Launch of 2020 Starter Company Plus Program

The Entrepreneur Centre celebrates five years of success in supporting local entrepreneurship and launches another year of the Starter Company Plus

Friday January 10, 2020 – The Thunder Bay & District Entrepreneur Centre (EC) hosted the launch of the 2020 Starter Company Plus program on Thursday, Jan. 9, at the Courthouse Hotel. The 2020 Starter Company Plus program, originally known as the Starter Company, is now embarking on its sixth year of operation. The program launch was celebrated by past participants, mentors, local dignitaries and the Thunder Bay Community Economic Development Commission (CEDC) staff.

When the program began in 2014, as Starter Company, it was for youth aged 18 – 29 years. In 2017, the Ministry of Economic Development, Job Creation and Trade updated the program, expanding it to allow all ages. The goal of the program is to mentor and train local entrepreneurs who are looking to start up, expand, or purchase an existing business. Once participants complete the four – six week program, they are eligible to apply for a $5,000 grant. Participants that are successful in receiving the grant are then paired with a mentor for three months.

“Since 2014, the Entrepreneur Centre had been running the Starter Company / Starter Company Plus program,” said Ryan Moore, Development Officer, Thunder Bay CEDC & Entrepreneur Centre. “In that time, over 130 entrepreneurs have gone through the training and assistance of the program with almost 100 participant receiving the grant. That is a huge sign that the entrepreneurial spirit is alive and well in our community and we are committed to helping foster that spirit as we launch the new version of the program.”

With the launch of the 2020 Starter Company Plus program the Entrepreneur Centre is looking for local entrepreneurs to participate. The Entrepreneur Centre has been given 13, $5,000 grants to give out between now and March 2021 to successful applicants.

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Contact: Ryan Moore, Thunder Bay & District Entrepreneur Centre (EC), 807-625-3960,

About CEDC: The CEDC is responsible for business development, retention and expansion, entrepreneurial support, opportunity promotion, and the collection and assessment of key business data. The CEDC receives formal proposals for projects that will contribute to economic development. It responds quickly to new opportunities and initiatives to attract direct financial involvement from the government and private sectors. For more information, visit

About the Thunder Bay & District Entrepreneur Centre (EC): The Thunder Bay & District Entrepreneur Centre is funded through a partnership between the Province of Ontario and the City of Thunder Bay. We exist to offer free and confidential small business counselling services to both new and existing small businesses. Our services vary from providing information on various business topics to one-on-one consultation with a Small Business Counsellor.

About The Starter Company: Starter Company Plus provides training sessions on important business topics. Program participants work with the Programs Coordinator to complete a business plan for their new start up, business purchase, or expansion.

Upon completion of a business plan, participants may apply for a grant of up to $5,000. Grant recipients also receive mentorship as part of the program.

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