• Certificate of Completion: You will receive a certificate upon completion of this training program.

  • A customized version of this program with 12 ONLINE COACHING SESSIONS, GROUP ACTIVITIES, MENTORSHIP & PRACTICAL PROJECTS is available to groups & organizations. Contact us for further inquiry.

About this training program

Course Overview

  • VentureStart’s self-serve online format will take an entrepreneur with an idea or the desire to start a venture from beginning to end at the speed comfortable for each individual entrepreneur. Even if there is no venture or idea at the present time, the knowledge gained from VentureStart will provide valuable insights into what it will take for an individual to bring an idea or business venture to successful launch.

  • Since its inception as an online education program, nearly 400 entrepreneurs have used VentureStart through the STEM BSD program to help them start-up their businesses. Since then, the VentureStart contents have been available in snippets in a variety of university courses globally, including the Academy of Management and York University (Lassonde School of Engineering)

Why take this program

Program Features

  1. Credibility - This program is based on an undergraduate course in Technology Entrepreneurship originally taught by our team at University of Waterloo (UW) and University of Toronto Mississauga (UTM) and the Innovation  Centre as well as delivered as entrepreneurship workshops as part of FedDev’ STEM Business Skills Development (BSD) program in which FedDev invested over $9M to support STEM entrepreneurs.  This was so successful that the initiative received a top-up of over $3M before that project concluded.  
  2. Systematic approach to success – The objective of the BSD training has been to lead the STEM entrepreneurs through the steps of building a solid base of knowledge that would be needed for business start-up as well as provide the foundation for the creation of a business development plan for their new venture. The “Venture Start” course will build their knowledge of the necessary business skills needed along the way. 
  3. Proven method – based on the our proven methodology of the Critical Factors Assessment 
  4. Knowledge Base – We use best practices such as CFA to enhance the learning for participants.   The course does not just employ best practices in online education, but can also be supplemented by coaching and mentoring with one-on-one advisor feedback, live events, tools and services targeted to help the STEM entrepreneurs develop their business concept to the point of being ready for external investment. 
  5. Flexibility – Venture Start was created to be offered online -which meant the content would be available anytime anywhere.

Watch Intro Video

Why take this program

Josie & Andrew explain

Content Overview

  • 2

    Chapter #1: Introduction

    • How to Create a Successful Business Venture

    • 8 Overall Factors for Venture Success

  • 3

    Chapter #2: How to Become a Successful Entrepreneur

    • Do You Have What It Takes?

    • How to Form Your Startup Team

  • 4

    Chapter #3: How to Identify Opportunities

    • How to Identify Sources of Opportunities

    • How to Establish a Value Proposition

    • When Do You Start a New Venture?

    • How to Understand the Market Environment

    • How to Define Micro and Macro Market Needs

  • 5

    Chapter #4: How to Make Money

    • What is a Business Model

    • How to Use Winning Business Models

    • What is Open Source Innovation?

    • How to Create Shareholder Value

    • Does Your Idea Have What It Takes?

  • 6

    Chapter #5: Creating the Path to New Venture Success

    • How to Use The Business Model or Business Plan

    • How to Develop and Write the Business Plan

    • How to Develop the Marketing Strategy

    • How to Create The Marketing Plan

    • How to Create the Buzz and Your Value Statement

    • How to Get From Channel to Market

    • How to Use Your Sales Strategy to Attract First Customers

    • How to Consider Risk and Mitigate Them

    • How to Develop and Manage IP

    • How to Establish Your Corporate Structure And Contractual Agreements

  • 7

    Chapter #6: Money Talks

    • How to Develop Your Financial Strategy

    • How to Create P&L, Cash Flows and Balance Sheets

    • How to Understand the Investor

    • How to Attract Investors

    • What Are Your Exit Options?

  • 8

    Extra Videos

    • How to Be Strategically Innovative

    • How to Make Strategic Decisions

    • How to Learn From Failure and Experimentation

    • How to Deal With Investors

    • How to Manage the Team

    • How to Handle the Financials

    • How to Boost Your Sales and Marketing

  • 9

    Exit Survey & Community Support

    • Before you go ...


Leadership Team; Bergeron Chair in Technology Entrepreneurship, Lassonde School of Engineering, York University ; Co-founder, Disruptive Innovation Hub(DIH)

Andrew Maxwell

Andrew has been involved in developing and enhancing many of the tools offered by the CIC, such as the CFA and InnoGate, and regularly uses these when he engages with a variety of clients, from new ventures to established companies, from government policy makers to universities. Andrew is in demand as a public speaker on a global basis, as well as a highly rated professor of entrepreneurial engineering at the Lassonde School of Engineering. Most of his research is developed from his direct experiences in working with client companies.

Josie Graham

With Economic Development Certificate studies (U.Waterloo) & Marketing studies (Ivey), 15+ years of solutions selling in the high tech sectors with a background in manufacturing, I am multi-lingual and a graduate of Glendon College, York U. I can determine the scope of a problem, find the resources needed to fix the problem. Armed with innovative thinking, I provide Business Planning, Market Entry strategies, Validation Assessments, Alignment studies. Using CIC’s proven processes I help start-ups and entrepreneurs determine their idea’s market potential, strengths and weaknesses, then how to best address them to drive their business successfully forward.
Photo Credits : Main Banner @MarioGogh Second Banner @darianepriakhina