Canadian Small Business Videos
CanadaOne's interview with Mark Coleman, Director of StartMe Up Ryerson.
StartMeUp Ryerson Transcript
The StartMeUp program is run by students and Free Enterprise Ryerson and what we do is we help entrepreneurs turn their ideas into reality. We help entrepreneurs by providing them with the education, resources and funding that they need to start their business and take it to the next level. Starting with the program orientation, we work with the entrepreneurs to find out what their idea is, some of the challenges they’re having launching their business. From there we move onto idea consultation where we bring in a panel of experts. The entrepreneur has the ability to pitch their opportunity and receive feedbacks and recommendations in terms of what to do next. At the resource stage, they are connected with everything they need. So if they don’t know how to write a business plan, we can help them with that. Or if they need help in legal, marketing, whatever it is, we will connect them with resources.
So we have our online website – startmeupryerson.com – which aggregates a whole bunch of resources that they need. We have online tools such as podcasts, journals, articles, online courses and tons of other resources.
For funding, there are lots of opportunities in terms of equity investment and angel venture capital. We have partnerships with CIBF, BCC, we have government grants and other sources of cash and business plan competitions that are not only open to Ryerson students but any entrepreneur. Traditionally, the program has been around for 5 years and it has been for Ryerson students and alumni however, now we are expanding into the community. In terms of fees for the program, for some events right now there is a minimal charge to get in. For example, there is Kevin O’Leary coming in next month for global entrepreneurship week which is a $10 charge.
Other than that, we are students, and lots of us are entrepreneurship majors at Ryerson so we are really benefiting from the value of working with entrepreneurs.