FIND A LOCATION

  • NORTH FORGE SMARTPARK

    WINNIPEG

    CEO: Joelle Foster

    441 – 100 Innovation Drive
    Winnipeg, Manitoba R3T 6G2• P: 204-262-6400

  • North Forge | East

    PINAWA

    President: Shane Li

    24 Aberdeen Avenue
    Pinawa, Manitoba R0E 1L0 • P: 204-753-5170

  • Fabrication Lab

    WINNIPEG

    Vice-President: Marney Stapley

    125 Adelaide Street
    Winnipeg, Manitoba R3A 0W4 • P: 204-799-2033

  • North Forge | North

    THE PAS

    University College of the North
    436-7th Street East, The Pas, Manitoba R9A 1M7
    (204) 623-0311

Founders Program

Build your business – better, faster, cheaper

No matter what stage you are at,
the online four-stage Founders Program is available to anyone in Canada.
We provide comprehensive resources, combined with regional knowledge and international experience.  Technology-enabled and advanced manufacturing businesses will receive foundational business training, access to experts, networking, mentorship, pathfinding to growth capital, and ongoing entrepreneur-in-resident support. 

Joining the North Forge Founders Program will provide you with:

A network of peers, professionals and subject-matter experts.

A coordinated program of supports and services.

A path to investment readiness.

Online and in-person, hands-on education.

Access to a curated resource list.

North Forge will assess coachability and fit to determine the most suitable stage for each company.

 

 

Everyone signs a code of ethics to protect their IP and ideas.

Pathfinder

Who You Are: You are an entrepreneur with an idea. You need to gain an in-depth understanding of the customer problem, the market, and the critical supports required for success with a honed-in value proposition. No cost.

Stage Length: 7 weeks

What You Get

  • 7 online modules and 5 online Master Classes licensed through MaRS Discovery District
  • You can apply for Microcredential after completion

Expected Outcomes

    • An understanding of the customer problem
    • Learning how to see the world from your customer’s perspective
    • A validated value proposition
    • Customer interview scripts and effective interviewing techniques
    • A framework for recording and analyzing interview data

 

Apply

Base Camp

Who You Are: You are an early-stage startup with a product that is undergoing primary product development. You need to understand the importance of the business model canvas (BMC) in telling the story of your business and learn how to pitch. No cost.

Stage Length: 8 weeks

What You Get

  • 5 online modules and 5 online Master Classes licensed through MaRS Discovery District
  • Pitch 101 – 2 hours
  • Cashflow Management – 4 hours
  • You can apply for Microcredential after completion

Expected Outcomes

    • An understanding of the lean startup methodology and why the BMC is used
    • Complete multiple versions of your BMC and conduct ongoing tests to validate your business model
    • Analyze external and internal forces acting on your business
    • Learn to pitch and tell the story of your business model

 

Apply

Ascent

Who You Are: You are a startup looking to build a working prototype and commercialize your product. You want to expand your network to support your business growth and are preparing to scale. Cost: $500/month (deferred payment).

Average Length: 12 months, with an additional 12 months of resource support available for business models that have a slower rate of entry to market.

 

What You Get

  • Bi-monthly meetings with a North Forge Entrepreneur-in-Residence
  • Access to the North Forge Angel Network
  • Access to 4 free Clinics
  • Access to Growth Coaches
  • Access to Pitchbook
  • Monthly access to experienced mentors on a variety of specific business topics
  • Numerous partner programs, resources, and industry networks
  • Unique access to free and subsidized business services
  • Pathfinding and coaching support to access growth capital
  • Pitch presentation scrubs
  • Access to a coworking desk at the Innovation Hub
  • Free membership with Tech Manitoba

Expected Outcomes

    • Monthly performance monitoring on your progress, in consultation with North Forge staff
    • A startup business model that is ready to enter the market and scale
    • A robust and detailed business strategy

 

Apply

North Star

Who You Are: You are a startup with a proven revenue-to-customer base, and the potential to raise a Series A investment round. You are growing quickly with a validated marketable solution. You need a network of specialized supports that will help you realize scalable growth, and prepare you for an investment round. Cost: $1000/month.

Stage Length: 12 months, with an additional 12 months of resource support available for business models that have a slower rate of entry to market.

What You Get

  • Bi-monthly meetings with a North Forge Entrepreneur-in-Residence
  • Access to the North Forge Angel Network
  • Access to 4 free Clinics
  • Access to Growth Coaches
  • Access to Pitchbook
  • Advanced customized training sessions on a variety of specific business topics
  • One-on-one access to experienced industry and business members
  • Numerous partner programs, resources, and industry networks
  • Unique access to free and subsidized business services
  • Pathfinding and coaching support to access growth capital
  • Pitch presentation scrubs
  • Access to a coworking desk at the Innovation Hub
  • Connection with VC and angel networks, and other critical resources to help your business scale

Expected Outcomes

    • Seed A company
    • Generating annual revenue of $500K-$1M
    • Ready to raise further growth capital

 

Apply

“North Forge’s Founders Program has been an invaluable resource for getting Portal Bots off the ground. The classes have been fantastic, and it is great to have the support of experts and fellow members. I very much look forward to starting the next chapter.”

“North Forge helped me get connected with the community and gave us valuable insight into what problems we needed to solve.”

The North Forge team’s extensive business-building knowledge and connections to local resources paired with the lived experiences of the Entrepreneurs-in-Residence have been helpful in guiding my company decisions and next steps.

“North Forge has been very encouraging with a wide network of mentors for almost every industry. We had been very fortunate to have mentors who are experienced in the Educational Technology vertical as well as advisors who are awesome in planning for Go To Market forming a very strong core of advisor expertise. They have provided valuable advice to gain traction and scale quickly with the solid foundation set for rapid growth.”

“North Forge believed in me before I did.”

“North Forge has added a lot of value to Carbon Block as we have gone through our entrepreneurial journey. Having access to the rich mentor pool and the collaboration spaces has proven invaluable.”

“North Forge has been an amazing resource for the business development of our company. Their programing has pushed us to reach out to our customers, plan our business strategy, investigate manufacturing processes, and organize our financials.”

“The worst thing a budding entrepreneur can do is spend a lot of time developing a product that nobody wants.  The North Forge Founders Program showed me how to test my business idea and confirm customer demand before moving forward with my business Hitchmail”.

“Starting a company at a young age with few prior experiences may seem like an overwhelming and daunting task. Thanks to the North Forge Founders Program, I have been able to denounce my initial fear of failure and dared to put myself in a position to learn. The program is intended to be pursued at your own pace. North Forge’s extensive network provides substantial resources and advisors to support your ongoing business needs. I am thankful North Forge has granted me this opportunity, it has truly opened my eyes to what’s possible and attainable in today’s world.”

Start-ups