Ask an Expert
Dot.com Financing in B.C.
Bill asked: I would like to start a dot com business. I have a dot com name and I live in British Columbia. Could you tell me what I have to do to get started? Or, do I have to register a dot com business in B.C.?
Congratulations for having the initiative and courage to start your own dot.com company.
The first thing you ought to consider before you get started is how you're going to finance your business. No money – no business. There's a great article by our managing editor and publisher, Julie King, which outlines the particulars of equity financing and understanding venture capital. Here's the direct link: www.canadaone.com/ezine/aug00/venture_capital.html.
There are many considerations here; a good starting point is to develop a business plan. We have a business planning workshop on our site. Bill needs to identify and assess his market, which can be done through a combination of strategic thinking and market research. His first question should be: is there a market for my product, and can I make a reasonable case for reaching profitability before my resources run out. As he develops an involved concept of his business he will need to address financing issues. There are many financing options for small businesses, but start-ups will find it difficult to secure funds through traditional channels. Venture capital may be unrealistic at this stage, which leaves the two most common methods for someone in Bill's position: family and friends, or if he is savvy, Angel financing. (we do have an article on this topic as well). A well thought out business plan will identify these issues and can also be used to present a business case to possible investor. Bill needs to be aware, however, that if he decides to raise money to finance his business he must not violate the security commission regulations governing his area.
About registering your dot.com business registration in British Columbia: the short answer is, yes. You will find a comprehensive, step-by-step overview of registering a business in B.C. on CanadaOne at:
You may also wish to gain additional protection for your dot.com name by trademarking the name. An in-depth guide to trademarking in Canada can be found on CanadaOne at:
With the dot.com registry being based in the U.S., you may also want to trademark your domain name in the U.S.
Starting a business is a challenge, but it can be very rewarding. Here are some additional links that could help you get started:
Writing an Effective Business Plan
Starting a business guide
Registering a domain name as a trademark
All About Canadian Trademarks
Canadian Trade-marks Database
US Trademark Search - Free Tool
About the author
CanadaOne is your just-in-time resource for business information.