Rick Emberley: 'Demand is not going to be the problem.'

Rick Emberley: 'Demand is not going to be the problem.'

BoomersWork, the Halifax company that helps retired executives find part-time work, is rebranding itself as BoomersPlus and launching operations in Ontario.

The new branding is part of an expanded service that will offer its clients — largely people over the age of 50 —various lifestyle services, such as travel bookings and financial services.

Since it began in 2012, the goal of BoomersWork has been to provide contract work for retired executives who want to keep active with project-based or part-time jobs. It matches these individuals with companies or organizations that need some help from experienced personnel, especially for special projects.

Co-founder Rick Emberley said in an interview that this will continue to be a cornerstone of the company, but it will expand its offering as it enters the new central Canadian market.

“It’s always been part of our business model . . . to create what essentially is a lifestyle hub for the boomer generation,” said Emberley. “We started it on the employment area because there were a lot of boomers out there looking for the part-time work and there were . . . a lot of talent gaps existing on the employer side.”

Emberley said he and the other four or five co-founders of the company wanted to carry out the rebrand before they moved into the Ontario market, so they have been working on it for the past few months.

They spent some time raising money in Ontario, seeking funding from individuals who could help the enterprise with more than just capital. They wanted people who could help build networks in the province and provide leadership to the growing venture. Emberley said the group was successful, raising more than $500,000 from several individuals.

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As BoomersPlus, Emberley said, the company plans to expand its services beyond its employment offering by providing baby boomers with an online lifestyle destination forum. The company is already in talks with potential partners about providing services on the website. Emberley expects to conclude one deal with a travel company in the coming weeks, and is in talks with a finance company.

“Reaction to our business concept has been great, and our growth is allowing us to expand into larger markets and also offer a wider range of services to those that register on our database,” he said. “Registration is free and our users remain anonymous in the site.”

The company has seven employees — including its development team — in Atlantic Canada and now has its first employee on the ground in Ontario. It plans to grow the team in Ontario in the future to include sales and marketing people. It has begun to encourage baby boomers across Ontario to register on the site, and says it is also receiving “very promising” indications that employers will find the product useful.

Emberley said that after five years, the team understands that there are lots of places on the internet with content for baby boomers. But what’s difficult to find is all the lifestyle content and offers in one place.

“Demand is not going to be the problem,” he said. “If we have a problem, it’s going to be building the product properly so it gets the greatest amount of appeal.”

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