at any time. You set the pace as to how fast you work your way through the program requirements. If you are approved for the grant funding, you must complete all requirements by March 31, 2020.

Am I eligible?

You are:

  • starting a new business (planning stage)* or be in the start-up stage of business operations in Bruce County**
  • 18 years of age or older
  • an Ontario resident
  • a Canadian citizen or permanent resident of Canada
  • able to prove a minimum personal investment of $1,250 (cash or in kind) towards the business
  • willing to spend a minimum of 35 hours a week running the business
  • not attending school full time or returning to school
  • not currently enrolled in other provincial employment or self-employment related programs
  • not currently be enrolled in any self-employment or entrepreneurship training/financing programs offered by government funded organizations
  • not a past recipient of Starter Company, Starter Company Plus, or Self Employment Benefit funding

*Planning stage: the business must open before you complete the program and the grant is awarded

** Start-up stage: operating (earning revenue) for approximately 12 months or less

What if I’m not eligible?

You can still participate in all components of the program but will not have the chance to pitch your plan or receive the grant.

Interested in learning more?

Contact us today to set up a meeting with an advisor in your area!


Check out our upcoming workshops on our events calendar for more free learning opportunities.

Bruce County Seminars and Events


Whether you’re an entrepreneur looking for education and mentorship, an established business owner who wants to spruce up their storefront, or a community ready to join the business development movement our supportive team members

Contact us
Spruce the Bruce
Toll Free:  1-800-268-3838 Facebook Link:  Spruce the Bruce Facebook

Starter Company Plus Grant

The County in partnership with the Government of Ontario recognize 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 Bruce and the Government 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.


  1. Training Program participants will participate in a series of seminars and workshops on entrepreneurial topics to help enhance their business knowledge.
  2. Mentorship Existing successful business owners or business experts in the area will work with participants as program mentors to support participants through their journey as an entrepreneur.
  3. Business Plan Writing Participants will work with Business to Bruce staff to write a comprehensive business plan for their business.
  4. Grant Money Participants who successfully complete the training, mentorship and business writing components of the program will be awarded $5,000 grant to spend on their business.

Applicants must complete an online application in order to be given grant consideration. You can save your application online and return to it later. A pre-determined and carefully selected group of local business experts or entrepreneurs will be selected to make the final decision on which applicants have successfully qualified for the monetary grant.

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