Skip to content

Get in touch with Hamilton, Ontario’s team of business experts: +1-905-540-6400

Back to Invest in Hamilton

Programs & Resources

Mentoring Programs

Digital Main Street

The Digital Main Street Project seeks to help small, main street businesses across Ontario improve their adoption of technologies to better promote themselves online, sell online and even run back-office processes online.

For Hamilton businesses, the City of Hamilton, Hamilton Business Centre – in partnership with the Hamilton Chamber of Commerce – will be assisting eligible businesses within the 13 Business Improvement Areas (BIAs).

Every business that wants to participate in the grant must first take an online assessment of their current technology use. Based on the assessment, the business will then develop a Digital Transformation Plan based on a template that will be provided which will detail their goals and what technologies they need to achieve those goals.

To help put the plan into action, the business can then apply for a one-time grant of $2,500 to help with the costs of adopting the required technology.

learn more about digital Main Street

Or, visit Digital Main Street directly

Starter Company Plus

Starter Company Plus is a training and mentorship program for businesses less than 1 year in age. This program offers opportunities for training in Business Planning, Marketing, and Financials. There is also an ongoing mentorship opportunity for businesses that are approved into the program. Applicants must be over 18, and be looking to take their business full-time. There are funding opportunities of up to $5,000!

  • Application Form (to be filled out and submitted by the due date)
  • Frequently Asked Questions (to help clarify some concerns about the program)
  • Ineligible Grant Expenditures (should you receive funding, what you can and cannot spend the monies on)
  • Required Dates (this outlined the dates required should you be selected to join the program)
learn more about starter company plus

Access to Professionals

Are you looking for business legal, accounting or marketing advice? Well, with the Access to Professionals series you can meet with a Lawyer, Accountant or a Marketing Professional for a 45 minute one-on-one meeting for $28.25 (including HST).

To participate in the Access to Professional program, please complete and submit the attached application at least one week prior to the proposed meeting time.  Business advisors will review the application to ensure the professional team can address your need and call to confirm your booking.

Access to Professionals – Client Information Form 

Accounting ($25+hst)
Tuesday, September 10th Four 45 Minute Time Slots
Tuesday, October 8th Available Between
Tuesday, November 5th 1:00PM – 4:00PM

Marketing ($25+hst)
Wednesday, September 11th Four 45 Minute Time Slots
Wednesday, October 9th Available Between
Wednesday, November 6th 9:45AM – 12:00PM

Legal ($25+hst)
Thursday, September 12th Four 45 Minute Time Slots
Thursday, October 10th Available Between
Thursday, November 7th 1:00PM – 4:00PM

Please note that a $28.25 (including HST) non-refundable deposit (payable by Visa, M/C, debit or cash) is due at the time of booking.

To sign up for an appointment during one of the listed sessions, please contact the Hamilton Business Centre at or by phone at (905) 540-6400.

Our “Access to Professionals” business clinics are presented in partnership with:

Business Advisory Group

BAG is a not-for-profit incorporated organization of business persons, senior managers and professionals, working together as volunteers. Since 1984, Business Advisory Group (BAG) and its predecessors have assisted over 700 clients to improve their businesses by helping to achieve:

  • Higher Profits
  • Increased Sales
  • Improved Cash Flow and Financing
  • Expansion of Product/Services/Markets
  • Business, Marketing and Succession Plans
  • Improved Management Control and Reporting

We work with both start-up and active businesses.

Best of all, BAG is a volunteer organization where members offer their time and expertise without compensation. The only cost to clients is some time and a $150.00 fee to cover BAG’s administration expenses.

For more information please call: 905-381-1999

Youth Programs

Summer Company 2019

Summer Company is a key component of the Ontario government’s young entrepreneurs programs, which aims to encourage more young people to turn their talents into creative and innovative businesses. Summer Company provides hands-on business training and mentoring, together with awards of up to $3,000 to help enterprising students start up and run their own summer business.

Eligible candidates must be between 15-29 years of age, a student returning to school in the fall of 2019, a resident of Ontario, Canadian citizen or Landed Immigrant and is not to be operating an existing business or be employed full time over the course of the summer. In addition, students must be prepared to commit a minimum of 8 -12 consecutive weeks full-time to the experience.

Students apply to the program by completing a comprehensive business plan and participating in an interview.

Visit the provincial webpage for more information.

If you have any questions, please contact the Hamilton Business Centre at 905-540-6400 or


Check to see if you are eligible for the program.

E.R. Monaco Business Plan Competition

This youth program gives high school students the opportunity to enhance their skills through the development of a professional business plan. Our competition is designed to challenge your students’ entrepreneurial talents.

Top 5 business plans will receive a cash prize for their efforts.

Eligibility Requirements 

The Business Plan Competition is open to youth between the ages of 15-20, individuals attending a high school within the Hamilton area, groups of no more than 3 students (entries may also be submitted by individuals).

For more information, please have your teacher contact the Hamilton Business Centre at 905-540-6400 or for more information.