Starter Company PLUS

Starter Company PLUS logo

If you have an idea to start a new business, are purchasing a business or would like to grow your current business, you may be eligible for the Starter Company PLUS program. The program offers a grant of up to $5,000 as well as access to training, mentoring, networking and one-on-one consulting support through the Small Business & Entrepreneurship Centre.

Starter Company PLUS

The Starter Company PLUS program is geared to startup and operating small businesses located in Windsor-Essex.  Please contact us if you have questions about the application process.

Application process

  1. Complete the eligibility form
  2. If eligible for the program, you will be invited to submit an application
  3. You may be contacted to meet with a program coordinator to review your application 

The eligibility portal is now closed. Please check back in summer 2024 

Applicant preferences

Preference will be given to businesses that meet the following criteria:

  • Can make an economic impact
  • Storefront location
  • Possibility for job creating
  • Sustainable business model with potential to scale
  • Fulfills market demand in priority industries 


There is no cost to apply or participate in the Starter Company PLUS program. This program is provided by the Province of Ontario in partnership with local Small Business Enterprise Centres.


You can apply for this program if you’re:

  • At least 18 years of age
  • Not a full-time student or returning to school full-time
  • A resident of Ontario
  • A Canadian citizen or a permanent resident
  • Willing to operate your business full-time
  • Starting a new business or operating a business that is less than five years old
  • Able to demonstrate 25 per cent matching funds in cash or in-kind assets
  • Not in the research and development stage of the business development
  • Not going to use the funds to refinance existing debt

What businesses don’t qualify for the program?

The following businesses don’t qualify for the Starter Company PLUS program:

  • Distributorships or franchises
  • Non-profits and charities
  • Pay-per-click businesses
  • Commissioned sales
  • Multi-level marketing (e.g., Avon, Scentsy, etc.)
  • Single event (e.g., concert, performance, sports event)
  • Part-time or seasonal businesses

About the program

To receive the grant, you must take part in mentorship and reporting for six months. You’ll also need to:

  • Complete the business training component of the Starter Company PLUS program
  • Spend a minimum average of 35 hours a week running the business


The Starter Company Plus program, provides:

  • One-on-one guidance from the Small Business & Entrepreneurship Centre
  • Grant of up to $5,000
  • Three months of mentorship from an entrepreneur or business professional
  • Networking opportunities

You’ll also get access to workshops on topics, such as:

  • Business plan development
  • Cash flow strategies
  • Developing and executing a marketing plan
  • Growing your business with confidence

Past Participants

Check out our 2023 program participates from the Windsor-Essex area.