Media Release

12 Local Startups Benefitting from $38,000 Investment New Spring Intake Now Open

Kingston, Ontario – March 7, 2022 – Kingston Economic Development announces 12 entrepreneurs in Kingston are benefitting from training and a micro-grant through the Starter Company Plus program. 

Starter Company Plus is offered through Kingston Economic Development Corporation with funding from the Government of Ontario. All successful applicants to the program receive business training at no cost to them. Twelve of them received up to $5,000 in microgrants based on the strength of their business plans and business pitches to a panel of community judges.

“We have had a great number of promising entrepreneurs and businesses in the winter cohort. It was mind-blowing to see several companies working on projects in the creatives space, specifically in film production, which is one of the strategic sectors identified in our Integrated Economic Development plans,” says Norman Musengimana, Business Development Manager, Start-Ups & Entrepreneurship. “We are looking forward to supporting more businesses and entrepreneurs throughout their respective journeys to becoming more profitable and sustainable.” 

Participants attended a week-long virtual business bootcamp covering topics on market research, digital marketing, small business financing, and hiring practices. Starter Company Plus also offers a coaching program that provides participants with 4 mentorship sessions. Each session is a one-on-one hour of with Jacquie Costron and her team at Costron + Co.

“I have been receiving support and advisory services from the Kingston Economic Development team for the past 6 months. They have been helping me in the process of acquiring and starting my business, Roving Dental Hygiene, says Karen de Luca, Starter Company Plus participant. “Today, I understand my business much better, I am more confident as an entrepreneur, and I am building strategies to help me serve my clientele better than we have ever done before.”

Applications for the spring 2022 cohort are now open until March 16. Successful applicants must attend a mandatory business bootcamp from March 28 to April 1 to be eligible to pitch for a microgrant up to $5,000. Visit KingstonEcDev.com/StarterCompanyPlus to apply.

Meet the Starter Company Plus winter 2022 recipients:

Roving Dental Hygiene by Karen De Luca
Roving Dental Hygiene provides dental hygiene services to those who are physically or mentally unable to go into a dental office easily. The clients are served from the comfort of their homes. 

Kitchen Table Seed House by Annie Richard and Katherine Rothermel
Kitchen Table Seed House offers 140 varieties of certified organic vegetable, herb and flower seed specializing in regionally adapted, flavourful varieties with exceptional culinary possibilities. 

Straight Up Leadership by Stacey Roques
Straight Up Leadership is a coaching service that exclusively serves healthcare leaders and offers individual, group and team coaching. Additionally, Straight Up Leadership offers different formats for coaching to increase the accessibility of offering to healthcare leaders and have coaching available to leaders when they need it.   

emske by Em Harmsen
emske is a for-profit business with a social conscience operating as a design studio. emske studios creates apparel and design services that offset the ableism that exists in everyday life.

Lumii Films Co. by Geraldine MacDonald
Lumii Films Co. is a subscription-based video-on-demand streaming site focused on short films. They bring binge-worthy screen entertainment to viewers, deliverable in under one hour.

The Canuk.co by Timothy Sharpe
The Canuck.co was established as a t-shirt, coffee mug and sock printing business in May 2020.The Canuck.co specializes in printing direct to film transfers for apparel businesses across Canada and they are one of 20 companies doing this in Canada.

Lenore Klein Events Incorporated by Lenore Klien
Lenore Klein Events Incorporated is a full-service event management business that offers in-person, virtual and hybrid event services for businesses, associations, and not-for-profit organizations in Kingston, Ontario. 

Branded to Film by J. Joly
Branded to Film (B2F) is an innovative strategy and content manufacturer based in Kingston. Founded in July 2020, over the next 3 years. B2F will produce a slate of 10 end-to-end screen-based intellectual properties that will serve as a revenue generating training platform to build the local workforce needed for the region. 

Storehouse ReDesign Studio by Hope Zamida
Storehouse ReDesign Studio is a business with a primary focus on refinishing, upcycling and redesigning one of a kind furniture pieces and home decor items for resale. Storehouse ReDesign Studio offers free consultation for commissioned work on available furniture.

Smart Superstore by Kazi Foyez Ahmmed
Smart Superstore is a convenience store serving as a superstore. They carry all kinds of convenience store products such as confectionaries, health and beauty products, household items and basic groceries. In addition, they also carry fresh meats, vegetables, dairy products as well as international foods.

Cravin’ by Selena Martin
Cravin’ is a locally and ethically sourced food subscription box service stocked full of seasonal homemade meals and treats. Convenience in a box is what they offer, food is either already prepared or needs minimal instructions before you heat and eat!

Renew-a-lawn by Matt Keenan
Renew-a-lawn offers premium lawn care service using sustainable fertilizers and safe weed treatments. All their fertilizers come from waste products and support a circular economy versus petroleum based synthetic fertilizers.


Media Contact
Nour Mazloum
Marketing & Communications Officer
Kingston Economic Development Corporation
613-329-9270
[email protected] 

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About Kingston Economic Development Corporation               
Kingston Economic Development Corporation is focused on building a strong community and supporting Kingston’s thriving economy. Its mission is to provide dynamic and collaborative leadership by leveraging Kingston's unique assets to create jobs and investments in order to sustain, grow, and transform Kingston's economy to meet the needs of the 21st century.