Ontario is investing in the next generation of promising entrepreneurs by providing $3000 in vouchers to access training and mentoring to launch their ideas into businesses and scale up their ventures.
At the 11th annual Ontario Centres of Excellence Discovery Conference on Wednesday, the province announced the successful Ontario Social Impact Voucher program will return for the second year. In partnership with the Ontario Centres of Excellence, the program will provide 200 vouchers worth up to $3,000 each to eligible social entrepreneurs across Ontario to access relevant training programs such as business planning or marketing to help scale up their business.
Last year, 125 vouchers were fully subscribed within the first six months of the program’s launch, allowing participants to grow their business in terms of both customers and partnerships through useful training programs. Participants in the pilot program include social enterprises across a range of sectors, including health, cleantech, digital media and information and communications technology and advanced manufacturing.
Ontario is also announcing the winners of the Young Entrepreneurs, Make Your Pitch competition.Six promising entrepreneurs will receive a reserved spot in Ontario’s Summer Company program, which provides mentoring and funding to help launch new businesses.
- Social enterprises use business strategies to achieve a social or environmental impact. While generating revenues from the sale of goods and services, they also expressly intend to create positive outcomes and they measure their results. As their business grows, the social impact grows.
- Up to 200 Ontario-based social entrepreneurs endorsed by an Ontario Network of Entrepreneurs (ONE) member organization may be eligible for a voucher worth up to $3,000.
- More than 200 videos were submitted by individuals or teams for the Make Your Pitch competition. The videos could be up to two minutes long and describe the participants idea for a new business or innovation.
- The competition is part of Ontario’s Youth Jobs Strategy. Over 4,700 jobs have been created under the strategy since it launched in the fall of 2013.
- Summer Company helped students launch 865 businesses in 2015. – CINEWS