Second Start

Second Start – bringing your dream to reality!

It’s a Wrap! Here are our 10 finalists that won $5000.00 to start their businesses. Congratulations to you all.


Entrepreneurs Wanted written on the road

Program Funded by:

Ontario Network of Entrepreneurs







Second Start, a new pilot program funded by the Ontario Ministry of Research & Innovation and the Ministry of Economic Development and Growth to provide 50 budding entrepreneurs aged 30+ with training, coaching, mentoring and the chance to win $5000 towards starting up!

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Training sessions ran from February 2016 to May 2016 with entrepreneurs learning and creating a business model canvas, financials, value proposition and to perfect their business pitch in “Pitch Practise School”.

After all 3 training groups are completed (May30th), 30 businesses will be selected to move forward. Owners of those businesses will go through Pitch School for 4 days (June 14th-17th. 2016) learning Pitches, Presentation Skills and how to market themselves and their business. The final Business Pitch event will be on June 27th where 25 of them will compete to win one of 10 grants up to $5,000.00.
The pitch will be a public event where we invite the business community to support these new businesses. Judges will pick up to 10 winners based on their pitches. Grant cheques and contracts will be issued and BACD will continue to work with these businesses to fulfill the program requirements.

Register to attend the Second Start Pitch Finale!

Your training over 5 classes:

  • Module 1: Idea and Business Viability
  • Module 2: Business Model and Plan
  • Module 3: Marketing & Sales Strategy
  • Module 4: Financials and Accounting
  • Module 5: Operations

It’s mandatory to attend all five sessions above.

In the 6th week program participants will be connected with the Program mentor for the 1st of 4 consecutive weekly mentoring sessions to augment their skills and help them with business start up/launch and growth.

After all 3 training groups are completed, participants will be trained on how to pitch for 4 days (June 13-16th. 2016) a couple of weeks before the Business Pitch event (June 27th) where they can win a grant of up to $5000.00. The pitch will be a public event where we invite the business community to support these new businesses. Judges will pick up to 10 winners based on their pitches. Grant cheques and contracts will be issued and BACD will continue to work with you and follow your business growth as well as complete due diligence needed.

You are eligible for Second Start if you are:

  • Over the age of 30 and not in full time education or work
  • Running a business, proposing a new company, expanding or buying a company, all under 1 year in operation
  • Under $500,000 in annual revenues
  • Residents or business owners in the Regional Municipality of Durham
  • A Canadian citizen or permanent resident living in Ontario
  • Prepared to commit to a minimum average of 35 hours per week to run your business
  • Prepared to attend mentor meetings as required
  • Prepared to enrol in the self directed Business Training Program and attend weekly training session for 5 weeks
  • Not participating in any other Government Funded Entrepreneurship Training Programs

What type of business can you start?

  • A sole proprietorship or a corporation where the applicant will be an equal shareholder
  • An independent business venture
  • Fits the Canada Revenue Agency definition of being self-employed in FORM RC 4110
  • Operates at arm’s length from family business ventures in Ontario
  • Operates full-time as defined in the business plan and maintains its own books and records
  • Maintains a separate business bank account, following government rules and regulations for operating a business

Businesses not eligible for Second Start include:

  • Franchises, commissioned sales, sales agents and distributorships
  • Businesses over 1 year in operation
  • Business ventures that are continuations of existing commercial endeavours
  • Not-for-profit or charitable enterprises
  • Multi-level marketing ventures
  • Single event such as musical ventures bands, DJs or dance/party event organizations
  • Businesses that are strictly pay per click and 1-900 businesses

Selection Process

  • Meet with BACD to discuss your business or business idea.
  • Agree to the Second Start Business Training Program and coach/mentor meetings
  • Present your completed Business Model Canvas and financials to BACD
  • Prepare to pitch your business idea at a public pitch event on June 27th.2016
  • Judges decision is final

Second Start Program Guidelines

  • Agree to comply with the program guidelines and implement the business substantially in accordance with your completed business model canvas and financials included with the application
  • Show your business name registration and any required licensing documents to BACD for verification
  • Operate your business on a full-time basis, a minimum average of 35 hours a week
  • Meet with a business mentor as required
  • Agree to one site visit by the BACD.
  • Maintain a journal, including time allocations, outlining business tasks, operations and marketing activities
  • Maintain appropriate business records of income and expenditures including receipts
  • Participate in the mandatory business training provided by the BACD
  • Complete the participant survey at the end of the program
  • Submit a professional report on your business (learning outcomes and experience)
  • All participants are required to sign an agreement with the (BACD) Business Advisory Centre Durham, outlining each party’s rights and responsibilities of each party
  • Agree to your business information being posted/shared publicly on our website, social media channels and BACD’s Funders/Partners

Successful completion requires that you

  • Participate in a coaching and training program
  • Meet with a local business mentor for duration of the program
  • Substantially meet your business plan objectives
  • Complete Business Journal etc

Note: BACD, a Small Business Enterprise Centre of the ONE network may, at its sole discretion, determine a particular business is inappropriate for the Second Start program.  As this is a competitive process, you may be eligible to receive up to $5,000 to put towards your business.  By completing an application for this program, you become a client of BACD and the standard client terms apply.  The Second Start Pitch will be judged by a committee selected by the BACD. The committee will include entrepreneurs, local executives and other experts deemed fit by the BACD.  All decisions made by the selection committee are final and BACD has the right to disqualify any application that has been deemed to violate the spirit of the Second Start Program.

Disclaimer: This is a pilot project funded by the Ministry of Research and Innovation and managed, delivered by BACD. Changes may be made to program without notice.

Ontario Network of Entrepreneurs