Spark webstie on tablet next to coffee

Spark Nova Scotia 2021 Launches With More Time and Training

SYDNEY, NS: This year’s Spark Nova Scotia startup competition – launching with a Zoom workshop on August 16, 2021 – will give entrepreneurs over a month to finesse their applications while benefitting from a four-part, world-class training series. 

Spark 2021 offers two components, training and competition, each with its own sign-up. Training is open to all, with little more than a one-line idea needed to register. Participants have until October 4, 2021 to apply for the competition, using insights gained from the training, including a new “Storytelling & Presenting” session.

In previous years, entrepreneurs had to submit lengthy applications by early September, before having even a day of training. “The training was so good that entrepreneurs wanted to change their applications as a result,” said Erinn Smith, Executive Director of the Nova Scotia Association of Community Business Development Corporations (CBDCs). “It made sense, so this year we moved the deadline until after training.”

The prizes remain the same. Nova Scotians in rural, coastal and academic communities in Cape Breton, Northern NS and Southwestern NS can win up to $50,000 for their innovative business ideas, to help turn them into viable businesses. Last year, 43 applicants resulted in 20 finalists who advanced into pitch training. Independent judges from among sponsors, government and local businesses selected 11 winners, awarding a total of $375,000.

“The 2020 winners were remarkable, and we’re hoping to see even more this year,” said Ms. Smith. “If you have a business idea, register for training. It might be a spark.”

Spark NS 2021 Logo

ABOUT: Spark Nova Scotia is an initiative of Nova Scotia’s CBDCs, funded by ACOA, emphasizing community-based business learning. The competition focuses on rural Nova Scotia communities to ensure support and programming for start-ups outside the metropolitan Halifax area. Sponsors are Cox & Palmer, Grant Thornton, OKR Financial, Innovacorp and Nova Scotia Business Inc. In addition to the four Spark training modules, Spark registrants have access to a bootcamp delivered by CEED.

CONTACT: Sandra Goodwin: 1 (902) 441-5476;