Halifax-based BoomersPlus has closed a $1.05 million funding round, led by Innovacorp, which will help the company expand in Eastern Canada and beyond.

In a statement Tuesday, the company also said it is forming a partnership with the Centre for Entrepreneurship, Education and Development, or CEED, to help Nova Scotian retirees mentor entrepreneurs or form their own businesses.

Founded in 2013 by serial entrepreneur Rick Emberley, BoomersPlus helps to match retired baby-boomers with businesses that need contract workers. The idea is that there is a wealth of experience in the pool of retirees and they can carry out projects or do temporary work for businesses. More than 30,000 Canadians retire each month, creating growing talent gaps across multiple sectors, particularly at the senior level.

“In talking to my peers, I found there were many boomers like me, who were closing off accomplished careers but weren’t yet ready for full-time retirement,” said Emberley in the statement. “The more people I talked to the more I realized that this growing network could be of significant interest to employers.”

The statement said 37 percent of Canadian business-owners identify a shortage of skilled labour as a growing business constraint, and baby-boomers (born between 1945 and 1964) are seen as providing a solution, particularly at the senior and executive level.

BoomersPlus.com has more than 4,100 professional retirees in its database and upwards of 130 employers using the service, including the Discovery Centre, Omista Credit Union, Devonian Coast, WBLI Accounting, Pacrim Hospitality and NB Power.

Innovacorp Invested $7.93M in 2017-18

With a combination of public- and private-sector investors in place, Emberley said he now has his sights on a major expansion in Newfoundland and Labrador, Prince Edward Island and across Ontario. The startup doubled its workforce and revenues in 2017.

“By providing access to a unique source of high-end talent that is otherwise not available, the BoomersPlus platform is already delivering value to its customers,” said Innovacorp Vice-President of Investment Andrew Ray. “The quality of this talent is clearly evident in the BoomersPlus team itself and we’re excited to be a part of scaling their proven model across North America.”

BoomersPlus has recently expanded its services to include a radio and podcast series interviewing high-profile boomers, as well as articles and commentary curated by boomers and corporate partners.

BoomersPlus recently signed a memorandum of understanding with CEED so they can work together to help boomers to consult with and mentor early-stage businesses, encourage more seniorpreneurs, and connect potential angel investors to local startups.

“We’ve taken a specific and serious interest in seniors and entrepreneurship because they are the fastest-growing cohort of entrepreneurs and they tend to be more successful because they bring their own liquidity along with a lifetime of experience,” said CEED Chief Executive Craig MacMullin. “Our relationship with BoomersPlus is something we see as helping us support the needs of entrepreneurs and the business community because of the ease they provide in accessing this incredible pool of prequalified experts.”

 

Disclosure: Innovacorp is a client of Entrevestor.

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